“The moment a child is born, a mother is also born.”
The Motherhood team celebrated Mother’s Day in one of the most special ways possible, by welcoming the newest addition to our work family… Baby Luca!
Just in time for Mother’s Day, our director of marketing and business development, Serena Mounts, gave birth to her first child, Luca Thomas. We are so thrilled for Serena and her family and wish them congratulations and all the best!
Please join us in sending Serena well wishes as she embarks on this beautiful new journey called motherhood.
We hope you all enjoyed Mother’s Day! Big hugs to all the moms out there (and dads, aunts, uncles, grandparents and everyone else helping to raise a child) from the whole team at The Motherhood.
According to a survey recently conducted by The Motherhood, 70 percent of respondents have never framed their college diplomas. After all of the effort put forth, and the time and money grads and their families spend earning that degree, no diploma should end up forgotten about, left in a drawer, or even accidentally destroyed! One solution is to protect and professionally display that achievement in a diploma frame.
This spring, The Motherhood teamed up with Church Hill Classics and a team of 15 amazing bloggers to celebrate their loved ones who are spring 2016 graduates – from husbands to children to nieces and nephews – by giving them the gift of a custom, officially licensed college diploma frame.
In their posts, the bloggers shared personal memories of their graduates and their accomplishments, graduation checklist suggestions, information about the importance of preserving diplomas in a high-quality frame and photos of their graduates with their hand-selected frames.
“The Motherhood [bloggers’] reviews, photos and posts are really helpful for us during our peak graduation season, because it gives us easy, visual and relevant content to share through our social channels,” said Church Hill Classics Marketing Manager Jessica Lombard. “The content creation from this program is a big benefit for us!”
To build on the conversation already stemming from the team’s blog and social media coverage, The Motherhood also hosted a Twitter party in early April, where the bloggers and other participants discussed ways to celebrate this season’s graduates and generated buzz around Church Hill Classics frames as graduation gifts.
The blogger team was then re-engaged in late April, just before graduation, to share additional social media posts and discount offers during the key sales period, reminding their followers of the best graduation gift idea – a beautiful custom diploma frame.
Overall, the campaign generated 16 blog posts and more than 1,200 social media posts, resulting in more than 45.5 million total impressions.
Winners are chosen by popular vote, and we are thrilled and honored to be recognized.
Melissa Pezza of The Mommyhood Chronicles, one of the bloggers engaged by The Motherhood to participate in the campaign to spread the word about Malala’s mission and the release of the film, was on hand at the ceremony and saw the live announcement. She told us, “I was very thrilled to be involved in a campaign for an amazing woman who is not only a pioneer but such a believer in education that she lets nothing stand in her way. She is a role model for all women!”
After learning the news of the win, Monica Marino of Marino Bambinos – another of the bloggers The Motherhood engaged for the campaign – said, “Malala is truly a symbol of hope and a pillar for girls’ and women’s rights worldwide. It was an honor to play a small part in amplifying the release of her documentary film He Named Me Malala and I’m grateful to The Motherhood for including me in this incredible campaign. It’s also wonderful to see community recognition for this important work.”
Lori Pace of A Day in Motherhood agreed, saying of the program, “Helping to promote He Named Me Malala was an amazing opportunity, not only for me, but for my daughter as well. Being able to open the discussion of going against the ‘norm’ and staying with your passion no matter what happens is an important one. This campaign promotes all that is good about her story and I am not surprised that it won an Iris Award!”
During the #HeNamedMeMalala campaign in September and October 2015, The Motherhood and our partners worked with nearly 75 blogger ambassadors to share news and information, via blogs and social media, about the Malala Fund’s efforts on behalf of women’s education around the world, along with the release of He Named Me Malala in theaters across the country. We also screened the film in advance for 340 attendees in a dozen different cities. Tweets with #HeNamedMeMalala during that two-month period totaled more than 2,000 and reached 4.5 million users.
