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Marketing to Parents - Canada - September 2016

"As parents are more likely to be working full time than ever before, the approach to parenting necessitates a certain level of independence from their children. The result is a greater respect afforded to their children, evidenced by greater input from children on family activities. This comes with the side benefit of children actively influencing parents on trends and brands – something marketers would do well to cater to. Technology has undoubtedly impacted the way we interact with each other, though Canadian moms and dads do not necessarily see eye-to-eye on whether it helps or hinders family time."
-Carol Wong-Li, Senior Analyst, Lifestyles and Leisure

This report discusses the following key topics:

  • Money matters are on the minds of parents 
  • Perceived participation in housework may not be fully aligned amongst parents
  • Parents with young children struggle for balance 
  • Parents are concerned about their children’s online safety and security – even those with teens

Gender continues to be a factor in the household division of labour amongst those who live with their partners, with women being primarily responsible for tasks ‘inside’ the home. Having said this, it cannot be denied that the definition of masculinity today is changing; men are partaking in household chores and childcare more than ever before. This shift is creating an interesting dynamic in Canadian households where a clear discrepancy is seen between mothers and fathers: Canadian parents are not aligned in terms of perceived contribution and responsibility for household tasks. For example, where moms are more likely to see themselves as primarily responsible for chores such as meal/snack preparation and household cleaning, dads are much more likely to see the task as shared or that they are primarily responsible. The key here is that even if each side has an inflated perception of what they do (ie men think they cook and/or clean more than they actually do), marketers need to treat them based on their perceptions as this is, in essence, their reality.

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Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Definition
      • Executive Summary

        • The issues
          • Money matters are on the minds of parents
            • Figure 1: Goals in the next five years, July 2016
          • Perceived participation in housework may not be fully aligned amongst parents
            • Figure 2: Household division of labour, by gender, July 2016
          • Parents with young children struggle for balance
            • Figure 3: Attitudes towards prioritizing career, personal life and parenting, July 2016
          • Parents are concerned about their children’s online safety and security – even those with teens
            • Figure 4: Monitoring use of technology, by age of children at home, July 2016
          • Opportunities
            • Children have a voice in family entertainment decisions
              • Figure 5: Influence of children, by age of children in household, July 2016
            • Brands needs to do more to establish a personal connection with dads
              • Figure 6: Attitudes towards the influence of children on trends and brands (any agree), by gender, July 2016
            • Family time will never go out of style
              • What it means
              • The Market – What You Need to Know

                • Increasing variations in what makes a family ranges
                  • More parents are working full time
                    • Debt and the current economic conditions weigh on parents’ minds
                    • Market Factors

                      • The family structure is changing
                        • Fewer couples are having children
                          • Single-parent households are on the rise
                            • Blended families represent 13% of couples with children
                              • Figure 7: Distribution and percentage change of census families, by family structure, 2001-11
                            • Marketing efforts need to keep up with the times
                              • Proportion of parents working full time is on the rise
                                • Two-parent households see growth of both parents working full time
                                  • Fewer stay-at-home parents seen today – though a growing proportion are dads
                                    • Single parent households also more likely to be working full time
                                      • Opportunities to connect with parents – at least for a moment
                                        • Parents today are carrying more debt
                                          • Economic factors
                                            • Debt and parents
                                              • Retailers will be dealing with a more price-conscious consumer
                                              • Key Trends – What You Need to Know

                                                • Media portrayals reflect changing family structures
                                                  • Parents today are stretched
                                                    • Companies are encouraging children to step up, literally
                                                    • What’s Working?

                                                      • Family portrayals are more inclusive
                                                        • From reflecting ethnic diversity…
                                                          • … to reflecting dad’s role in the home
                                                            • Figure 8: Infinity QX60 – Pool Party, April 2016
                                                            • Figure 9: Mark’s Father’s Day, June 2016
                                                          • Simultaneously appealing to the interests of kids and adults
                                                          • What’s Struggling?

                                                            • Moms and dads want flexibility in the workplace
                                                              • Figure 10: Agreement with ‘it is important for parents to have a flexible job’, by gender, July 2016
                                                            • How protective is too protective?
                                                            • What’s Next?

                                                              • Helping children find balance between technology and play
                                                                • Figure 11: Agreement with ‘parents should set limits on their children’s screen time, by gender and age of children in household, July 2016
                                                              • Screen time means less play time – ParticiPACTION
                                                                • Figure 12: Make room for play, December 2015
                                                              • Fitness trackers in Happy Meals – McDonalds
                                                                • Catering to the busy-ness of being a modern parent
                                                                • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                                                  • Parents strive to save money and quality time with the family
                                                                    • Moms continue to be responsible for the majority of the housework
                                                                      • Canadian parents put their children before themselves
                                                                        • Children have a voice, though parents are worried about spoiling them
                                                                          • Canadian parents are tuned in to brands and trends their children like
                                                                            • Parents are divided on how technology impacts family time
                                                                              • Moms and dads are actively monitoring children’s use of technology
                                                                              • Goals and Priorities

