Mums and Tots magazine was started seven years ago and was the first Irish magazine of its type. It is now a leader in its field. Here we speak with founder Roberta Von Meding. 

Why did you start Mums and Tots magazine?

Mums and Tots started when my first daughter was one year old. Throughout pregnancy and the first year as a mum, I bought different magazines for information and guidance and found everything lacking. My pregnancy was not glamorous like the models I saw on the magazine covers. I felt like there was a gap in the market for something a little more real and community orientated that the reader could feel akin to. So we spent about six months in total on the business plan before the magazine launched.

How many people do you employ now?

Not many. We are a family business. We employ a designer and have regular paid contributing writers. 

“I felt like there was a gap in the market for something a little more real and community orientated that the reader could feel akin to.”

What tips would you give someone wanting to launch a magazine in Ireland today?

Know your audience. Make sure the market is not over saturated with similar offerings and lastly, make sure you do your research. 

What content works best in the magazine?

A mix of things; real mum stories on whatever topic we are covering whether it is water births or someone who has twins or triplets. We make sure to have plenty of light-hearted articles, trend pages for kids, expectant mums, beauty products we love. A little bit of everything really.

“My pregnancy was not glamorous like the models I saw on the magazine covers.”

With the shift towards online media, how do you keep Mums and Tots magazine relevant in today’s market? 

They said print was dead over 10 years ago, with the advent of the eBook and smartphones with Wi-Fi access. But in Ireland, this is certainly not true. People love a break from screens, to have something tactile to read while they have a cup of tea or coffee. There is nothing like flicking through the pages of a magazine.

How did you go about gaining such a large following online?

We have over 45,000 followers on Facebook to date. We run a lot of competitions and consciously make an effort to engage with our audience with lots of fun pictures and videos. Plus we run our Mums and Tots awards via an integrated FB voting app so this draws a lot of new users every year.

Article by Barry Walsh. 

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