BSM Media is immersed in the Mom Market- globally and locally. Along the way, we find unique and creative opportunities for companies to reach moms. We bring you this Mom Marketing Clearinghouse as a service to make reaching moms easier and more cost effective. For information on these initatives, feel free to contact the group directly or email Amy Shiman at AShiman@bsmmedia.com
MOM FUNDRAISER EVENT
Moms Group hosting fundraiser for breast cancer research looking for corporate sponsors and donations of raffle prizes. Varying levels of sponsor packages available as well as sampling opportunity. Event will draw between 300-500 moms in NY/NJ area. Act fast as event is in early May. Contact Amy Platt firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.
Major Christian-oriented brand looking for cross promotion partner for product launch in June. For more information, contact Holly Edger atHedger@bsmmedia.com
ONLINE VIDEO DESTINATION FOR MOMS
Newbaby.com: Throughout the month of May, NewBaby.com will be featuring products in our giveaway promotion and sweepstakes. For the opportunity to showcase your product and receive promotional space on Newbaby.com, contact Natalie at NZupo@bsmmedia.com.
EDUCATION MINDED MOMS
Yahoo Group with 2,000+ members willing to post product reviews and appropriate website links. To be considered, companies/websites must offer educational content or tools free of charge. For more information, contact Lori Seaborg at email@example.com.
Mom Bloggers: Mom bloggers seeking sponsorships to attend BlogHer Conference July 2008. This is your opportunity to develop meaningful relationships with mom bloggers. Sponsorships vary from $500 to $2000. On site promotion and inclusion in future blogs. For more information contact Natalie atNZupo@bsmmedia.com
LONG ISLAND MOMS
Long Island company looking for products, coupons, magazines and samples to be included in 10,000+ goodie bags distributed in OB/GYN offices. For more information, contact Amy Platt at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Today’s Mom Market holds the key to over $2.1 trillion dollars in annual US spending. Effectively tapping into this market can be lucrative to the bottom line, brand awareness and overall growth of your business. It amazes me that even today, in a world of consumer generated media and YouTube marketing, that many marketers still believe it is necessary to buy expensive television time and print ads in national parenting magazine. Although these efforts reach a large number of moms in one swoop, they don’t provide the relationship, customization or personalization with a brand that moms are seeking. This is good news for companies with small marketing budgets or shrinking resources. As technology, socialization and consumerism have changed, the opportunities to connect with the mom market have expanded in way that increases both ROI and sales for your business. Let’s take a look at three easy and effective ways to reach moms.
You’ve heard about the power of word of mouth and you’ve read the headlines about Mom Influencers. Also known as the “Go-To” moms, these women share information on products, services and retailers regularly with other moms. As you might guess, Mom Mavens earn their spot at the top of the pyramid of peers from their extensive breath of knowledge. We have identified that Mom Mavens share common behaviors and traits that make them an influencer.
BSM Media has developed the Mom Matrix, a system of 18 common behaviors that position a mom to be a distributor of marketing, product and brand information. Some of these qualities include mothers who are group leaders such as PTOs, moms of multiples and moms who run businesses. A combination of two or three of these behaviors allows you to identify moms who have strong established social networks. In word of mouth marketing, these networks are leveraged as outlets for her to share marketing messages. In order to engage these influencers with your message it is necessary to supply them with some type of exclusive nugget of information that elevates them among her peers. It’s important to also give her something to share with others as well as something to share with her child. You might consider hosting a special preview night in your store or providing mom mavens with special discounts they can share with friends.
To identify local mom mavens we suggest scouring the pages of regional parenting publications or local Websites. Identifying the leaders of these groups can be your first step to developing meaningful relationships with Mom Mavens.
Mommy bloggers have been a hot topic in the media recently. Research conducted by BSM Media cites almost 50% of moms now read a blog with a growing number of moms going to blogs for product recommendations. These technology savvy mothers can be an effective way to market your business. Consider them Mom Mavens on steroids. Some mom bloggers have audiences of over 8 million readers and subscribers. However, marketing through bloggers takes time and a great deal of relationship building.
As companies are scrambling to have mom bloggers post about their stores, product and services a great many of them are making severe mistakes along the way. This is one instance where learning from others’ mistakes is invaluable and doing it right is best learned with a list of “What Not to Dos.”
Don’t Google “Mom Bloggers” to pull the names of the top searches and blindly contact them. There have been many documented debacles in the blogosphere about companies who have done just that. One company sent Easter information to a Jewish Mom blogger while another emailed child product samples to a childless women. Spending a few minutes to read the blog and learn about the blogger can go a long way to avoiding such blunders. Get to know the writer so that you establish a meaningful relationship.