                                                                                • Parents strive for financial goals and family time
                                                                                  • Figure 13: Goals in the next five years, July 2016
                                                                                • Financial goals targeted regardless of life stage
                                                                                  • Moms tend to be more family-centric
                                                                                    • Time spent with family can work as a de-stressor for parents
                                                                                      • Modern family traditions can be easily incorporated
                                                                                        • Dads with teens are interested in getting a new vehicle
                                                                                          • Figure 14: First Date – Hyundai Super Bowl Commercial, The Hyundai Genesis, February 2016
                                                                                      • Household Division of Labour

                                                                                        • Household duties fall along traditional gender lines
                                                                                          • Figure 15: Household division of labour, July 2016
                                                                                        • Opportunity for financial companies to cater to women
                                                                                          • Inside vs outside housework – In their words
                                                                                            • To be fair, men are contributing
                                                                                              • Figure 16: Edge Cereal – Boxcar, August 2016
                                                                                              • Figure 17: Household division of labour, by dads, July 2016
                                                                                            • He said, she said
                                                                                              • Figure 18: Household division of labour, by gender, July 2016
                                                                                            • Acknowledgement in both directions will go a long way
                                                                                              • Crediting moms for their time and energy put in the home
                                                                                                • Figure 19: Quaker “Stay True”, August 2016
                                                                                                • Figure 20: P&G TV Commercial, “Thank you, Mom”, April 2016
                                                                                              • Depicting men as capable
                                                                                                • Figure 21: Strong is Beautiful, Pantene Dad-Do, February 2016
                                                                                            • Order of Prioritization: Children vs Career vs Self

                                                                                              • The children come first
                                                                                                • Figure 22: Attitudes towards prioritizing career, personal life and parenting, July 2016
                                                                                              • Younger parents more likely to feel stretched
                                                                                                • Figure 23: PC Organics Babylicious, April 2016
                                                                                              • Moms with young children could use some pampering
                                                                                                • Figure 24: Moms’ attitude towards prioritizing career, personal life and parenting, by age of children in household, July 2016
                                                                                            • Approach to Parenting

                                                                                              • The dialogue goes both ways
                                                                                                • Figure 25: Attitudes towards parenting, July 2016
                                                                                              • Making brands child-friendly is an opportunity
                                                                                                • Children’s age is a factor
                                                                                                  • Urban parents need practical solutions
                                                                                                    • Figure 26: Attitudes towards benefits of daycare, by area of residence, July 2016
                                                                                                • Children’s Influence on Household Decisions

                                                                                                  • Children hold sway on family entertainment choices
                                                                                                    • Figure 27: Influence of children, July 2016
                                                                                                  • Greater influence among those with older children – particularly Moms
                                                                                                    • Figure 28: Influence of children, by age of children in household, July 2016
                                                                                                  • Moms are more likely to be swayed
                                                                                                    • Figure 29: Influence of children aged 12-17, by gender, July 2016
                                                                                                • Children’s Influence on Trends and Brands

                                                                                                  • Children keep parents aware of trends and brands
                                                                                                    • Figure 30: Attitudes towards the influence of children on trends and brands (any agree), by age of children in household, July 2016
                                                                                                  • Moms with teens are paying attention to the trends
                                                                                                      • Figure 31: Loft TV Commercial, “First Day”, September 2015
                                                                                                    • Dads with teens are tuned in to brands
                                                                                                      • Figure 32: Agreement with “my children often ask for things by brand name” (any agree), by gender and age of children in household, July 2016
                                                                                                  • Technology and Family Time

                                                                                                    • Parents are divided in how technology impacts togetherness
                                                                                                      • Figure 33: Attitudes towards technology and the family, July 2016
                                                                                                    • Fathers see bonding potential, mothers see divisiveness
                                                                                                      • Parents will respond to increasing interaction – online and off
                                                                                                        • Shared experiences via separate devices is possible
                                                                                                          • Bonding without devices continues to be desired
                                                                                                          • Monitoring Children’s Use of Technology

                                                                                                            • Concerns about online safety lead to personal monitoring
                                                                                                              • Figure 34: Monitoring use of technology, July 2016
                                                                                                            • More monitoring with under-12s, more worries with teens
                                                                                                              • Parents of children under-12 are setting limits on technology usage
                                                                                                                • Figure 35: Monitoring use of technology, by age of children at home, July 2016
                                                                                                              • Parents of teens could use some help – particularly moms
                                                                                                                • Figure 36: Monitoring use of technology, by age of children at home, July 2016
                                                                                                            • Canadian vs American Parents

                                                                                                              • American dads show greater personal connection to brands kids ask for than Canadian dads
                                                                                                                • Figure 37: Attitudes towards the influence of children on trends and brands (any agree), Canadian parents vs American parents, July 2016
                                                                                                              • Connecting with Canadian dads
                                                                                                                • Make it easy for dads to see why children ask for a brand
                                                                                                                  • Appeal to dad’s kid side
                                                                                                                    • Be a resource for Canadian dads
                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

                                                                                                                      • Data sources
                                                                                                                        • Consumer survey data
                                                                                                                          • Consumer qualitative research
                                                                                                                            • Abbreviations and terms
                                                                                                                              • Abbreviations

                                                                                                                              Marketing to Parents - Canada - September 2016

                                                                                                                              US $3,995.00 (Excl.Tax)