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Marketing snapshot - Hortlink 2017, edition 1

Publication date: 28 February 2017

This Hort Innovation Avocado Fund marketing snapshot has been taken from Hort Innovation’s Hortlink 2017, edition 1.

The digital and social media marketing strategy for avocados this financial year is an ‘always on’ approach. This means that Australian Avocados always has a voice in the online world and is accessible to consumers 24/7, offering inspiration, information and education.

In recent months, a combination of fun facts, unusual food combinations and delicious dishes has seen lively discussions and good sentiment shown toward action and usage across the Australian Avocados Facebook ( and Instagram (@AustralianAvocados) accounts.

Incorporating video content in posts has brought some great engagement. During November, the Facebook page’s top-performing post was a ‘Salmon and Avocado Norirolls’ recipe video, which delivered a high engagement rate of 41 per cent and a large number of consumers showing high intention to try the recipe.

During December, the combined activity delivered the highest audience reach for the 2016/17 financial year to date (with January and February results still being collated). The top-performing post was an ‘Avocado and Soft Shell Crab Rice Paper Rolls’ video, while other high-result content included an unusual recipe for avocado ‘bubble tea’.

The #MakeBrunchNotWar reactive campaign

The always on approach allows the industry to capitalise on opportunities that arise unexpectedly – such as in the debate that ensued after comments made by social commentator Bernard Salt during October last year, which bought smashed avocado on toast into the spotlight and a passionate response in the media landscape. (In this article for The Australian, Bernard wrote: “I have seen young people order smashed avocado with crumbled feta on five-grain toasted bread at $22 a pop and more. I can afford to eat this for lunch because I am middle-aged and have raised my family. But how can young people afford to eat like this? Shouldn’t they be economising by eating at home? How often are they eating out? Twenty-two dollars several times a week could go towards a deposit on a house.”)

This topic maintained its presence in the community dialogue for more than 10 days, with Australian Avocados making sure avocados remained a part of that conversation with the #MakeBrunchNotWar campaign.

The response needed to focus on the social groundswell by responding in social channels, which it did, however the content was also mirrored on the Avocados Australia website and search ads. Throughout the campaign period, there were a total of 12 social posts, which delivered sound results for a reactive campaign.

Across paid social media, close to 435,000 people saw Australian Avocados’ campaign content, with just under 6000 link clicks and more than 7300 total engagements (likes, comments, shares, retweets, etc).

Three key audiences were targeted in this campaign, including:

  • Those that had an affinity with the hot topics of the Bernard Salt article
  • Those who live a ‘millennial lifestyle’
  • Those who work for the major news publisher sites such as, Buzzfeed, Twitter Australia, Fairfax and the like.

Having avocados being spoken about in the media as positively as they were, for as long as they were, is a very rare occurrence. The campaign succeeded in getting avocados to be a part of the conversation, showing consumers that the avocado industry is across the things that matter to consumers and are focused on a higher cause, albeit tongue in cheek.


Positioning Australian avocados in their healthy, versatile and tasty ingredient role, the industry has partnered with MyFoodBook for the latest e-cookbook collection, Good For You Food Book. Launched on January 27, this digital recipe book is all about fresh, delicious and easy-to-produce recipes. Just three days after launch, the book had already achieved over 3500 downloads.

MyFoodBook is an online publisher that promotes the food products of their advertising partners to an engaged audience looking for meal ideas via recipes, food stories, cookbooks, e-newsletters and more. MyFoodBook has over 200,000 subscribers with their main audience (70 per cent) being made up of a demographic that is the avocado marketing campaign’s main demographic: mothers 30 to 50 years old.

A push of ‘The Perfect Match’ series (described in the last edition of Hortlink) occurred ahead of Valentine’s Day to further inspire avocados to the MyFoodBook audience.

Australian Avocados consumer website

The consumer-facing Australian Avocados website ( features recipe collections, how-to tips, health and nutrition advice and more. During December, an ‘Avocado and Tuna Poke’ recipe was the most-visited page of the month. ‘Poke bowls’ (with ‘poke’ pronounced ‘poke-ay’) are a highly trending Hawaiian dish based on raw fish with a variety of fresh ingredients. They’re simple, healthy and versatile. The concept has been taken up by a few Australian foodservice venues and tweaked a bit, so now poke bowls feature other proteins besides raw fish. The avocado poke bowl showcased the flavour and textural benefits of the fruit, while ticking the ‘wholefood’ and ‘health’ boxes that are top of mind with so many consumers.

Digital activations

As part of the media schedule for avocados, there has been a strong digital component targeting the main grocery buyer, families and the health conscious. Throughout late September through to mid-December, a number of digital platforms were used to communicate about avocados:


This is mobile-specific technology, with GumGum using image recognition to deliver Australian Avocado banner ads when consumers are looking at anything to do with the fruit (recipes, news pieces etc).

From September 19 to October 17 last year, GumGum delivered the avocado ad 918,080 times, with 11,249 clicks through to the Australian Avocados website.

Totally Her

Used from September 19 to December 21, Totally Her offered a three-pronged approach to amplify the avocado marketing messages:

  • Editorial and native content
  • Standard display
  • Influencer social content.

Four recipes were featured across the Totally Her network demonstrating the versatility and diversity of cooking with avocados. These included ‘Cheesy Avocado Quesadillas’, ‘Mexican Avocado Salsa Boats’, ‘Avocado Pound Cake’ and ‘Avocado Picnic Tart’.


Tubemogul delivers content via connected televisions, which allow users to access digital channels. When a consumer selects a TV show, a ‘pre-roll’ commercial is played to them without the ability to be skipped until after a certain time point. As the audience is already highly engaged to watch a show they have hand-selected, they are more inclined to sit through one advertisement.  Some 32 per cent of all homes currently have internet-connected TVs, and this number will continue to grow as the NBN is rolled out across Australia over the next two years.

Between September 19 and November 7 last year, there were 1,174,000 avocado video views with a ‘completion rate’ (the number of people completing watching the ad) of 75 per cent, compared to the industry standard of 70 per cent.


These marketing activities are strategic levy investments in the Hort Innovation Avocado Fund