Are Blogger Moms ‘Measuring Up?’

The following blog first appeared on Media Post Publications’ Engage: Moms column.

We started working with mom bloggers nearly eight years ago, at a time when hardly anyone knew who or what they were and persuading brands to trust this new and mysterious form of media was a lengthy, painful and, for a long time, unsuccessful experience.

Talk about ancient history! Eventually, the “momosphere” exploded as a target for brands. Over time, we found ourselves in the position of having to advise some clients not to go there – or at least, not until they understood how blog posts really worked as marketing tools and how and when they might be most effective.

Bloggers are an excellent source of information for moms, and an abundance of studies indicates that mothers routinely turn to social media to research products they are considering buying. In every case, studies show, blogs and Facebook are the key social media sources of information for moms.
Along with information, what bloggers offer most is awareness and credibility. To this day, moms look to other moms – blogger moms – for an honest evaluation of products. That is all good and an “endorsement” by blogger moms offers a tremendous value to brands.

But awareness and credibility do not necessarily drive immediate sales – or massive click-throughs or record-breaking downloads. Instead, blogs plant a seed. We are increasingly partnering with brands to measure and better understand the degree to which bloggers make an impact.

While bloggers offer credibility, traditional media, whether print, broadcast or online versions, provide visibility. The most notable difference between bloggers and traditional media is reach. A really significant blogger may have 50,000 or 100,000 unique visitors per month. Parents magazine, e.g., has a circulation of over 2 million.

Clearly, these are not the only options to consider when targeting moms. We’ve engaged moms through Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram, held live events to allow moms to experience products hands on, developed content for companies to incorporate into their web sites, reached out through online marketing – pushing out a message via, e.g., a sponsored mom-community newsletter or targeted e-blasts — and run advertising in the social space.

The point: unless your primary goal is credibility, limiting outreach to bloggers alone may not achieve your objectives. For greatest effectiveness, an integrated effort is essential.