Strategies Roundup 09/08
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Mom's the Word
By Sara Wilson
What do you get when you bring moms and advertisers together? A buzzworthy website.
Childhood friends Andrew Shue and Michael Sanchez have done it all. A TV actor and a one-time chess champion, respectively, the 41-year-olds have also played professional soccer in Zimbabwe and started a nonprofit together. Now they're on to their next challenge: creating a place where moms and advertisers can peacefully coexist. In 2006, the friends launched CafeMom, a New York City-based social networking site just for moms. While the site focuses on providing moms with a rich experience through stories, photos and advice, it's powered by the advertising dollars of companies like General Mills, Kraft and Wal-Mart. With more than 4 million unique visitors and 150 million page views a month, CafeMom lets advertisers listen in on conversations and even run campaigns that get the site's most influential members to interact with and talk about the brands. As Sanchez, who projects year-end sales of well into the eight figures, points out, "Moms listen to other moms more than they listen to an advertising message."
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