RMD Advertising Becomes AOR for Better Than Coffee
RMD Advertising a fully integrated advertising, public relations and brand strategy agency, focusing exclusively on growing challenger food brands, announces the addition of Better Than Coffee to its list of established blue chip food clients. Together, RMD and Better Than Coffee will expand the awareness and reach of the brand’s natural energizing bars.
Deriving caffeine from plants instead of chemicals, the Better Than Coffee product line offers four flavors of caffeinated energy bars made with organic dark chocolate and free from most major allergens. The product line will lean on RMD’s tactical counsel through an increased focus on brand strategy and public relations to raise awareness and knowledge about the brand. Better Than Coffee is available on Amazon at an SRP of $23.99 for 12 bars.
Better Than Coffee aims to delight professionals and health conscientious consumers by providing a small energy bar with no chemicals and very little sugar. This allows them to stay on the go all day long. Their secret: guarana and maca. These two plants are found in South America and have a long history with the natives of the area, giving them energy to hunt and survive. The bars are also non-GMO, gluten-free, soy-free, dairy-free, nut-free (excluding coconut), certified Kosher and Vegan, making these energy bars accessible to a large population of selective consumers.
“The addition of Better Than Coffee to our portfolio of challenger food brands is exciting. It’s a unique product that deserves its share of the limelight, as it’s truly innovative,” shares Sue Reninger, Managing Partner, Client Brand Strategy, RMD Advertising. “We’re super-charged and excited to help coffee drinkers everywhere think differently about their day to day energy-craving routines, and know this product will help consumers to do that more deliciously than ever!”
RMD’s ideas address the challenges faced by the agency’s clients with solutions embodying the words smart, creative, sharp, passionate and problem-solving. Objectively considered one of the strongest brand-oriented challenger food advertising agencies, the RMD team works to find a better way for clients to relate to their audiences from both emotional and intellectual perspectives. In being determined as an agency within the top 20 performing firms by O’Dwyer’s, RMD’s depth of knowledge within the challenger food category, specifically, separates it from the rest and makes it the ideal partner for Better Than Coffee.
RMD Advertising, a fully integrated advertising, public relations and brand strategy agency, focusing exclusively on growing challenger food brands, announces the addition of McClure’s Pickles to its list of established blue chip food clients. Together, RMD and McClure’s Pickles will expand the awareness and reach of the brand’s premium pickles, relishes and snacks. As a 15-year “love brand”, McClure’s is the nation’s premier producer of gourmet pickled goods, condiments and snacks. The product line will lean on RMD’s tactical counsel through an increased focus on brand strategy, digital, social media and public relations to raise awareness and knowledge about the brand, overall.
McClure’s has manufactured, prepared and distributed authentic, gourmet-quality food products since 2003. Preserving the family’s time-tested recipes, and exemplifying the brand’s nostalgia and passion for quality food, the McClure family has remained true to tradition. As traditional family recipes are translated into commercial production, authenticity remains the overarching goal to achieve premium quality and bold taste.
“It’s a true privilege to work with brands that have such love and history behind them. McClure’s is a challenger food brand with a very bright future, and we’re proud to represent them,” said Sue Reninger, Managing Partner of RMD Advertising. “We’re looking forward to a long partnership that gives a refreshed voice to the brand persona and provides increased awareness for the brand.”
RMD’s ideas address the challenges faced by the agency’s clients with solutions embodying the words smart, creative, sharp, passionate and problem solving. Objectively considered one of the strongest brand-oriented challenger food advertising agencies, the RMD team works to find a better way for clients to relate to their audiences from both emotional and intellectual perspectives. In being determined as an agency within the top 20 performing firms by O’Dwyer’s, RMD’s depth of knowledge within the challenger food category, specifically, separates it from the rest and makes it the ideal partner for McClure’s.
Do Certifications Matter in the Restaurant/Food Service Category?
By Sue Reninger, Managing Partner and Client Brand Strategist
The food industry is independently unique, and today, consumers are more educated and thinking more critically than ever. In fact, many have begun asking whether the industry and the restaurants it encapsulates are doing their part to maintain the integrity guests so desperately desire.
Are we doing our part to lead guests to better, more healthful and more sustainable choices? Are we offering guests the food from our menus because we truly believe in its inherent good?
