The food industry is fiercely competitive, and business owners should always be looking for an opportunity to get a leg up on the competition. But how do you make your sales numbers as delectable as your dishes? Your products may speak for themselves, but online food marketing can amplify that voice and take your business to the next level.
Wondering how quality food marketing strategies convince a discerning customer base to give your products a try? It’s really not as complicated as you’d think! Let’s talk about some steps you can take to up your marketing game and give yourself the sweet treat of skyrocketing sales.
Businesses can be structured vastly differently depending on the industry, but they all share the same basic goal: to turn a profit. And no matter what you’re selling, the primary way that most businesses expand is by bringing in new customers.
There are some unique aspects that are specific to online food marketing, but for the most part, you’re going to see the same basic brand promotion guidelines that transcend specific industries and provide great results across the board. Nearly all of these strategies revolve around boosting your company’s online presence and getting your food in the hands of more consumers.
Simply put, there are some quirks to the food industry, but quality brand promotion is usually structured off the same basic building blocks - a concept which we’ll talk more about below.
There are a few basic parts of digital marketing that companies need to keep in mind to see success in an increasingly-online world. This list is by no means exhaustive, but it should give you a sense of the basics as you establish an online presence and keep your brand moving forward.
No one can buy your food if they don’t know it exists! While you may see some traffic from social media or other sources, the fact of the matter is that search engine rankings are a major determining factor when it comes to which brands succeed and which go unnoticed.
Marketing strategies should always have search engine optimization as one of their primary goals, as keeping the company’s online content easily accessible opens the business up to sales from a much wider market.
Getting traffic is really only half the battle. Traffic that doesn’t result in a conversion isn’t completely useless, but it definitely won’t take your business to the next level - making quality conversion rate optimization especially important. While SEO might get visitors in the door, factors like website layout and design can be a major factor when it comes to actually making sales.
With quality SEO and CRO, your brand will see increased traffic, and that traffic will be far more valuable since it will more frequently convert.
With how central social media is to many customers’ lives, companies that aren’t taking full advantage of these platforms are missing out on a huge opportunity for brand promotion.
Targeted advertising on social platforms is shockingly effective, and paid posts through sites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat are an excellent way to give your food more exposure.
Even without paying for sponsored posts, creating quality, mobile-optimized content that is tailored to each individual platform will help your brand accumulate followers, and those followers are a valuable resource. Many of the most successful brands have built a community around their products and are actually able to leverage their existing customers as a free form of advertising!
Social Media Management, alongside CRO and SEO should give you three major pieces of the food marketing puzzle that will put you on the path toward some seriously tasty profits.
While the basics of brand promotion might be the same across industries, there are some adjustments necessary when developing food marketing strategies in order to attract more sales. Let’s talk about some of the tweaks you’ll need to make in order to conquer your niche and give your sales a push in the right direction.
The best advertising for your food is getting people to try it, but you can’t exactly offer people a bite of your products while they’re discovering your brand online. Because of that limitation, we have to settle on making your food as visually appealing as possible.
“Visual appeal” doesn’t necessarily mean taking a gorgeous picture of your food - although that’s certainly a part of it. In the world of online marketing, we’re starting to see a trend towards media-heavy content, largely due to the fact that more and more people are browsing the web on their phone. While all businesses will benefit from attractive visual content, it’s especially important for those in the food industry to create media that positions their products in the best possible light - both figuratively and literally.
Companies live and die by reviews, but that rings especially true for the food industry. There’s something incredibly visceral about food that can be difficult to quantify, but people behave differently when it comes to what they’re putting in their body. While customers may be able to discount a few negative reviews, it’s extremely important that food brands take steps to manage their reputation and make sure the good far outweighs the bad.
Quality marketing strategies need to place a priority on customer service, and a big part of that in the online world is public relations. Responding to negative reviews on visible platforms not only assists one angry customer, but it also gives your brand the reputation of a company that cares about providing quality service.
A quality food marketing agency can take this to the next level, using avenues like social listening tools in order to keep an eye on brand sentiment as a whole. But whether you’re going it alone or bringing in the help of professionals, you’ll need to keep conversation around your brand positive for long-term success.
The food industry, in particular, is extremely well-suited to increasing brand influence through promotions and deals. When customers are making the decision to visit a specific restaurant or buy a new product online or in-store, the chances of them choosing your food is far from guaranteed. Your first priority should be getting customers to taste your food, and making your products a more financially attractive option is a great way to do that.
While you may make less money on that initial sale if you offer a limited-time sale, you’ll give your customers a literal taste of your brand and potentially secure a loyal buyer for years to come.
We’ve covered the basics of marketing and some aspects that make food marketing unique, but there’s something to be said for trusting your brand promotion to a professional food marketing agency.
Partnering with expert marketers does require some initial investment, but the volatility of the food market can be better navigated by industry professionals that can build a plan custom-tailored to suit the needs of your business.
But whether you’re going it alone or trusting an agency, food marketing boils down to a mastery of the basics and an understanding of what separates piping hot sales from a lukewarm reception.
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