Congratulations to our incredible partners, in particular Morra Aarons-Mele of Women Online and Chrysula Winegar of Wake Up World Communications, and all of the bloggers who participated in the #HeNamedMeMalala campaign and share the credit for the Iris Award for Best Sponsored Content!
The unapologetic truth, saying no to working for free and what brands can do better; Muffy, of Brown Mamas, is sharing it all with The Motherhood this month!
As our featured blogger in May, Muffy delves into some of the greatest challenges when working on brand programs, what inspires her and where she sees the greatest engagement with her content. She also offers great advice for those interested in starting a blog, and shares about one of her favorite programs.
Read more below and give Muffy and the moms at Brown Mamas a shout out at @TheBrownMama.
Each month, our internal team convenes and discusses our latest programs, stellar partnerships and top-performing influencers. It’s not about numbers, but rather, the quality, authentic content they’re delivering consistently. It’s about reliability, professionalism and partnership. We discuss our nominations for the month and ultimately decide on just one blogger to invite as our featured blogger. Stop back June 1 for the next blogger spotlight!
“One of the things that I really strongly believe in is that we need to have more girls interested in math, science and engineering. We’ve got half the population that is way underrepresented in those fields and that means that we’ve got a whole bunch of talent…not being encouraged the way they need to.”
— President Barack Obama, February 2013
Today, in an age in which nearly half of all primary breadwinners are women, and women’s labor has expanded the economy by $2 trillion dollars, the fact is that females are still underrepresented in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) field.
As Reshma Saujani – an education activist who has the goal of getting one million women in computer science by 2020 – stated in her Ted talk, we must encourage a culture in which girls learn bravery and find a sense of comfort in imperfection. Part of nurturing a girl who can innovate and change the world with her talents is helping her develop the confidence in her skills to show what she can do, without fear of failure.
With summer break approaching, these next few months are a prime time to nurture a sense of creativity, innovation, problem-solving and invention in both girls and boys.
STEM Activities for Kids: Five Ideas for a Summer of Exploration
1. Create a question jar
The first week of summer break, sit down with your child and brainstorm all of the questions that are on their mind.
Why is the sky blue?
Why do lightning bugs glow?
How does an airplane fly?
How many iPhones do you have to stack end-to-end to reach the moon?
Write each question down on a note card or piece of paper, fold them up and put them in a jar. Each day or week of vacation, have your child draw a question and brainstorm ways to find the answer. Field trips, research, a library visit or science experiments are all great ways to encourage curiosity and discovery.
2. Get growing
Help your child plan and plant a backyard garden. They can research the kinds of seeds that are likely to thrive in your climate, the optimal levels of sun, shade and water necessary to grow, the impact of insects and other animals.
Encourage trial and error! They don’t need to have the greenest thumb on the block the first time around. Have your child keep a journal with notes on the growth and harvest schedule, and at the end of the summer, have them develop a plan for the next season, using the key learnings from their first garden.
3. Host an at-home science fair
Whether you tackle the classic egg drop challenge, build a toothpick bridge or research a different problem to solve, work with your child to tackle a feat of engineering. Have your child gather some friends and neighbors to display their creations, explain their thought process and test them out to prove or disprove their theories.
To drive home the importance of trial and error and the iterative process, make the focus of each child’s presentation to share their best “lessons learned,” recognizing that there is a lot to be learned by examining unsuccessful attempts at creating a solution.
4. Crack the code
One of the amazing benefits of the proliferation of smartphones and tablets is the ability to learn the back-end functions of computing with the touch of the screen. While parents want kids to put down their electronic devices and spend the summer outside, a possible exception to this rule could be for coding apps.
For students entering grades one through six, sign them up for Camp Invention, a weeklong adventure that will turn the summer from ordinary to extraordinary through hands-on problem solving. Camp Invention is the only nationally recognized summer program focused on creativity, innovation, real-world problem solving and the spirit of invention.
Camp Invention provides an opportunity for inventive young minds to exercise their creativity and use their imagination in ways they don’t normally get to in the classroom. Campers have so much fun they barely realize they are learning and developing new skills as they build prototypes, take things apart, explore different types of technology and so much more.
