Drive Repeat Purchase With Food Fusion

 Since I work in the food industry, in particular with brands of less well known foods…by choice, I might add, I am always on the look out for ways to incorporate the unusual into the American diet.

I’m fortunate that I tend to work for truly healthy foods – but I get to use the “health” message, far less often than the “tasty” one. Wow – look at this delicious, delectable way to use fresh subterranean spinach pear … can you imagine how you will love biting into this? Incidentally, go ahead…it’s healthy too.



Convincing trial is less arduous than one might think in this “Foodie’ culture of ours – people are willing to try. It’s helping them figure out how to actually use this new “stuff” they brought home, on a regular basis and put in their cabinet or frig that can be challenging.

So, I like to read articles, like this one in Fast Company: Dip Into Innovation: How Sabra’s CEO Is Going To Put Hummus In Every U.S. Fridge.

Cut to the chase here- the key to getting beyond trial and into the weekly menu is embracing “fusion”.  American consumers are so much more willing to add a new food to a beloved dish than they are to incorporate a new dish into their diet. Find a twist on any standard dish that drives the top chef in any household batty with its repetitiveness in their family’s repertoire and you have an almost guaranteed winner.

But getting there is not so easy.  It takes lots and lots of mouthwatering examples, otherwise known as recipes to hit on that combination of meal ideas that speak to the palate of target consumers.  It takes hours of recipe development and importantly visual and textual presentation on digital properties. In this age of social media, broadcasting is optimal…over and over on a variety of social media platforms in various guises…as a pin, as a post as a tweet .  It takes relationship building with the hundreds of thousands of chefs, dieticians, bloggers, foodies and household chefs to build an information web visible enough to change consumer behavior on an ongoing basis.

Caught Creating Branded Content

I wasn’t surprised to read today about the real need for content creation. According  to Outsource Success: Brands Re-Up Content Marketing  the vast majority – almost 80% of brands are rapidly shifting into branded content.

Since content, especially well crafted and on target can be used across multiple channels and properties, the need is clear. In a “conversation” versus a “one to many” world, more and more content needs to be created in the specific way that allows it to be used on multiple levels in many different ways.

The content creation “time-suck” increasingly obvious to even the most newly created social media team, seems destined to drive outsourcing to teams of content creators well versed in multiple ways to create and use content. It’s a unique way of thinking.

When we create content, we, perhaps after all of these years, think globally and write globally. How can we translate this into a Facebook post? How does this headline work on Twitter? Is the SEO strong? What parts would work well on Pinterest? Is there a graphic element I can include How do readers use this type of content? How will they share it?

The explosion in content has whipsawed we web writers from crafting long thoughtful pieces of self expression to cramming key words into a framework of a thought back to carefully selected word-smithing for selected audiences. It’s been a heady ride.

In times like these, I thank my parents for ensuring that I was both a voracious and eclectic reader. Voice, tone and experience  drive engagement – connect with the intended audience on their level and in the way they want to use your content and engagement explodes. So, reading People, Gourmet, Kiwi and National Geographic Kids, along with Malcolm Gladwell and Hemingway and Austin with a dollop of  CNET, WSJ and Yoga Journal thrown in, may make my more literary minded friends laugh, but make my job easier!

 Maryanne Conlin, CEO of RedRopesDigital likes browsing the magazine rack at Barnes and Noble.

You can’t Advertise Yourself out of a Bad Relationship!


The above from an article by Bob Garfield about the recent presidential election, called Advertising Loses in a   Mudslide. The article, of course deals with the massive advertising campaign put on by the Romney campaign which was overshadowed by gaffes and inauthenticity perceived by voters. I don’t want to get into politics here, because the “Ah Ha” that I got out of it was reinforced by a fan comment one of my clients got on more or less the same point.

Advertising has a new challenge – authenticity. Not that we haven’t learned that over the past few years with the scandals du jour of the likes of Lance Armstrong and Tiger Woods, but as fan engagement through social media and online interaction increases, brands must strive even harder to stay on message in everything they do.

This means vetting every celebrity endorser to the nth degree or coming up with a good response to the now absolutely inevitable and extremely loud response from a strong base. The harder you work to build a fan base, the more you can expect dissenting voices.

My takeaway is not so much that advertising is dead, but that advertising need to be more and more closely aligned with the 24/7 feedback arriving via social media.


 Maryanne Conlin, CEO of RedRopesDigital likes maintaining relationships especially when they lead to good conversation     and good food.