Marketing to Working Mums

Women now make up 54.6% of the Irish workforce, and around 50% of all Irish mums work outside the home.  Unfortunately, when you look at advertising that is focused on these women, it is full of cliches.  Laptop and baby, anyone?  Super-stressed-out looking mum?  It’s no wonder that Sheryl Sandberg’s foundation, Lean In, partnered with Getty Images to create more realistic images of working women and parents. These images are a breath of fresh air for women tired of the same old stock photos.


Scarborough, a US research firm, recently issued the findings of their Working Moms Study. Among the more interesting statistics:

  • 95% agree that spending time with their family is their top priority
  • 37% disagree that juggling family and work demands is very stressful for them
  • Working mums are 27% more likely that all mums to have financial investments, and nearly 30% more likely to spend more money on entertainment.

Although these women still prioritize family time, they enjoy their careers, and are more likely to spend some of their income on investments and entertainment. In marketing to working mums, companies should not assume that all working mums are stressed as over a third do not consider their situation stressful. Companies should approach working mums just as they would any other target consumer – meet her where she is.

  • Promote time-saving benefits to products.  No one has much ‘free’ time these days.  How does your product/brand save time? Even an attribute that could be viewed as a negative can be turned on its head, think of stores that promote their small selection for ease of shopping.  “Get in, get out, get on with your life.”
  • Be available.  Banks here in Ireland are finally offering 8:00 am and lunchtime banking appointments to reach out to individuals who are working during business hours. Salons are quickly expanding their hours to cater to women outside the working hours.
  • Go online – working mums use the internet to help them save time.  They are 13% more likely to have spent at least $2,500 (€1825) in online purchases in the past 12 months.  They are also active on social media.

This group is more educated and more affluent than all mums. In general, they have more money but less time.

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