Moms need subtle approach

18 May 2012

NEW YORK: Brand owners targeting US mothers could benefit from dividing this audience into segments such as "wallflowers", "mobilisers" and "urban originals", a report has argued.

MWW Group, the public relations firm, surveyed 1,000 women with children, and as a result identified five different clusters that marketers might consider trying to engage.

Some 30% were categorised as "practical adopters", averaging out at 45 years old, and using technology to balance their work and home lives. They were also typically "second generation adopters" of social media.

Elsewhere, the 23% of "casual connectors" used digital channels to keep in touch with close friends and family. Average individuals in this group were characterised as being 47 years of old, and had the lowest level of smartphone uptake.

"Wallflowers" constituted an additional 22% of interviewees. A majority of these consumers had a role as full-time homemakers. They also favoured browsing content rather than creating it, and were entertainment-focused in their media habits.

These participants were especially enthusiastic about tablets like the iPad and enjoyed reading "shared" content online, meaning they often used platforms such as Pinterest.

"Mobilisers" made up 17% of the panel, were, broadly speaking, 33 years old and the most "hyper-connected" cohort, being both highly engaged with mobile phones and influenced by celebrities.

A smaller community, "urban originals", or 8% those polled, were usually 35 years old, and fitted the profile of early adopters. Every member of this demographic posted product reviews and 85% tweeted regularly.

More specifically, 90% of all online content generated by mothers was attributable to this segment, according to the analysis.

When it came to the spreading of new trends, "wallflowers" were particularly influenced by "mobilisers", while this latter group and "urban originals" played a similar role where "practical adopters" are concerned.

Doug O'Reilly, vice president of MWW Insights, concluded mothers were not a "monolithic audience", but suggested the various "behavioural archetypes" featured in the study had certain things in common.

"These moms are uniquely influenced - and hold influence - over others, including celebrities, friends, families, and other networks," he added.

Data sourced from MWW Group; additional content by Warc staff