Earlier this year, research by advertising agency Saatchi & Saatchi in partnership with Mumsnet found that less than 20% of mums relate to the advertising targeted towards them. That’s obviously a concerning statistic for an industry which spends £1.9bn every year targeting mums.
At Saatchi & Saatchi X, we look at where and how retailers can create experiences that enhance the customer’s buying journey, so we decided to delve deeper in to how mums benchmark these experiences. We spoke to 500 mums about their shopping behaviours and emotional drivers and found that the way mums shop has changed, but the way retailers are targeting them hasn’t. Instead they are making assumptions when it comes to the way mums want to experience retail. We’ve summed up six key ways retailers can cater to mum in a more effective, meaningful way in the run up to the festive season.
- Help mums to spend time with their children
Christmas is all about family. 60% of mums say the best fun they have is with their children, and the same say that their children are more fun than most of the adults they know. More importantly, 53% of mums do not mind having their children with them when they shop.
With 71% of mums working full or part time, retailers who facilitate those moments of connection and provide ways for mums to spend quality time with their children throughout the retail experience at Christmas will build her emotional connection to the brand. Christmas provides plenty of opportunity for retailers to do this, but they need to think beyond baubles and singing Santas, and put their brand at the centre of the idea.
- Make shopping convenient
Nearly three quarters of the mums surveyed in Saatchi & Saatchi’s study agreed that they are not, and don’t want to be perfect, with only 9% claiming to have met the ‘perfect mum’. This translates to shopping, no mum is perfectly disciplined. Many are happily influenced by their children, with 50% agreeing that what they buy is influenced by what their children want. Never more so than at Christmas.
Life is a balancing act for mums and Christmas can be a hugely busy and stressful time ahead of the event. Brands need to use their influence in a positive way to provide mums with convenient solutions that make life that little bit easier or better, show empathy and a real understanding of her needs.
- Don’t forget about Dad
Whilst mums still remain very much in charge of household shopping, dads are still heavily involved. According to our findings 60% of mums agree that dads have influence on what they buy, and that when they shop together they invariably spend more. Mums prefer brands that understand their partner’s role within the family. Retailers therefore need to be aware of this dynamic and ensure that this Christmas they target the family as a whole.
- Let mum decide where value lies
Christmas can be expensive, but Mums are deal hunters and price savvy. 80% of mums say that they actively look for deals, 60% bulk buy to take advantage of deals, and 69% of online shopper’s bulk buy.
At Christmas mum will have a planned list and she will also be open to inspiration and ideas. Understanding where and when to help or inspire is critical, a meaningful connection or relevant, targeted promotion will out-perform broad brush discounting in both the short and long term.
- Mums are digital, make sure you are too
The internet has opened up an abundance of opportunities for brands to enhance shopper experiences and mums are embracing the new experiences available to them. 61% of mums said they research items for the home online and 35% of mums like to research their grocery shop too. Four out of five mums do some shopping online, and two out of five mums do as much online shopping as possible.
Christmas is no exception. Cyber Monday is one of the biggest days of the year for retail sales, and retailers need to make sure they have a strategy in place to not only cater for demand, but also meet the needs of mum.
Mums have high expectations in terms of ease and convenience and also in terms of a seamless shopping experience. Retailers must curate, inspire and offer relevant solutions at every stage and across all their channels.
- Remember the woman behind the mum
A mother will naturally re-prioritise when she has children, putting her family first. 64% of mums buy cheaper products for themselves in order to buy better quality products for their children (rising to 69% of mums under 35) and nine out of ten mums would rather a prize or treat with her family to one with her friends. While this doesn’t mean mum’s committing herself to a life of personal sacrifice, retailers need to remember all mum does for her family, and help her make the decisions she has to make for her family easy.
Mums and dads work hard to make Christmas special, which means family is put first. Brands that show real empathy through their creative retail solutions can benefit from significant competitive advantage. Yes of course make it quick, easy, and helpful but also think about ways to make the shopping experience part of the Christmas experience itself through moments of surprise and delight, by giving permission to mum to relax, enjoy and have fun, perhaps even indulge a little, why not, she really deserves it.