Because I said so, that’s why.

Guest Post by Maggie O’Neill

May 22 - mommy blogger Because I said so, that’s why. An iconic Mom-phrase that resonates with most of us but is taking on new meaning in the marketing world today.  The power of what Mom says – and even the word Mom itself – is quickly becoming the industry’s hottest new ticket, despite the fact that Moms have been around and influencing purchasing since the beginning of time. Eve…Apple?

From terms like Mamaste to Momosphere, the Power Moms, identified by Nielsen  as ages 25-54 with at least one child, have a voice that is $2 trillion dollars strong for US brands* and make up  20 percent of today’s  online population.  And the group itself is becoming more diverse year after year, demanding targeted marketing to their definition of “mom.”

With all this buzz and promise, a misstep or two by the marketing industry and we could be headed for a “mom-com” bust.  One mom told me that she complained about the benefits of a face care product online.  She got an email back and a Tweet apologizing that they fell short and that they were sending her a free sample of the exact same product.  Great opportunity, completely blown. 

Why?  The almost automated response and one way conversation from the company , plus the fact that they sent what the mom considered a bad product back to her, not only pushed her away, but you know she told a million people about it by now.  What should they have done?   The face care company had a perfect opportunity to engage this mom in a dialogue and find out what the issues were and if another product might make more sense for her.  Did her friends have similar issues?  Could they provide another recommendation, coupons to one of their other product lines for her family?  Simply asking what they could do rather than pushing back a bad solution would have helped them not only win back this mom, but remain a recommended brand to her network and influencers.

What this says is that if we all don’t take a step back and listen to this very vocal, very tech-savvy and very diverse group, we run the risk of being tuned out.  In fact, according to a May 5, 2009 Brandweek article, Moms Say Marketers Ignore Their Needs, it is already happening.  Sixty percent of moms believe marketers are ignoring their needs and 73 percent feel advertisers don’t understand them.** 

So what’s a mom marketer to do?  Let the mom stereotype go; create a real world experience in their space; and finally talk with them not at them. Think Tupperware Party 3.0 and remember the old Faberge commercial about “telling two friends” before you jump in.  Recommended can go both ways, and oh yes, Moms still have eyes in the back of their heads.

* Mom’s Marketing Coalition

Photo Credit: Velveteen Mind

6 thoughts on “Because I said so, that’s why.

  1. Thank you for the informative post, it gave me some food for thought. Besides the photo is really marvelous, it is very cozy. Our mothers are our all in the global sense, even when they do or talk too muchJ I’ll use the post for my essay writing.

  2. Megan – We originally pulled the image from Google where it had no direct credit. We added a credit to the post above.

  3. Some are already doing a great job with influencer groups, entrepreneur programs, niche marketing within the group, etc. And they are being recognized for it. But a few bad ones can spoil the bunch. And this audience will be quick to call them out.

  4. Great post Maggie.
    Carpe Matris = Seize the Mom
    I hope brands heed your advice of listening first, creating relevant experiences second and then finally engaging on a one to one level.