Archive for category: Marketing to Moms

Dear Doctor: How To Market To Moms

I recently completed a four-article series on marketing to moms for Bentson Clark reSource, a quarterly publication dedicated entirely to orthodontic practices. Why orthodontists, you may ask? This particular healthcare category is all about moms and their children, of course. For the back story, I have Chris Bentson to thank for the opportunity to contribute to his newsletters and reach this audience. Chris asked me to keynote at a conference way back in 2011, and we have worked together many times since then. It goes to show the power of moms across every category, and that Chris is smart for recognizing and promoting the connection in what is an annual $11 billion orthodontics niche.

Here are a few tips to consider for marketing to moms that work for orthodontists, health care practitioners and any business or brand that works with moms. These tips are from my latest book, “Millennial Moms: 202 Facts Marketers Need to Know to Build Brands and Drive Sales” (Wyatt-MacKenzie, 2015):

  • Upgrade Appointment Options: Moms don’t want to talk on the phone. Only 19% of GenX mothers want to speak with a customer service agent (i.e., scheduling rep or office manager). Explore options for online appointment software and appointment reminders via text or email. Make it easy for moms to calendar appointment days and times on their phones. While live phone conversations are not going away, especially in healthcare offices, moms will appreciate any time they gain back by avoiding long telephone calls.
  • Social Media Presence: Today’s moms (and their tweens and teens) will look for social media presence if only as a reflection of a progressive practice. If you and your staff can manage a social media account or two, start with Facebook and Instagram and start practicing social listening. Moms appreciate relevant, informative content, and they really love to be “liked” and followed on social media. Respond to comments when appropriate. Including this kind of engagement in your social strategy is imperative. On the flip side, if regular posting, maintenance and social listening is not an option, wait until resources are available to start and maintain a healthy and social media presence.
  • Social Listening and Audits: Every company and brand with a social media presence should be practicing social listening and conducting regular social media audits. Listen to what moms are saying. Search relevant keywords, hashtags, company and brand names to see what moms are talking about and respond when appropriate. Search your practice name and hashtags related to the industry on a regular basis to determine see what moms are talking about, then comment when appropriate. Perform an online audit by checking online search sites to check for accuracy of company contact information. Speaking from recent experience, nothing is more frustrating to busy moms than searching for a phone number or information that is incorrect.
  • Powerful Word of Mom: Finally, regardless of the many social media tactics that I consider a must for practices, good old-fashioned word of mouth, or “word of Mom” is invaluable in gaining new patients. Moms love to socialize and share their latest finds on the playground, in the carpool line and anywhere they gather with friends and family. Consider outreach at community events, sponsoring school activities and underwriting school sports teams (apparel, equipment, etc.) as just of the few ways to show moms that you are involved in the community.

As I wrote earlier, the power of moms in the marketplace is widespread. In writing this article about a specific niche, I can’t think of one consumer category where moms are not relevant. To continue the conversation, tweet me @momtalkradio.

5 Ways Mom Consumer Communities Help Grow Your Bottom Line

There was once a time when most of us were listening to music on cassette tapes, when brands interacted with consumers only in focus group facilities and information was gathered via phone surveys. Today, the options to engage with customers are boundless. Technology’s rapid growth birthed a new wave of advancement. Everything from our dog’s collar to our refrigerator is “smart” and while technology continues to advance, it begs the question, “Are brands any smarter in the way they are growing their bottom line?” The truth might hurt some.

When it comes to today’s mothers, the tactic for engagement with the greatest return on investment can be found in consumer communities. These groups may conjure up images of brand ambassadors or in-house research panels, however, what I am referring to is a community of moms with each one screened for influence, brand enthusiasm, social reach and interest in contributing to the growth of the brand. Its members socialize with each other as well as brand representatives in a private online community and provide more than just insights or sales support. These women are an extension of the brand. They are available for insights whether the request for input is coming from engineers, retail designers or product development teams. They earn exclusive sneak-peeks and product previews and some even receive flowers from the brand on their birthdays.

