Moms need targeted model

15 June 2011

NEW YORK: Moms in the US display highly diverse media consumption habits depending on their age, a study has revealed.

The Coalition for Innovative Media Measurement, supported by firms including Procter & Gamble, NBC, Unilever and TimeWarner, has released a new report focusing on this key demographic.

Its findings were based on research, conducted with the Media Behavior Institute, involving 1,000 adults who employed eDiaries on iPhones to record their media usage every 30 minutes over ten days.

The analysis compared mothers in three age-groups: "Millennials", or 18-32 year olds; "Gen X", or 33-46 year olds; and "Baby Boomers", or 47-64 year olds.

In all, the biggest differences were found in the proportion of time dedicated to "basic duties" like household chores, meal preparation and grocery shopping.

For Millennials, such tasks took up 20% of their time, hitting 26% concerning their Gen X counterparts, and 29% while discussing Gen Y.

Similarly, 33% of daily activities the youngest segment participated in incorporated "connecting" with others, slipping to 26% for the middle group, and the 23% lodged by the oldest cohort.

Stronger consistency was found around "down time", pursuing hobbies and making a living, the report stated.

Looking at food preparation, 72% of 18-32 year olds prepared food or cooked on an average weekday, rising to 82% among 33-46 year olds, and 78% relating to 47-64 year olds.

Figures stood at 68%, 80% and 76% respectively for housework or chores, while 34% of Millennials visited stores nearly every day, climbing to 42% for Gen X and 40% when assessing Boomers.

Some 43% of the oldest featured consumers watched Live TV as they prepared meals, declining to 39% for the middle group, and 24% for the most youthful mothers.

Internet usage attained 17% for the Gen X community, measured against the 10% posted by Millennials and 12% for Boomers.

Gen X contributors demonstrated the greatest engagement with social networks, and mobile scores here reached just 11% for Boomers, halving the numbers of the two alternative cohorts.

In terms of broader "connecting", 78% of Millennials socialise face-to-face on a typical weekday, falling to 67% for Gen X and 60% for Boomers.

Equivalent social networking ratings came in at 45% for the first cluster, and 36% for the two additional groups.

Meanwhile, mobile phone usage peaked at 71% for Gen X moms, 68% among Millennials and 58% for Boomers.

The study was the first to leverage USA TouchPoints, combining existing media measurement services with time-based data across traditional and digital channels, following on from an initiative originally run by the IPA in the UK.

"We know delivering ads in more receptive moments increases advertising ROI. Recent research shows a 20% lift in ad effectiveness when ads are placed in receptive moments," Jim Spaeth, a partner at the Media Behavior Institute, said.

"If we apply those findings across the whole media environment it means TouchPoints has the potential to help create $25bn in value for buyers and sellers of media."

Data sourced from Coalition for Innovative Media Measurement; additional content by Warc staff