How to sell breastfeeding to both moms and dads

medela1Whatever Medela is paying the people who handle its marketing and communications – it’s not enough.

Just take a look at this marvelous ad, which includes families of all shapes and sizes, plus ad copy that doesn’t exclude any one member of the family.  And while you gaze, bear in mind what this company is all about:  it’s a staunch supporter of breastfeeding, and nothing else.  Read what its company founder calls its “Breastfeeding Support Pledge”:

“We pledge our dedication to breastfeeding as the best nutrition for babies and families.  We further pledge that our breastfeeding accessory products and literature shall never be used to influence mothers to switch from breastfeeding to infant formula feeding.  Nor shall our breastfeeding accessory products and literature be used in any way to promote artificial baby milk.” – Olle Larsson, Founder of Medela.

medela2So if there was ever a company that could be excused for playing the dad omission card (not that it’s ever right), Medela would be it.  But they don’t stoop to that inappropriate level – they include dads on its website, in print, and employ complete, inclusionary words like “family,” “parents” and “parenthood” on a consistent basis.

The converse of this wonderment, of course, is Similac – a company which sells formula, which is arguably, intrinsically built-in for dual-parent use.  Yet, Similac takes every opportunity to exclude dads from its messaging.

For further irony, check out comparable ad copy from each ad:

  • Medela:  “…breastfeeding looks different for each family.”
  • Similac:  “There’s no ‘one-formula-fits-all’ for babies, or for parenting, either.” 

While these lines are similar in nature, one walks the talk – the other just talks, because the latter isn’t backed by consistent communication through photography, social media or website use.

Medela deserves Dad Marketing’s highest Seal of Approval for demonstrating that breastfeeding involves both parents, and for not propagating the unfair perception that parenting should be directed by one gender.


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