As Children Grow Up, Moms Take More Time for Themselves

As Children Grow Up, Moms Take More Time for Themselves

(And, surprisingly, spend less time with their spouses and partners)

Marketing strategists often think of the "mom market" as a homogenous group of women. In reality, the mom market can more accurately be subdivided into groups based on the age of her oldest child. As her child ages, mom's motivations, activities and focus shift.

In this article, I want to focus on one key element: When marketing to moms of older children, realize that these moms are finally taking more time to do things for themselves. The adage that "the best way to reach a mom is through her children" is still true, but as children age, moms have more time to start focusing on themselves as well.

The following chart from the Marketing to Moms Coalition, State of the American Mom Report 2008 shows how moms think differently about activities that help them be a better mom as their children grow up:

When Mom's child enters the teen years, she suddenly finds herself with more spare time (and money!) than she's had in years. Readers will notice a full 76% of moms with a teen child agree that they, "Take time to do something I enjoy," compared with 64% of moms with a child under two. Her increased emphasis on sleep and exercise, along with preparing and eating healthy foods, demonstrates a renewed interest in her own wellbeing and enjoyment. And since Mom is typically entering her highest earning years, she can afford more luxuries than she could in, say, her twenties.

I've noted with interest that taking more time for herself doesn't correlate to spending more time with a spouse or partner. In fact, the Marketing to Moms Coalition research shows that women spend less time with their spouses as children grow up. Marketing strategists need to treat these facts with care to avoid strategies and marketing messages that won't resonate with these moms.

Marketing strategies should focus on the opportunity to provide moms of older children with ways to take more time for themselves. For example,  Rancho La Puerta, a luxury resort spa in Baja California, focuses on reaching this market through their wellness message of exercise, health, self reflection and nutrition. I don't think their success is a coincidence when their marketing strategy addresses all the "green areas" on the right side of the chart.

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  • I highly recommend this enlightening article as it presents quantifiable data to assist the small business owner in marketing strategically to specific population segments. Thanks for posting it!

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    Michal Clements

    Michal is co-author of Tuning Into Mom and an experienced consultant. Michal develops winning growth strategies and detailed go to market plans for some of the world’s outstanding organizations including McDonald’s, Gatorade, Abbott, Barilla, Tylenol, Clorox, Key Bank, Eagle Ottawa, Quaker and the Baker Demonstration School.

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