Influencer Marketing for Food and Beverage Brands
Industries incorporating influencer marketing have witnessed tremendous growth in their overall performance. It has an edge over traditional advertising since instead of sales pitches, the confident word-of-mouth opinion of subject matter experts influences the perception of the desired audience. Influence marketing has also found its application in the food and beverage industry.
Food Influencers combine their creativity with social media reach to help brands get a boost in awareness, engagement and sales. These individuals visit restaurants, hotels etc. Eat and review food. Talk about your menu items and encourage their audience to relieve their experience. This has earned food Influencers a robust reputation in the industry for cutting through the noise and delivering faster results.
However, the food and beverage industry is diverse and can get competitive very fast. The easiest way to lock down on niche food Influencers ideal for your immediate objectives is to work with an influencer marketing agency. This is because an agency has an experienced network of food Influencers who they can navigate, sort and recruit for your business in half the time it would take you doing it solo.
Now that we addressed that, it is time to understand the importance of influencer marketing and how you can make the most of it for your food and beverage brand.
Why do Food and Beverage Brands need Influencer Marketing?
Broader Market Reach
Think of us local restaurants or food outlets with limited reach – that is, customers that know of their existence come from nearby localities. However, Influencers with their substantial following across different geographies – can change that.
As food influencers have niche communities, one sponsored post for your business will be viewed by thousands whose interests align with your products and services. These people can even share your post with their peers, extending your reach to unknown markets.
Influencers have a dedicated community because they are considered vital authority figures in their respective industries – due to their background and experience. Same with food Influencers. When they visit your restaurant, post about your food and share their honest opinions from their experiences, you have positive word-of-mouth, which is vital social proof that significantly boosts your brand’s trust and credibility in the marketplace. Your customers will think about you and the food you prepare the next time they have a craving.
Food Influencers have their areas of specialization. Some like to cook, while some like to eat and review food. Depending on your goal and target audience demography, you can work with food Influencers with aligning specifications. Your branded messages will attract people highly interested in what you are offering – resulting in more brand exposure and conversion, significantly impacting your ROI bottom line.
Top food Influencers have a rich history operating in the industry, which has earned them valuable networks from critical stakeholders. This works in a brand’s favor as they get opportunities to capitalize on the latent power of industry thought leaders to further get on their customer’s radar. For example, food Influencers can rope in relevant fellow opinion leaders for a campaign. A restaurant’s food, drinks and menu can be featured in culinary magazines by recognized food bloggers. Brands can also get mentions on news and talk shows.
When food Influencers create content for your business, it circulates the web for a long time and brings consistent results. Take an item on your menu; top food Influencers can vlog the entire preparation process in their videos which you can repurpose and utilize as a promotional asset for future campaigns. More new customers will view the video and be inspired to visit your restaurant.
The Influencer Marketing Tips for Food and Beverage Brands
Have a Goal
As a food business having a specific goal for different stages of your buyer’s journey is crucial. Determine what you want to achieve from your campaign – do you want to make your customers aware of your newly launched menu item? Do you want them to consider your restaurant over your competitors? Do you want to scale online orders, or do you want to drive traffic to one of your many physical outlets?
Your goal should be budget inclusive, trackable, optimizable and achievable within a given time frame.
Select Niche Influencers
Food Influencers come in different shapes and sizes. Some have specialty over up broad spectrum of cuisines while others limit themselves to specific verticals like veg, non-veg, beverages, desserts etc. Hence, picking niche influencers who align with your expertise and have a proven track record of collaborating with similar businesses is crucial. The food Influencers can have a smaller following if they are authentic and match your buyer persona.
Formulate a Plan
You need to take stock of your in-house resources and staffing with the skills required to execute the campaign. Analyze the capabilities of each of your workforce and allocate responsibilities accordingly. Next, find an influencer marketing agency with access to the right Influencers. Ensure the agency partner you select has worked on similar campaigns and has testimonials to back up their claims. Lastly, prepare a brief that highlights your expectations, content requirements, budget, brand standards, creative guidelines, and timeline to bring your team on the same page.