The changing face of parenting: how mums and dads are buying for babies post-pandemic

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a first-time mum-to-be picks the items that will adorn her nursery in one of three ways:

Either, she heads to WHSmith for a stack of glossy magazines debating breast-vs-bottle and the importance of a sleep routine.

Alternatively, she debates the pros and cons of one way against another with the other mums at NCT, as they file out after antenatal classes.

Or finally, she sits down with her own mum and harks back to the way she was raised thirty years earlier…

It’s been that way for years, if not decades.

That is until now. The Coronavirus pandemic has transformed many aspects of society, one of which being the way audiences spend their time and their money.

With new and expectant parents isolated due to shielding measures, parenting brands need to consider adding new strands to their strategy to ensure the right messages hit home.

NCT is out, influencers are in
Mums and dads alike have long been influenced by content creators across Instagram, Facebook, YouTube – and now TikTok.

While the impact of influencers is nothing new for popular parenting brands like Elvie, Nuby and Ewan the Dream Sheep, it has grown to unprecedented levels during lockdown.

Unable to attend popular NCT courses where they can bond with other mums and their bumps, expectant mums are increasingly turning to their favourite influencers to find a sense of community.

Data from Channel Mum indicates that mums are watching 13% more content than usual.

And it’s not just household names like Giovanna Fletcher and Louise Pentland.

Small and even micro-influencers are also gaining new audiences as first-time parents search for creators that feel relatable and reliable.

If parenting brands want to reach this new generation of Lockdown Mums, they will need to harness the voices of influencers whose values genuinely reflect their own.

Prioritising a real connection over impressive-but-empty follower figures means collaborations will deliver authentic, educational content that genuinely resonates with new parents.

On-demand content builds a lasting relationship
When you’re spending sleep-starved mornings on the sofa with a small baby, there’s no denying the appeal of daytime shows. Even lockdown can’t dent the universal popularity of ITV’s This Morning!
But on-demand, bitesize content also has an essential role to play when mums are finally able to grab five or ten minutes to themselves.

The popularity of parenting podcasts continues to grow apace, including Giovanna’s ‘Happy Mum, Happy Baby’, Scummy Mummies and Kate Lawler’s ‘Maybe Baby’ podcast.

And parenting brands with an educational element, such as babytech brand Happiest Baby and sleep experts Snuz, can get in on the action too.

Executed thoughtfully and strategically, brand podcasts and webinars have the potential to build long-term relationships with new customers as they return weekly for more insight and ideas.

New mums and dads need support more than sales
There’s always a time and a place for sales messaging, but sensitivity is key at the moment.
Of course, product roundups and reviews are essential to build customer awareness and drive sales. A well-crafted PR strategy can help you secure this kind of coverage and land your product messages when audiences are open to it.

However, it is essential that product messaging is underpinned by a wider press office that combines reassuring education and expert commentary with in-depth features and creative campaigns.
It’s this kind of well-rounded press office that has helped drive positive coverage for My Expert Midwife over the course of our work with them.

Of course, some things will never change. Becoming a parent for the first time is a joyous, terrifying, exhausting rollercoaster. But by listening to what new mums need during lockdown, brands can become a trusted partner and expert that they rely on for years to come.

Are you a parenting brand looking to get your name out there and be a part of this conversation? Do you need support cultivating your brand messaging? Speak to one of our award-winning PR team today to discuss how we could help.

Get in touch with the team