People Insights

March 22, 2016

Modern Parenting: A World of Infinite Choices and Voices

There's now a wider web of influence on parents’ decisions. Learn how to earn your way into their trusted circle.


    First-time parents are met with an overwhelming sea of products and services. And decisions about how best to spend money, whose opinions to follow and what advice to take only seem to multiply as kids get older. Indeed, all parents live in a world of infinite choices and voices.

    We know that mobile is helping parents navigate these confusing waters. Mobile is where parents—especially Millennial parents—get opinions, price comparisons and reviews that lead to informed household decisions.

    But just as moms and dads are getting more informed, so are their kids.

    To explore how technology is helping parents become smarter consumers, Facebook IQ embarked on a multi-phased research study of 25–65-year-old parents of infants, toddlers, adolescents and teens around the world. We analyzed Facebook and Instagram data across eight markets (Australia, Brazil, Canada, Germany, Mexico, Spain, UK and US) and commissioned quantitative work, conducted by Ipsos Media CT, and qualitative research, led by Sound Research. We also gathered feedback from 8,300 parents and five parenting experts.

    What we learned is that, more than ever before, there’s a wider web of influence on parents’ decisions. The modern family is an inclusive environment where friends, experts, brands and especially kids’ opinions are encouraged and taken seriously. From the everyday moments like “what movie should we watch?” to big-ticket purchases like “PC or Mac?,” children in particular are shaping the direction money is flowing at home.

    Household Decision Making: Majority Rules Infographic

    Household Decision Making: Majority Rules Infographic

    What it Means for Marketers

    What it Means for Marketers

    • Seize the Mobile Opportunity to Help Inform Parents

      Parents, particularly Millennials, are using their mobile phones to make informed purchasing decisions, giving marketers the opportunity to reach the next generation of buyers. Brands need to provide these tech-savvy consumers with relevant information that offers tangible advice in a mobile-friendly way.

    • Don't Underestimate the Influence of Family Members

      Brands need to acknowledge the growing curcle of influence kids, family memebers and friends have on parents' decision making and how this web of influence transforms through the parenting journey. And in the US, parents with a kid under age 13 tend to feel more pressured to buy what their kid suggests than other parents. But as their kid grows, these parents are happier— proud, even— to have their input.3

    • Build Trust Among Parents

      Growing up in a world where technology is second nature to them, kids are often the "teachers" and parents are the "students." For parents, this often means playing a game of catch-up. Brand can earn their way into parents' trusted circle and help build their confidence in teh products and services kids are advocating for my helping them stay informed.

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