The life and times of a happy go lucky blogger in London
#SMWLDN Family Circles debate at the Design Council

I am at the Design Council this morning for the great debate about parents, children, marketing and social media. And of course us ‘mummy bloggers’ are at the heart of this discussion.

On the panel:
Jules Kendrick, Mumsnet
Jane Rumble, Ofcom
Julie Adair, exBBC and Disney
Maurice Wheeler, Coco

Here’s some more about what is being discussed today:

Seen through the prism of the family, this session is investigating the dynamics of the socially connected family unit and how marketers engage. We’ll explore how children and parents use social media both separately and together and the effects of this on relationships between the generations.

Marketing in its purest form should enable parents and children to make informed decisions about what’s best for their family. Social media can simplify and empower this process in a way that’s never existed before.

This presents opportunities and challenges for brands and their marketers, in a sensitive but important area. Taking a look at the latest research, our panel will discuss how marketers can support the family and answer those critical questions: “What’s new?” and “Who’s doing it well?” as well as providing plenty of time for Q&A with the audience.

Panel topics:

- What’s the latest thinking on social media and family dynamics?
- How is social media affecting brand engagement and purchasing?
- How can brands engage positively with families using social media?
- What are the new opportunities to engage with the family?
- What’s ‘Best practice’ communications with families and children?
- Potential impacts of the Bailey report and OFCOM digital literacy research?

I really enjoyed the Ofcom research data which shows how kids consume media and their attitudes towards it. It highlighted the fact that parents don’t know enough about emerging media and the internet landscape – if ever there was a case for educating adults, this is it. According to the research, one anecdote described how a nine year old chose the model and make of phone for his parent because he was better placed to do so. Several references were made to how savvy kids are online. I beg to differ, children are not equipped to deal with the vast array of what’s out there. We just have a knowledge gap and it needs to be filled. The panel was quite useful and I always love to hear people with direct experience talk about the work they’ve done. I think I set my sights a little too high as interestingly, the panel was unable to answer my question about the next steps following the Childrens Panel debate with government in October 2011. If you are interested, the results are here.

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4 Comments to “#SMWLDN Family Circles debate at the Design Council”

  1. Lara says:

    I was at the event too, thought it raised some interesting points. Shame that they didn’t want to engage with their audience so much though and instead opted for offending!

    Liked the data, I’m hoping to put together some sort of guide to help parents and children manage social media security and privacy issues, do you think this could be useful?

    • admin says:

      I think it would and it would be really good to produce it in an interesting format. I know so many parents who are clueless about technology. One of the debates we were having last year among bloggers was should the parents and bloggers bear the responsibility for educating each other? I love the digital inclusion campaign that is happening, I suppose next is to get everyone more au fait with how it all works. Obviously ebay and amazon have managed to do that because they are sites people can use every day. Please keep in touch about what you’re up too. Cheers

      • Lara says:

        Great, I may well get in touch with Ofcom as well, as it relates to their (scary) data. It would be great if it could be a crowd sourced format, maybe drawing on FAQs and general ignorance of internet security. It’s al very well having fire walls and child locks but they can’t protect against everything and I’m sure there are ways around them! Will keep in touch, do you mind if I add you to my bloggers database (read rather large spread sheet) to keep you up to date with this idea?

        • admin says:

          Yes please; I would be happy to be involved in anything like that and love the crowdsourced idea. Thanks, Eva

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