US mothers prefer Internet to TV for info

MUMBAI: This is news that should give the US advertising community targetting the mother, food for thought on where they should allocate budgetary resources. The internet is turning out to be the information source that American mothers turn to the most. The information is contained in a study conducted by C&R Research which was commissioned by Disney Online.


84 per cent of mothers who use the Internet said that if they had to give up one type of media, they would miss the Internet more than any other source of information or entertainment. The study's methodology used segmentation analysis to identify four distinct groups spanning heavy Internet users to non-techie moms.

The study also found that including email, moms now use the Internet almost twice as much as they watch TV. They spend 13.2 hours a week online versus a mere 7.6 hours per week sitting in front of the idiot box. The Internet outranks TV, radio and magazines as a trusted source of information. Only newspapers were ranked higher by just three per cent.

The data showed interesting commonalities between three segments -- The Yes Mom, Mrs. Net Skeptic, and Tech Nesters -- which together comprise 77 per cent of the 31 million moms online. Commonalities include use of the Internet for information gathering, purchase research and openness to online advertising that provides tips and suggestions that relate to family life.

Disney Online senior VP, MD Ken Goldstein was quoted in a company release saying, "We found it enlightening that a segmentation analysis pointed to strong similarities in online attitudes, behaviors and needs. The fact that these Internet moms are interested in Internet ads related to family life suggests that online media can be purchased using many of the same buying techniques used in traditional media planning -- by segment as well as by reach. Where we give moms useful information, it is clear that they are embracing online advertising as a tool in their decision making."

Nine out of 10 Internet moms agree that they want to simplify their lives and the Internet helps fulfill that function. The mothers surveyed ranked weather, food and cooking, entertainment, news, health, and parenting as the most popular types of sites to visit. 64 per cent of the Internet moms embrace ads that provide ideas, tips and suggestions that are family-related.

The study was conducted from July to December 2003. Over 1,800 moms with kids aged 6-14 were recruited using the C&R Research KidzEyes panel, a statistically representative online panel. A sophisticated segmentation analysis was also performed.

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