Food and Beverage Marketing 101
August 10, 2021
Food and beverage marketing may seem pretty straightforward at first glance. People love to eat and drink, so it’s not too difficult to showcase the benefits when you have a tasty product to sell. Focus on creative design and food packaging, be strategic about brand positioning, maybe throw in a loyalty program, and you have all the elements you need for a successful food and beverage marketing campaign, right?
Traditional marketing methods most certainly need proper attention, but don’t underestimate the power of digital marketing in the food and beverage space. Increases in online shopping mean less foot traffic through stores and brands must give equal time to emerging methodologies. A stronger emphasis on digital marketing could be the key to propelling your brand ahead of the competition.
We’ve handcrafted websites, brand designs, product videos, and digital marketing campaigns for food brands, breweries, restaurants, grocery stores, and farms. We know what works for them and how to help you get more from your food marketing campaigns.
Today we are sharing our very best tips and tricks to give food and beverage brands a fresh take on digital marketing.
Here are five digital marketing best practices to give your food and beverage products an online boost.
1. Make it Easy for Customers to Do Business With You
This statement may seem obvious, but think about it from a user’s perspective. When a customer visits your website, what do they see? Do the images look so good they can practically taste the benefits? Is it clear how or where to purchase your products? Is the content laid out in a user-friendly way? How does your website look on mobile devices?
These are all important questions to ask when evaluating your online presence. It’s widely known and accepted that your website is your digital doorstep in the online marketplace, yet we’ve all encountered websites that are clunky, out-of-date, and hard to navigate.
(Read More: Six Questions to Help You Evaluate Your Website)
Don’t let your brand fall victim to a stale website. Make it easy for customers to do business with you online with a responsive website that’s designed with the end-user in mind. Highlight the benefits of your product with professional photography and videography. Make sure the user experience (UX) translates flawlessly between desktop and mobile devices.
Mobile apps add an additional dynamic to the overall customer experience. Depending on your niche within the food and beverage industry, it may make sense to invest marketing budget in a custom mobile app, especially if you’re selling products online. We’ve designed mobile apps for businesses in this industry and would love to help you brainstorm ideas.
2. Increase Audience Engagement with Relevant Content
Today’s consumers are glued to their smartphones—are you providing your customers multiple ways to connect with you online? Beyond your brand’s website, consider all the ways you can increase engagement with customer personas by offering up a steady stream of relevant content.
We recently created a new website for Martin’s® Famous Potato Rolls and Bread with functionality and design that’s helping them get results with a creative approach to content. This beloved purveyor of delicious baked goods is taking online engagement to a new level by showcasing recipe ideas featuring their delicious products. How do Grilled Swirl Bread Ice Cream Sandwiches sound?
Notice how this recipe offers relevant and meaningful content their customers can use that highlights a specific product, in this case, cinnamon sugar swirl potato bread. By demonstrating innovative ways to use their products, Martin’s is increasing audience engagement and brand awareness at the same time. This tactic also helps to humanize the brand, which leads to our next point.
3. Humanize Your Brand and Get Social With Target Audiences
Whether you’re targeting audiences on Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, or Pinterest, remember that there is an actual person on the other end of the conversation. Don’t create content that always goes for the sale. Take time to nurture the relationship and let them get to know the softer side of your brand. Videos, staff testimonials, and real-life examples of people using your products are ways to make your brand more relatable.
We want to highlight, again, how Martin’s® Famous Potato Rolls and Bread is using digital marketing strategies to reach new audiences. Its YouTube channel has over fourteen thousand subscribers that have on-demand access to recipes, how-to videos on entertaining, staff highlights, and even a collection of Food Network appearances.
We’ve also worked with brands in the beverage industry to create digital content to personalize the brand experience. A couple of examples include Liquid Art Stories with Roy Pitz Brewing Company and Grand Illusion Hard Cider. In both cases, these beverage brands worked with our video production team to create brand videos and testimonials that were then repurposed on social media and their websites to give customers a virtual taste of their craft beverages.
4. Be Strategic with Seasonal Marketing Campaigns
Food and beverage brands have unlimited opportunities to piggyback marketing campaigns with changing seasons. When thinking about seasonal campaigns, remember that there are more than four seasons. Beyond meteorological seasons, consider building marketing campaigns around the holiday seasons, events surrounding the school calendar, or other transitional times in the calendar year.
One long-time client of ours is Sunnyway Foods, a Pennsylvania-based grocery store with deep roots in the South Central region. We worked with them in a variety of ways over the years, but one aspect of their marketing that we want to highlight is their use of season-driven campaigns.
We worked with Sunnyway on a multi-month social media campaign called “At the Table with Sunnyway.” This campaign celebrated how food brings people together. Using video vignettes, staged, filmed, and produced by Cross & Crown, we highlighted the different ways Sunnyway products and services are bringing people together.
If you’d like to explore ways to leverage seasonal campaigns in your food and beverage marketing strategy, please let us know how we can help!
5. Keep Tabs on Your Digital Footprint
If you’re not regularly tracking your brand’s digital footprint you could be unintentionally hurting your digital marketing efforts. Your digital footprint includes every online expression of your brand. That includes your Google My Business listing, online reviews, all mentions of your name, address, and phone number in online directories, and how your branding appears across all of these channels.
We suggest making a habit of regularly checking your online presence. And while you’re at it, take time to do a bit of social listening as well. You may discover new opportunities to engage in conversations with customers about your brand online.
Food and Beverage Marketing You Can Rely On
When you’re looking for a food industry marketing agency, you need a creative team that understands your brand and how to translate your products into first-class online experiences.
We love helping passionate people who want to make a difference in the world accomplish their goals with creative digital marketing strategies. Whether you need help with branding, web design, video production, or social media, we would love to be of service to you.
Please don’t hesitate to reach out and schedule a meeting with us today. Our friendly project managers are more than happy to arrange everything you need for a fresh perspective on food and beverage marketing!