Connect with power moms through their trusted causes

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Perry Allison, VP of marketing, BiddingForGood
Perry Allison, VP of marketing, BiddingForGood

There has been much written about the massive influence moms wield in the blogosphere. However, even before blogs existed, Mad Men-era marketers knew that women held the purse strings in their homes, made many of the buying decisions and used their social influence to raise awareness about issues, raise money for charities or elevate the profile of a brand they believed in. Companies like BzzAgent and Procter & Gamble with their Tremor network have built entire word of mouth businesses around this powerful demographic.

In fact, these behavior patterns in women are prehistoric. A recently published study conducted by American and British scientists, shows that early human social networks were almost identical to our own. Women, in particular, used the concept of ‘tend and befriend,' which encouraged the building of communities through communication and cooperation so that women could support each other in case of famine, drought or some other trauma. Trust and word of mouth have been powerful tools throughout our history.

Today, these women are often called “mommy bloggers,” but I prefer to use BSM Media CEO Maria Bailey's term “power moms,” which describes a broader force that extends beyond the power of their keystrokes.

In my world of charitable commerce, we define power moms not so much by their social media influence or the reach of their blogs, but by the volume and impact of their volunteer efforts on behalf of the schools and nonprofits they care about.

We see their impact within the world of the charity auctions they organize and run on our platform. We watch them galvanize large groups of other moms (and sometimes dads) who also care about the school or nonprofit they are serving. The volunteer hours that these women put in could move mountains. Many of them do their volunteer work on top of busy full-time jobs and some have replaced their professional commitments with family and community commitments.

They are also reaching out to businesses to fuel the auctions that are raising funds for their kids' schools. And this unlocks a huge opportunity for businesses. A recent global survey conducted by Nielsen titled “Women of Tomorrow” found that when it comes to advertising, “recommendations from people she knows” is, by far, the most respected source for brand awareness. Furthermore, 85 percent of consumers we've studied say they have a more positive image of a product or company when it contributes to a cause they care about.

Marketers should consider tapping into the possibilities of reaching this important demographic group not just through media or blogs but also by partnering with the organizations where they invest their time and their passion. Brands will be able to build trust and tap into social channels in a genuine way while helping causes we all care about.

Perry Allison is the vice president of marketing at charity auction site BiddingForGood.

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