It’s official: YouTube is now second to only Google itself in terms of search queries. Which only makes sense — when we want information about something, we Google it, but when we want to know how to use something or cook it properly, we visit YouTube to watch a video on the right way to do it.

Over a billion unique viewers visit YouTube every month, watching over 4 billion videos a day. And foodies use it just as much as anyone else,with the Food Network and Epicurious channels fast becoming two of the most popular YouTube food channels.

For food brands and manufacturers, the ever-increasing popularity of both cooking shows and video content creates many opportunities for creating brand followers. After all, what more convincing way to show customers how easy it is to prepare your products than to let them watch you do it in your own videos?

“Mobile is too big of an opportunity for retailers to not properly seize.” says Adam Lavine, CEO of FunMobility.  Mobile presents many strategic advantages for retailers to differentiate their brand, strengthen customer relationships and loyalty, and ultimately drive revenue.  While nearly 83% of the top retailers already provide a mobile offering, there are only one-in-three who actually provide all three platforms – mobile web, iOS and Android.

A recent post featured Chiquita’s big hit as they stepped into social media for the first time.  As part of their 2012 Summer FanFun Sweepstakes and partnership with Little League, they worked with FunMobility to create a multi-platform app. This encouraged consumers to check-in at their favorite retailers to participate in the sweepstakes, interact with games, make Little League baseball cards and ultimately connect more with the brand and the retailers carrying their product.

As I look back at my notes from the Path to Purchase Institute’s Shopper Marketing Summit [] last week, I realize just how much there is to share. Rather than overwhelming you, I will provide a few bullets for you to think about.


  • Insights, insights, insights – An idea may be great, but without insights to support it, it won’t get any traction.
  • Relevance – Retailers are looking for relevance – they all want to provide the right content, at the right time, in the right channel.
  • Partnership – Retailers want to partner with CPG companies – as long as the insights support the idea and the idea is relevant.
  • Promotions – It’s no longer about those key events or holidays; taking occasion-based ideas to the retailer is a win-win.
  • Speed – Companies are going to be moving at the speed of light. Walmart is now producing 30 spots per week!
  • Concepts – The idea must come first. Long gone are the days of determining the channels and then following with the ideas to fit. The big idea is what is important, the channel is secondary.

As a brand, your digital presence is incredibly important. It should be a given that brands regularly post new content on their website and across all social media platforms. It keeps consumers informed, provides access to up-to-date information on your products and helps keep your presence on the web relevant (from  a search engine standpoint and to the consumer). Nothing is worse than going to a website to look up information and finding something incorrect or outdated, or going to a brand's Facebook or Twitter page and seeing their last post was from 6 months ago.

In addition to continuing to push out information and promotional messages about your products, your brand should be posting content that is timely and relevant. Keep up with what is in the media and entertainment world and join in the conversations with consumers. Your website may not always be the best place for this, but your social media accounts sure are.

On Monday of this week, Google announced that it would be ending the RSS service "Google Reader" which was a content aggregator that is still widely used by a very core group of enthusiasts. So if the audience is there and the service is being used then why would they go out of their way to upset a very loyal and vocal readership? In order to answer this I think we have to look at what RSS provides and what recent developments in technology have meant for the service.

RSS was always one of those things that everyone wanted to know about but few people really understood.  The way it works is you select an aggregator RSS service like Google reader.  You then subscribe to any RSS feeds of your choosing from various websites.  When the content was updated on the site, it would appear through your aggregator. People that championed the service liked to compare it to a television station that only got the channels you wanted.  Marketers loved it because it was a way to distribute content to people interested in your product or industry.  These are the elusive "evangelists" we're always chasing.

Nudge-Nudge, Wink-Wink

In case you didn’t know it, March is International Mirth Month. And in honor of this momentous occasion, we’re focusing on ad concepts and headlines based on familiar phrases, puns and clichés. After all, some of the most memorable campaigns ever created were simply new spins on old one-liners.

click to enlarge

Who can forget Charlie Tuna and “Sorry, Charlie - we’re looking for tuna that tastes good, not tuna with good taste?” Just as the most effective sell copy’s built upon thoughts the audience already believes, the best headlines connect with phrases we already know.

I just came across a very interesting article on that I thought worthy of sharing:  Brands Leverage Influencers’ Reach on Blogs, Social

Digital and Social Media Advertising Budget 2012

In summary, this article explains the value of blogger outreach campaigns:

  • Of all social media channels, bloggers are most likely to influence purchasing decisions.
  • Bloggers have “greater than average reach among consumers.”
  • Consumers are influenced by people that they respect, such as bloggers.
  • Bloggers can help to gain Facebook likes, Twitter followers, and website visits.
  • In 2012 Brands spent only 12% of their social budgets on influencers and bloggers.

Chiquita Baseball Little League StickersI recently read an article, “Chiquita Goes Mobile with Little League Baseball” , that immediately had me cheering: “Way to think outside of the box Chiquita!”  “ Great idea!”  “Perfect target!”. Chiquita bananas have been a long-standing favorite of mine; the perfect fruit, with its own wrapper, sweet, not messy, great grab-n-go snack.  With four active kids, it was often a fruit I picked up as the snack mom providing something nourishing for the team. When I read that Chiquita Brands had leveraged a three-year partnership with Little League Baseball, I was excited! They have stepped into the perfect fit – Mom’s shopping for healthy choices for their family, parents providing snacks for sports teams, kids wanting a grab-n-go, fun snack.

Behavior Segments
click to enlarge

As discussed in last week's post Who's Who With Your Brand, all consumers fall into one of three basic profiles: Devoteds, Temperates or Dabblers.

You may not believe that a cheese manufacturer has the same consumer profiles as a pork processor, but read on and you will see that they do.

Devoteds: Love it Temperates: Like it Dabblers: Take it or leave it
  • Loyal to your brand
  • May purchase at retailer or shop online
  • Most likely to promote your brand to others
  • To become brand advocates
  • To interact with your brand online and via social media
    • Likely the smallest profile in terms of percent of the market
  • Spread spending across multiple brands
  • May or may not be aware of your brand
  • Motivated by
  • Incentives, offers and prmotions
  • May interact with your brand online in order to receive offers
  • Largest profile in terms of percent of the market
  • Not loyal to any one brand
  • May or may not be aware of your brand
  • Wouldn’t actively seek out your brand
  • Motivated by incentives/offers/ promotions
  • Not motivated by brand engagement online or otherwise
  • Likely slightly larger percent of the market than the Devoteds

Behavior Segments
click to enlarge

In food marketing it’s expected that customer segmentation and profiling is part of the marketing strategy and planning process.  Often times, this can be overly complex, and, in typical marketing fashion…not very practical or actionable.

Here’s an easy, effective way of looking at it: your brand has Devoted followers. They love you. Temperates, who like you. And Dabblers, who can take you or leave you.


They are loyal to your brand. No other brand compares. They are ambassadors of your brand, talking about you to their friends, posting on social media networks, and influencing others to use your brand.

They want to know about you and stay connected to you, so they join your club or email group. They won’t wait until your brand goes on special to buy, however, it’s very beneficial to make them feel appreciated, by sending them coupons.