Moms in the consumer community actively support the goals of the brand by posting about new products, bringing PR opportunities to the company and most importantly defending the brand among their peers if crisis management is needed. Brands such as Chick-fil-A, HP, Disney, LeapFrog, Children’s Claritin and Medtronic have benefited from consumer communities created and managed by BSM Media.

HP, for example, has seen such overwhelmingly positive results that they currently have consumer communities to engage with Millennials, Moms and Gen Z influencers. During the 2016 holiday season, the HP Sprocket Photo Printer sold out after tweens and moms in their communities contributed ideas and feedback on the handheld photo printer and then promoted it to friends and peers when it launched.

Here are five ways a consumer community can boost your bottom line:

  • Increase speed to market: A consumer community allows engineers and product developers to obtain quick user input and reduce the time and money loss in generation two modifications. HP was able to cut 6-8 months of development time off of two recent products- HP Sprocket Photo Printer and HP Social Media Snapshots. Moms in their HP Smart Mom Panel provided design input to engineers and eliminated the need for timely focus groups and revisions.
  • Expand innovation to include consumer product ideation: Let’s face it, no one knows more about a product than the end user and having access to an entire pool of end users can produce ideas at a lower cost to the development process.
  • Amplify product marketing: With a committed team of brand enthusiasts who feel vested in your product’s success, your marketing dollars stretch a whole lot further. Chick-fil-A uses their Chick-fil-A Mom’s Panel of 1,000 influencers for input on their Kid’s Meal prizes each year. The benefit is not only do they learn what moms and their children want but when the prizes appear in the Kid’s Meal a year later, the Moms feel a sense of ownership to the process and are happy to share the news with family and friends.
  • Higher engagement with social media influencers: Because you screened moms for reach and influence, you eliminate the cost of re-engagement with influencers each time you need them for marketing programs. LeapFrog was paying high agency fees every time they wanted to execute a blogger outreach campaign for a new product. By creating a panel of moms who loved the LeapFrog brand, they were able to engage with these women over and over again. Posts were authentic because their relationship with the brand was long term.
  • Deeper insights about your products and brands: Allowing consumers to have conversations among themselves in a safe community gives you and your team a “fly on the wall” perspective on their opinions. HP learned so much about the user experience associated with their HP Instant Ink subscription program and printers, that they inserted a customer service representative into their HP Instant Ink community and later used the process to enhance customer support on a wider level.

As brand leadership continues to look for ways to get more out of their investment, we will see an increase in brands creating consumer communities. When done right, it provides easy and direct access to insights, deeper relationships with social influencers and cost-savings to bringing innovative products to market.

BSM Media designs and manages consumer communities for brands based on your goals and objectives. All community members are screened and recruited for influence, brand enthusiasm and channels of communication with peers. For more information, please email Maria Bailey at or call BSM Media at 954-943-2322, ext.1. Additional information can be found at

4 Marketing-to-Moms Tactics For 2017

There has been a lot of debate around the death of the mom blogger. Regardless of which side of the fence you fall on in the argument, the good news is that mom bloggers have given birth to social media influencers with greater reach and more channels to deliver your message.

Yesterday’s mom blogger has extended her reach to Instagram where she showcases her favorite brands. She’s also come out from behind her laptop in order to share her opinions with peers on Facebook Live. All of this has changed the marketing-to-moms landscape and how brands can use these influencers to connect with mothers. Here are four tactics important to success in 2017 and a few examples of moms who are effectively using them.

1. Facebook Live: Before the commercials aired, moms had already discovered the fun (and effectiveness) of Facebook Live. From at-home unboxings and lifestyle segments to product reviews and in-store peeks, moms like Joey Fortman of Reality Moms have embraced Facebook Live. For her #CoffeeConvoWednesdays, Cindy Simmons (Surviving Mommy) attracts thousands of viewers per video by picking three topics and weaving them into a casual conversation.

