Fast-Track These Social Media Ideas

Your grocerants can be more responsive, impactful, and on-trend

February 27, 2018

Grocerants can keep their reputations and strategies safer by being less eager to message on brand new social-media platforms. Remember Meerkat to live-stream, which gave way to Periscope, which was usurped by test Facebook LIVE?

“Being first on social media doesn’t mean being the best,” said Elizabeth Pigg, Senior Vice President and Director of Paid Media and Influencer Strategy at Edelman as a panelist at the latest NRA Show.  She urged her grocerant-skewed audience to “watch others go and then do it, if you have a brand new story to tell that’s perfect for the platform, and you have a credible partner who’ll do a good job and you know you’ll get some earned media.” 

This cautionary tip was one of several suggested by Ms. Pigg and Claire Siegel, RDN, LD, Lead Registered Dietitian and Content Strategist at SNAP Kitchen, during their grocerant panel discussion. Among others:

  • Gain insights from fans to refine your business objectives.  “At the beginning of every menu launch, we decide what we want to improve,” said Ms. Siegel.  “We opened up on our Instagram feed in 2017, telling guests, ‘Hey, we’re getting ready to launch a new breakfast menu. We want to know what you guys want.’  We want to see a ton of engagement and show people we really listen…and we carry them through that process until we launch a menu.”
  • Use influencers to expand your audience.  “We’ve been partnering with Whole 30, a 30-day nutritional reset program.  They have a huge social-media presence, and their founder is extremely passionate…,” said Ms. Siegel.  “We try to fit around this niche marketing of providing convenient, Whole 30-approved food…and we are true partners….We recently had their founder curate a pack for us – it’s a day-long menu of SNAP Kitchen foods that can take you through a day of Whole 30.  To celebrate and launch that, we had her take over our Instagram Stories. In a day, we gained 1,700 followers, which for us is normally weeks of work.  We reach out to influencers whom we think will really benefit from our product…for us, it’s been a genuine love of the brand, and in return a genuine love of the influencer, and we love supporting what they do.”
  • Partner with experts to bring high-quality content to life.  Tasty, which is owned by BuzzFeed, has over 3 million subscribers to its video vertical because it creates videos that give brand partners “exactly what they’re looking for, instead of spending $200,000 or $300,000 to set up their own studio to try to replicate it,” said Ms. Pigg. “They, National Huffington Post and TasteMade are examples of publishers who have tons of technology, ‘get it’ and know how to get people’s attention with compelling headlines and quality content that’s not click-baity. The younger generation has had enough of all those ‘Top 13 Things You Must Do Now’ articles.” 
  • Listen to conversations happening online.  “Whether you want to participate is up to you. But your brand is there and visible, and people are talking about it,” said Ms. Siegel.  “On Twitter, look for hashtags of your brand name, what’s trending, and what might be happening in your city. Do a Google news search because anything that’s indexing highly in Google News has already been shared across Facebook. You can’t see it because of privacy within Facebook, but that’s how things get to be trendy now.”
  • Support customers.  SNAP Kitchen has a Slack channel as its social-media feed, and its social-media coordinator views every incoming message.  “As soon as any food complaint comes in, we respond with concern and an apology, and we move the conversation off of social media as quickly as possible,” Ms. Siegel described.  “We divert it to Customer Care, who connects and escalates it to proper channels [such as] our CEO or VP of Safety. We take every complaint and concern very seriously. It’s important not to approach with any defensiveness. Address the guest, express our concern, and immediately take it off of social media to prevent it from becoming a huge viral incident.”  
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