In short, what today's moms want from brands is to be treated as individuals -- not as merely generic moms. At the iMedia InFocus Summit in Chicago, Katie Ford and Jill Griffin of Starcom MediaVest Group spoke about reaching women at different life stages, from Millennials to Boomers. (And half of the women brands are marketing to are moms.) In fact, according to Ford, 40 percent of women are now the primary household earners, and one in three moms are also bloggers, so women have a louder voice than ever. Ford also emphasized that becoming a mom is life-changing, "but not self-eclipsing." We need to continue to recognize "the me behind the mom."
Griffin went on the explain moms don't want to be spoken to as mass moms, but as individuals. At each stage of motherhood, new needs and desires develop. Furthermore, at these stages, we still shouldn't be lumping moms together into categories. Of course, as marketers, we have to do this to some degree, but it only goes so far. And women in particular, are not a demographic that takes kindly to stereotyping. Griffin gave the example of Mom.me, a website designed to be tailored to individual moms, using technology that learns and remembers the specific user's preferences. The more a mom uses the site, the more personal her experience becomes, rewarding her for her individuality -- no matter how much her needs go against the grain.
The truth is, this ideas goes beyond moms, and even beyond women. In the digital age, we always need to be thinking about personalization. Today's shoppers don't want to be pigeon-holed, they want to be catered to, because we are all individuals with our own needs and desires. So perhaps this Women's Summit will go on to show us that actually, it isn't a question of what women want from brands. Rather, we should be asking: What does Beth want from Macy's? What does Jennifer want from P&G? And so on. Stay tuned for more from Chicago!