How Strategic Alliances MOVE Today’s Female Millennial Shoppers
The landscape of the food industry – and how brands and consumers interact – has changed drastically.Consider how shoppers are making decisions. Who do they trust? Which marketing campaigns deliver maximum engagement from a distracted generation of shoppers?
According to a new report from SmarterHQ, 72 percent of consumers say they now only engage with marketing messages that are personalized and tailored to their interests. This desire for personalization is key for food brands determining how to move forward in capturing the attention of their shoppers. They want to know that the brands they are supporting in the checkout lane understand their wants and needs.
Think about it…
America’s savvy brands began targeting Millennials back in 2012. That would have put the upper Millennial at the ripe age of 15. Today, the Millennial consumers range from 23-38 years of age. Major lifestyle changes happen within those ages. At 16, female Millennials were preoccupied with lifestyle brands that supported their personal aspirational needs. Today, they have families of their own and focus on filling their family’s meal and snack appetites.
That lifestyle change also means today’s Millennial shopper is considering labels more. She is buying for varying appetites andbrand preferences. Mostly, however, it means her level of trust has changed. She trusts her friends, her family and her coworkers more than ever – in short, her circle of influence.
The moral of the story: if you’re targeting Millennials the same way you were when your brand first started focusing on them, you may be speaking to an audience that has lost interest.This is where strategic alliances and partnerships can play a critical role within the food industry.When well-orchestrated, co-branded alliances can propel organic word of mouth and do an excellent job of promoting trial.
Teamwork and relationships within a team can be very elusive. Well done, a strong sense of team seems effortless, but rest assured, it never is. At RMD, we constantly work to balance the need for conflict to bust through complacency in a hurry … with the need to build bridges within our teams that forge strong relationships. We have found these six tips to help along the way:
1. Take the initiative. Go to the other person first.
2. Sympathize with their feelings. Listen before talking. Focus on their feelings.
How To Stop Thinking Just Anyone Can Represent Your Business in Social Media
The food industry is crowded with brand after brand just trying to make it to the shopping cart of the consumer. What makes a food brand special? What makes you indispensable in the consumer’s mind and heart? An agency that specializes in the food industry has access to knowledge that can propel you forward, putting you in the hands of the perfect consumer for strength and sustainability.
For each brand, their purpose is different. It’s time for you to evaluate (or re-evaluate) yours … and identify the most strategic avenue by which to share it.
The list of impactful social media platforms goes on and on. While a good product is a key to success if consumers don’t know about it, how well can it perform? In the meanwhile, the world is seemingly in tune with the latest social trends. In order to maximize your momentum in this space, there’s something deeper brands should responsibly consider.
The question is, why should you employ the services of an agency to manage your social media instead of that eager new intern or a family member who can’t wait to get their hands on your social accounts?
Instead, consider these four big reasons to rely on an agency to help share your brand’s story and, just as importantly, your purpose:
1. Talking to the consumer and managing crisis.
A series of high-profile food crisis has caused a growing awareness of particularly stubborn pathogens amongst all consumer groups. Both food manufacturing teams and their marketing counterparts have been charged with the daunting task of exemplifying excellence in food safety by incorporating industry best practices, particularly by bolstering their crisis management plans … this is especially necessary in a space as transparent as the social space.
By fine-tuning a food crisis strategy, your brand can ensure it continues to serve the organization well and protects its public profile while helping to instill trust between the brand and its consumers. Partnering with an agency with a deep knowledge of the industry and a solid track record in times of crisis is an exemplary way to prepare your brand for the unforeseen. In a volatile industry, such as the food industry, your agency partner should realize that food can either nourish us or serve as a toxin. Their work should prepare your brand and protect it accordingly.
2. Strong SEO means big power for your brand.
Powerful SEO is a must-have today and it can be integrated into your marketing mix seamlessly with the help of an agency. For maximum effectiveness and brand power, your agency partner should be able to incorporate a smart SEO strategy into your day-to-day efforts across social media. One brand, one topic, one voice every day. This is the fastest way to become (and stay) a Love Brand.
3. Posting in your voice, as a friend to the consumer.
As consumers peruse the social space, they’re actively reading messages and posts from their friends. It’s critical that your agency brings them friendly messaging that’s in line with what they’re already expecting to see on that platform, while broadening the conversation to accommodate a variety of subjects that relate to your brand.