To best serve restaurant guests, today’s chefs and their menus need to reflect the restaurant as a brand, but also its mission and values, overall. For many, that means turning to the power of third-party certifications. Top certifications in the food world include, but are not limited to, a handful of the select elite:
USDA Organic: This relevant certification regulates the standards for any farm, wild crop harvesting, or handling operation that wants to sell an agricultural product as organically produced.
Why this certification is important:A 2016 poll from the Pew Research Center found that 55 percent of Americans believe that organic food is healthier than conventional. This is particularly true of organically grown fruits and vegetables. The market reached $43 billion in 2016, and a 2017 survey found that 82 percent of American homes stock organic food.
In considering certified organic ingredients versus foods simply labeled as ‘organic’, consider the fact that a certification requires that farmers and handlers document their processes and get inspected every year. This ultimately allows you to make an educated and informed choice for your restaurant.
Non-GMO Project Verified: The Non-GMO Project is an independent verifier of products made according to best practices for avoiding genetically modified organisms in the U.S. and Canada.
Why this certification is important:A non-GMO market insight report released by Mintel in February 2017 states 34 percent of Baby Boomers and 29 percent of Millennials surveyed avoid genetically modified foods in their diet, which supports the fact that this mindset spans generations. Research demonstrates today’s restaurant guests are actively seeking out non-GMO foods, and the ingredients on your menu can mirror their concern.
Certified Gluten-Free: The Gluten-Free Certification Organization (GFCO)is dedicated to providing certification services to producers of gluten-free products using quality assessment and control measures throughout production, in order to provide consumer assurance of the safety of their foods.
Why this certification is important:With rigorous standards ensuring no cross contamination, a Gluten-Free Certification oftentimes means you can cater to a still growing community of foodies. For guests not participating in an exclusively gluten-free diet, your commitment will help them perceive your restaurant as one that is both tolerant of these special dietary needs and inclusive of their friends and family who rely on a gluten-free diet.
Certified Humane: Administered by independent nonprofit Humane Farm Animal Care, this program ensures that animals raised for dairy, lamb, poultry or beef products are treated humanely and with their welfare in mind.
Why this certification is important:Packaged Facts survey data from February through March 2017 show that 58 percent of U.S. consumers are more concerned about animal welfare than they were just a few years ago. This certification shows them you are listening, and even more, doing your part to support a sustainable food system.
Certified Vegan: Products Certified Vegan speak most prominently to a population of food lovers interested in vegan products. The certification ultimately aims to help vegans shop and eat with confidence. It also helps companies and restaurants recognize a growing vegan market and brings the word Vegan—and the lifestyle it represents—into the mainstream.
Why this certification is important:While your restaurant does not need a certification to wear a vegan label, ensuring the ingredients you use on your menu have integrity behind them is important to restaurant-goers. Show them you align with their values and respect their need for complete transparency.
Above all, the certifications and conversations surrounding food should demonstrate to restaurant leaders the way guests view nutritional information is vastly different from what it once was, and what it will be in the years to come.
In reflecting upon whether your menu should showcase the trends and certifications that have frequently spotted the food industry, consider the restaurant’s authenticity through the guest’s eyes. If your menu no longer speaks to your core guest or aligns with their values, it won’t be long before your brand lags behind your competitive counterparts.
Today, third-party certifications can help affirm your restaurant’s commitment to transparency and authenticity. Furthermore, third-party certifiers can act as strong partners in bringing a menu and dining experience that match what you envision for your brand to reality. For brands especially focused on the up and coming generations of restaurant goers, certifications can help shape your image, convey the values your company stands for and, as a result, build loyalty.
This outward reflection of your restaurant’s internally stated morals is one avenue by which you can show shoppers you are committed to their wellbeing, while still boasting an impressive menu.
O’Dwyer’s Recognizes RMD as a Top 20 Food Advertising Agency
RMD Advertising, a fully integrated advertising and brand strategy agency with a sole focus on the challenger food brand category, has been recognized by O’Dwyer’s among the top twenty agencies nationwide specializing in food. This acknowledgment demonstrates RMD’s exemplary work within the advertising, public relations, digital and social media worlds, particularly within the food industry. A total of 48 agencies complete the O’Dwyer’s list of top Food & Beverage Public Relations Firms of 2018, ranking those that have demonstrated their expertise in niche marketing within the food industry.
In being determined as an agency within the top 20 performing firms, RMD’s depth of knowledge within the challenger food category, specifically, separates it from the rest. An accomplished 26-year history and a full roster of blue-chip food clients has marked RMD’s presence as a growing force. The agency is known for serving national food brands that are category leaders – brands that have carved out a strong niche for themselves and prefer to work with a food agency that is as committed to their growth as they are. What differentiates RMD is a compelling promise to documenting tangible results backed by unique expertise that precedes confidence in sales-oriented results.
