Blue Suit Mom

A Campaign That Honors, Empowers, Respects Mom

All too often, it seems that the media spotlight shines on marketing initiatives gone bad. Unfortunately, the same viral buzz that is created with a good mom marketing program can take a brand mistake and catapult it to another level. I’m not going to waste my words here recapping all the social media tragedies of big brands; instead, I want to focus on successes.

This week, the Marketing to Moms Coalition, a professional industry organization of which I am a proud founder, awarded its fifth annual H.E.R Award to Quaker Oats for its “Afterschool Rocks” campaign for Quaker Chewy Granola Bars. In the event you aren’t aware of the coalition or its award, let me fill you in. The coalition is an independent organization dedicated to supporting and promoting an understanding of mothers as the most powerful consumer group in the United States. It serves as a resource for industry professionals and is dedicated to providing insights, identifying trends and connecting members. Membership is free and you can learn more here.

The H.E.R. Award is presented each year to a company that has executed a high-impact marketing campaign that honors, empowers and respects mothers. Past winners include Purex, Clorox, Sara Lee and Whirlpool. Quaker Oats Chewy Granola Bars now adds itself to the list of honorees.

The Quaker “Afterschool Rocks’ rocked with moms because it identified a common behavior of this consumer group — bonding with their children through music — and leveraged it via multiple mediums. It integrated pop culture to engage the child and offered moms a philanthropic tie-in via a cause-marketing affiliation with the Afterschool Alliance, a nonprofit organization.

Quaker partnered with VerveLife, a tech-driven music marketing solution to offer exclusive video content from artists such as Jordin Sparks and Jason Derulo. The content smartly focused on the impact the moms of each of these artists had on their career positioning moms as a hero in the eyes of her child. Yay! A micro-site offered a library of 250 “mom approved” songs which could be downloaded.

In-store end-caps and on-package messaging spoke to mom while she was in the purchasing mode. According to Bill Fiely, director of Quaker Snack Bars, “The goal of the campaign was to use music to inspire healthy lifestyles, balanced nutrition and the importance of staying active afterschool.” Congratulations, Bill, not only did you succeed in reaching your goal, but you did it in way that was creative, respectful of mom’s desire to be cool, hip and up to date with her child’s music and afterschool activities. You also elevated her in the eyes of her child.

Brands who want to successfully engage today’s mothers need to create campaigns that empower mom to reach her goals. Universal among mothers are five key themes that motivate them toward reaching their goals. Pick one: Nurturing Relationships, Sharing, Doing it Better and Simpler, Raising Happy and Healthy Children, and The Sense of Accomplishment.

Quaker built its campaign on mom’s goal of nurturing relationships. Marketing programs built on one of these key motivators and that deliver the message through multiple platforms allow brands to develop a dialogue with moms that is relevant, intuitive and valuable. Apply it to your next campaign and perhaps next year your brand may be earn the H.E.R. Award.

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