Recent research demonstrates that 79 percent of Millennials and 84 percent of other generations prefer brands to let their personalities shine on Facebook, while 51 percent of Millennials and 35 percent of other generations like it on Twitter. Your fans want your brand to tell stories they can relate to, share recipes they can identify with or post articles that highlight how you can add value to their lives. It’s simple, it’s subtle and it’s friendly.
4. Posting on a regular schedule, without being predictable.
Strategically diverse – conversational yet intentional. There’s strategic thought that goes into each post, and the content calendar your agency creates for you is a tool not likely to be found in the hands of a social media team that’s not simultaneously armed with a marketing mindset.
Simple but effective tools built monthly for your company’s unique needs. Important holidays, food celebrations, retailer awareness and more are crafted to be talked about in each month, using a pattern that keeps the message fresh and the user engaged.
It’s easy to have that son or daughter, that cousin, that guy in billings who has an Instagram account, take care of your social media needs. It seems smart and affordable. But when you consider that social media is an advantage medium and your direct connection from your brand to your consumer, you realize your product may be the most important key to your business.
The advantage of daily communication with your consumer is a very close second … and that shouldn’t be in the hands of a single person who has an idea of what they’re doing, or just having fun learning. That should be entrusted to a team of individuals that want the same thing you do: success.
See how we can help you and your brand find just that right here.
Grassroots Marketing Efforts Mean Expansion for Ohio-Based Nonprofit
Ten years ago, RMD Advertising dreamed big. The agency’s team members took the first step in what would become the company’s largest charitable initiative. It all stemmed from a simple desire: to give their clients a holiday gift that would stand out from the typical corporate gift.
So, the agency took the money earmarked for client gifts and bought 25 red wagons, filled each with food and distributed them throughout the community to local Columbus families in dire need during the holidays.
Wagons Ho Ho Ho began with that simple mission in mind. We’ve grown since that first year. Last year, our Wagoneers donated more than 8,000 pounds of food and built a total of 1,000 wagons. This year, we’ll call on the Central Ohio community to help us build and distribute 1,250 sturdy wagons – our largest initiative to date. But we’ll also fill each one with enough food to feed a family of four Christmas dinner. 1,250 wagons and enough food to feed 5,000 people … all assembled in one day. More than 600 volunteers make this possible.
How does one 501(c)3 organization mobilize a group of over 600 volunteers and inspire the Columbus community to donate enough nonperishable food to feed so many Ohioans in need? Powerful marketing, lean, targeted messaging, smart event marketing and word of mouth certainly play a critical role.
Marketing to the head and the heart
Wagons Ho Ho Ho is an enormous responsibility, and without the support of our volunteers and the city of Columbus, it wouldn’t be possible. With strategic and targeted marketing efforts, our grassroots initiatives have fostered a giving and selfless community that has made Wagons Ho Ho Ho’s annual Build Day more than simply eight hours during which we assemble wagons.
Build Day is now an event that epitomizes the spirit of the holidays. It reminds volunteers that what they contribute is unique. On that day, the city’s local recreational center turns into Santa’s workshop and strangers work side-by-side, working towards one goal and becoming friends in the process.
We’re proud of this accomplishment. We realize that providing a gift and a meal on Christmas is important, but what is really important to us is what each wagon represents to its recipients … hope. It’s our way of showing these children that there is a community of people who care about them during the biggest holiday of the year.
Each local radio interview, television segment, printed story and event Wagons Ho Ho Ho participates in is an opportunity to make an emotional connection with the next potential Wagoneer. While we share the harrowing facts of Ohio’s food insecurity and the daunting need of families in the area, we are also keenly aware of our story.
Marketing Wagons Ho Ho Ho as a brand has required us to approach each piece of content created as a vehicle for communicating our story, celebrating the people behind our strong but mighty nonprofit and our hopes for the future. By concentrating our media opportunities to the months leading up to the annual Build Day, we have been able to saturate the local airwaves with our story … and in return, have continued to inspire volunteers to proudly step forward and call themselves Wagoneers.