This year’s Camp Invention curriculum is called Epic™, inspired by some of our nation’s most brilliant minds, including experienced educators, Inductees of the National Inventors Hall of Fame and members of the United States Patent and Trademark Office. Campers will construct a DIY solar-powered cricket, design an eco-adventure park, brainstorm product ideas and build original prototypes using real tools and components found in everyday devices, and much more! Learn more about this year’s curriculum by clicking the link.
Camp Invention serves more than 94,000 students every year through nearly 1,400 camps across the nation. For additional information or to find the nearest location for registration, visit www.campinvention.org.
This post about STEM activities for kids is brought to you in partnership with Camp Invention. All opinions are our own.
If you find measuring social media campaigns to be a challenge for your brand, you are not alone. More than half (53 percent) of marketers surveyed for a recent Forrester report said measurement was their main challenge with social marketing. While we know that influencer and social media marketing can have significant ROI, there is no one simple formula for determining a campaign’s success, which bring us to the importance of identifying a way to effectively measure social engagement.
The value of influencer marketing comes from brands’ ability to tap into an influencer’s close-knit community of followers who already know and trust the influencer. This value cannot be communicated effectively with sheer impressions alone, but instead can be seen in how followers engage with a post, an indicator of lasting impact that will motivate followers’ future opinions, decisions and purchases.
The bloggers we work with continue to tell us that numbers alone are not their biggest success factor – the real connections and shared value with readers is what matters. Most of these influencers feel that there is a gap between their thinking and brands’ point of view on what works and what doesn’t in a social media campaign.
Take a look at some of the “gaps” we found:
Impressions and reach are not the only value of an influencer: deep, targeted connections and quality content are very important.
Success shouldn’t be hindered by the limitations of measurement today – avoid focusing only on impressions, unique monthly views, page visits and bloggers’ reach.
Other factors, such as engagement, provide valuable consumer insight and are often indications of purchase or action.
When their readers view posts in that moment, they are just that – readers. Purchases or actions may not be immediate, but without a doubt, there is an impact on purchasing behavior.
Knowing the brand’s objectives going into a campaign is extremely helpful in getting the desired results.
Content does not go viral right away, and there is also value in evergreen content.
Online influencers are more than numbers and impressions – they are community creators and thought leaders. They have a relationship with their readers built on trust and shared values, which makes them powerful voices.
We often see that brands believe working with the highest-reach bloggers will make their campaigns more successful, but we know that highest reach doesn’t always mean the best results. When sponsored content is authentic, it naturally provides value for its readers. We see influencers with high AND lower reach creating true connections with their followers, and their content performs well and garners higher engagement over time.
Since we’re finding that the long-standing impressions metric does not always communicate the inherent value of influencer marketing, we’re continuing our #MeasurementMonday series by tackling the topic of going beyond the impression — and how to measure social engagement.
Why measure Social engagement?
Impressions are one piece of a campaign’s success. For example, a recent study from The Motherhood found that 80 percent of blog readers were more likely to seek out brands they’d seen on social media and blogs. But when we measure social engagement, we get better insight into how users responded to the content and receive more tangible metrics to analyze.
Here are five reasons to measure engagement:
Easily indicates top-performing content
Allows for analysis of factors that lead to high engagement
Engagement rate as a percent of total impressions levels the playing field between large and smaller influencers’ followings
Industry standard ROI calculations rely on engagement as a metric of earned media value
Each different type of engagement (likes, shares, comments, etc.) indicates users’ response to content
What does an Online engagement mean?
There are many reasons people like, share and comment online; however, in general, those actions can indicate the following:
Shares and re-tweets indicate that a post resonates with those individuals. 86 percent of people say that they share to give others a better sense of who they are and what they care about without having to explicitly state it.
Likes and favorites often indicate reciprocity. We do this because we want to maintain or reinforce closeness and add value to relationships as well as to indicate a shared emotion or understanding of post. (You can actually connect your Facebook profile here to find out what your likes indicate about you.)