Don’t assume the Mom Blogger wants your coupons, samples or product information. After reading the blog for several days, reach out to the mom blogger with a friendly, sincere introduction. Tell her your goals and ask her permission to communicate with her in the future.
Don’t be one-sided. A true relationship flows in two directions. Mom bloggers are looking for special information to share with their audiences. Many run contests or giveaways in their posts as well. Ask the mom writer how you can develop a mutually beneficial relationship and express your willingness to help her reach her goals as well as yours.
YouTube for Mom
Over 75% of moms have viewed at least one online video in the last 7 days. In fact, BSM Media research points to online video as the next preferred media among moms. Think about it – online video allows moms to hear and perhaps watch your message while stirring macaroni and cheese and answering homework questions too! It’s perfect for delivering your message when moms have time to listen. Creating video that showcases your product or retail location doesn’t require expensive production crews or pages of well crafted scripts. The most popular online videos are conversational in nature and run 3-4 minutes in length.
Moms are more likely to watch solution based videos. If you are marketing a product, focus on the solution it provides rather than its features. For instance, if you are selling a stroller with the latest in mobility, create a video titled, “Navigating Narrow Store Aisles with Baby In Tow” and feature ways to make shopping easier for moms rather than focusing on the turning ability of the stroller. Of course, you’ll mention your stroller as one of the solutions for moms but she’s more likely to click on it and watch if it provides a solution to a challenging problem.
Once you’ve produced your video segments there are plenty of online destinations for distribution. YouTube is of course the largest platform for distribution but there are many others. Newbaby.com, www.newbaby.com, allows moms to learn, creates, share and archive videos and offers companies the opportunity to upload videos at no cost. Through the use of a viewer or widget, videos can also enhance the experience of visitors to your website.
While many of these programs require a more significant time commitment than placing an advertisement in a magazine, the end results are sure to be well worth it. Taking the time to cultivate lasting relationships between moms and your brand will translate into brand loyalty and positive word-of-mouth communication- both invaluable to your business’s bottom line. And whose bottom line couldn’t afford a piece of Mom’s trillion dollar pie?
The Internet has long been compared to the “anything-goes” Wild West. New trends, however, suggest it is becoming an updated version of the sewing circle of yesteryear.
“Mommy blogs” and related mom-oriented social networks enable merchants to communicate with consumers in a space where they are actively engaged in product discussions. According to Maria Bailey of the consulting firm BSM Media and author of “Trillion Dollar Moms,” as well as an upcoming book about moms and the Internet, there are 10,000 active mommy bloggers (moms who post at least once a month) in the United States. Bailey’s research found that 60 percent of moms read blogs at least once a week and 75 percent said blogs are the medium they are most excited about.
Product evaluations are of special importance on mommy blogs. “Among moms, knowledge confers social status,” Bailey explained. “And knowing about new, useful products or good deals is highly valued.”
A white paper (“Online Communities: What Should Retailers Do?”) published in mid-March by Internet application developer Optaros articulated the advantage this will have for Web-savvy retailers: “What if a store can be placed where the customers are spending their time, rather than trying to get the customers to come to the [store’s Web site]?”
According to Bailey, one of the keys to reaching the online mom community is authenticity. “It’s very, very important,” said Bailey, “if you try to reach out to mommy bloggers, that you don’t just send them a press release.”
Kathy Ireland Worldwide has authenticity in spades. While the company hasn’t gone so far as to actively create an online network, it does allow members to communicate with Ireland. Sometimes, this communication takes unexpected turns. “I get a lot—a lot—of e-mails that are faith-related,” said Ireland. “It’s something that I’m very mindful of, because I never want to exploit my faith. That’s tricky when you sell stuff, but it’s such a huge part of who I am.”
Discussions of faith may seem pretty far afield from mainstream, brand-building operating procedure. But, according to Bailey, authenticity is the coin of the digital realm, in contrast to the lifeless, board-approved copy of press releases.
Not all communications are so personal. Ireland shared a recently received e-mail with Furniture Style as an example: “Your company is rather limited in window treatments. I own some hard window treatments that you’ve made, but I don’t want that in my bedroom. Why have you not addressed this lack of service, and where should I go to find soft window treatments that coordinate with the area rug in my bedroom and my top-of-bed, both of which are from your European Country style guide?”
According to Ireland, her team will respond quickly and might “ask [the customer] to e-mail us a photo of her rug, and we’ll help her tie it together with other items in the room. Any product we don’t carry, we’ll do some research, and find good manufacturers who are in line with our pricing.”