“RMD has always been focused on quality, smart and highly strategic work. The challenger food category is where we shine,” shares Sue Reninger, Managing Partner, Client Brand Strategist at RMD Advertising. “To be recognized for our integrated work for food and only food for the past 15 years is an honor. We’re proud to be able to work with passionate food brands, who have driven us to continue growing, pushing and making strides within this exciting industry.”
RMD’s ideas address the agency’s clients’ challenges with solutions embodying the words smart, creative, sharp, passionate and problem solving. Objectively considered one of the strongest brand-oriented challenger food advertising agencies, the RMD team works to find a better way for clients to relate to their audiences from both emotional and intellectual perspectives.
All-Natural Granola Brand and Innovative Food Cooking Show Select RMD as AOR
RMD Advertising, an integrated advertising, brand strategy, social media and public relations agency considered to be an expert in the challenger food brand category, is proud to announce the addition of two new accounts. The agency has partnered with Real Food Real Kitchens, a show that films real people in their kitchens telling stories of their family dishes, and Whirlybird Granola, producer of all-natural, Non-GMO, gluten-free and vegan granola. Under its insightful eye, RMD Advertising will help its new accounts grow awareness and attract consumers through the strategic use of public relations, advertising and marketing.
Real Food Real Kitchens is a cooking series and brand that goes into the kitchens of everyday people and tells the story of families’ traditions and recipes. Available on Amazon Prime, the show is the image of authenticity. Whirlybird Granola is an all-natural and healthy-for-you granola brand made by passionate food lovers. The brand offers four delicious flavors of granola made with nuts, seeds and berries in four flavors: original, chocolate, vanilla berry and citrus ginger. RMD Advertising is proud to work with both new clients, proving the versatile and nimble approach the agency takes in the area of food brands. Current clients describe RMD Advertising as a partner with unwavering work ethic and commitment to the food category overall.
“Both Real Food Real Kitchens and Whirlybird Granola are the best at what they do, and we are excited to spread the word about their brand,” shares Sue Reninger, Managing Partner and Brand Strategist at RMD Advertising. “We are primed to make deeper connections for them with their respective audiences, and to make great things happen very quickly.”
In The News: Enhancing The Food Influencer Program Brings Greater Awareness to Challenger Food Brands
RMD Advertising, a fully integrated advertising, public relations and brand strategy agency, focusing exclusively on growing challenger food brands, announces its renewed strategy to influencer marketing with a unique program. This exclusive program invites food brands to celebrate new levels of awareness. It also allows digital influencers to become official brand ambassadors for RMD’s food brand clients. As brand ambassadors, influencers will create unique recipes and work with these challenger food brands in unique ways.
According to Forbes, 30% of consumers are more likely to buy a product from a non-celebrity blogger. Similarly, 70% of millennial consumers are influenced by online reviews of products by their peers. This consumer to consumer marketing strategy gives shoppers a try-it-before-you-buy-it reassurance and ensure an honest review of products.
“We’ve been enhancing and perfecting this program for several years,” shares Sue Reninger, Managing Partner and Client Brand Strategist at RMD Advertising. “As one of the few advertising agencies in the US that focus exclusively on Challenger Food Brands, we’re proud of the value this enhanced program now brings to the food brands we serve.”
RMD Advertising’s expertise in the food industry spans more than two and a half decades, making it the ideal agency for authentic clients. With a sales driven mindset and the discipline to follow through on each project it adopts, the RMD Advertising team often attracts growing and emerging food brands that are passionate about their future. The proof of the agency’s success is in the lasting relationships built with brands such as Graeter’s Ice Cream, Rudolph Foods and Bil-Jac Foods. Currently celebrating 26 years of experience and its expansive industry knowledge, the agency cultivates a strong relationship with its brands in an ever-competitive industry.
Natural Products Expo West is arguably the biggest, the most interesting and the most exhausting food trade show of the year. Food brands of all types come from across the country and the globe to introduce their foods and new product development, share their ideals and gain new distribution and fans. In short, everyone is after the almighty and powerful retailer relationships … and consumer dollar.
