2013: The End Of The Mommy Blogger?

by , Dec 26, 2012, 11:25 AM
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December editorials are traditionally packed with predictions for the following year and, therefore, I will proffer this one: 2013 may well be the end of the mommy blogger as we know her.

Since we became involved in marketing to mom bloggers way back (seven or eight years ago), the role of mothers in the blog world has changed significantly. Once known exclusively for posting about their kids, moms who blog are now more than ever posting about products, which is both a good and bad thing for marketers.

On the one hand, for the simple cost of product, shipping costs and, typically, a middleman such as a PR agency with connections in the space, companies everywhere have the opportunity to create visibility and credibility for their products among other moms. No doubt about it, moms trust other moms’ opinions and this directly impacts buying habits. In fact, according to research we conducted in September 2012, 92% of women who are active in social media indicate that they have made a purchase as a result of a social media recommendation, primarily via a blog.

However… .

While mom reviews in many ways offer great opportunities, their impact very much depends on the bloggers involved. Brands are, justifiably, looking for that direct link between post and purchase, and, increasingly, it is only a limited number -- those at the top of the scale in terms of reach and professionalism -- that drive traffic. 

Unfortunately, too many bloggers feel a sense of entitlement -- “I am, therefore you need me, therefore I can pretty much do whatever I want and, oh, by the way, I expect to be paid for it” -- without a sense of obligation. Posts are often dashed off with little more than a “cut and paste” from press releases, reviews are shorter than ever, facts are inaccurate, and -- my pet peeve -- deadlines are ignored. 

And yet … there is that ever-important trust factor.

In the coming year, brands will, and should, become more selective in the bloggers that they choose to deal with. Mass is great for visibility -- and there is value to that -- but targeting the right bloggers is the better choice for impact. In 2013, brands will plan their marketing strategies not on the fact that bloggers are the way to go, but on proven, measurable efficacy in meeting objectives. The cream will rise to the crop. As for the rest, many will find more room in their homes where all those free samples may once have been.

4 comments on "2013: The End Of The Mommy Blogger? ".

  1. Maryanne Conlin from RedRopes Digital/4GreenPs
    commented on: December 26, 2012 at 11:43 a.m.
    Great post, Stephanie! Managing a blogger outreach has become more like managing an ad campaign - I look for impressions and uniques, as well as, target market and additional marketing opportunities when developing a program.
  2. Desiree Miller from StressFreeBaby.com
    commented on: December 26, 2012 at 12:40 p.m.
    I think "The End of the Mommy Blogger" may be an extreme title here, but I do see the point in the article. I wear several hats in life, blogging being one of them, and can say I honestly see more and more people jumping into the arena, not less. I believe there are those who have been blogging for a while who now are actually doing fewer reviews because they prefer to focus the content of their blog on more than reviews and giveaways. I also believe marketers should be smarter about who they send product to and outlining expectations. I work with several brands that spell things out clearly, including deadlines. I can respect that and gladly meet those expectations. But to be honest, without a deadline, that particular product ends up last on my list as something to write about unless I'm simply crazy about what it does for me or my family. Last on my list means it may take months to get a post up...not intentionally, but because something else always seems to pop up that MUST be done. I'm not trying to make excuses--just posing a possible solution to frustrated marketing companies. Another point to be made is looking at where the bloggers post. I know my personal blog is small, but I contribute to several larger blogs that get the kinds of eyeballs marketers dream of. It's important for marketers to see the reach beyond the one blog and I'm not certain how that can be measured.
  3. Candace Lindemann from Naturally Educational
    commented on: January 3, 2013 at 6:04 p.m.
    I agree with most of what you are saying, Desiree, but I am very turned off by requirements for a review. Unless I am being paid, or I am agreeing to receive a product as in- kind payment, I am considering a sample for review, not entering into a contract. Of course, if it is a seasonal campaign, or a small business, I will make every effort to be timely. However, editorial should mean there are no guarantees. Some bloggers write for large sites or do TV segments ... the product might end end up there. It would be short sighted of a company to sacrifice that genuine, earned media for short-term guarantees.
  4. Candace Lindemann from Naturally Educational
    commented on: January 3, 2013 at 6:09 p.m.
    Stephanie: You hit the nail on the head here: In the coming year, brands will, and should, become more selective in the bloggers that they choose to deal with. If a chunk of bloggers feel entitled, it is a monster of the industry' s own making...those who use the spray and pray approach. There will always be a place for visibility alongside impact, though. Some campaigns for some companies must see value in the cut and pasters... since they keep sending them products.

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