Can a wagon really change a child’s life? We think so. And it takes just one voice to help a family know they have a supportive community of caring neighbors behind them.
Today, the face of the hunger has changed. 1 in 6 in Ohio experience food insecurity, meaning they don’t know where their next meal will come from. These are your neighbors and your co-workers. Sometimes, it is a matter of having to sacrifice dinner one day a week. It may even mean having to choose between buying food or medicine for a sick child. If they are struggling to buy food, how can they buy Christmas gifts for their children?
On Build Day this Saturday, December 2nd, we’ll once again open the doors of a local recreation center and invite over 600 hard working Wagoneers to bag food, build wagons and send each delivery off with our dedicated distribution charity partners. With music, plenty of food and laughter filling each corner of the room, it’s plain to see – this is a special event not only for the recipients of the wagons but also for the builders themselves.
Every volunteer who touches Wagons Ho Ho Ho, whether by donating food, funds or their time, is an important part of the Wagons team. Visit WagonsHoHoHo.org to learn more, and help to give a child HOPE for today and the future.
The most heart-warming, rewarding and hard-working months
To Future RMD Interns:
The next two and a half months at RMD Advertising are going to be the most heart-warming, rewarding, hard-working months you’ll have. RMD is a special place where you’ll be surrounded by people who want to see you learn and grow, who enjoy laughing and sharing in good times, but who also buckle down and work hard.
I know from my internship, working at RMD is an experience I’ll never forget. I want to share with you the five pieces of advice I have that you should keep in your back pocket as you experience RMD for yourself.
1. Be Open-Minded: Your first week as an intern will be exciting and overwhelming. You’ll be learning so much, very quickly. Be a sponge. Soak it all in and definitely, take notes.
2. Ask Questions: Show your curiosity, and don’t be afraid that the words coming out of your mouth might feel silly. RMDers will go above and beyond to make sure you understand what you don’t yet know!
3. Overcommunicate: I can’t stress this enough. It’s one RMD’s core values. If you’re having trouble understanding a task, RMDers will help you through it.
4. Be a Helping Hand: Agency life can get busy, but if you ask how you can help an RMDer, it will alleviate their stress and will show that you care. It’ll teach you that the team you’re playing on is bigger than any one player.
5. Share Your Ideas: Big or small, don’t be afraid to share ideas you have about a social media post or how to tackle an upcoming campaign. It shows that you’re willing to jump in and participate!
All of this and more that I’ve learned at RMD are life lessons I know I’ll carry with me throughout my career. Thank you RMD, for an incredible experience!
When I tell people about working for RMD Advertising, I tell them to imagine the ideal modern ad agency and you’ve got a good start to understanding the environment that is RMD. An incredible team, comfortable working environments, dance breaks, and an eclectic creative suite are just some of the characteristics that make this hip and up-beat agency shine. But what makes it really stand out in terms of creating the best internship experience are the things I didn’t necessarily expect; the things that are a little bit less tangible. There is no way to describe it other than to say this agency is the MOST FUN work environment I’ve ever been in while at the same time being the MOST PRODUCTIVE.
It’s about this time that I should say that this agency isn’t for everyone. It takes a very special type of person to succeed with RMD Advertising. This internship isn’t for someone who is just looking to bolster their resume, although it will definitely do that. Honestly, this isn’t even just for someone who is looking to work hard, although you may be successful. This internship is for someone who is looking to GROW. In addition to being able to see the ins and outs of a national food advertising agency, you will learn more about time management, personal productivity, and personal development than you learned during the rest of your adult life.
So, if you feel that you’re passionate, driven, and ready to grow, then dive-in with RMD, and I promise you won’t be disappointed.
Each week, RMD Advertising honors a team member with the Mojo Award. This “prestigious” award is presented to a person who has gone beyond the task at hand – it could be uncovering a solution to a client issue or a simple gesture toward another team member in need. The Mojo Award is given during our Friday morning team meeting (yes, we call this meeting Mojo).
This week we raise a cup of joe to Jason for alleviating a team members’ stress by finding a way around a missing file. Ahhh, the power of Mojo. A big attitude of gratitude goes out to Jason for a being a great member of our team. This is something RMD Advertising is proud to be built upon.
