Whole Foods Exemplifies the use of Social Media

The Lempert Report
February 28, 2014

By now, it's no surprise that consumers are plugged into the digital world, and as a result, retailers need to have a digital platform.

Well once again, Whole Foods shows us how to take it a step further. Check out,  #WFMdish. What's this you ask?  It’s the most used supermarket hashtag of the last year and an effective way Whole Foods market has found to connect with consumers on Twitter. A place where you’ll find a grouping of recipes made from Whole foods products, the medicinal properties of their products, cooking tips, deals of the day and more. 

Whole Foods is far ahead of the pack in terms of customer engagement. If you tweet them a question, someone tweets back. Rave about a product, they’ll thank you. In fact, the Whole Foods Twitter account operates almost like the neighborhood butcher who knows your name and your favorite cut of meat. They’ve managed to take face-to-face interaction online.

Other large companies have also been using social media to their advantage. Walmart for example has a robust social media presence and uses social to drive in store promotions. Target and Kroger also have a strong social media presence, with Target’s #GiveWithTarget campaign a major success last year, particularly around the holidays. Kroger has seen success with its Free Friday Download, a digital coupon that you can redeem at a Kroger’s store for a free or discounted product.

But still, several supermarkets are clearly trying to find their footing in the social media space, with some still absent altogether. Trader Joe's, for example, has no presence on social media.  But as consumers clearly finding appeal in this platform and several retailers are moving toward social media for marketing campaigns, advertising, customer feedback and more, those that do not embrace this platform will be left behind. There is ample opportunity for grocery retailers to explore the social media space with marketing tactics unique to their brand.