2. Instagram: Moms love posting pictures of family life, and of course the craziness that is parenthood. Ilana Wiles of MommyShorts shares snippets of her NYC life, incorporating brands that resonate with her personally, for authentic content. Naomi Davis of LoveTaza boasts almost a half-million followers by sharing colorful life stories through photos. Watching these instagrammers’ posts will give brands a good idea of what attracts their followers, particularly fellow moms.

3. Ambassador Programs: As I watch ambassador groups evolve, it’s sometimes easier to convey what is not a good example. Mom ambassador groups are not about paying a group of mom influencers to post a required number of times each month on your behalf. It’s not gathering up a bunch of bloggers and asking them to put a button on their blog with your logo on it.

An effective ambassador group is gathering a group of moms who truly love your brand through thick and thin. They are super fans and will defend your brand in a time of crisis. They will go to bat for you no matter what because they are loyal. You probably already know a few of these customers. Find them on social media and cultivate them in a group. Give them a name and solidify the relationship with them to make it beneficial for them as well as you.

4. Influencer Insights: Researchers tend to hire what I call professional focus group participants for their survey. Behind two-way glass, they watch and wait for insights. In 2017, try doing more social listening. Watch for hashtags about your brand, specifically targeted to it or through keywords and topics related to it. Conversations between moms are rich in ideas, potential product changes and great ideas for marketing and social media campaigns.

I hope your 2017 is off to a great start and that you’ll utilize these tactics before January is over! It’s going to be another fun year working with moms and brands, experiencing the lightning fast growth of social media playgrounds and the mom influencers who play in them.

Contribute to the conversation with me here or on Twitter @momtalkradio.

What’s New For Holiday 2016

It’s that time again when brands are looking for the silver bullet that will drive holiday sales and help them meet their goals for 2016. Unfortunately, many marketing teams set their plans in place back in the spring. I say unfortunately because in a time when social media is constantly changing, it’s nearly impossible to predict what social platform will be popular six months in advance.

Ask anyone last February if they would be talking about Facebook Live for live-streaming videos and I will bet they would have told you to put your money on Periscope. The platforms that moms are using move as fast as a toddler in a ball pit. Marketing to moms has become a fluid environment and those who are not flexible in their marketing plans miss the full potential of the market. So what are some of the most effective new marketing tactics for the 2016 season?

  • Facebook Live: There’s a reason I mention this platform first. I choose Facebook Live over a single blog post for most product reviews. A picture (in this case video) is worth a thousand words and a Facebook Live video can attract thousands of viewers to your product.
  • YouTube videos: Millennials shop with the advice of videos. YouTube is their search engine of choice and it’s where they look when researching a product and for product comparisons (features and price). There are very affordable YouTubers who are willing to review product and now is the perfect time to add this to marketing tests.
  • Amazon Video Reviews: I’ve never been a fan of inauthentic product reviews and neither are consumers. This is perhaps why Amazon recently clamped down on brands paying bloggers to post reviews on product pages. There are several approved video providers for Amazon who will review your product and post video reviews on your product page and social media.
  • Instagram: it’s not new but its influence has grown since last year, particularly with young consumers (i.e., millennial moms). It’s a must for products and brands, and, of course, the video options make Instagram even more effective. Perhaps even more effective than blog posts.

Regardless of the social media platform du jour, the overriding lesson I have learned and always convey to clients is flexibility. Be willing to allocate or shift resources on the fly to leverage last-minute opportunities, to test programs on emerging platforms, or to capitalize on a program or campaign that’s showing excellent results. For many brands, the holiday season can represent 30% or more of annual sales, a number that makes holiday marketing and social media campaigns so important.

Are you using the social media platforms listed above? I’d love to hear your experiences here or tweet me at @momtalkradio to continue the conversation.