A major life experience changed my perspective. Big whoop. It seems obvious and I am certainly not the first or last person to have my perspective changed by becoming a parent, but becoming a mom has undoubtedly changed me (and the way I market).
When you become a parent, your time is no longer your own. Instead, a tiny human is the priority on your daily schedule. This causes you to focus and prioritize how you spend any “free” time. Nap time is precious, sleep and food are the first parent priorities, but I now spend my precious 36 minutes on something really meaningful, instead of wasting my time. This laser-like focus means that it is easier to discern what is vital and what is a time waster. I am spending less time working overall, but more consequential undertakings are completed. Being forced to identify what is important for me on a personal level means that I have done away with alcohol, cable/Netflix/Hulu, my gym membership, and any other pre-baby indulgences like “free” time. My personal pampering now includes social media, library books and home workouts or jogging with a stroller. In the same way, I am able to focus on what is really important: a content calendar and original blogs for our internal Alter Endeavors marketing. I also keep an eye out for unique ideas, perspectives and opportunities for us and our clients. I don’t have as much time, but the work I do is more impactful.
Before I became a mom, like many people in the work world, I spent the majority of my day on a computer. This meant that I viewed all media and the world from my 13-inch MacBook screen. The online spaces where I spent most of my time included Google, Gmail, Facebook and Reddit. After my tiny tot entered the scene, balancing a MacBook and a baby in my lap wasn’t as easy. Plus, I’m no longer stationary for very long. I began primarily viewing the world and consuming content from my phone. Instagram and Instagram Stories overtook Facebook as my primary social media platform of choice. I now have more insight into how others use different social platforms. Previously, I was aware that websites and media could look different when viewed on a phone or a tablet versus a computer, but I now see the degree to which the user experience is impacted when creating and consuming content from a phone. It seemed as though a whole other world was opened to me. I now have a greater perspective on the pathway a potential client may take when interacting with a brand or arriving at a website from their phone.
Creation Over Consumption
Pre-baby, I posted infrequently, but now that I have something (a baby) that many people are interested in and want to see more of, my content creation for social media has skyrocketed. Granted, not everyone finds the goo-goo-gaga set adorable, but many friends and family encourage more posting. This causes me to become more creative and try new strategies for my “personal brand,” which then enables me to feel more confident about suggesting new strategies or different approaches for the Alter Endeavors brand or clients. My social media presence has become a guinea pig, if you will, for professional enrichment and development. As a new parent, who is humbled daily by all that I don’t know, I am now less timid about sharing or trying something new.
This sort of goes along with not having time, but I find myself much more confident in my actions and forthright simply because I don’t have the time to be reserved. When I go to the grocery store and I am trying to get back home before the baby wakes from his nap, I now have no problem striding up to an employee and asking for help reaching that carton of milk that is stuck all the way back in the corner. Before, when emailing with my team or close contacts, I might agonize over an email — the wording, all the details, the tone, etc. Now I am trying to get something down in a short nap time, so I have learned to say what I need and just hit send. Obviously, when corresponding with a new client or during a more formal exchange, it is important to proofread, edit and sound professional, but as far as quick correspondence, suggesting new ideas or communicating a thought that might help someone, I go for it instead of agonizing over it.
If you have never had a kid or it has been years since you had a child, you only need to take a peek at a baby registry to realize that young parents speak an entirely different language filled with jargon like Dock-a-Tot, Bumbo, Comotomo, Uppababy, Wubanub and more. All of these brands are fighting for space and name recognition among the stroller set. Being immersed in this new world and how these brands market their products/services and interact with their community, provides me with an interesting perspective on marketing for moms. These mom-focused brands now fill my Instagram feed as I am both a potential consumer and a marketer doing research. I am sometimes inspired by different strategies or examples and can encourage my team to apply a similar approach for different clients in diverse industries.
The Mom Connection
There are approximately eleventy billion (give or take) groups for moms, but being a part of some of our local Facebook groups that are specifically for moms is invaluable. Recently moved moms, newly pregnant moms, all kinds of moms are looking for recommendations from OBGYNs, to service technicians, to places to eat, to the best brands of car seats… I now have a front row seat to the inside conversation between the largest and most powerful buying force of most families. Not only do I want to know the best car seat to buy for my own child, but I am able to recommend clients and see where competitors rank and learn what people really think. This is an invaluable research tool when it comes to creating content for our local clients because I am learning about the needs, values and priorities of a targeted audience.
Is that a baby I hear? Got to go, nap time is over, but if you would like a new perspective for marketing your brand, I or one of my colleagues would love to help!