1 billion iPhones and the rise of the Dadsumers.

Ben Hafner: 900282113

Just this week Apple announced they have sold 1 billion iPhones. Not too bad when ultimately it’s just one phone that comes in a couple of different colours, shapes and sizes.

But what does this have to do with consumption and stay at home dads? The Apple iPhone itself very little, but the trending data of the smart phone; that shows a different story. Forbes report that 56% of people utilise their phone for the purpose of searching the internet.  And of that, Think With Google has highlighted that there is a large increase of expectant parents turning to mobile devices for their answers.

‘New and expecting parents are 2.7 times more likely than non-parents to use a smartphone as their primary device’ (Think With Google)

Overall Growth in Searches by Device in the Maternity and New Parent Categorynew-parents_articles_01

Not only the rise of mobile related questions regarding the who what when and whys of parenting but videos streaming to mobile were reported to rise by 329% in the year of 2014. Parents are actioning a lot of searches; but what are they actually looking for? It’s really no surprise that searching ‘what to buy’ and ‘where to buy’ are at the top of that list. In the newborn category; health, clothing, feeding, diapers and shopping are amongst the most searched list. (Think with Google)

Pew Research have shown that there has been an increase of 16% since the late 80s in stay at home fathers staying home for the primary purpose of caring for the family. There has been a large amount of change over the years, from the traditional concept of family with one partner being the breadwinner and the other being the parenting expert.

‘88% of millennial dads feel it’s at least somewhat important to be the ‘perfect dad,’ a higher percentage than millennial moms’ (Think with Google)

The team at Allen & Gerritsen recently produced a creative interactive article titled Dadsumers.

According to them most Dads consider themselves to be conscious consumers, with 72% of Millennial Dads, 55% Gen Y and 52% of Dads facing 50, identifying with the need to purchase environmentally friendly products. Millennial Dad’s are more willing to purchase luxury items,  44% saying they are willing to pay more for luxury brands.

With this is mind and the rise of the smartphone it’s easy to see the consumer behaviour changes and a marketing opportunity for brands, businesses and mothers alike. More than ever Companies need to be aware of the Pre Purchase Process, as very few walk into a shop and purchase the first recommendation.

The Purchase Process from Iacobucci (2013 p.13)


When it comes to fathers and their online needs, Bay Centre Reports, 7 in 10 want parenting tips and tricks and 6 in 10 are looking for answers to a parenting question.

With ‘Forty-five percent of millennial dads are most reliant on search for parenting information, more than any other digital resource’(Think with Google). This comes with a large increase from year to year in parenting products.

Mobile Search Growth in the Baby Category

mobile_search_growth_in_baby_category_yoy copy
Source: Google Data, April 2015 vs. April 2014, United States.

It’s at this stage that a need has already been identified, possible solutions have been sourced and or queried and a variety of options have been considered. The Gen Y father group is also considered the most active on social media. If information isn’t readily available products may not have made it to the short list.


It was also shown that there is a change in consumer behavior once a child is born, and this change can impact the brands of their consumer needs including food, cleaning products, personal care and financial products. (Baby Centre and Think with Google). So now with this change in the traditional family unit, with the access of the internet more readily available, what does this pose for future marketing and the direction of consumer behaviour.

At the purchase stage one has already narrowed the set of considerations, at this stage items have already been discarded from possible purchases and only one or two possibilities remain. 4 in 10 Dads state they feel more comfortable if they can purchase a product they can research first.


With many of the new dads being part of the Millennial / Gen Y cohort the need to increase marketing opportunity and track social behaviour is more relevant than ever. Millennial Dads are considered amongst the first mobile multitaskers, with 52% utilising a blend of mobile technology.

They expect to be able to interact with brands online, which included reading, commenting/liking and sharing, this was also highlighted to be more so than Gen Y mothers.

In the post purchase phase this highlights the needs for companies to be aware of the consumers’ feedback and the need to make reputable products that live up to what they have been promised. It’s at the post purchase phase that one Dad’s feedback may shape another’s prepurchase thoughts.

And it was at this point I found myself standing in a baby store Googling on my iPhone  trying to decide which baby carrier I should purchase.

Iacobucci, D 2013, MM4, South-Western, Cengage Learning, Mason OH, USA.

Fortune: Apple One Billion iPhones

The Dadsumers

Diapers to Diplomas: What’s on the Minds of New Parents

Baby Center: Millennial Dads: Equal Partners in Parenting

Pew Research: Growing Number of Dads Home with the Kids

What Do People Use Their Cell Phones For Beside Phone Calls?




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