Such back-and-forth communication is a far cry from traditional advertising, where a brand delivers a marketing message—whether through a print, television or banner ad—that the consumer may or may not be receptive to at the time of delivery. Mommy blogs and networks give retailers, including those specializing in home furnishings, the opportunity to engage their primary consumer in a way that is far more meaningful than the typical “Labor Day Sales Event” ad buy.
Say two words to any mom of a 4-15 year ol girl, “Miley Cyrus” or “Hannah Montana” and you are certain to evoke some type of response. In most cases, it will be positive. “Oh, my daughter loves her” to “Her music is so affirming.” But what makes Miley Cyrus so appealing to mothers? The secret lies in the core values and key motivators of mothers. Disney has produced a marketing to moms initative that is so strong it exceeds American Girl and Build A Bear Workshop, two brands built on leveraging mom’s approval to drive repeat purchases and brand loyalty. To fully understand the creation of this powerful machine called Hannah Montana, let’s peel back the layers and take a look inside.
Achy Breaky Heart
It all starts with Billy Ray Cyrus, her father. Tell a mom that you don’t know who Miley is and she will most often tell you, “she’s Billy Ray Cyrus’ daughter.” The same Billy Ray that wooed the hearts of 40 something boomers with his Achy Breaky Heart twang. Moms can immediately relate to the good times and memories they had singing along to the older Cyrus in the early 90s. With music being one of those pop culture wedges that drive generations apart, Miley and Billy Ray Cyrus offer moms and daughters the opportunity to share rather than distance themselves from each other. A very good start in earning mom’s approval.
Good Wholesome Entertainment
Bratz dolls may have outsold Barbie last Christmas but there is a growing trend of anti-Libby Lu moms. Moms who want their little girls to remain little girls. They are visiting sites such as Preciousmoms.com, www.preciousmoms.com where they can share their views with other like-minded spiritual and conservative mothers. They have had enough of idols such as Lindsey Lohan and Brittany Spears and are searching for good role models for their daughters. In two and half hours of Miley’s current concert performance, not once did any of her costumes reveal a breast or even a belly button. Her dancers managed to entertain young concert goers without girating or pulsing their pelvic muscles. This is the kind of safe environment, cyber-fearing moms are desire for their young girls.
Miles of Smiles
Many brands have been built on selling products to moms but few have truly mastered the art of winning the hearts of her child at the same time. Think about American Girl. If you’ve ever been in their flagship store on any given Saturday and watched the bulging arms of moms eager to purchase product than you know what I’m about to describe. Truly remarkable brands win mom over so well that they buy product even without the influence of the nag factor. Moms aspire to give their daughters the “tea party” they remember from their childhood, so they flock to the American Girl store to brunch with $80 dolls whose cloths cost more than their favorite pair of jeans. Miley presents the same opportunity to create a smile on the faces of their daughters. At a recent concert, I watched as mothers happily shelled out $35 for concert t-shirts and relished in the delight of seeing their girls go crazy. Best of all she could share it with her.
Bonding Before the Teen Years Set In
It’s not surprising to professionals who study moms that Miley Cyrus’ concert was a sellout in every city. Her concert presents mothers with the chance to share an experience that she knows has a very short shelf life in the eyes of her tween: going to a concert with mom. Think back to the time when these boomer moms were teens. Chances are they didn’t go to their first concert with their mothers. No, they saw Lynryd Skynyrd at the sportatorium with their peers after swearing their life away to their mom who sat up in the kitchen until they got home. Mily Cyrus’ Tour allows mom to share in the first concert experience before she becomes uncool in the minds of her precious daughters.
As Miley would say, “Rock On.”
“Help! I’m getting pressure from my manager and executive team to tap mom influencers.”
It’s a cry that I hear everyday from even the most experienced marketers. Cultivating relationships with the millions of mom bloggers out there could take years yet you have sales goals this month.
So where do you begin? The first thing to do is to stop long enough to determine who is your target market? Is it Gen X moms with new babies or boomers with teens? Knowing how you need to deliver to your message will help you to shrink the universe of 83 million moms. Then it’s important to find the right influencers. We call them Mom Mavens but regardless of what you call them, influential moms will deliver your message to other moms if you empower them with it. We believe that these influencers will become more and more important as marketing budgets shrink and you need a greater ROI. Engaging Mom Mavens or Alpha Moms to deliver the message not only costs less than traditional media buys but delivers your message with intense credibility.
We caution marketers however to approach Mom Mavens carefully. It’s not about mailing a few samples and hoping the mom spreads the word. It’s about creating a relationship with the right mom and engaging her in a mutually beneficial partnership. BSM Media has developed the Mom Matrix©, a system of 18 common behaviors which Mom Mavens exhibit on a regular basis. Among these traits you will find: the number of children she has, the roles she plays in her community and the career path she has chosen. It’s important to identify the right mom to carry your message.