Commenting on posts can indicate a variety of things based on the content. However, commenting does indicate that the user took time to view and interact with the post. Comments, even negative, are said to create value for other post viewers as well: 85 percent say that reading others’ responses on a topic helps to understand and process information and events.
Not all engagement is created equal; as we mentioned in a previous #MeasurementMonday post, success factors can vary based on campaign goals. Studies indicate that shared values were a much bigger driver for consumers than lots of interaction with a brand. Engagement metrics help us to better understand how online users react to sponsored content.
Social media influencers help create a more personal and shared brand experience for consumers, and the value of that experience is best showcased in understanding engagement and insights. When brands measure social engagement as a key performance indicator in their influencer campaigns, they’re acknowledging the power of well-written, authentic content in moving the needle.
Continue following our #MeasurementMonday series and view past posts here!
Simply put, social media feeds are becoming oversaturated, and an algorithm is a way to cut down on the clutter. Following in the footsteps of Facebook and Twitter, social platforms tend to introduce algorithms when they’ve hit the tipping point, which also generally happens to be shortly after successfully introducing ads. With that in mind, it was no surprise when Instagram announced that it was working toward implementing an algorithm in its newsfeed, so that you can “see the moments you want to see first.”
Source: Social Media Today
Instagram claims that users currently miss 70 percent of posts on their feed, and the updates will be focused on improving the user’s experience. Instagram also states that the feed will concentrate on “optimizing the order—all the posts will still be there, just in a different order,” and will likely prioritize content that you engage with, content that has garnered a high amount of engagement and content that attracts high engagement in a short amount of time.
Although many users did not react positively to the announcement, we don’t feel this is all bad news. Instagram’s new algorithm will cause brands and individuals to analyze what content performs best and resonates with their followers, which could help them create more effective photos in the future. Furthermore, it is likely that the updates will level the playing field between accounts with huge followings and those that are smaller. We also believe it will continue brands’ focus on engagement with content rather than on sheer numbers, which is consistent with what we’ve observed in recent social media and influencer marketing campaigns.
But even still, some are worried that their brand’s photos will be buried deep in user Instagram’s feeds, possibly never seen. Here are a few ways you can set yourself up for success when the new algorithm rolls out.
Three ways to stay on top of the Instagram algorithm:
Encourage interaction and engagement
This does not mean asking followers to turn on notifications (that tactic could potentially lose followers due to its spammy nature). Instead, encourage users to engage with posts they like and enjoy seeing, so that they will continue to see more like them. The algorithm will focus highly on user’s history of post engagement and make assumptions about what you care about seeing from that, so what you currently engage with will play a huge difference in what you see. Interact with others — the more you interact with them, the more likely they are to interact with you.
It’s no secret that individuals respond better to authentic content that they can personally connect with. Authenticity is key in an era in which individuals expect to only be shown content that they are interested in and are blocking pushy ads altogether. Great content will rise to the top of your followers’ feeds; make sure you are part of it. Analyze what types of content have created the highest engagement historically and garner insights from past interactions so that these insights can be used to create content that followers want to see. Try writing timely content, including a few relevant and popular hashtags, and see how your followers respond!
A photo posted by Thomas' Breakfast (@thomasbreakfast) on
create mutually beneficial partnerships between brands and influencers
Finding interesting, relevant and authentic ways to ways to leverage the in-tune followings of influencers in your target market is one significant factor in a brand’s success, especially in the algorithm era. Featuring a brand or product in the context of a real person’s life will provoke engagement from followers as they will see it as an authentic post (not an ad). Brands can repost and feature followers on their account to encourage users to share photos with a dedicated hashtag. Social Media Today also suggests that focusing on a larger number of quality influencers (with possibly a lower reach), rather than a small number of prominent or celebrity influencers, will increase brand’s chances of appearing in users’ feeds.
