Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Moms Try On A New Hat – Blogger

What television did for Jersey Shore and the Kardashians, the Internet is doing for moms. With almost 4 million moms and counting, mommy bloggers are the next big thing on the web, and as their influence grows, so does the attention of companies looking for new ways to get the all-important mom approval. Most interesting, however, is that these aren’t just your average moms. They’re well educated, high-earning women who have passed up lucrative job opportunities to tell the world about their experiences. Check out some stats H&R Block collected about today’s mommy bloggers:

·      On average, they earn $14,000 more a year than their nonblogging peers
·      They are 52% more likely to have a college degree than the average mom
·      They represent 14% of American moms

And those numbers only tell part of the story. With wide-reaching networks of followers, and affiliations with strong blogging collectives, mommy bloggers wield buying power influence that rivals a celebrity endorsement. Companies from McDonald’s to Kraft to P&G are using mommy bloggers as the new advertisers; replacing generic banner ads with interactive blogger experiences. These multibillion-dollar companies are standing behind their products and letting bloggers write whatever they want about the free products they’re given. Mommy bloggers have tipped the hand of power when it comes to promoting products, and with new moms starting blogs everyday, companies will have to continue to reach out to these networkers and community leaders to gain traction with a target concerned about buying only the best for their families and themselves.

The mommy blogger is no passing fad, like the soccer mom before her, she represents a highly influential purchaser and makes some of the most important family budget decisions. Companies can harness this influential power by partnering with mommy bloggers (who are notoriously picky, but endlessly loyal to a select few companies), giving them the freedom to write about products however they want, and letting them spread the word about those products organically. The mommy blogger typifies the new power consumers hold over companies. No company will be able to force mommy bloggers into endorsing a product they don’t like or want and that’s the key to their power – they don’t need companies, but the Fortune 500 sorely needs them.

Justin Alsop is a graduate student in the Northwestern Medill IMC marketing program. He’s interested in how web influencers are changing the Internet business model and their impact on the future of e-commerce; you can find him at @JDaneA.

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