7 need-to-know facts about today’s dads

Dad with his son

We’ve got Father’s Day on our minds, so we decided to take a closer look at today’s dads.

Family life is evolving, and today’s dads prioritize their time differently than past generations. Millennial dads are more likely to say they help with household and childcare tasks. Compared to dads from 1965, they spend more than 2x the time on housework (9.8 hours per week) and nearly 3x the time on childcare (7.3 hours per week).1

Dad’s chores stretch from meal prep to entertainment. And when he needs new ideas, he turns to Pinterest for help. Nearly 40% of US dads use Pinterest, including 45% of dads with a household income of $100k+ who have children living at home.2

Sure, they look up grills and gadgets (more on that in a bit). But overall, dads use Pinterest much like any other Pinner. They look up recipes, search for playtime ideas and dig into hobbies. They also use Pinterest to shop, with 82% saying they find new products on the platform.3

“Pinterest makes me feel happy,” says Sean, a 37-year-old dad in Utah. “It makes me feel connected to the world.

Want to reach dads like Sean? Here’s 7 things to know about today’s dads, based on our latest research.  

1. They want to be super dads

49% of dads say they help plan playdates and other activities for their kids, so they’re always on the lookout for fresh ideas.4 Since last year, we’ve seen a 450% increase in dads searching for DIY projects to do with their kids—and a huge increase specifically for DIY slime searches!5 

2. They’re health-centric

Dads say they make 1 out of 3 meals in their households, and they’re keeping an eye on health.6 They’re 1.2x more likely to search for healthy recipes than male Pinners as a whole.7 They’re also more likely to search for workout tips than male Pinners who aren’t dads.8

3. They have a need for speed  

Dads over-index in searches for easy meals and snacks, compared to male Pinners as a whole.9 When it comes to meal prep, they’re looking for time-saving techniques, plus appliances like air fryers or Instant Pots.   

4. They seek quality time outdoors

Compared to other Pinners, dads are more likely to search for outdoor activities.10 That includes activities with their kids, like outside kids fort, ninja warrior course for kids, and kids obstacle course. It also includes home projects: they over-index for searches about topics like patios, fire pits and outdoor kitchens.

5. They really do love their gadgets

Dads are more likely to search for home gadgets than other Pinners. They’re especially interested in smart home technology (3x more searches than Pinners overall) and home entertainment consoles.11

6. They’re action-oriented

Compared to other Pinners, dads are especially focused on getting things done. They’re actively considering what they want, and search 62% more than the average Pinner.12

7. They’re collaborative  

Dads share responsibilities with their partners, so it makes sense they share Pinterest boards, too. They’re 3x more likely to have shared boards than the average male Pinner.13 Jacob, a dad in Oregon, uses Pinterest boards to make joint decisions with his wife. “My wife and I share a board that is talking about what we want to do with our house and how we want to style it,” he said.

Marketer takeaways: How to reach dads on Pinterest
  • Help them bond: Dads want to build stronger emotional connections with their kids and families. Feature creative and copy that shows how Dad can use your brand to spend more time with their loved ones. Set the scene for family moments like outdoor meals, DIY activities or game night.  
  • Hone in on home: Home is the most popular category for dads on Pinterest. They’re interested in projects to make their home more welcoming and fun, both indoors and outdoors. Popular search terms include: bar ideas, fire pit ideas, outdoor kitchen, home theater ideas, and smart home technology.  
  • Use video to whet their appetite: Food is the #2 category for dads on Pinterest, and we’ve noticed that they’re especially interested in video Pins. Come up with a creative video to help Dad plan meals, snacks and beverages. Popular search terms include: weeknight-friendly meals, easy dinner recipes for family, freezer meals, 3 ingredient recipes, meal prep for the week for beginners, healthy snacks on the go, easy snacks, and finger food.   

–Eric Alessi, currently saving ideas to Interesting Eats

Father’s Day is coming up fast, so now’s the time to start your campaigns. Use this post to plan great Father’s Day ads.

1Mintel, Millennial dads report, Aug 2017

2comScore, Jan 2018

3GfK, Path to purchase research with weekly Pinners, Dec 2017

4The Mom Complex, 2018  

5Pinterest, US analysis, March 2018

6The Mom Complex, secondary deep dive

7Pinterest, US analysis, March 2018

8Pinterest, US analysis, March 2018

9Pinterest, US analysis, March 2018

10Pinterest, US analysis, March 2018

11Pinterest, US analysis, March 2018

12Pinterest, US analysis, March 2018

13Pinterest, US analysis, March 2018

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