In 2015, The Motherhood launched the Blogger Spotlight Series to showcase the tremendous talent within our network, spotlighting some of the most professional, creative and hardworking influencers in the industry. This year, we’re continuing the series with a top-tier roster of influencers, highlighting one per month, starting with Penelope of Penelope’s Oasis.
How does it all work?
Each month, our internal team convenes and discusses our latest programs, stellar partnerships and top-performing influencers. It’s not about numbers, but rather, the quality, authentic content they’re delivering consistently. It’s about reliability, professionalism and partnership. We discuss our nominations for the month and ultimately decide on just one blogger to invite as our featured blogger.
To kick things off for 2016, we’re thrilled to feature Penelope. From Capital One to Geek Squad and many others, Penelope has been an outstanding partner across various campaigns.
Now, without further delay, read on to find out what she predicts to be the #1 trend in blogging in 2016, where she gets inspiration for her content and more!
Do you have questions for Penelope? Share in the comment section below!
Did you know that safe drinking water is a problem for nearly one billion people around the world?
In 2015, The Motherhood had the incredible opportunity to execute a campaign on behalf of Procter & Gamble’s (P&G) Children’s Safe Drinking Water Program, which helped secure a donation of 126,000 days of clean water for children in developing countries!
On the heels of such an impactful program in 2015, our influencer team shared feedback with us about the real power of the Purifier of Water packets demonstration. They wanted to use the demonstrations to deliver the important message about the global need for clean water by making the packets available to their communities and to their schools.
Over the past several weeks, P&G has given them what they asked for!
You can now conduct a water purification demonstration at home by purchasing a set of P&G Purifier of Water packets here. With each set of packets purchased, you’ll be donating three months’ worth of clean drinking water to a child in a developing country. For each purchase of P&G packets, $1.80 will be donated to the Children’s Safe Drinking Water Fund, a charitable fund managed by the Greater Cincinnati Foundation. For more information, visit www.csdw.org.
This season, as families take time off to enjoy spring break, we encourage you to take few moments for this simple, at-home family activity for a good cause. It transforms water right before your eyes and gives you the opportunity talk to your kids about the importance of clean water, science and giving back.
For this year’s #PowerofClean influencer program, our bloggers and their families revisited the water experiment that utilizes P&G Purifier of Water packets. Check out some of their in-home experiences below:
Photo Credit: Cindy, Akron Ohio Moms
“My kids were grossed out when I asked them if they would drink the dirty water and they were sad when they realized that this is the only option for many children across the globe. It was so exciting to see their eyes light up and hear their excitement when they saw the dirty water turn into clean water, magically before their eyes!” – Cindy, Akron Ohio Moms
Photo Credit: Jessica, A Parent in America
“We tried the P&G Purifier of Water packets right in our kitchen, and when Charlie, Eve and Alice saw with their own eyes that we had to intentionally ‘dirty’ water in order to recreate the impure water that families worldwide have to drink, the gravity of the situation was made clear to them. Then they used the packets to purify the dirtied water and then even drank the purified water, experiencing firsthand how this innovation helps children who live elsewhere.” – Jessica, A Parent in America
“It is such a great feeling to know that the time we spend with our kids can really give them a global view and teach them a new process at the same time. It’s a perfect hands-on way to show how science and technology can help in solving global issues, and the importance of giving to those in need.” – Alice, Thrill of the Chases
Photo Credit: Tiffany, Stuff Parents Need
“During your spring break, I want to encourage you to do this activity with your kids. It’s super neat to watch, and it also can lead to a terrific discussion about the global clean water crisis and the role science and technology can play in finding a solution, as well as the role we each can play by contributing a small amount of money to help provide clean water to those in need.” – Tiffany, Stuff Parents Need
Even if your family’s spring break has passed, you can still purchase a water purifier packet and do the experiment on your own! Four water packets are included per purchase, so you can share the experiment with your kids’ classroom or with other groups of friends. We hope you’ll join us in this wonderful opportunity to provide clean water to someone in need in a developing country!
Photo Credit: Ellen, Confessions of an Overworked Mom