But, what about the unchange?
Of course, becoming a mother can affect a woman emotionally, physically, and practically – in her career, relationships and social life. But it rarely brings fundamental change to what we’re into, how we dress, what we value and what we don’t. We’re still the same complex, idiosyncratic, sophisticated Millennial consumers we were before. Just with longer shopping lists. And less time.
Becoming a mother is anything but boring and predictable, so how come so much of the marketing aimed at us is? Where are the deep human truths, the wit, the diversity, the attitude, the levity, the #realtalk, the insight, frankly, the…effort…in all this advertising and editorial aimed at me, now? Am I to live in a lens-flare world of domestic pastel perfection, smoothing the cotton-soft edge of a nappy against my cheek? Must I be infantalised by baby food brands and their baby-talk product descriptions? And will I learn to enjoy being greeted by decade-old stock shots on your website?
We mothers are full of warmth for brands that understand the complexity of our lives and find ways to help lighten the load. Boots for instance has a Parenting Club as part of its loyalty program that sends personalised monthly newsletters pointing to specialist editorial, product reviews and discounts closely linked to my baby's developmental milestones, so they are there with me every step of the way. But other examples are few and far between. So brands, show us you get us. Please, find a way. Recognise us as people, don’t define us by life-stage. See us as individuals, not segments in the targeting model.
Beth Bentley is global VP of strategy at Virtue Worldwide, the creative marketing agency of Vice Media. She is a mother of one and pregnant with her second baby. While on maternity leave she started an Instagram blog about modern baby weaning after struggling to find relatable modern infant nutrition resources and has now been commissioned by Penguin Random House turn her blog into a cookbook for Millennial parents, to be released June 2018.