I recently visited the Trinity Leeds Mamas & Papas store for their Parents to be event which spanned across a couple of hours. The event aimed to introduce parents to be to items which would be relevant to them whilst offering a range of advice across areas such as: choosing the right car seat for you, first aid and diet.
Staff greeted you at the entrance, directing parents to a desk of drinks and nibbles (cupcakes and mini quiches) and informing us that talks would be every half an hour lasting 15 minutes.
Parents to be talks
After a short circuit of the store, my friend and I decided to visit two of the mini ‘stations’ for the talks in those areas: the first was about diet by the feeding items and the second was a short introduction to baby and child first aid near the baby bedding.
We chose the diet talk as the handout they were giving out had a number of healthy recipes inspired by the likes of Hemsley + Hemsley and I personally thought we might learn a little about weaning and introducing the first foods to our children. The talk, however, was mainly focused on our nutrition as parents-to-be with reference to various vitamins we should be ensuring we have in our diet. They also reminded us that we should prep various freezer meals for after the little ones have arrived.
I have to admit that I didn’t get much from this particular talk and it took a strange turn when the company presenting asked us all if we have friends who are struggling to conceive as they have a service for that. In addition, they were very quick to ask for contact details for their mailing list – both as we had been browsing the store ahead of the talk and afterwards which wasn’t to my taste as it felt quite pushy and upon further reading of their recipes, I receive similar inspiration regularly from the likes of Madeleine Shaw anyway.
After a short break we moved onto our second talk of choice, baby and toddler first aid. The gentleman presenting from the British Red Cross was very enthusiastic and keen on audience participation; asking us various questions throughout and offering the opportunity to try out what we’d learnt about removing items from a choking child whilst he was there to correct us.
He covered: choking, fevers and burns and highlighted that in many cases, it’s better to be safe than sorry and seek out experienced medical help if you are struggling yourself, particularly when a baby has a fever as a continued increase in temperature can lead to a fit and bringing their temperature down too quickly can lead to shock.
The areas he covered were the right amount for an event of this ilk and it has reinforced that I would like one of us to do some baby and child first aid training to improve our confidence within our home.
Outside of the talks there was a promotion running throughout the evening which was based on the amount you spent in store that night. The lowest amount you had to spend to receive a discount was £100 and for parents to be like us, we just don’t have any ‘big-ticket’ items left to justify that amount of spend.
I also noticed that, similar to Mothercare who hosted a similar event earlier in the year, the spend related promotions were available after the event BUT only if you booked a personal shopping appointment. Needless to say, the event didn’t inspire any purchases from us as there wasn’t anything we needed that was related to or highlighted in any of the talks we attended.
The goody bag
Lastly, like with most events, there was also a goody bag. The goody bag tote mainly contained Mamas & Papas items such as a white newborn babygrow, a £10 voucher, a small soft toy, the Mamas & Papas catalogue and leaflets, and a small box of Pregnacare.
It was interesting to compare it with the one from the Mothercare event which had a range of items from brands across a variety of price points which encouraged a number of purchases both on the evening of the event and afterwards (though we haven’t always bought some of the branded items related to those in the goody bag from Mothercare as we like to price check across a number of shops).
Overall, if you’re pretty much sorted in terms of your larger spend items the Mamas & Papas parents to be events may not exactly be for you, though you may find some of the talks useful. For a more rounded event which introduces you to a variety of brands, the Mothercare events might be more preferable and you can use their discount both at the event and within a given time period afterwards.
Have you attended any of the parents to be events? What did you think?