How one mum benefited from living off one wage

The global financial crisis may have passed, but thousands of Australian mothers are still seeking money-saving tips similar to those their grandmothers followed to lead a more frugal life. While many criticise the excesses of the baby bonus for Gen X and Y, Stay at Home Mum: Survive and Thrive on One Wage founder Jody Allen said many mums still found it hard to make the family budget stretch. “It happened to me – struggling with that transition from double income, no kids; to really trying to make ends meet on one wage and with kids in tow,’’ Jody said. She dipped back into some sound advice from her dad to help her through. “My Dad taught me early on that you need to make your money work for you,’’ she said. Jody began sharing her money-saving knowledge on a site she started, called Stay At Home Mum, to help other mums in similar situations. “I wasn’t sure what sort of demand there would be out there for that sort of information,’’ she said. “Boy, was I shocked.’’ SAHM is now regarded as one of Australia’s top-ranking blogs. It has grown to now gaining hits in the hundreds of thousands each month and a Facebook fan following of 75,000+. “So yes, there was definitely interest in it,’’ she said, laughing. On the site, she shares tips for cooking on the cheap, money saving and real options for mums to begin working from home. Jody has gone on to write books and sell products tailored to her market. Now, she’s not only helped supplement the family budget, but also helped...

Small-time Gympie mum wooed by big business

Small-time Gympie mum Jody Allen is wooed by big business on a daily basis. Confessing to being “just a mum in her tracky daks’’, about three months ago Jody reached a point where she was fielding hundreds of requests each week from businesses wanting to collaborate and tap into her Stay At Home Mum: Survive and Thrive On One Wage blog audience. “I remember those first few weeks, wondering if anyone would ever read this stuff. Now we get pageviews in the hundreds of thousands each month and have built a Facebook page with a loyal 75,000-strong fan base. I’m now in a position where I’m giving other mums out there living on one wage work opportunities directly through the Stay At Home Mum brand,’’ Jody said. She saw a need for the website a year ago as busy mums constantly sought out help to live more frugally. She shared tips for cooking on the cheap, saving money and real options for mums to begin working from home throughout her blog posts. “My Dad taught me early on that you need to make your money work for you,’’ she said. Jody has gone on to write books and sell products tailored to her market. SAHM is now regarded as one of Australia’s top-ranking blogs and businesses are doing whatever they can to get on her radar for sponsored posts, advertising and collaborative projects. “The appeal for businesses is the fact my audience is made up of brand-savvy mums. Research shows women are the main decision makers when it comes to the household finances and businesses and brands want direct...

One of nation’s top bloggers ready for business

One of nation’s top bloggers ready for business GYMPIE, QLD June 4, 2012 –In a move that is recognition of the importance that blogs are beginning to play in the Australian media landscape, influential blog Stay At Home Mum: Living On One Wage (SAHM) has recently taken on representation with Mum PR, a boutique management agency. SAHM, owned by Jody Allen and Nicole Millard, is one of Australia’s top-ranking blogs. With visitors well into the hundreds of thousands each month and Facebook followers reaching almost 70,000, it’s no wonder that brands are clamouring to work with the pair. “It’s getting a bit crazy, with lots of big companies wanting to tap into the community we have created,’’ SAHM director Jody said. “We are keen to work with those that we know will be a good fit, but simply don’t have the time to do it justice. That’s where the Mum PR team comes in. They will be supporting us through not only working with brands, but enhancing and growing our community experience,” she said. Mum PR has recently formed a collaborative approach with the team at Katrina Higham Consulting, offering their clients a full spectrum of services. “We understand that the media and advertising landscapes are shifting. It’s no longer enough to offer a stand-alone traditional public relations service for clients anymore,’’ Mum PR director Kellie O’Brien said. “We know that our clients get a much better result by combining traditional public relations with a strong social media strategy. It’s more holistic and provides far better results,” said Katrina Higham, director Katrina Higham Consulting. “Our readers are happy that...

Fast-growing beast keeps feet on the ground

Fast-growing beast keeps feet on the ground MELBOURNE, VIC October 17, 2011 – WITHIN six months, mum of two Louisa Claire has gone from casually blogging about her children to heading Brand Meets Blog, a highly successful Australian brand-blogger matchmaking business.  It was ill-matched press releases in her inbox each morning that sparked the idea for the venture earlier this year. Today it boasts major nationals L’Oreal, Holden and Kellogg as clients. Kellogg Australia corporate communications and PR manager Gareth Lucy said working with Louisa was “massively rewarding’’. “Louisa has provided us with invaluable insight every step of the way and has enabled us to develop some great relationships within the mum blogging community. Louisa is able to find the perfect balance between brands and bloggers so that ultimately everyone walks away having gained something from the introduction,’’ Gareth said. This month the business continued to expand, with two new team members joining the ranks. For Louisa, the business is a fast-growing beast. Yet, she will always keep its feet firmly planted on the ground, through personal, targeted approaches working with genuine advocates in the mummy, lifestyle and food blogging sectors. These involve blog campaigns and events. Louisa’s success can be credited to finding a gap in the market, an innate understanding of how bloggers think and talk, and working hard to become a leader. Its success also came down to timing. “The market was ready to move into the online space, but they needed a guide. I’m the guide,’’ she said. “PR and brands have been starting to engage with bloggers over the past 12 months, but many...

Mums the word for tourism body

“Mum’s’’ the word for tourism body Bloggers provide authentic message for Gippsland tourism GIPPSLAND, VIC August 9, 2011 – THE rapid growth in digital media has led tourism body Destination Gippsland to discover an authentic message for its consumers via mummy bloggers. Marketing and project manager James Archibald said it had always used a mix of traditional and new media, but would now have a stronger focus on digital media as its growth brought about new opportunities to attract visitors to Gippsland. Mr Archibald said he chose to work with mummy bloggers – a relationship established via Brand Meets Blog founder Louisa Claire – because of the integrity they had to offer regional tourism. “With Louisa the integrity is sound and we’re looking for bloggers to send an authentic message to consumers.’’ The project involved mum bloggers Megan Blandford, Claire Hewitt and Toushka Lee visiting West Gippsland on Saturday and Sunday, taking in the towns of Yarragon, Erica and Rawson before reaching Walhalla. The trio experienced the inaugural light festival, Walhalla Vinter Ljusfest, and toured historic houses, a mine and cemetery with the town’s longest serving resident and Star Hotel proprietor Michael Leaney. Ms Claire, of Brand Meets Blog, said engaging established bloggers for campaigns could be an effective part of any new media strategy. “A blogger’s reputation and reach means they capture their audience in a more personal way than is often achieved through traditional media.’’ She said watching the bloggers’ genuine engagement with the town confirmed what a powerful strategy this was for Destination Gippsland. Mummy blogger Claire Hewitt from Clairey Hewitt (www.claireyhewitt.blogspot.com) said using targeted bloggers...