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Marketing snapshot - 2019/20

Publication date: 30 October 2020

Hort Innovation is responsible for investing the apple and pear marketing levy into a range of activities to drive awareness and consumption, under the Hort Innovation Apple and Pear Fund. Here’s a quick look at some of the activities and achievements of 2019/20, for both the domestic and export marketing campaigns.


The 2019/20 financial year saw the continuation of the Get Your Crunch On campaign that was launched at the start of 2017. With activity across television, digital, radio, outdoor and social media, the campaign targeted main grocery buyers aged 25 to 54 and built on previously established messaging that apples are the ultimate go-to, on-the-go healthy snack.

Aussie Apples on TV

To drive mass top-of-mind awareness Aussie Apples had six weeks of TV live in the second half of 2019. Launched in July 2019 across five metro capital cities (Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth) and regional markets of NSW, QLD and VIC, the campaign results exceeded benchmarks in all markets.

The campaign took advantage of the strong opening schedule of programs, Marketing report Hort Innovation is responsible for investing the apple and pear marketing levy into a range of activities to drive awareness and consumption, under the Hort Innovation Apple and Pear Fund. Here’s a quick look at some of the activities and achievements of 2019/20, for both the domestic and export marketing campaigns. with the Aussie Apples TV commercial featured in eight of the top 10 performing shows airing at the time, including The Block, Australian Ninja Warrior, The Ashes Series – First Test and The Proposal. This was also boosted with features across high performing general entertainment programs such as The Big Bang Theory, Home and Away, Millionaire Hot Seat, The Chase Australia, and news and current affairs programing.

Across Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane metro the Aussie Apples ad reached 32 per cent of the target audience at least two times, surpassing the key performance indicator (KPI) of 30 per cent, while in Adelaide and Perth Metro the ad reached at least 30 per cent of the target audience at least two times, surpassing the KPI of at least 25 per cent.

In Northern NSW, Southern NSW and Victoria the ad reached at least 45 per cent of the target audience at least two times, surpassing the KPI of 40 per cent, while in regional QLD the ad reached 47 per cent of the target audience at least two times, surpassing the KPI of 35 per cent.


From July to October 2019, Aussie Apples ran digital activity across catch-up television, YouTube and Spotify. This involved playing the 15-second television commercial (TVC) across catch-up TV channels such as such as Foxtel, SBS, and channels 7, 9 and 10, a six-second unskippable ad on YouTube, and a 15-second audio ad on Spotify.

All benchmarks for these activities were exceeded, and over the course of the campaign an impressive 3.7 million impressions were delivered to consumers Apple and Pear Fund Annual Report 2019/20 Marketing report 20 (an impression is the display of an ad to a user while viewing a page), and ads had a 94 per cent viewability rate, and a 93 per cent completion rate (i.e. watching ad in full rather than skipping).


The Aussie Apples radio campaign ran from late July to mid-August 2019, targeting consumers during the commute to work, school and shopping. Airing across the Nova stations in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth, a total of 1,522 spots were aired, leading to some great results including reaching a total of 4.5 million grocery buyers at least four times across the campaign.

Outdoor media

To remind consumers to purchase apples on their path to purchase journey and consistently talk to consumers throughout their day, Aussie Apples had advertising panels across shopping centre screens and gym screens from July to September 2019.

 In shopping centres, the Aussie Apples media reached a total of over 6.4 million consumers, exceeding the KPI of 5.9 million people, while gym screens hit the KPI of reaching 2.25 million consumers an average of 2.5 times.

Social media

Social media activity is a cost-efficient way to reach consumers (an opportunity previously only available via ‘above the line’ media such as television and newspapers), and also to ‘keep a finger on the pulse’ in terms of how people are using apples, answering any questions they have, and giving people an opportunity to simply share their love of apples. The role of social media is to help remind shoppers and consumers of the benefits of apples through compelling content.

The 2019/20 social media campaign for Aussie Apples ran from July to November 2019, leveraging the Aussie Apples Facebook ( and Instagram pages (@aussieapples). Through a combination of created and curated assets the campaign aimed to educate, inspire and engage consumers with compelling content which demonstrated how to make snacking and meal occasions easier with Aussie Apples.

