4 Content Marketing Tips to Appeal to Busy Parents
Get ready for the understatement of the century: Parents don’t have a lot of time. And if your lifestyle brand is aimed at parents, your content is going to have work quickly and effectively to win and keep their attention. This can be accomplished through empathizing, entertaining, educating, or a thoughtful combination of the three.
A savvy lifestyle brand content marketing strategy needs to make use of multiple avenues and formats. Wherever parents are searching for advice, support, and new insights, you should be there with content that helps them out and keeps them coming back for more. Here are four content marketing tips to make your parenting brand speak to busy moms and dads.
1. Focus on the practical
Sure, those blog posts about “Top 10 Funniest Parenting Tweets of the Week” are entertaining, but that’s all they are. They don’t do anything — and content that’s entertaining or “nice to know” is the first to be ignored when parents get busy. Which is always.
On the other hand, parents aren’t all that different from anybody else: Most would rather read a story that teaches them something indirectly than to read a lecture. So your goal should be to blend the practical with the creative. The website Scary Mommy does an excellent job of this. Most of their content addresses real-life issues, and there’s a lesson embedded in almost all of it, but they communicate that lesson in such an irreverent, sarcastic (and sometimes crude) manner that no one would ever think of one of their stories as a “lecture.”
Likewise, an analysis of content shared on social media by Fractl and Buzzstream found that what they call “why-posts” are among the most regularly shared, earning 22.32 percent of social traction. That’s likely because parents are constantly bombarded with unsolicited advice: Use a pacifier, don’t use a pacifier, give your kids chores, don’t give them chores, etc. Why-posts that help them sort it all out can rack up big likes and shares. Combined with a personable introduction and a creative, narrative spin, a why-post is a great template for drafting your own original parenting content.
2. Keep them coming back
Sure, it’s great to have that one post that goes viral and racks up thousands of shares and likes. But it doesn’t do much good (except for your ego!) if none of those readers ever come back to your blog again. You don’t want to create the content that parents only read while they’re stuck in the car line with nothing better to do. You want to create the content that they can’t live without … the content they count on to make their lives easier. Whether it’s your web copy, a blog post, or even an e-book, you want your content indispensable.
To accomplish that, think about the universal things that parents deal with every day. “Resolve their pain points” is always good advice; that kind of content solves a problem or fulfills a need. But parenting isn’t just about solving problems. There’s a lot of good stuff in there, too, so don’t forget to include content that helps parents celebrate the wins. A few ideas:
- A blog post that curates the most common advice given to first-time parents, and then breaks it down into what’s true, what’s silly, and what may seem like an old wives’ tale, but is actually grounded in truth
- An e-book that explores the vaccine controversy and offers sound medical advice
- “How to survive…” web copy for each stage of child development: infancy, school years, teen years, etc.
- A series of “how to” blog posts giving tips on celebrating milestones like first birthdays, a great report card, etc.
Other great content ideas include things like new product launches and/or recalls, research, trends in child rearing, and advances in the fields of child nutrition and education (to name just a couple of examples). It’s not that busy parents don’t enjoy entertainment; it’s that they need information. Provide them with practical, easy-to-access advice, and they’ll keep coming back for more.
3. Be both reliable and transparent
As of 2012, there were 3.9 million mommy bloggers in the U.S., and 14 percent of American mothers with at least one child used mommy blogs for advice and/or blogged themselves. But there’s a catch: A common concern among many parents is that they’ll mess up and harm their child by being misinformed. So while parents do rely on blog posts, they also tend to vet the sources pretty carefully to make sure they don’t follow bad advice. To increase your reliability, use facts and statistics whenever possible, always providing links to your sources. If you include data resulting from your own in-house research, include a brief explanation of how that research was conducted, who conducted it, etc. Don’t just expect readers to trust you; show them why they can.
4. Make it engaging
Your social media presence is one of the fastest, most effective, and most engaging ways to establish the voice of your brand. Sure, it’s a reliable point of contact and a constant opportunity to both pitch your own original content and share some of the newest and most exciting developments in the field. But it also allows you to show your readers who you really are and to start the kind of conversations that create a personal connection.
Busy moms and dads don't necessarily have the time to wade through dense treatises on the vast complexities of parenting. (Think about it: Would you want to read boring, academic content on two hours of sleep?) Your content has to be engaging. Then again, parents want to know that what they’re reading is credible, reliably sourced, and well researched. It’s a tall order. Don't fancy yourself a wordsmith? That's where we come in. Prose Media can help you develop a content marketing strategy that can take your brand to the next level. Sign up today for free, no-obligation access to our platform. We look forward to seeing what you have in mind.