So, what were the trends that Team RMD spotted at Expo West last week? Here’s a summation, along with some of our favorite finds:
Bars and Balls: From protein-enriched to caffeine-enhanced, meat and grain bars and nutrition balls are making their way into all meal categories — and aren’t just for snacking anymore. Our favorite: The Better Than Coffee bar at 100 calories and just 3g of sugar, it truly tastes like a caffeine kick (and agency people are known for their love of coffee). We also love the relaunched MetaBall, which has introduced a whole new array of flavors (and new packaging!), including our favorite – Berry Cobbler Crunch.
Pork Rinds: Grandpa’s snack has made its way to mainstream America with reinventions of this old favorite. Our favorite, of course, is Southern Recipe Small Batch’s rinds. Newly introduced at the show? The oven baked rinds, touting less fat and a powerful bacon flavor. The traditional line of Southern Recipe Small Batch rinds is equally delicious. We suggest the Spicy Dill. This flavor combination insists that your taste buds take notice.
Grab ‘N Go Everything! There’s protein-enhanced, grab ‘n go foods in nearly EVERY category. Clearly, we’ve gotten the message that protein = good and we’re all on the run. For a flavor sensation that’ll make you turn that car around and want more, give Lilly’s Hummus a taste. It’s hummus made with clean, simple ingredients… and obviously, lots of heart.
Grain Free/Alternative Grains/Gluten Free: The Gluten Free community is in for a TREAT if Expo West is any indication of what’s going to be found in grocery aisles and on Amazon in the coming months. Outrageously delicious, this category has come a long, long, long way. Our must-try favorites: Soozy’s Muffins, Brekki Overnight Oats, The Toasted Oat and Oggi Pizza. OMG, delicious!
Convenience: Everything that’s entering the market is in some way trying to solve our biggest challenges … we’re time-starved and still, want delicious food when we sit down at the table. Food brands have gotten this message. For the best products in this category (that we LOVE), try Saffron Road entrees (like, wow!) and Medlee Food’s new line of flavor-infused butters.
The food industry is a competitive one, with restaurants dawning trendy personas, while food brands are introducing new must-have products that entice consumers to buy as soon as they hit the selves.
For marketers, this means battling a crowded field where the average restaurant guest or food consumer no longer respond to overt messages to “buy now!” Read the rest of this compelling Entrepreneurial Chef magazine article written by our very own Managing Partner of Strategy, Sue Reninger.
At a time when consumer awareness has peaked and transparency remains critical, the food industry has worked to reestablish the role and definition of food safety. Included in the cost of doing business today is a food safety communications plan that ultimately rises above industry standards. Companies must not only employ a strategically sound plan for crisis management but also whip-smart crisis communication and protocol.
Read more about Sue Reninger’s article as it was published in FoodDive
We are proud to have been recognized with three awards from the American Marketing Association’s annual AIM Awards, including Platinum PR Publishing Division for Graeter’s National Ice Cream Month, Gold PR Publishing Division for Graeter’s National Ice Cream Month and Gold Marketing Campaign for Southern Recipe’s Truck Driver Appreciation Week. These awards speak to RMD’s imaginative and innovative use of media, social media and online influencers to create successful and influential campaigns through both Graeter’s and Southern Recipe.
The AIM Awards recognize leaders and innovators in marketing, communications, graphic design, public relations and advertising throughout Columbus, Ohio. AMA, which judges and selects the AIM Awards Winners, is comprised of practitioners and academics, who share an interest in networking, learning and serving the community. The awards symbolize excellence in clear, concise communications, and AIM recipients represent marketing professionals, companies, nonprofit associations and institutions local to Columbus.
“We were honored to have been recognized for the strategic work we did with the Graeter’s Ice Cream Month and Truck Driver Appreciation Week campaigns,” shares Sue Reninger, Managing Partner, Client Brand Strategist at RMD Advertising. “We love the AMA’s because we are so proud to be amongst marketers statewide and nationally who work to help their brands grow. For us, it is all about helping our clients reach a new level of distinction, growth and success.
Amidst hundreds of submissions, RMD’s entries for Southern Recipe’s annual Truck Driver Appreciation Week and Graeter’s Ice Cream Month campaigns were distinguished as leaders in their respective categories. Graeter’s Ice Cream Month campaign focused on utilizing National Ice Cream Month to generate sales and brand awareness through media, contests, giveaways, social media and online influencers. Meanwhile, Southern Recipe’s Truck Driver Appreciation Week campaign partnered with the St. Christopher Truckers Development and Relief Fund to spread awareness of health problems truckers face and raise money for the charity through the use of a social media photo contest.