The 'Otherhood': How This Demographic Affects Your Marketing Efforts

A new study from DeVries Global focuses on the power and influence of the “otherhood,” a word used to describe women who are not moms. The word is actually the title of a new book by founder Melanie Notkin. In fact, Notkin partnered with DeVries Global on the study, which sheds new light on a demographic of women—moving them beyond the “Sex and the City” stereotypes and showing women who are smart, savvy and discerning in all aspects of their lives. 

One myth that this study busts is that non-moms are not maternal. In fact, 80% of non-moms say that children still play an active role in their lives. Childless women today have deep and rich relationships with their nieces and nephews as well as with the children of close friends. This fact is one of the reasons Notkin launched her brand and led her to create the acronym PANKs—Professional Aunts No Kids. 



Why should brands that market to mom also want to connect with the “otherhood”? First and foremost, the number of childbearing-age women who do not have children is huge—nearly 50% of American women do not have children. And, because they don’t have children of their own, they tend to have more discretionary income and time to spend with children and their loving parents. 

Inspired by tips found in the DeVries Global study, I offer some ideas for connecting with the “otherhood”:

Include the Kids

Kids—as stated above—are often an important part of her life, so use them in your campaigns. “Show her as a hero to her nieces and nephews,” writes the study. Just as moms love campaigns that show dads in smart, capable family roles, they also love messaging that shows their children being cared for—and adored — by the other women in their lives.

Share Her Aspirational Side 

While we often think that motherhood is aspirational to those without kids, the “otherhood” lifestyle is also aspirational to moms. “The busy mom who is time-pressed is looking to members of the otherhood in their friend circle as influencers in-the-know,” the study says. She is the one who knows the best restaurants, spas and stores and is also the first to engage with new social platforms such as Vine. If you want to reach moms, you may want to consider tapping into the non-mom influence. 

Dig Deep to Find What Really Matters

Yes, it’s true, moms are not one-dimensional people; however, all moms are united in the fact that they share in the joys and challenges of motherhood. It isn’t so easy to find the one thing that unites the group of non-moms. “She’s an aunt, a godmother, a friend, a volunteer, and a colleague,” states the study. “The key will be finding messages and campaigns that can speak authentically to the varied interests and makeup of this group.”

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