May 7, 2019

A Marketer’s Guide to Talking to Millennial Moms

Heather Freiser

Millennial moms are growing in numbers, and their purchasing power is too. There’s just one problem: most of them feel like brands just don’t understand them. And I get it—as a millennial mom myself, the last thing I want is to be sold the perfect image of motherhood while I’m checking my phone in the middle of the night as my infant wakes up… again.

So, what do marketers need to do to break free from the fact that 42 percent of millennial-aged mothers agree with the statement “most advertising and marketing is not geared toward women like me”? It starts with understanding a few things about us.

We Worry… A Lot

Worrying is part of being a mother. From keeping our kids healthy, to money, to balancing it all, to stacking up against other mothers, it’s safe to say that social media has made us a bit more self-conscious, anxious, and stressed. (In fact, 64 percent of millennial women feel enormous pressure to be the perfect mom.) Reading about those “Insta-happy” moms can make us feel awful. So, we tend to gravitate toward ads that center on the real, not the ideal. Give us a funny mom with a messy kid any day of the week. We’ll breathe a welcome sigh of relief.

And while social media is a place where we might compare ourselves, it’s also a place where we seek support and build community. According to Pew, 45 percent of moms say that they receive support from social media compared to only 22 percent of dads. And I have definitely benefited from the support of moms groups. Want us to trust you? Create that same kind of connection and conversation with us. Show us you get us.

We Want Fast Fixes

To put it succinctly, I don’t have time. And other moms don’t either. We work, we side gig, we’re often the primary breadwinners, we’re starting businesses at a faster rate than any other segment of the population, we’re carrying the mental load of parenting, and we are very, very tired. You want to capture my attention? Solve a problem for me.

Give me an easy way to buy, fast shipping, and a product that’s good quality and won’t require me figuring out when I’m going to return it. And if you’re selling to me, get to the point. I have more debt than my parents do—so if I spend, I’m going to do it wisely. Show me value, and you’ll get my money.

We Love Social Media… and Our Phones

According to Adweek, millennial moms are more likely to use their smartphone as a shopping accessory than any other group. We spend about 17 hours on our phones weekly—and we’re likely on social media. After all, the average millennial mom has at least three social media accounts. Aside from photos of our kids, we’re likely sharing something funny or something emotional. So if you want to build trust with us, make us laugh… or make us cry, but please don’t make us feel like we’re being sold to.

We Don’t Want You to Forget Dad

Sure, we make a lot of the buying decisions for our family, but 21 percent of millennial dads are stay-at-home caregivers. Our partners are into equal parenting, and as a result do more of the household shopping, spend more time with their kids, and have more purchasing power than ever before. So, find a way to reach moms and our partners online, and you may have found the social media marketing sweet spot.

Solve our problems. Show us you get us. Give us quality. Create connection. That’s how you’ll earn a mom’s trust. Now, if you’ll excuse me, my two-year-old just spilled something on my laptop.

Tags: Consumer Insights, Niche Networks, Strategy

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