New Reality of Marketing to Older Moms
By Bernice Hurst, Contributing Editor, RetailWire
For the past several years,
one pundit after another has observed that more women are waiting longer to
start their families. Whether they want to build careers or simply need to
earn money to help support themselves and their partners, it seems that the
ticking of biological clocks has to be loud and clear before many women decide
to settle down to motherhood.
Experian Marketing Services has now taken a look
at the consumer patterns of those older mothers.
"The universe of moms of children 18 and under who are 35 plus has grown
from 40.9 million to 44.9 million in just four years," Jan Jindra, Experian
product manager, told Marketing Daily, part of Mediapost.
Some of the survey data from the latest Experian Simmons National Consumer
Study, provided to RetailWire, revealed some attitudinal differences
between moms over the age of 35 and those under 35:
- Thirty-three percent of moms surveyed older than 35 agreed that advertising
helps them choose products to buy for their children versus 39 percent of
moms under 35;
- Forty-two percent of moms over 35 agreed their children had a significant
impact on the brands they choose versus 35 percent for those under 35;
- Thirty-seven percent of moms over 35 said they find it difficult to say
no to their kids versus 32 percent of those under 35;
- Forty percent of moms over 35 don’t like it when their children ask
for non-essential purchases versus 36 percent of moms under 35.
However, where older mothers could be expected to have an interest in buying
so-called "green" products, younger mothers are also shifting from
membership in the category dubbed ‘Potential Greens’ into the ‘Thinking Green’
and ‘Buying Green’ categories.
"While older consumers tend to be more ‘green’
in their purchase patterns,"
data supports the growth of green behaviors among moms 18-35 providing "a
unique opportunity for green marketers to get and keep this consumer segment
at a young age," the study stated. Exposure to this segment of the consumer
population "lays potentially life-long brand commitment and revenue streams
for marketers offering a wide-range of products."
The survey featured
23,575 randomly selected, nationally representative, adults ages 18 and older
of which 3,669 were mothers with children in the home. It was conducted continuously,
between February 2009 and March 2010, using dual phone and mail recruitment.
Discussion Questions: Are retailers and brands making enough changes to
meet the needs of older mothers? What changes do you think are most important
for retailers and brands to make if they want to connect with this consumer