By now, most of us have heard about Amazon’s purchase of Whole Foods Market. The announcement, followed shortly by the revelations of a planned meal kit delivery program, ate the bulk of the news cycle in the food industry. The statement was a stark reminder to food startups – with powerhouses like Amazon dominating the media, being smart and creative is more important than ever to stay relevant with journalists and consumers. Savvy brands know that in to order succeed, they must:
- Understand the Landscape: The food world has changed drastically. Consumers and media are no longer easily impressed by technology offerings from food businesses; they’ve come to expect it. Stunts must be ballsy and bold to even get noticed. And with media darlings like Amazon joining the fray, companies must differentiate themselves in meaningful ways to draw attention.
- Think Social First: Social-friendly products are also cornerstones for success. The proliferation of ‘Grammable products has crowded the space, making it all the harder for brands to break through. Even if the outrageous social-oriented creation is infrequently purchased, the shock factor and splashy colors catch consumer and media attention alike, and allow entry to the rest of the company’s offerings. Trendspotting is an especially essential step in this process to stay ahead of the pack.
- Generate True News: The food space is also incredibly crowded when it comes to media. Pitching seasonal lifestyle angles has become more difficult. As a result, the best way to shine is to generate bona fide news. Celebrity partnerships, surveys and new products are all effective tactics to produce this type of exposure. Though they can be costly investments, under the right circumstances, they create a windfall of coverage and click-throughs.
As industries continue to converge, it’s more important than ever for food companies to stay nimble, smart and creative to rise above the noise. The landscape will only continue to clutter and breaking through becomes more difficult than ever. But smart PR certainly goes a long way!