Monday, May 6, 2013

PR push by ag and biotech industries has a secret weapon: Moms : Business

Betsie Estes is a mother of two young kids who lives in suburban Chicago.

She’s also public relations gold.

Last week, Estes was in the audience at an annual biotechnology industry conference in Chicago, attended by the industry’s power players, Creve Coeur-based Monsanto Co., and its competitors, Bayer, Dow, DuPont, among them.

After the gathering, Estes jotted a few thoughts on her blog. (Twitter: @FieldMomBetsie, Super Suburbs)

“There’s a pervasive thought that the people who are anti-GMO are operating from a purely altruistic place,” she wrote. “But make no mistake, just as there is big money in biotech, there is big money in opposing the technology. Entire brands, both corporate and personal, have been developed around the concept that GM foods are bad.”

That’s the kind of message the industry wants to hear — that they’re not the bad guys — and it’s the Betsie Esteses of the “momosphere” who are, increasingly, being invited to convey it.

“Moms are really important because they’re the most influential consumers in the country,” said David Wescott, director of digital strategy with the public relations firm, APCO Worldwide. “They’re increasingly finding their own peers to be the most credible sources of information.”

So, what does an industry do when it wants to nudge public opinion in its favor? Find moms — preferably with blogs. (Facebook: Super Suburbs - Updated March 20, 2013)

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PR push by ag and biotech industries has a secret weapon: Moms : Business

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