HOW TO… create value with new and expectant parents

In our last guide entry, we covered why building pre-purchase value with customers can create more efficient and valuable marketing programmes for brands in the baby sector. But, how do you set about doing it?

The reality is in marketing terms, loyalty is massively challenging now. If a website takes longer than three seconds to load in 2021, 50% of people aren’t making it to your landing page.

We live in an age of window shopping on steroids. Society has become less patient and we expect everything at our fingertips.

Unlike our grandparents’ generation, where they used the same brand of toothpaste for over 30 years because it’s their trusted brand, people now shift and change. They are willing and inspired to try new things.

Some of this is marketing, but a lot is to do with the fact we have powerful computers sitting in our pockets that work at the speed of light.

Technology and channels dictate a lot. When people are visiting your site, have good load times because this can impact everything. If you’re communicating via email, don’t use them to share a novel, be short, sweet and to the point. Your emails should drive clicks.

The most important thing to understand is that there’s a time to sell and a time to be nice. Building value is not about selling up front, it’s about engaging people at the right moments.

Be life stage-appropriate

The questions you should be asking when setting up your landing pages or creating any marketing content are: At which stage of pregnancy are my ideal customers? What’s relevant to them at this point?

Doctor’s appointments, scans and other key milestones have traditionally been the points in which to build loyalty with parents, and if you have the right setup, these early stages remain the best places to establish connections.

But, this isn’t just about getting some data and firing out a bunch of offers. One of the biggest mistakes to make is using email in this blanket way.

There’s no point in trying to send out a 20% discount code to someone who is only 14 weeks’ pregnant, when you could have access to quality data to send products and offers to them at an optimal time later, focusing on their journey as an individual.

Respond to societal trends and changing behaviours

With the right information and timing, there are real marketing opportunities out there.

A perfect example is in the surge of gender-reveal parties and announcements, after the 22-week scan.

Back in 2015, these were barely a thought. Now there are millions of gender reveal videos being shared, they go viral and make the news. This surge has made even more people want to find out the gender of their baby.

If you take these different factors and align them, you could target the 20-week stage to send out ideas for gender reveals or ‘click to enter’ competitions that link into finding out if they’re having a boy or a girl. 

You can recruit early and help parents through. Suddenly, you’re building a structure where people get to know you and your brand. You’ve shared positive things with them at a relevant stage. Then when they reach 28 weeks, you could send them a guide to car seat safety and relevant offers on car seats.

Interconnect everything and take your customers on a journey. This is a million miles away from saying ‘we have 20% off everything, click here’ and the audience you’re communicating with is only 8 weeks’ pregnant.

Own the loyalty journey

We’ve seen an influx of first trimester sign ups to Your Baby Club during lockdown. With more people working from home, parents are online with nobody hovering over their shoulder and searching for information or resources earlier than ever.

With this audience, brands have the opportunity to connect and then own those relationships directly.

You can recruit parents in the first trimester, then build up loyalty from there by sharing helpful, relevant tips and helping them through their pregnancy journey.

This could be through one email a week/fortnight and then sharing incentives at strategic points.  You will soon develop a relationship with real value in advance of any purchase points.

Our software means we can insert brands at any stage in the loyalty journey and send out targeted emails or offers to parents reaching a specific point. With the correct in-house resources and facilities, you can then take this data via first-party opt-in and take control of the loyalty journey under your brand.

How this all leads back to the cost/scale scenario discussed in our previous guide entry, is that in the baby sector there are people coming into the market every day.

If you’re continually driving for sales and only trying to find people at the time they’re ready to buy, that is going to be hugely expensive.

Instead, why not recruit parents in the huge period ahead of the purchase point, share the right messaging and completely own the journey.