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Dads Are More Emotional Than Moms, According To New Unruly Parents Playbook

New research from Unruly’s Parents Playbook Shows That Dads Overindex Across All Devices, Are More Likely To Buy and Are More Emotional When Watching Video Ads

As a number of countries gear up to celebrate mom this weekend, Adland needs to increase its focus on dad.

According to data from Unruly’s Parents Playbook, dads are more likely to have a stronger emotional response to video ads than the US norm, in particular, feelings of happiness, inspiration, surprise and pride (see chart below).


The new research, which pulls data from 1 million people around the world, also found millennial parents are more emotional than Gen X parents and therefore should be targeted differently.

As you can see from the chart below, millennial parents are more likely to feel happiness (+28%), inspiration (+20%), amazement (+23%), pride (+22%) and nostalgia (+25%), compared to Gen X parents.  



Additional findings from the research include:

  • It’s easier to emotionally connect with parents: Parents are more likely to have a strong emotional response to a video ad than the average viewer. Parents are also more likely to feel positive emotions – like happiness (+28%), inspiration (+25%), pride (+16%) and amazement (+25%) – than people without children;
  • Parents are more likely to like your products after watching an ad: Parents are also more likely to find your product empowering (11%), innovative (12%), high quality (13%) and a good value (11%) compared to non-parents;
  • Parents are more likely to act after watching your ads: Not only are parents more likely to watch your ad again (52%), they are also more likely to talk about it (49%), share it online (46%), want to find out more (49%) and show intent to buy the product or service featured (50%);
  • Parents migrate across all devices: When asked where parents watched video over the last 30 days, desktop is still the top device for watching video at 50%. But parents also migrate across mobile phones (48%), laptops (48%), tablets (44%), connected TVs (38%) and game consoles (23%).

Unruly’s SVP of Marketing and Insight, Devra Prywes, said: “Marketers are frequently looking to target mom, but it turns out targeting dad will give them greater ROI on their ads. The role of fathers continues to evolve at home, and our data shows that they are also easier to engage online, more active and more likely to want to buy. Creating ads that resonate with dads and launching them across all devices is a win-win for advertisers.”

Unruly was selected to present this data at the IAB Newfronts on May 10, 2017. To learn more about how to target parents, see our full playbook.