Food Brands Are Best At Influencer Marketing

by T+B Blog Team on July 2, 2014

Many brands are familiar with the concept of influencer marketing—the partnership between companies and social content creators, such as journalists or bloggers—which aims to influence buyer decisions on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. But did you know that brands from certain industries are better at influencer marketing than others?

Consumer food brands, like Kraft, Whole Foods, Horizon Organics, Coca-Cola, and Black Box Wines, all enjoy higher sales, engagement, and awareness thanks to influencer marketing. Holly Hamann’s article in Chief Marketer examines this food brand phenomenon and looks at the most successful campaigns and the key components they share.

The best performers in influencer marketing focus content on the consumer, not the brand, satisfying users’ appetites for unique content while making an indirect reference to their business. People crave emotional content and the best way to achieve this is to use content from actual consumers. The food industry has the upper hand here, as it’s much easier to encourage people to talk about recipes and restaurants than finances or car repairs.

Food brands are also aware of the power of visuals—videos and images generate more clicks and result in more conversions on social media than text. The success of International Delight’s new line of Cold Stone Creamery flavors is a good example: as part of its launch, the company used food bloggers to create and share recipes using the products. One blogger, WillCookForSmiles, generated over 28,000 pins on Pinterest for a photo of a White Wedding Cake milkshake prepared with one of the flavors.

Food brands also take more risks than other industries. Lays, for instance, rolled out a social media campaign offering influencers and fans a $1 million award for the best chip flavor idea, a “high-risk high reward” campaign. It proved hugely successful, resulting in the release of the top three flavors to consumers who were asked to vote for their favorite on social media. The campaign led to a 12% increase in sales and the addition of the Cheesy Garlic Bread flavor to Lays’ product line.

How has your brand used influencer marketing techniques?

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