Temporarily Cool: I’m a Mom of a Generation Z-er

Mother with Child

The Moms of Generation Z

Oh, happy day!  According to a new report by the Retail Advertising and Marketing Association, I’m officially cool.  Why?  Because I’m the mom of a tween – which means, according to the report, that I’m cooler than the moms of non-tweens.  Tween moms are more likely to be on Facebook (true), read more blogs than other adults (true), listen to Top 40 radio (true again), and use our web and mobile technology to do more research online than other adults.

Tweens (or Generation Z as demographers are now beginning to label kids ages 8-12) have emerged as the new “it” market in the last few years, leading marketers to want to know more about their gatekeeper moms.  It turns out that we’re a very busy bunch, but I guess we’re busy in different ways.

We’re very adept at multitasking: while using any media, more than three-quarters of us say that we’re also doing laundry and housework. And while our other mom friends are listening to rock and oldies most often, more than one-third of tween moms listen to rock and top 40/pop music.

Social media has quickly become a favorite for many moms, but tween moms use Facebook more than moms of other age groups.  It could be because we enjoy catching up with friends and colleagues, but we’re also fanatically monitoring our own tween’s Facebook pages. But for whatever reason we’re online, we’re also tuned into the growing popularity of retailers’ social networking sites that are helping us track coupons, as well as in-store events and promotions.

I’d like to suggest the following theory:  perhaps it’s not so much that tween moms are cooler than other moms, but that we’re so busy and in such transition that we have to multi-task just to survive.  Tweens aren’t yet old enough to be given free rein to do what they please, but they’re old enough to have very strong opinions and to fight for that freedom they so desperately seek.  Their voices are changing as their hormones are raging.

And while I’d like to believe I’m cooler than the average mom, the fact is that at this life stage I’m just extremely busy and grabbing onto whatever tools will help keep my life sane.

So for this weekend I’ll happily embrace my status as a cool mom, because next week my son turns 13 and I’ll have to hang up my title.