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Mama “Likes” – How Social Media is Influencing Moms’ Purchasing Behavior

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There’s been a lot of talk about the power of moms in social media. A recent study by the NPD Group helps to quantify the power of the moms and how they influence and impact retail purchases – and now there’s a new innovation that may take it to the next level.

According to the 2011 study “Social Media Moms: How Networking Impacts Purchasing Behaviors” (NPD Group), mothers listen to others when it comes to purchasing. With nearly 80% of mothers with children under 18 actively using social media, the numbers add up to one of the single largest influencers in the social media space.

  • Nearly 1-in-4 (23%) of mothers have purchased a children’s product because of a recommendation they found through their social network site or a mom blog
  • 43% use online recommendations DAILY and have purchased a children’s product based on those recommendations
  • More than half of the purchasers made the purchase based on a blog review, and 40% based on a Facebook recommendation

According to recent Empathica survey about gender and social media, 35% of women recommend brands, products and services on a regular basis (compared to 28% of men).

As Facebook begins its new “Like”-based ad campaigns, I believe these numbers will increase. As a mother, wife and busy professional, I depend on my friends’ recommendations for children’s products as well as for dinner and film recommendations, local events and activities. My time is precious – and the babysitter expensive – so I am less likely to trust a sidebar ad from a restaurant touting their menu than a friend saying, “hey, I loved this – the soup alone was worth the price of the sitter.”

If Facebook is going to more easily assist me in finding those key recommendations by putting my friends’ likes in the sidebar, my mom hat goes off to them.  It saves me from scrolling through all of the brands I’ve “Liked” who now populate most of my wall – making me like them a little less when it seems they’re just selling and not informing, entertaining or spiffing me – and gets right to what’s most useful to me. Recommendations from the people who I trust most: other moms who know that time is short, money is tight and I can always find them if that reco wasn’t all that it was cracked up to be.

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