The English royal baby has been an inspiration for different types of industries. The medical world used the birth to motivate Belgian mums to leave hospital after a day, in order to save money. The fashion industry was interested to see what the future Queen of England wore when she left hospital and still today when the media catches a glimpse of the baby, this will be broadcasted all over the world. This event inspired me, since I am working on a project at a baby retailer, to write a point of view on targeted marketing of pregnant women.
Why pregnant women are so interesting to target.
Pregnant women are on the brink of making purchase decisions. Expecting a new family member is often a reason to buy a bigger house or safer car. The new mothers and fathers will also browse and purchase new products they have never bought before. On top of that they will spend more money since they have more mouths to feed.
There is a difference in women who are expecting a first child and those who have already had children. The first group will do more research. This can be research online, at the doctor’s or they ask questions to family and friends. Mothers who have already had children are less uncertain, since they have experienced it before. This group will be less interesting to target, since they have already bought most items for their first child.
Pregnant ladies love to share their experiences and emotions with others. In this era of social media everybody knows someone who has posted her echography or posted a picture of their little princess or prince. Young mothers, more than other people, read blogs, learn from YouTube films and explore websites in order to find what is best for their baby and themselves.
To summarize, woman pregnant with their first child will look for information about the products they need to buy and they share this information and experiences with others. This sounds like a dream come true for every manufacturer of products relevant to this market. But for this to happen you should target pregnant women in a correct way.
How pregnant women should be targeted.
Give mothers and fathers the opportunity to experience your product. I would advise to use free samples, since this will increase the possibility of using your product, and when being satisfied they will repeat purchase for a long time. For instance, when parents choose a nappy brand, it is most likely they will stick to this brand until potty training. Le Chat, a well known hypoallergenic laundry detergent, is good at this. They are present with a sample, coupons and product information in all baby boxes that reach young mothers.
Please take care you are relevant and advertise at the right moment. It is not worthwhile giving baby food samples to parents with newly born babies. There is a risk that the baby food cannot be used within the perishable date. Another example of wrong sampling are the razor blades in those baby boxes. I understand the far-fetched link to the father, but this is a dangerous item and not every new born baby has a father.
It is important to give useful information. Since these parents do more research than others it is necesarry that they get the information they are looking for at your own channels. This can be done at baby fairs, online or in print. I would strongly adviselinking social media to the online information on the website. This increases the possibility that they share product or brand information with their family and friends with one mouse click. I would advise you to dedicate someone or a team to keep track of what is said online about the brand or product. This gives you the opportunity to quickly react on questions, problems or compliments. To support this statement I would like to refer to Nutricia. They have a very clear and structured website with the possibility to ask questions to experts. Furthermore their Facebook page involves their fans to the company with soft contests. When using Le Chat as a good example in sampling it cannot be used as an example for social media, because the only page existing is Le Chat Lebanon. There is a link to Facebook on their website, but it only allows you to put their content on your Facebook page. The possibility to start a dialogue with your consumers is therefore missed.
It is important to interact with your pregnant target group combining a consistent story with correct information. There is a thin line between information and advertising, but the difference in purchase and brand loyalty is huge. Therefore it is important to give relevant information and answers to the questions of your clients. So think about what the client wants to know instead of selling the product.
In fact, targeting pregnant women is a child’s play!