Parenting Mags and Mad Men: Connecting Via Media

Research care of Parenting Magazine notes some interesting findings:

  • 76% of moms feel that parenting magazines have less information of interest to them once their children start school.

  • 76% of moms would rather connect with moms who are dealing with the same issues they are, regardless of their age or the age of their kids.

This research underlies the larger issues that print media is facing. With the level of interactivity social media offers users, users are coming to expect that sort of interactivity from all media they consume. New media makes one-to-one connection possible. In the mommysphere, blogs and online communities are delivering content that allows people to enter into conversations with other moms. Once a mother experience’s that level of interactivity, the stale articles in parenting magazines fall flat.

It’s not just moms who want to connect. All across the media spectrum, people want ways to connect. The user-generated Twittering of Mad Men characters offers viewers of the show a chance to make a connection with the characters that pre-social media viewers could not have imagined. Expect this type of activity to become more prevalent, not less. While the Mad Men characters are simply fans taking control of the brand, there are no doubt marketers that have taken an interest and are planning ways to harness this for other brands.

How do we feel about this as marketers? This sort of phenomenon raises the bar for content. It urges us to take campaigns down to a personal level. That is not an easy thing to do.

But as the Mad Men Twitterers have shown us, if marketers don’t go there, users will.

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