The campaign delivered positive results, delivering 1.3 million engagements (engagements are the total number of likes, comments, shares, saves, photo views, video views, and link clicks) exceeding the KPI of 1.2 million, 9.5 million impressions (exceeding the KPI of 8.5 million), and engagement rates of seven per cent on Facebook (a substantial increase on the 2018/19 average of 0.5 per cent), and 15 per cent on Instagram.


The primary objective of the 2019/20 Australian Pears marketing plan was to increase purchase frequency of light pear buyers by giving consumers the confidence to pick, ripen and use pears. Using the new Dare to Pear creative assets and logo, the campaign was across digital, outdoor, social media and events/in-store activations.


The Australian Pears digital activity ran from August to October 2019, using a 15-second and six-second ad across programmatic video (video ads across relevant websites including lifestyle and cooking sites), YouTube, and Coles Flybuys. In total, the campaign delivered 6.2 million impressions, exceeding the KPI of four million impressions, and a strong viewability rate of 81 per cent and a completion rate of 77 per cent (each sitting above the benchmarks of 70 per cent).

On programmatic video Australian Pears ran the majority of ads across the Nine Network, with and Mamamia as the key sites delivering recipe content across highly engaged audiences. Activity was also run across Daily Mail,, New Idea Food, Time Out, Hello Magazine and Nigella to further reach the target audience. Across the campaign Australian Pears programmatic video over delivered in impressions by 74 per cent, delivering over 1.15 million impressions (with a KPI of 666,000).

The Australian Pears YouTube activity involved a six-second unskippable ad targeted at ‘food affinity’ audiences, that is cooking enthusiasts, foodies (people enthusiastic about food and restaurants), aspiring chefs, and 30 minute chefs (people who often cook). The activity finished with above benchmark results, providing a total of over 3.7 million impressions (over delivering against the 2.2 million KPI by 74 per cent).

On Flybuys, Australian Pears targeted four key audience segments including active pear buyers, lapsing pear buyers (those who were purchasing less), lapsed pear buyers (those who had stopped purchasing) and new pear buyers. Across the course of the campaign the Flybuys activity drove an 85 per cent uplift in sales. The largest uplift was seen across the lapsing audience, with a strong uplift of 96 per cent. In total, 1.25 million impressions were delivered, exceeding the KPI of 1.1 million.

Outdoor media

Targeting main grocery buyers, the Australian Pears outdoor media campaign ran across retail shopping centre panels from August to October 2019. Acting as a final reminder on the path to purchase journey, all retail screens utilised were 100 per cent proximity to supermarkets (directly outside and around stores) and targeted supermarkets that index highly against high fruit buyers and have high foot traffic areas. In total, the outdoor activity reached a total of over 9.1 million consumers, exceeding the KPI of 7.9 million people.

Social media

The 2019/20 Australian Pears social media campaign ran from September 2019 to June 2020, leveraging the Australian Pears Facebook ( and Instagram (@australianpears) pages. Through a combination of created and curated assets the campaign aimed to demonstrate how Australian pears are a delicious and healthy way to shake up the everyday. Targeting three key audiences (‘health pursuers’ and ‘seasonal fruit hunters’ aged 45+ on Facebook, as well as ‘sweet tooth Apple and Pear Fund Annual Report 2019/20 22 Marketing report 22 Hort Innovation foodies’ aged 25-44 on Instagram) the social media campaign aligned to the strategic pillars of education (how to pick, ripen and store pears), versatility (demonstrated through recipes and tips and tricks), nutrition/health benefits, and varieties (increasing awareness of different varieties including educating content on seasonality and different flavour profiles).

In response to break out of COVID-19 and implementation of social distancing and lockdowns from March 2020, the social media communications plan was reviewed to ensure it was appropriate in the COVID-19 climate, while continuing to inspire Australians with delicious pear content and recipes. This review included:

  • Refining the tone of voice across each social media platform to ensure contextual appropriateness (for example, not making references to ‘entertaining with friends’ during the lockdown periods)
  • Refining messages to ensure they were helpful and useful during social distancing/isolation periods, such as showcasing recipes which were great for freezing, great for the whole family or sharing tips on extending shelf life of fresh produce through proper storage techniques
  • Working with influencer partners to ensure any content generated was sensitive to the COVID-19 climate.

