Electronics business to rival Netmums and Mumsnet with the launch of a branded peer-to-peer social network for pregnant mums.

The Due Date Club app connects expectant mums to one another by geographical location before matching them to others with a due date similar to their own.

It is being used to promote Philips Avent babycare product range and lets users share their own pregnancy experiences on the portal as well as obtain professional advice from a Philips consultant. Users can also click through to a website to buy products such as baby monitors and bottle feeding equipment.

The launch follows a study of 2,000 mums by Philips that found 74 per cent believe having a baby affected their friendships, with 72 per cent completely losing touch with some of their friends. It is hoped the Iris Worldwide created portal will grow to become an established social hub for first time mums in a similar vein to parenting sites Mumsnet and Netmums.

The move is part of a wider push from the electronics business to boost the emotional appeal of its local marketing initiatives. The business is increasing its investment in CRM, PR and digital after admitting earlier this year that it needs to be better at communicating how its products are relevant to consumers everyday lives.