Mommy loves best when brands stoke the maternal instinct

A few months ago I heard an endearing story from a male friend, that obviously got me all soppy and even seemed to get to him, in a maternal sort of way. It was a story of two pigeons nesting on his balcony ledge. One of them as differentiated by the shade of its wings spent plenty of time cushioning the eggs…that was mamma pigeon. Then there was daddy pigeon hovering about & replacing mamma when she took her turn gathering food.

The day my friend discovered them, he tried to shoo away the one in the nest (mamma pigeon). With dog/cat sounds, a blunt stick creating ominous sounds on the wall, scaring it by moving close etc…mamma wouldn’t budge. Fearlessly she sat on her eggs guarding it with the fierceness of a tigress. She didn’t seem to care that she could get hurt. Of course my friend did no such thing and finally resigned to his fate. Then on another day, he saw daddy sitting on the eggs. Mamma had gone hunting for teeny tidbits. My friend tried his stunt again to scare away this fella, and lo and behold with just a sound of a bark, daddy flew away.

My buddy was shocked. He didn’t touch the nest or its eggs and let the small birdies blossom and fly away in their own time. His heart went out to mamma pigeon and her bold and brave gesture of never giving up on the not yet hatched babies. He was saddened by the act of daddy pigeon as he was a father himself, but did wholeheartedly acknowledge the power of the umbilical cord & selflessness of mothers, whatever the species.

No surprise then in our wonderful bells & whistles world of marketing, brands play up this soft and tender emotion in many ways. At different stages of her motherhood, brands move in with a range of stories to find the sweet spot. And today in the age of the well connected Mommy, brands have found a brand new way of tracking her smartest, coolest and deepest desires. Through the internet.

Take a look around and one will find many versions of Moms & what drives them, in abundance. I thought I’d scribble some of my favorites & some that fuel profitable brand stories.

So here’s looking at some Mommy avatars

1. ‘Return to Innocence’ Momma: She is 100% Momma & totally dedicated to child rearing and upbringing. Her state of mind says that she’s willing to learn, but feels helpless often. The emotions she relates to are led by:

a.    Cute factor ~ Cute kids who do cute things and make her feel all warm & soft about them
b.    Presence of a Mother hen ~ Advise from experts
c.    Vulnerability stories ~ Situations that evoke her maternal instinct of protection & security

Brands that love this Momma have a heritage & often a clear edge that they use, to provide the comfort & faith so that she enjoys her motherhood

Surf Excel: Dirt is good

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2.    ‘Playful’ Momma: She is someone who has extended the baby-mom relationship into the child’s growing up years. Donning a ‘child-woman’ role herself, she is not overtly angst out & even enjoys the process of  haggling with her kid to drink a cup of milk. She is often the cool Momma kids love to be friends with. Trust her to find pragmatic and simple solutions to make every day beautiful.

Brands here often slip into the family seamlessly & become a source of desire for both Momma & kid alike.

Pears Soap

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3.    ‘Don’t stop till you get enough’ Momma: A Momma that’s fierce and getting more and more demanding. She infact is 50% Momma and 50% woman of steel. She brings it on when foundation building & dos & donts of life become the need of the hour. She won’t stop & is relentless in extracting the maximum, often not just for the kids but the entire family. She loves a good bargain any day & she is firm in what she doles out to the kids.

Brands always present themselves as heroes here & act as problem-solvers

Horlicks Foodles

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4.    ‘Don’t mess with me’ Momma: She is a woman who knows. Put’s on her knowledge cap and needs plenty of coaxing to convert. Brands need to really tell powerful stories to convince her to shift loyalties. She won’t compromise or give in to anything that drops lower than her benchmark of expectation. She reads. She asks. She tries. She switches. Focusing only on earth mother stories don’t work. Hardworking brand stories do.

Brands here are loaded like bazookas & make Mommas look like super heroes.

Arokya Milk

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5.    iMomma: She is 100% woman, professional, smart mom, eager to learn mom…all rolled in one. She is on the move be at as a home or a out-of-home working Momma. She is keen to participate…be known as a Momma of substance. Not just for her care taking abilities, but her ability to share it with the world around her. She reads, uses the internet, shares her views & in some cases blogs too. She is a fresh thinker alright and possibly has got something new to say before the day ends, every day

On one of my intense read-ups, I picked up some interesting aspects of the iMomma that’s a must share. As of 2010, on record there are 82 million moms across the U.S. of all ages. And 26 million of them are momma bloggers. Websites targeting Moms comfortable with the net abound & they capture many aspects of her personality.

‘PoshMama’, dubbed “The Hip Hangout for Haute Mamas” is a Ning-operated social network that screens members prior to approving them. The site features an online magazine with tips on fashion, fitness, and inspirational and informational features like “words to live by” and “gifts that don’t cost a cent.”

‘CityMommy’, is a location-based social network for moms in major metropolitan areas across the US. In addition to parenting groups and photo sharing, moms can also discover local events (such as yoga classes and running clubs), up-to-date neighborhood information, and an exhaustive local directory.

How do brands trigger iMomma’s?

Mommas are busy. All the time.

So, Target has embraced mobile as a way of making it more convenient for moms to shop. Moms no longer have to carry cash. They can checkout via their mobile phones simply by using Target gift card information. They can find gifts and update gift registries while on the run. Everything available on Target.com can be purchased, and moms can search by personality, price, gender or age.

Through the mobile site, moms can search locally for the nearest location that has the items they’re looking for, and Target also provides companion customer reviews. If that wasn’t enough, no more cutting coupons or searching for coupons — they are sent directly to the users’ phones, complete with a bar code they can use to take advantage of any sale (Source: adotas.com).

With convenience at the core, it’s a great way to tell Momma’s you understand.

Some Momma bloggers are emerging as covert brand ambassadors too, when they decide to press the ‘LIKE’ button for brands on their facebook page or blog about them. Corporates are starting a relationship with these women to capture not just them, but all who follow them. Most likely they are Momma’s too.

Brands here stoop to conquer. Clearly Momma leads the way & brands appreciate this to let them be mom, woman, friend, guide…whatever she wants to be.

The standard code of treating Mom’s with kid gloves (literally) is over. Momma’s have their own varying personalities and different triggers that allow marketeers to present their brands in refreshing new ways. After all Momma’s are women. And who ever said women come in custom made-to-order packages?

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1 Comment

  1. My mom is return to innocence+playful+iMomma.

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