The Demographics of Mommyhood

What New Data Tells Us About This Important Consumer Group

By Published on .

Just a few weeks ago, all we could think about is how great our dads are. Greeting cards, ties and golf clubs flew off the shelves for Father's Day. The summer smell of charcoal, propane and charred meat wafted through suburbs. And now? It's all about the moms again.

Never mind the disrespect of daddy (Are Fathers Necessary?) in the new Altantic piece. All kinds of interesting data is coming out on who moms are and how marketers can reach them.

Why would they want to? It can cost an average of $475,000 to raise a child, according to the USDA. That doesn't even count college, and we all know how cheap that is. Who do you think is controlling most of that spending?

Chicago-based agency Fuor Digital recently put out a study about "digital moms." It culled data from eMarketer and DoubleClick Performics, noting that 36.1 million moms are online (40% of women on the internet in the U.S.) and 54% use search engines before making offline purchases. The report also cited Forrester's findings that newer moms especially are "at least 50% more likely than average online Americans to create social content and join existing communities online." Popular mommy blogs and various online forums can be a good tool for reaching out to this audience.

But these are just one kind of moms. Pew reminds us that there are others, and that the demographics of mommyhood are changing. Women 35 and older are now more likely to have kids than teenage moms are. Nearly one in five (18%) of women will never have kids, up from 10% in 1970. A record 41% of children are born to unmarried mothers.

Contrary to what you might expect, The Harvard Business Review points out in a blog post titled "More Women Manage to Have it All" that women with advanced degrees are actually having more children than they used to.

The results of these shifts are already showing up in the population estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau and spending data from Bureau of Labor Statistics. We'll be keeping an eye on them here.

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