Rolling Out the Orange Carpet for NickMom

by Daina Amorosano, Viacom
Nickelodeon-Cyma Zarghami-Wanda Sykes

Cyma Zarghami (left), with Wanda Sykes (center) and Kim Kadlec of Johnson & Johnson

Nickelodeon rolled out the orange carpet at Manhattan’s Edison Ballroom this afternoon, with an hour-long presentation to introduce its forthcoming NickMom prime-time programming block to advertisers and press.

Hosted by Nickelodeon Group President Cyma Zarghami, the presentation served as an advance look at Nick’s first foray into programming for parents, and treated the audience to a preview of NickMom’s launch lineup and performances by comediennes Wanda Sykes, Caroline Rhea and Sherry Davey.

NickMom, which debuts on Nick Jr. this fall, arrives at a crossroads for the Nickelodeon brand.  The channel is now on the far side of 30 years old, meaning that many of its earliest viewers – whose comedic sensibilities were shaped by seminal Nick shows like You Can’t Do That On Television and Hey Dude – now have children of their own.

“For the first time, there is an entire generation of adults who grew up on Nick and are now raising kids who are watching Nick,” Zarghami said.


Comedienne Wanda Sykes closed the NickMom event.

These Millennial moms are quite different than their Gen X and Boomer predecessors, according to Nickelodeon’s research.  Where Boomer moms typically sought to project perfection, and Gen X moms worked and worried while trying to keep their families afloat, Millennial moms have the confidence and savvy characteristic of their generation.

“As she continues to come of age, we know that as in her youth, the Millennial Mom has a community-focused, ‘can-do’ approach to life and also to being a parent,” said Jane Gould, senior vice president of Consumer Insights for Nickelodeon.  “She will outnumber and outspend the Boomer moms, so she really will change the face and style of parenting.”

Jane Gould presents “UnMommed.”

Gould presented UnMommed, a deprivation study conducted with Reckitt Benckiser and Smarty Pants Research to learn more about how moms define themselves through their relationships with their families.

The study took 11 mothers out of their homes for 48 hours and set them free to do whatever they like – except contact their families.  UnMommed found that, for all the challenges and anxieties of being a parent, today’s mothers embrace and build their identities around motherhood.

“They find it hard to be separated from their families emotionally and physically; when taken out of mom-mode, they struggle to know what to do with themselves,” Gould said. “And despite the stress of juggling life, career and family, they relish every moment and every challenge of motherhood. It is their dream job.”

Newly minted NickMom chief Bronwen O’Keefe gave the audience an advance look at the programming block’s development slate, which includes the stand-up comedy series NickMom Night Out, talk show It’s Nighttime with Annabelle Gurwitch and The Judy and Kate Show, which follows two mom video bloggers with no shortage of opinions.

NickMom already has a live blog of its own at, the first element in the brand’s multiplatform offering.

“It seems pretty clear that whether it’s a mom of a toddler, a middle-schooler or teenager, they’re all in need of a release,” O’Keefe said. “So we’re creating content to superserve them all – on-air, online and through mobile.”

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  1. I would prefer that Nick Jr. focus on quality programming for my daughter rather than targeting me directly. Positive endorsements from moms usually comes as a result of something that makes our children happy. As a result of the recent programming changes to Nick Jr. you have lost me as a viewer.

  2. When does this start?

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