Millennials are changing things up. In a big way. And they will continue to change the purchasing patterns for years to come. So it’s no wonder that businesses are dying to know more – to dig deeper into how they behave, how they consume, and most importantly, how to reach them.
Recent projects here at Feedback have us investigating one large sector of that millennial consumer group – moms. According to MillennialMarketing.com: “80% of Millennials will have families in the next ten years and 83% of today’s “new moms” are already in that age range.” So as a brand, how does reaching these moms look different today than it did 5 years ago, or even 2 years ago?
Let’s break it down and look at three big areas of concern with this group – the three F’s, if you will – food, family and fashion. These topics ride sidecar to an even bigger discussion here, and that’s influencer marketing. Both food and fashion have been hijacked by big-time influential bloggers and Instagram success stories, and what it all boils down to for millennial moms, no matter what the topic, is authenticity.
Authenticity via social media is a debate in its own right, but the point is, consumers feel the connection to these bloggers; and in turn, they have become majorly influential. Millennial consumers gravitate towards those that are seemingly going through what they are, experiencing the same life phase – and let’s face it, all moms, whether they’re working or staying at home, are busy. For new moms especially, this blogger connection can be a source of comfort, knowledge and validation. And this is somewhat unique to the millennial mom, as opposed to other moms, because they have grown up in a time of rapid change where priorities and expectations are different than those of prior generations.
It all boils down to this – Millennial moms want quick, healthy snacks and meals for their family and they want to look cute, comfortable and fashionable with less effort.
During a recent study on snack foods, we found that millennial moms want healthy, but they also want convenient. And while convenience is a factor for all Millennials, it’s no surprise that it can be an even bigger deal when we’re talking about mamas who are always on the go. Millennial moms have taken a very public stance on their role as choosers of family snacks; and as such, they have a purchase path that careens in two directions based on whether their family will have access to what they buy. As evidenced by our research, if their family is going to eat it, they want it to be healthy, but if it’s a secret stash of something they love, they care less about the health aspect. Ease is important regardless. They want quick meals, they want quick snacks. And for the choices they make, it’s an individual but often public and emotive decision. Family access, health and ease are the key factors in that purchase journey when it comes to food.
Similarly, ease is a major contributing factor in how millennial moms view fashion. MillennialMarketing.com states that “although 87% of millennial moms said that having a baby has changed how they approach their style, they still care about fashion.” There is a large niche segment of fashion bloggers that also double as mommy bloggers. Those women typically post themselves modeling on-trend looks and they’ll usually even point out exactly where they’ve purchased the items they are wearing. So, not only do the bloggers offer the validation that many women seek when it comes to fashionable but comfortable mommy-wear, they also make the different looks simple to achieve. You can check their blog or Instagram page on a consistent basis, take a peek at the outfits they’re posting, find those items online and either purchase right there, or pop in and out of that one store in the mall quickly. It cuts down on time – a rare commodity for moms.
If you’re asking yourself, how did these influential bloggers and Instagrammers get to be that way? Well, if you remember from above I mentioned moms seeking validation and connection – these women offer just that. Take Rachel Hollis of TheChicSite.com. She is a blogger and Instagram sensation that reached next-level status overnight. She was already popular, but when her Instagram bikini post went viral, her popularity exploded overnight. Rachel’s Instagram has almost 20,000 followers, while some bloggers and Instagram mom’s like @taza and @caraloren have upwards of 300-500k followers – that’s comparable to or even more followers than large brands such as Loft and Old Navy have.
If you’re like me, scrolling through your Instagram feed is more like you’re viewing a digital cooking show or staring into the closet of your dreams, rather than posts from friends and family. Because of social media, opinion leaders have significant influence on word of mouth, but are brands underestimating the power of that influence? Big-time Instagram players and bloggers are now developing relationships with brands that are doing it right. They’re inserting their brand into that social conversation with an authentic voice behind them. Moms connect with other moms, so if you want to reach them, go straight to the source.
by: Brittany Heare, Director of Client Services