You might have asked yourself why we’re so darn awesome…
The rise of social media has made it difficult for millennial moms to “measure up,” so to speak. Today, there is a race to perfection among millennial moms. In fact, according to the 2015 State of Modern Motherhood: Mobile and Media in the Lives of Moms study, 64% of millennial moms said parenting is more competitive than ever before. In their eyes, the “perfect” mom is a good cook, organized, educated and fit and focused on family. And to top it all off, she still manages to hold down a good job.
I recently shared a post on how brands can track down and engage with millennial moms. You can read all about these thoughts over here. In this post, I discuss key findings from BabyCenter’s latest report on millennial moms, and stats from Pew Research as well as thoughts from Ken Morris of retail consulting firm Boston Retail Partners on how brands are connecting with millennial moms.
Love Before Marriage
Millennials seem to be shying away from marriage. For millennial moms, love comes first. More than 60% of births to millennial moms are to unmarried women, according to the report conducted by IAB for BabyCenter. But these moms are not alone. More than half (62%) of millennial moms said dads are helping them raise their child.
Pew Research published an article around this time last year stated that only 26% of millennials are married. With 69% of this group hoping to wed in the future, retailers are changing their marketing messages to tailor this audience.
“With a rise in single mothers, retailers recognize that mothers’ shopping decisions are impacted by the challenges of being a single parent,” Morris told Motherhood Through My Eyes. “Time-starved working millennial mothers are harder to reach and rely on their smartphones for everything from communications, scheduling, research and socializing to shopping. Marketing messaging needs to be quick and to the point and available on a mobile phone.”
He then added: “With a high percentage of single and working mothers, offers that focus on value or savings are most effective with this demographic. Savvy retailers understand the persona of their customers and are absolutely tailoring their message to these demographics.”
A Change In Shopping Habits
As the economy continues to improve, more consumers are diving into the pool of eCommerce websites. Millennial moms have six top concerns about products:
1. Safety (77%);
2. Convenience (65%);
3. Good value (64%);
4. Good online product reviews (60%);
5. Simplifies life (57%); and
6. Recommendations (51%).
Millennial moms will change the type of brands they prefer over time. In fact, 45% of U.S. millennial moms surveyed by IAB said natural/wholesome ingredients is an important criterion when making everyday purchases, a 33% increase from the 2006 version of the study and 28% from 2009. In addition, 24% of these moms said they regularly buy organic foods and beverages for themselves.
As noted in the study, the millennial mom has 9+ hours added to her day and 13 fewer hours to herself. And because online shopping is convenient, the BabyCenter report found that 23% of millennial moms get half or most of their shopping done through eCommerce websites.
In terms of online purchases, millennial moms are more likely to buy items from the following categories:
– apparel (44%);
– electronics (43%);
– financial services (30%);
– personal care/cosmetics (19%);
– cleansers/detergent (10%); and
– groceries (9%).
Appealing To Millennial Moms
Millennials in general are quite different than their predecessors, explained Morris. “Millennials have essentially grown up in a digital world that has shaped their habits to be quite different than Baby Boomers and Baby Busters. For example, millennials don’t buy a newspaper – instead, they get news and information from their smartphone or tablet and usually from non-traditional sources, such as Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube.”
To help brands connect with millennial moms, it is important that they “refocus their approach to ‘selling to my daughter, not my mother’ and shift their marketing strategy accordingly.” Morris then explained: Millennials spend more time on their smartphone than watching TV and more Millennials own a smartphone than a laptop or desktop computer. Millennials’ mobile lives communications styles dictate a mobile marketing approach.”
Brands need to present and “engage with millennials wherever, whenever and however they want to interact and create an intimacy unlike anything they have experienced before.” Morris continued: “To provide this level of personalization, retailers need to understand their digital footprint, what’s in their closet, what makes them tick and only interact with them if they opt-in and request it.”
Based on the BabyCenter report, U.S. millennial moms are most likely to engage with digital ads that feature the following elements:
– A baby (77%);
– A family (76%);
– A mom holding a baby (72%);
– Children (59%)
– Someone running on a beach (20%); and
– Someone leading a meeting (19%).
In addition to images, 54% of millennial moms said articles or video that is well produced and informative improve their perception of a brand.
Work And Family Life Balance
Millennial moms experience a shift in their values post-baby. From fitness goals to friends and time for herself, all these values come second to her family.
Pew Research found that millennial women who work and have a family are reducing work hours, taking a significant amount of time off from work and quitting a job or turning down a promotion. Morris explained how brands can use these habits to their advantage: “To appeal to mothers who are concentrating their lives on their children instead of their careers, retailers can emphasize product attributes or company philosophies that support mothers’ focus and attention healthy children and positive lifestyles.”
But what messages should retailers use, you ask?
“Messaging that provide tips or product recommendations that enhance their family environment or make their lives simpler will be receptive to stay-at-home mothers and elevate the perception of the brand,” said Morris. “Retailers are also offering customers unified commerce solutions (shop anywhere, buy anywhere, pick-up/receive anywhere and return anywhere) to enhance their brand experience by minimizing time wasted in the cross-channel shopping/returning processes.”
With a number of women exiting the workforce to focus on family life, millennial moms are looking to earn an income doing what they love while caring for those they love.
Will this be the year of the entrepreneurial mom?
According to Morris, the skills required to successfully manage a household are similar to many of the skills needed to start a business: working under pressure, multitasking, negotiating, networking and communications. “Mothers with previous business work experience are poised to be successful entrepreneurs,” he added. “Our firm (Boston Retail Partners) offers our consultants flex-hour opportunities to allow them to maximize their earnings while still taking care of their most important job, raising the next generation of consultants!”
For stats on millennial parents and millennial shopping habits in general, check out these 20 interesting stats compiled by Brian Honigman over here.