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Those Multitasking, Smartphone, Connected TV-loving Moms

Study shows moms are among the earliest and most dedicated media consumers

Photo: Getty Images

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Capping off what has been a tumultuous week in the media for motherhood, a new study looks to dismantle any preconceived notions of "the Luddite mom."

Working with Nielsen, BabyCenter released a study on Thursday (April 19) boasting data indicating that mothers are spending an eye-opening amount of their daily time with media and among the earliest adopters of new technology platforms.

The study, comprised of in-home interviews with over 2,500 surveyed mothers, shows an increased rate of smartphone adoption with 65 percent of moms navigating their busy lives on the mobile Web. There appears to be no exceptions to the mom-early-adoption trends either, as mothers are 38 percent more likely to own an Internet TV device and 28 percent more likely to own a tablet. However, more intriguing than their propensity to buy new technology is how moms are using their devices.

For most moms, multitasking is a mastered skill as old as motherhood itself, and BabyCenter’s study reveals that when it comes to media, multitasking is a must. One in four moms admitted to talking on the phone while watching TV or online and confessed to shuffling through social media sites while watching online video.

While the figures are new, these trends have been building for years now. Previous Nielsen studies had shown that nearly one in three bloggers are moms, with women making up the majority of bloggers in 2011. Yet, just because moms are voracious digital consumers doesn’t mean they’re easy targets for brands and advertisers. According to a BabyCenter press release, “Three in four moms say that they skip all of the ads they can while watching television content—a rate that is 20 percent higher than the general online population.”

For brands it would appear that mobile is the way to a busy mom’s heart as usage of mobile for product/brand recommendations has almost doubled in 2011 to 33 percent. With moms relying on smartphones more than ever before, brands may want to think about upping their mobile targeting ad campaigns to reach moms directly at the point of purchase. Don’t be surprised if this trend blows up in the coming year.

Another key area for brands to explore: Web video. Per BabyCenter's report, moms are 50 percent more likely to watch video online compared to the general population. That's likely a big reason that companies like Maker Studios and DGB are producing original mom-oriented content as part of YouTube's 100-channel rollout this year.