P&G develops Web series to reach moms

CINCINNATI: Procter & Gamble launched an online series about pregnancy and parenting as part of an ambitious ongoing social media program for its Pampers brand.

CINCINNATI: Procter & Gamble launched an online series about pregnancy and parenting as part of an ambitious ongoing social media program for its Pampers brand.

The branded “A Parent is Born” series was posted August 24 to the Pampers Web site, although none of the 12 episodes include product messages, said Bryan McCleary, director of PR for P&G's Baby Care unit.

“One of the things we're trying to do as a brand is connect with moms in meaningful and relevant ways,” he said. “One of those ways is to not simply be pushing product messages but to actually be bringing content and services that actually add interest and value to her life.”

The episodes are also available on YouTube and DirectTV.

To drive interest in the series, P&G focused on a “blogger first” strategy, sending sneak previews to hundreds of mom bloggers, the Nielson Top 50 bloggers, and influencers the week before the launch, and providing the bloggers with trailer videos to post to their blogs as widgets and contest prizes for the blog's readers.

Two bloggers that P&G reached out and received coverage from include Isabel Kallman at Alpha Mom and Kailani Okamoto at IslandLife808, said Angela Alvarez, group director for PainePR, which has worked with the Pampers brand for five years.

The agency has worked with the Pampers brand on several social media initiatives, including Blogger Days, "One Pack = One Vaccine" campaign, and the Pampers Community Manager.

“It's exactly the point, to reach mom on an emotional level and to provide a service that parenthood is a journey,” she said. “[We're] showing that we're a brand that understands that.”

The company also created a team of brand ambassadors, made up of P&G executives, who are posting information about the series on social media channels. The company does not plan to use advertising or traditional media outreach for this effort, said McCleary.

“Media can begat media,” he said. “Although we're not pushing offline media, it would not be surprising if that happens organically.”

McCleary said he would not provide a breakdown for the budget but noted that he expects the series to garner “many millions of downloads for the episodes” and that it is a 21st century example of the way P&G used soap operas to showcase its brands.

In May, competitor Kimberly-Clark also launched parent-focused webisodes for its Pull-Ups brand. At the time, senior brand manager Michael Krebsbach called the video series a "departure" from past initiatives, because it went beyond product placement for the diaper brand.

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