Across the course of the campaign, all key performance indicators were exceeded. In total, social media activity delivered more than 13 million impressions, 1.8 million engagements (almost 1.8 times the KPI), including 1.1 million video views and 620k non-view engagements (non-view engagements are reactions, comments, shares, saves, link clicks, photo views). Further to this, engagement rates averaged eight per cent on Facebook (KPI 7 per cent) and 11 per cent on Instagram (KPI 10.5).

 In addition to this, on Instagram the Australian Pears channel showed impressive growth and potential, with the audience growing 500 per cent from September to June (331 followers to 2,001 followers), and across both Facebook and Instagram consumer sentiment was exceedingly positive over the course of the campaign, with consumers’ comments centred around people’s love of pears and appreciation of the content shared.

Influencer partnership

During the last four weeks of the overarching social media campaign, Australian Pears engaged foodie and nutrition author and magazine columnist Louise Keats to drive advocacy for Australian pears. Louise created three key recipes featuring Australian Pears which were shared to both her own social channels and the Australian Pears Facebook and Instagram pages. This included a spiced pear porridge, a pear savoury slaw with lamb cutlets and a pear leathers recipe (pictured, right).

Louise also hosted an Australian Pears Instagram take-over where for one day she took over the stories feature on the Australian Pears Instagram page to share educational messages about pears and answer any pear questions from consumers. These stories can be viewed at the link here.

During this take-over, Louise shared a total of 27 stories on the Australian Pears Instagram account.

In total, content generated by Louise delivered over 330,000 opportunities to see across the Australian Pears owned channels and Louise’s own Facebook and Instagram channels. Further, over 13,000 post interactions (likes, comments, shares) were generated and over 15,000 consumers viewed the Instagram stories.


Taste Australia

This year marked the first campaign for Taste Australia in Hong Kong, a mature market that has a good understanding of the value of Australian produce and a desire to trial premium imported fruits. The focus of the campaign was on driving purchase of apples and pears in market through retail sampling.

City Super and YATA were the retail partners selected for sampling due to their premium image and geographic coverage. Sampling activities were coordinated at the same time as Asia Fruit Logistica, the largest fruit industry exhibition in Asia. In total, there were 140 sampling sessions conducted across two retailers and six stores.

Both City Super and YATA reported an approximate 50 per cent growth in sales for Australian apples and pears during the campaign, demonstrating the effectiveness of sampling in the market. Sampling activities provided consumers the opportunity to try different varieties and taste profiles, as well as providing valuable insights on consumer taste preferences that can be used in future trade activities. Pink Lady and Granny Smith apples were reported as a bit too tart for the market, while Bravo and Fuji were popular. Through the sampling it was also learned that red or purple skin is more attractive to consumers in Hong Kong. The average purchase in market was less than four and no more than six apples.

Co-promotion in Canada

In March 2020, Australian Pears partnered with LPG Cutri Fruit Global and Lee McKeand Produce to promote Australian pears in key Canadian retailers. The objective of the campaign was to increase consumer awareness and demand for Australian pears in Canada by increasing brand recognition, building preference of and loyalty to Australian pears over competitors, and developing relationships with Canadian consumers, trade partners and retailers.

The focus of the campaign was to promote Australian pears via print campaigns within key retailer catalogues between March and June (Australian pear seasonal timings in Canada). A number of key retailers were selected, but unfortunately the impacts of COVID-19 meant activity was only secured in the Costco Annual Catalogue with a link to the website to further showcase Australian pears. Being featured in this catalogue meant that the fruit was promoted to around three million Western Canadian Costco members. This resulted in a 77 per cent increase in Australian pears sales in Costco and satisfied repeat customers.


These marketing activities are strategic levy investments in the Hort Innovation Apple and Pear Fund