Mom’s the word.
I crank out a couple of kids and, boom! Suddenly I’m a member of marketing’s most lucrative demographic: the working mother. I’m referred to as a “Mom,” always. Now with super purchasing powers. I’d be flattered if it didn’t make me feel so cringe-y.
For instance, I just read this article about how mothers are the “dream demographic” from Time’s Moneyland: “Marketers have always wanted to reach moms, of course, but now these moms are easier than ever to reach, 24/7, no matter if they’re at home, the office, on a train, or at the pediatrician’s office.”
Quit stalking me, weirdos!
BabyCenter.com, sponsored by Johnson & Johnson, is sort of a clearing house of all things baby. From pregnancy to child rearing, this site offers advice (and products) for every conceivable (pun intended) situation. But the language is kind of creepy. Like this copy from the About section of the site:
“BabyCenter is the voice of the 21st Century Mom® and modern motherhood…BabyCenter reaches over 78 percent of new and expectant moms online in the United States, and 7 in 10 babies born in the United States in 2009 were BabyCenter babies.”
Can you register “21st Century Mom”? And what does it even mean to be a BabyCenter baby? Are the babies trademarked? And how did they get that statistic?
Working mothers constitute a rich resource of consumerism. A recent story on NPR, stated that two-thirds of women with young children work, and half of them are the primary earner. Which means that they likely hold the purse strings, if not the apron strings.
However, marketers would be wise to note that someone needs to care for the children of these Moms and that cost of daycare can eat up nearly half of a woman’s paycheck. So maybe the demographic is not as rich as they think. Maybe we can see women in a more holistic way, not just as moms with a baby on one hip and a bag of money on the other.