We’ve all seen the data. Moms, and new moms in particular, are the most digital-savvy audience. Moms are significantly more likely to have smartphones, blogs and Twitter feeds. Our media director calls this trend “baby down, power on.” In fact, 90% of moms are online.
Beyond the desire to share photos of their adorable babies, we asked ourselves, why? Why are moms off the charts on digital usage? What’s driving them?
The answer: Moms have questions. Lots and lots of questions.
There is no more universal archetype than the “good mom.” But what is a good mom? Everyone has an opinion. When it comes to baby’s health and development, moms are full of questions on everything from feeding and nutrition to what kind of diaper is best to avoid diaper rash. Just how important is baby health? Try this little experiment: put “baby health” into Google. How many hits would you expect? Millions? How about 2.7 BILLION?
Interestingly, our search intelligence reveals that the majority of moms’ searches around baby health and nutrition are phrased in the form of a question. And they are thirsty for answers. Who do they turn to? They particularly want to turn to other moms who have kids just a little bit older than their child.
Babycenter.com has carved out a valuable place in mom’s hearts and minds by helping her connect with other moms around the babies’ birth month. By keeping track of where she is in her journey, and feeding relevant content as she progresses to each new phase, it helps moms feel they have a handle.
Giving is as important as getting.
When they participate in communities, moms tell us that as much as they want to get information and advice from other moms, it’s important to them to be able to give advice as well. Part of the redefinition of self to being a “good mom” includes being able to share what you’ve learned along the way.
Moms’ Facebook usage is also different from that of other young women. Whereas we’ve all gotten familiar with the online status updates, many moms are using their Facebook walls as message boards, with paragraph long updates and questions, prominently featuring questions and answers about their baby’s health, e.g., getting enough sleep, running a fever, rejecting new foods etc. Sites like urbanbaby.com offer moms answers to their questions on when to add foods, what are the best organic baby foods, when should they reach developmental milestones, when should you call the doctor.
Online fueling offline connections: The power of Meet Up
Founded as a way to foster community and bring people together soon after the events of 9/11, among the most active Meet Up groups are mom connections.
As moms adjust to life recentered on baby, it’s their way to learn from other moms. In fact, 88% of mothers say the Internet has helped them stay connected to other people.
Lisa Belkin is the #1 mommy blogger with Motherlode. In her last post before moving on to the Huffington Post, she shares: “Time was when our parenting knowledge and our parenting support circles came from nearby family and friends. But now families have scattered, and friends are never home, and so much of what we know comes from places like this. The sharing is no less real or rich for happening online – in fact, sometimes it is more so.” Which is why digital is as much part of being a mom as the mini-van, the carpool and the pediatrician’s office.
Most important lessons for health and wellness marketing to moms
But be careful - moms will sniff you out if you are focused too much on selling, not helping. They want to believe that you care about them and the health of their baby.