Donn Ditzhazy, ECD
Travel offers a chance to get out of your comfort zone, learn, and bring ideas back to your normal life. Earlier this year I was given the opportunity to travel to Tarime, Tanzania with a group of volunteer dentists. Luckily, my employer, RMD Advertising, sees value in these kind of life experiences and has a policy of awarding an additional week of paid vacation in order to assist.
Coke at the Great Rift Valley
Landing in Nairobi, and then driving 8 hours to Angel House Orphanage and Secondary School, was a fascinating introduction to East Africa. Nairobi is a metropolis with LCD-topped skyscrapers blasting adverts into the sky, the Kenyan countryside is flush with people and an interesting mix of commerce, while the Tanzanian country is still filled with primarily herders and farmers … but through all of it one thing was always present – bright Red Coca-Cola signs everywhere you looked. But not ads for Coke … the signs were for schools, for bars, for taxis … all the names printed in white text, with a circular Coca-Cola logo, all on Pantone 484 … aka Coke Red.
If an alien with a very basic understanding of earth were to land in East Africa and look around, he would probably think Coca-Cola is the central government. After enjoying a cold Coke, which seem to be omnipresent, I began to ask questions. I learned that Coca-Cola will print a sign for anyone, the sign is bright red and about 30% of the face of the sign is already branded. Coke, and some other enterprising brands, will come out and give any building a fresh coat of paint — and logos and slogans. Coke is willing to invest money in emerging markets with a strategy that is mind-blowing longterm by today’s standards.
Make it local
Even Coke’s rival Pepsi wants in on the action! And in an interesting repeat of their Great Depression food marketing that worked so well in the United States 80 years earlier, Pepsi is charging half as much for the same amount; if Coke is 1000 Tanzanian Shillings, Pepsi in the next cooler is 500. I wonder how many food marketing gurus Pepsi went through before they decided to return to what worked.
When I returned to my job in the states, I had some new perspective on how powerful a brand can really be in a community. I also carried with me the notion that something successful doesn’t always need to be reinvented, perhaps just refreshed for a new market or demographic. Things that are universally appealing: value, purity, health … are ideas that don’t need a meme or app to make them resonate with consumers. Now who want’s a refreshing Coke?
Only after two short weeks at RMD, and as a recent grad, I quickly realized that what this agency has taught me extends far beyond those realms of what a student can comprehend from inside of the classroom.
From mailmen to new members like myself, anyone who steps foot into this agency can agree that RMD is an agency that truly cares. They care for every member of the RMD team and equally for their clients.s Whether it is wearing client’s T-shirts each Friday or ensuring we test their newest product, it is clearly evident that caring for our clients is a top priority for RMD. This agency does not discriminate between new and old clients, when you’re a member of RMD, you’re family.
Which brings me to my topic of discussion – Slawsa. Slawsa is a new account that we recently won. Before RMD, I was unfamiliar with the product despite the fact it has a large following and appeared on the primetime TV hit Shark Tank. The vibrant yellow condiment interested me. How do I use this?
My first encounter with the brand was nothing out of the ordinary, but transformed me into a believer. Other RMDers are trying out Slawsa in new ways daily. Their enthusiasm for the brand is contagious and it shows through their early dedication to the brand.
Flash-forward to my lunch, I was staring indifferently at my plain turkey sandwich. It was suggested that I add some Slawsa to my sandwich. So I listened, I spooned the Slawsa on top of the lunchmeat, examined it, and closed the face of my sandwich. My first bite of the innovative condiment, was crunchy with a distinctive kick, and a fiesta of salsa dancing with maracas sounded off in my head. It underscored the flavor of the plain turkey and begged, “Daniella! Enjoy this sandwich!!!” But I’m on a diet, as I argued against my taste buds. But behold, it’s healthy! I devoured the rest of my sandwich and included extra scoops of Slawsa in every mouth-watering bite. My first experience was with the Original Flavor, but I am eager to try the Garlic Slawsa on different dishes as well.
My experience with Slawsa and the RMD team’s devotion to the condiment is just one of the many examples of how this agency is committed to caring for clients and incorporating their products into our lives. I look forward to lunch every day, and wear my Slawsa shirt proudly, because I can say how SLAWSOME it is!