Friday, October 24, 2008

Marketing to mommybloggers: Two great parties in one week.

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I attended two fabulous bloggy events this week: the LeapFrog party and the Epson/Sparkplugging party. What made them so fabulous?

The hosts, the guests, and the swag. It's no coincidence that both events were crafted with the input of actual mom bloggers.

I've been working with LeapFrog throughout their blog outreach campaign and I matched them up with the women behind Silicon Valley Moms Blog Group to host regional parties. One2One Network, the group behind the Epson event, is getting advice from their new employee and my blog sistah Arianne.

It pays to pay a momblogger to aide you in your outreach efforts. We know the space, we know the trends and hot-button issues. We know the moms. Sure, nobody knows them all--who could? the momosphere is huge and growing daily--but we know how to find target your audience and reach out to them.

Hosts: At both recent parties, the hosts placed a priority on the guests, not the products. LeapFrog brought members of their educational advisory board to speak with parents, but rather than provide an informercial on the wonders of LeapFrog educational toys, the experts engaged moms in a conversation about the role of technology in the lives of our children. Parents made suggestions (eco-friendly packaging, electronic games with built-in timers that shut them down after the prescribed amount of playing time) that the PR rep promised to bring back to the Pond (LeapFrog HQ). LeapFrog also provided entertainment (even non-electronic entertainment, I should add) for the kiddos.

I expected to see half a dozen printers at the Epson event, but there was only one and they kept it busy all night printing out photos of the guests, thanks to Beth. When asked, the One2One staff was happy to expound on the printer's marvelous features, but, frankly, the pictures spoke the proverbial 1,000 words about it. They are sharp and bold. They look like they came from a developer, rather than a home-office printer.

Guests: What's not to love about a chance to meet and hang out with my friends from Chicago Moms Blog and other local social media moms, especially when a sponsor is picking up the tab?

Swag: Bloggers love swag. A beach ball with the company logo might cut it at your industry trade show, but not for your typical mom blogger. LeapFrog was not only quite generous with the amount of product they gave out at the party, (check out the photo at the bottom of this post), but they also offered to sponsor bloggy giveaways for the guests. In addition, they also provided a flash drive filled with product info, and a coupon code for guests and their blog readers.

The Epson swag bag was a bit more random. Each guest received a stylish Envirosax (love 'em!), filled with product. Though the assortment was a bit odd, for example, the Downy Detergent seemed a bit out of place, it had some interesting items including a Ecousable stainless steel reusable bottle (it's beautiful, but made in China and I'm leery of lead regardless of the product label). Each guest also received a sample pack of Epson papers. I would have welcomed a flash drive or brochure on the Epson line. And some high-quality chocolate. But it was a fun bag, nonetheless. Oh, and I forgot to mention they raffled off two printers during the party!

If your company is planning a party for bloggers take note. Use a blogger to reach out to bloggers, stick to a soft sell and focus on your guests, provide an exciting swag bag, and don't forget the chocolate.


kristina said...

Great post as always, Kim. As a mom blogger, I'd say you echoed my thoughts on how companies should approach moms.

I'm just envious I don't live in Chicago or a bigger city so I could attend these events.

CanCan (MomMostTraveled) said...

I'm dying to get to one of these events one day.

Sprite's Keeper said...

Awesome post! If I lived in the area, I would have arrived early! Great advice, Kim!

Seeryus Mama said...

That's awesome!! I wished I lived somewhere in the hub of things so I could network. The Swag sounds great!!

Karen Putz said...

Kim, it was wonderful to meet you at the Sparkplugging/Epson event! You echoed my thoughts on the swag. I loved the game in there though! The bottles I'm a little wary of because of the "Made in China" background as well. The Downy I gave to my neighbor as I haven't used fabric softener in seven years.

Alyson, the 3 P's Mama said...

What a great time! Kim from What's That Smell?> said y'all had a blast and I can totally see why. Thanks for letting us know what all happened!:)