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87pc of moms use mobile, up 34pc: report

Moms are increasingly relying on mobile to manage their schedules, email and social media, according to a new report from BabyCenter. 

Eighty-seven percent of moms use smartphones, up 34 percent from last year. Savvy marketers are targeting this consumer group, finding ways to use mobile to simply mom's lives. 

"With mom's busy lifestyle, portable devices provide convenience and give her easy access to the information she needs," said Mike Fogarty, SVP/Global Group publisher at BabyCenter, New York. "Two in three - 66 percent of - moms say their smartphone helps reduce the isolation of motherhood and more than half said it brings her closer to others. 

"Moms are busy, and that?s not going to change any time soon," he said. "And as more companies begin to recognize this, and create opportunities on mobile to help make her life easier, this trend will only continue to grow."

Mobile mommy
BabyCenter's 21st Century Mom Insights Series identifies the top 10 trends for moms in 2013.

Five of 10 trends involve some aspect of mobile device use. A sixth trend is that moms are big social media users, with 91 percent using it regularly. 

In addition to mobile devices being moms' essential tools, more than half of moms use mobile devices for health-related activities. 

Ninety-five percent of moms use smartphones when shopping and many are showrooming.

Twenty-three percent of moms appreciate geo-targeted ads, especially ones that offer deals in nearby locations.

These mobile-friendly moms are driving social media trends. 

The percentage of mothers who use mobile devices as opposed to a recreational gadget increased 21 percent in the past two years. Nowadays eight out of 10 moms manage their day with mobile.

"Moms are a leading indicator of broader consumer trends," Mr. Fogarty said. "As mom goes, so goes the nation.

"Moms are driving social media trends, leading smartphone usage, taking charge of their families? shopping, and more," he said. "Marketers who keep a close eye on moms? attitudes and behaviors are rewarded with brand growth and customer loyalty."

Easy going
Mobile influences mom?s purchases, according to Mr. Fogarty.

In just two years, moms have increasingly taken to mobile for every part of the purchase funnel: product ideas (up 125 percent since 2011), product recommendations (up 147 percent), comparing features (up 133 percent), comparing prices (up 114 percent), finding coupons and deals (up 118 percent) and deciding where to buy (up 125 percent).

There is a growing multitude of applications and mobile devices targeting parents.

Families, in general, are increasing their use of mobile devices.

Companies and brands are creating mobile products to target parents at all stages.

New parents and those who are and expecting are more connected to their mobile devices than ever before (see story).

"Marketers, brands, and companies can better reach moms by listening to them and understanding their needs and busy lifestyles," Mr. Fogarty said. "Nearly everything mom does to care for her family is migrating to mobile devices and brands need to be right there with her.

"Brands that help make mom?s life easier will gain a loyal customer," he said.

Final Take
Kari Jensen is staff writer on Mobile Marketer, New York