Mom Blogs and Brands - dummies

By Wendy Piersall, Heather B. Armstrong

Brands hope that when moms give advice on their blogs, they advise readers to use the brand’s products or services. Mom bloggers are natural networkers and helpful and supportive of each other. Mom bloggers also turn to each other for advice —this is what makes mom bloggers so attractive to brands and advertisers.

There are tens of thousands of moms who blog, but don’t happen to make their family lives and motherhood a big part of the content of their blogs. Mommy blogging is a genre — whereas mom blogging is for any mom who blogs.

That being said, many moms who blog will find that they are treated like a mommy blogger even when they don’t discuss mom-centric topics. Brands have long known that moms are high-impact influencers, and that we control 85 percent of household spending in the United States.

We are also natural online socializers and word-of-mouth marketers — 79 percent of moms are active on social networking sites, and 23 percent of these moms said they have purchased a children’s product as a result of a recommendation from a social networking site or blog.

In fact, mom bloggers are more likely to be approached by a brand than if they were just everyday bloggers — 33 percent of bloggers have been approached by a brand, but 54 percent of mom bloggers have been approached by a brand.

This high profile as a target of marketers has been both a blessing and a curse for everyone involved. It has empowered moms to transform their influence into rewarding careers as publishers and marketers. Plus it has given brands unprecedented access to directly engage their most important customers and get real-time feedback.

A dark side has also emerged from both bloggers and brands. Some mom bloggers have let their influence go to their heads, thinking they are suddenly entitled to royal treatment — or (worse) using their blogs as extortion tools. Brands have also taken advantage of mom bloggers who have less business experience, exploiting all that eagerness as a way to get free (or extremely cheap) advertising.

Many mom bloggers talk about their personal lives in some way, even when their blogs aren’t considered personal blogs. Mom bloggers — especially mommy bloggers who write about parenting — are in a position to disclose highly personal subject matter about themselves and their families.

It is this personal, from the heart writing that allows readers to so deeply connect with the blogger. But there are things mom bloggers should all do in this day and age to ensure their families are kept from embarrassment or worse, harassment, threats, and personal attacks.

There are few, if any, bloggers who start out knowing exactly where their blog will take them. Some start blogging just to get their websites found in the search engines.