2010 is being hailed as the Year of the Daddy Blogger.
A number of forces have propelled dads into the spotlight usually reserved for mommy bloggers. Many dads have lost their jobs due to the sagging economy, and as a result have been thrust into a stay-at-home role. Other dads have willingly given up their careers in order raise their kids. But whether men are staying at home with their kids or out in the working world, dads are noticeably more active in their kids’ lives.
And one way dads are stepping up is by increasing their online presence. New dad bloggers are popping up everyday and they’re contributing some truly unbelievable content. Dads have opinions on everything from diapers to daycare, and they’re expressing it in ways much different than moms. Dads tend to be a little grittier. A bit more honest and straightforward. And because of that, I think readers appreciate a fresh voice.
Many people think companies will be attracted to that voice, and start to court dad sites like they have with mom bloggers. The hope is brands will partner with dad bloggers via advertising, giveaways and product reviews.
But even though I’m a dad blogger who would love some extra money and recognition, it’s never gonna happen.
Mommy bloggers are where it’s at. At least for advertisers. Because even though dads are stepping it up, they are positively dwarfed by moms who have been doing it better for longer. Most of the dads I know are incredibly involved and supportive, but the sad fact is moms still make the overwhelming majority of parenting and spending decisions. They are also more organized and networked with conventions such as BlogHer, and when it comes down to it parenting is still very much tailored to women.
I know the knee-jerk reaction for a dad is to get frustrated by all of this. I know I have. I bust my ass as a dad. I have the bulk of the caretaking duties when it comes to Will. I dress him, feed him and change most of his diapers. I work full-time, but blogging and social media might as well be a part-time job. Yet people still say I’m “babysitting” when they see me out with my son. And when I take Will to a restaurant, my blood boils when I have to change Will on the floor of the men’s room because they haven’t bothered putting a changing table in the men’s bathroom. I’m just as involved as any mom blogger out there, so why shouldn’t I be treated as an equal by companies and advertisers?
But when I took a step back, I realized how ridiculous I was being.
I thought about watching football on TV and the commercials that are on during the game. Erectile dysfunction, beer commercials with scantily clad women and tough guys pitching manly pick-up trucks. They’re not exactly advertising tampons, diapers or the trailers for the next Sandra Bullock chick flick.
And why is that? Because it’s a football game and the simple fact is more men watch football than women.
That’s not to say many women don’t enjoy football. They do. And they’re knowledgeable about the game as well. But they are a small percentage and they certainly aren’t the target demographic. So why would advertisers cater to such a small part of the football watching audience? The answer, of course, is they shouldn’t.
And whether any of us dads want to admit it or not, we fall into the same category when it comes to parenting. Many of us are involved dads who would be great ambassadors for these brands, but we’re not the target demographic. And unfortunately, I don’t think we ever will be.
But you know what? That’s OK. Because I didn’t start this blog or become a father to be rich and famous. And I’ve had some offers from companies to advertise here, but I’ve said no. Granted, if the right offer came along to make me rich and famous I wouldn’t turn it down. I’m not crazy. But my reward is that I’m a good dad and I’ve been able to connect with other similar fathers. We may not have the clout that Dooce and other top-notch mommy bloggers have, but we’re slowly carving out a niche of our own.
So whether advertisers think we’re marketable or not, I think we should just keep on keepin’ on and know we’re making a difference. Because we will never be the same as mom bloggers, and I for one think that’s a good thing!
BE SURE TO CHECK OUT DAD-BLOGS, WHERE I PROBABLY WON’T BE POPULAR THIS WEEK FOR ADMITTING WE ARE SECOND TO THE WOMEN FOLK.