The saying “Mother knows best” now extends to social media and brand recommendations. More moms than ever before are active on social media, and they aren’t shy about writing about products or interacting with brands they like. Moms also turn to other moms for advice on shopping and products, making them some of the most influential and social consumers.
Moms are ubersocial
The vast majority of moms (91%) make regular use of social media, which is a 20% increase from 2010. Mothers are not only using social media more often than ever, they are also using it more than the rest of the overall population.
Mothers spend 260% more time than the average user on Facebook and overindex in their use of all the other leading social platforms. Sixty percent of moms reported using Pinterest in the last six months, more than double the 30% of the general population; and 77% used YouTube compared to 60% of the rest of the population. Says Mike Fogarty, senior vice president and global publisher at BabyCenter:
“Social media has become so pervasive [among moms], it’s now fundamental to the way today’s moms live their lives. Today’s mom is the most influential and social consumer you’ll meet.”
These visits aren’t just a once-a-week fad either: 46% of US moms surveyed visited social networks multiple times per day in 2012 — up from 32% in 2010. To reach moms online, brands must become meaningful contributors to their online conversations.
The social mom is a global trend. In Canada for example, almost six out of every 10 mothers with internet access visit social sites on a daily basis. Canadian moms also demonstrated a willingness to interact with brands online: More than six in 10 have Liked a brand’s Facebook page, while about 25% have commented on a brand’s page. And one in five used their own Facebook page to comment on a brand.
Moms trust each other over anyone else when buying
Nearly half of mothers say that the most important overall factor when making a purchasing decision is reviews and ratings from other moms. An additional 9% said recommendations from other moms were “critically important” in their purchasing decisions. For brands, it’s important to connect moms from their current satisfied customer base with other moms online. Encourage reviews from all your customers, and ask moms to identify themselves in demographic fields. Help other moms find these trusted opinions with the option to sort reviews by persona.
Half of mothers also use social networks for making their purchasing decisions. One of the more popular networking apps they use is Pinterest, which they rely on to help find ideas on what groceries (75% of moms), home décor (59%), travel (27%), and clothing (24%) to buy.
Moms who are also heavy social networkers are also more likely to shop online, where they purchase clothing (61% of moms), portable devices (91%), baby supplies (63%), and home and garden products (65%).
Moms rely heavily on mobile for social and shopping activities
Mothers are also 49% more likely to have smartphones than the general population, with 8 in 10 owning them, up from only 8% in 2009. Mom smartphone ownership is up 25% this year, while tablet ownership is up 79%. Seventy percent of moms use a smartphone or tablet to shop, and one-third of moms say mobile devices accounted for half their shopping time or more. To reach on-the-go mothers, it’s essential for brands to build a robust and helpful mobile presence. Outside of the branded app, consider partnering with popular shopping apps to reach more moms on more devices.
Accessing mobile moms can be especially important for CPG and grocery brands. Nearly 50% of moms use their smartphones for grocery shopping, and 47% said it was because it made shopping easier and more convenient. Also, 36% said they used their phones to help them decide what items to purchase for a specific meal.
Networking moms also use their smartphones often to access social media sites. Mobile devices were used by 53% of moms to access their favorite social media sites (vs. 34% of general population). Moms also frequently use their mobile phones for texting (86%); getting online (61%); accessing social media (53%); and mobile banking (30%).
Moms are active social, mobile, and digital shoppers. For brands that frequently target mothers, being active where moms are most influenced should be a priority.