Marie Gruy
Jul 8, 2014

Asia's millennial moms aren't all 'Tigers'

Six key findings for brands looking to communicate with Millennial Moms and three action points for marketers.

Marie Gruy
Marie Gruy

Much has been reported on millennial mums in North America and Europe. However, few reports have focused on this digitally connected and highly influential group in APAC. Through CCS, Dentsu Aegis Network’s study of more than 160,000 people, we were able to look at this important segment and understand more about their habits.   

'Tiger moms' are defined as demanding mothers who push children to high levels of achievement using methods typical of childrearing in China and other parts of Asia. Much has been written on the so called ‘Tiger Mother’, particularly in the wake of Amy Chua’s now infamous parenting guide ‘The Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother’.

However, our research shows that this latest generation of mothers, the Millennials, are more open, happy and connected to the world than ever before. These women now have wider access to a whole host of sources and are influential both online and offline. Their connectivity gives them a different perspective on motherhood, and they understand the importance of engaging with others to share learnings to support each other.

Fast facts on millennial mums in APAC:

Millennial makeup

Through our research we found six key factors for marketers who are looking to communicate to Millennial moms:

1. Millennial moms are more likely to strike out on their own. Marriage rates are lower for millennial moms vs generation-X Mums (born between 1961 and 1981) with more millennial moms remaining single (11 per cent across APAC) vs. gen-X mums (7 per cent).  In some markets, including China, Indonesia, India, Singapore and Vietnam, tradition still holds with only 1 per cent or fewer millennial moms remaining single. However, in many other markets, including Australia (38 per cent MMs vs 23 per cent GX), Philippines (26 per cent vs 9 per cent) and Thailand (19 per cent vs 88 per cent) fewer women are getting married but are continuing to have babies.

2. Millennial moms rely on their mobile to stay connected. Four out of every 10 millennial moms (39 per cent) across APAC use their mobile daily for the internet (26 per cent more than Gen X). This figure rises to 45 per cent, 65 per cent, 80 per cent and even 91 per cent of millennial moms in China, Singapore, Hong Kong and South Korea, respectively.

3. Millennial moms are social oversharers. In line with the Asian ‘Tiger Mom’ image, millennial moms are 15 per cent more likely to proudly post photos online vs Gen X mums. This varies across Asia, with the most active millennial mom sharers in Hong Kong (57 per cent) South Korea (47 per cent) and Singapore (42 per cent), who upload photos every week or more.

4. Conversely millennial moms apply more caution to any content posted. Overall millennial moms were more likely to agree they ‘are very concerned about their privacy on social networking sites’ vs Gen X moms. Even in highly socially connected markets like Hong Kong, Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia Millennial moms are more likely than Gen X Moms to be cautious (59 per cent vs 58 per cent, 20 per cent vs 18 per cent, 20 per cent vs 9 per cent and 6 per cent vs 4 per cent, respectively) about social media privacy.


5. Millennial moms are making use of their connections. They are not necessarily striving through life on their own as the ‘Tiger Mother’ image suggests. Their digital connectedness allows them to draw support from other connected mothers. Even in China, where Chua originated, more than half of millennial moms (58 per cent) agreed that they ‘ask others for opinions’. In fact, over half of all millennial moms in Asia Pacific (56 per cent) agreed that ‘other people’s opinions and recommendations are important to me’ or ‘I’m influenced by others’ opinions on products’.


6. Subsequently, millennial moms are happier than their own moms ever were. Many across Asia Pacific are subsequently now more likely to agree they are ‘very happy with my standard of living’ vs Gen X moms. This holds true in Philippines (72 per cent vs 63 per cent), Vietnam (66 per cent vs 65 per cent) Hong Kong (60 per cent vs 45 per cent) and South Korea (30 per cent vs 26 per cent)

Why is this important?

  1. Not all millennial moms are part of two-parent families. They may relate more to campaigns that focus on the mother-child relationship rather than the traditional two-parent family structure.
  2. Mobiles are essential toolkits for mothers of this generation. Millennial moms rely on their mobiles for entertainment, organisation, advice and even purchasing more than the previous generation. Campaigns should not only focus on digital but mobile.
  3. Finally, social sharing doesn’t mean over sharing. Although millennial moms are more likely to share online, they are also more likely to apply caution to posting content which needs to be taken into account for any social media activations.

Marie Gruy is regional director for insight with Dentsu Aegis Network APAC.


Campaign Asia

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