YouTube Raises Hope & Not So Savvy Parents

It's a fact - our Millennial children are having little Millennials of their own. And perhaps not having paid a lot attention to their own role models - they're struggling with the new job responsibilities. Marketers and TV execs are using YouTube and humor to portray the angst and struggle of the latest generation to adjust to their new roles as first-time parents.

Gen Y parenting is the subject of a series of commercials by Evenflo, makers of child car seats and a Fox TV Show airing in the fall called 'Raising Hope.' Parents represented in both projects, while digitally-savvy have no clue as to how best to raise and protect the new additions to their households. From being overprotective to being a single parent, each takes a different tact as to how best to address the needs of their progeny -and both have used YouTube to reach their targeted audience.

Evenflo Commercial

Noting that Millennials are the first generation raised on the Internet (and coinciding with the release of its Momentum 65 convertible car seat), Evenflo has created a humorous series of short online videos depicting an overprotective dad trying to install a car seat by bubble-wrapping the interior of his car.

"Parenting is serious work, and the risk is you get so caught up in it, you're not enjoying it,"
Chris Craig, chief marketing officer of Evenflo says. "We wanted to lighten things up a bit. I do find a refreshing sense of humor among this group."

Raising Hope

Now, take a new TV show coming this fall that focuses on a the trials and tribulations of a 23-year-old suddenly saddled with parenting responsibilities and you will see how he not only approaches the 'car seat' dilemma differently, he also has a unique perspective on changing diapers and shopping for baby food.

This offbeat family comedy from Emmy Award Winner Greg Garcia ("My Name Is Earl") stars Lucas Neff, Cloris Leachman, and Martha Plimpton looks like it might this season's comedy hit.

Dissimilar to parents depicted in commercials and TV Shows of the past, YouTube is the fastest and quickest way to get the attention of targeted audiences that are living through parenting in the 21st Century. While many of us had to wait for our weekly installments of an idyllic version of family life with shows like "Father Knows Best" and even "The Jetsons," YouTube provides us with snapshots of today's world separate from the TV set - both on our desktops and our mobile devices.

Craig, in a Marketing Daily report noted that, "it's not so much what you say or how you say it, but where you reach them."The company has been reaching out to blogs and other new-parent information sources, and will soon begin a "hyper-targeted" banner advertising campaign and social network advertising in the coming weeks to come.

'Raising Hope' in a similar vein of 'Modern Family' and 'The Middle' shows us the dysfunction of how the next generation is not only coping with a new set of problems in today's world - but also dealing with the same problems that have been dealt with for centuries. YouTube just helps us see what's happening in bite-size chunks -  almost in real-time.