But moms aren't the only ones deciding what their kids can and can't eat. Schools, where kids spend the majority of their time outside of home, are also stepping in and setting regulations on what kids are allowed to consume on school grounds. Many schools have already banned the sale of high-calorie, high-fat, and high-sodium snacks and beverages, and many are revamping their lunch programs dramatically to meet new dietary standards for school kids.
The one challenge facing both moms and schools in this joint effort to keep kids healthy, however, is actually getting kids to eat (and to want to eat) the "better for you" food options. For most kids, "good for you food" = "boring or yucky food mom makes me eat."
Consumer packaged goods brands, which have largely taken the heat for creating the products that fueled kids unhealthy eating habits in the first place, have made some strides in creating "better for you" products that also taste good and pass the scrutiny of both moms and schools. But if these brands really want to become champions of the "healthy kids cause," they need to find ways to connect with moms through their child's school that demonstrate and reinforce their brand's commitment to encouraging kids to make healthier choices.
Providing free product samples to moms at school as Mission Tortillas and Chiquita Bites have done this past year is one way. Giving coupons out at school events like family movie nights is another. Providing useful tools and tips to moms to help them get their kids on board with eating healthier and exercising regularly ... such as the NFL Play 60 Program is currently doing, is yet another.
With a targeted offer and the right messaging and execution, a through-school marketing program can be one of the most effective ways to engage health-focused moms, create brand goodwill and build long-term brand loyalty.