MTV Networks (NYSE: VIA) has acquired Babunga, a company which owns a network of family-focused websites, Mediaweek reported. Babunga’s sites, which include BabyNamesWorld, 3D Pregnancy, WikiParenting and PetNamesWorld, will be housed within MTVN’s Nickelodeon’s parents-based ad network. The network is led by MTVN social net ParentsConnect.com. Terms were not disclosed.
Like sports community sites, online networks and communities seeking to reach young parents are attracting a great deal of attention lately as marketers have developed a greater appreciation for the targeting opportunities these niche-oriented web properties present. And MTVN plans to use the Nickelodeon brand, which already has an established currency with parents, to start an ad network that extends beyond its Nick-owned sites. So far, the company has deals to sell ads across independent sites like ParentPreviews.com and Smartmomma.com.
But the main part of MTVN’s family focus entails making ParentsConnect more appealing in its own right. The site has maintained a Facebook-like quality since MTVN created it nearly two years ago. But the Viacom-owned company has found that having a community site is simply not enough to keep moms and dads returning on a frequent basis – especially with similar functions already being offered by other social nets. The site needed content and MTVN has been working on building up ParentsConnect to have more portal-like aspects. And that’s where the purchase of Babunga, which will bring an entire slate of family content along with it.