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Marketing snapshot - Hortlink 2017, edition 4

Publication date: 7 December 2017

This Hort Innovation Avocado Fund marketing snapshot has been taken from Hort Innovation’s Hortlink 2017, edition 4

Hort Innovation is responsible for investing the avocado marketing levy into a range of activities to grow awareness and consumption, under the Hort Innovation Avocado Fund. Here’s a look at some of the most recent activity… 

Social media

Managed by Hort Innovation on behalf of the industry, the Australian Avocados Facebook page is an important component of the industry’s marketing program. The page is liked by more than 186,000 consumers (whose ‘likes’, comments and shares on the page reach even further to their own digital social circles), and has an ‘always on’ approach that keeps Aussie avocados top of mind for consumers year-round.

Over 1.6 million people were reached by Australian Avocados content in August, the second highest result to date ever for the page.

The top performer for this month was the ‘Avocado satisfaction’ post, which was a video of someone spinning the pit of an avocado inside a half-cut fruit. It gained the highest engagement rate (amount of comments, shares, ‘likes’ etc), creating a strong dialogue within the community – with many coming to the agreement that avocados are the best fruit and though the spinning pit was interesting, eating the avocado was better.

A recipe for ‘Avocado Fries’ was the next best hit, with many fans intrigued by the idea, which showed avocado as being more than just a spreadable fruit or an embellishment to a main dish. Instead ‘Avocado Fries’ changed the role of the avocado into a main dish of its own and the community loved it.

Video content

A three-month digital campaign featuring the clever ‘Perfect Match’ series of ads (seen here) is underway to keep avocados top of mind and impress the idea that avocados are a great match with other ingredients such as chicken, haloumi, salmon and chocolate.

The latest digital activity has been live for 11 weeks, with a month remaining of the activity. This campaign involves playing the 30-second television commercials, and includes placements on catch-up TV sites such as Tenplay, 9NOW and PLUS7, and on contextually relevant websites such as, and

Connected and catch-up TV services continue to lead the way, consistently averaging over 90 per cent for completion rate (the rate at which people watch the video to the end), which is an excellent result considering the 30-second length of the ads. We are also seeing great results through targeting men – showing there is a male audience for good avocado content, with 92.92 per cent of all impressions being watched to completion on male-focused sites such as

Digital activity with MyFoodBook

Australian Avocados previously worked with MyFoodBook ( – a recipe and cookbook community that includes more than 200,000 subscribers, and promotes recipes to more than 2.8 million people each month – to develop a range of avocado recipes for use across social media, and the Australian Avocados website, and the MyFoodBook platform.

The recipes have now been on the MyFoodBook website for a year, and have proved very popular with consumers. In that year, ending October 1, 2017, the Australian Avocados recipes have been viewed more than 154,000 times. The most popular recipe was an avocado, garlic and cheese pull-apart bread, which had more than 23,000 engagements, which include recipe views, saves, shares, video views and social actions.

This activity is designed to keep reminding and inspiring consumers of the easy, versatile uses for avocados that make meals extra-special.

Cinema campaign

An Australian Avocado out-of-home cinema campaign started on September 21 and ran through to November 18, 2017, to bring avocado messaging to an engaged audience – keeping the fruit top of mind and reminding consumers of their versatility across meal occasions.

The Perfect Match series of ads was once again chosen as the communication tool, with the videos’ funny scripts and cleverly made visuals suiting the cinema environment perfectly.

The first burst of activity ran during the school holidays and the October public holiday in order to capitalise on increases in audiences at this time, while the second burst of cinema activity coordinated with blockbuster releases such as Thor: Ragnarok and Blade Runner 2049.

A rotation of two Perfect Match videos – Avocados & Chocolate and Avocados & Haloumi – were screened more than a combined 596 times. Final reach numbers are due shortly.

In-store sampling

Following meetings with Woolworths, 100 in-store demonstrations were held across Woolworths stores in October, showcasing avocados in smoothies.

In-store sampling is a highly popular direct marketing tactic that has many benefits, including proven conversion to sales, improved brand loyalty and brand recognition. Rather than just talking about how great a product tastes, sampling literally puts it in consumers’ mouths, with the product then speaking for itself. Introducing a new way of using avocados for many Australians via smoothies fit with the everyday gourmet pillar of the marketing strategy, and helped offer a solution to consumers who don’t know what to do with “the other half”.

There were two Thursday – Saturday sampling periods across October 21-23 and then October 26-28. Each session ran for four hours, and involved sampling avocado smoothies and handing out recipe cards. The objective of the in-store demonstrations was to demonstrate the ease of use and versatility of avocados to consumers via a high traffic retailer at point of purchase, with the locations picked based on foot traffic and performance of stores, with a focus on busy metro stores.

Over the 100 sessions, there was a total of 13,921 interactions with customers, and 8,918 samples handed out. This equals on average 89 samples handed out to consumers per session.

Consumers loved the smoothies, which was shown both by their comments, and the amount of avocados sold at the stores during the demonstrations. There were 10,178 avocados sold over the sampling period, equating to more than 102 per four-hour session, a conversion rate of 118 per cent when you look at the number of samples handed out, with the assumption that one avocado sold = one sale.

The promotional staff also used the demonstrations as an opportunity to ask shoppers questions about their attitudes to avocados, and helped educate shoppers on how to pick the perfect avocado based on when they wanted to consume it.

Feedback on the smoothie was overwhelmingly positive, with comments including “It tastes so good! I usually have my avocados on toast, never thought of making a smoothie,” and “I love that creamy texture the avocado adds to the smoothie”.

Australian Avocados on television

Australian Avocados were the focus of a segment on television program Studio 10 on Monday, September 11. Celebrity chef Damian Heads cooked up three recipes that showcased the versatility and ease of using avocados in a variety of dishes.

Cooking live on set, Damian prepared an avocado smoothie, avocado salsa with steak, and avocado brownies. The segment was hosted by Ita Buttrose and Sarah Harris, with all the shows’ hosts then sampling the food that Damian prepared.

Over 133,600 people tuned into the segment, and with a key section of the viewers being young mothers who are responsible for the household shopping, it was a great environment to get the key messaging out. You can view the segment here.

Experiential activation – Good Fat by Australian Avocados

Engaging and inspiring consumers amongst a very cluttered world of advertising messages can be difficult sometimes and therefore requires a little something extra to cut through. That’s why disruptive and highly engaging marketing activities are sometimes employed. In the Australian Avocados case, a pop-up restaurant was opened in Sydney’s Surry Hills for the month of November (1-30) to demonstrate first-hand just how delicious, versatile and healthy avocados are. It also gave media something extra special to talk about.

Following on the overwhelming love for avocados in Australia and the huge support seen for the avocado cafés in Amsterdam and New York, it made sense that Australia should have its own dedicated café.

Recipes covering all meal occasions such as breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert and snacks were designed for the menu to deliver that message of versatility and how avocados make a meal extra special. All of the menu items were designed to be cooked at home and so all of the recipes from the restaurant have been featured on the specially designed website supporting the pop-up,, so that everyone in the country can experience the Good Fat dishes.

The response across media has been incredible, with coverage of Good Fat appearing in 265 media articles and social posts, with the opportunity to be seen by 153.5 million people.

To further break this down, Good Fat coverage has appeared in 103 media articles, including 23 international articles, with the opportunity to be seen by 38.9 million people. Breaking down the social coverage, Good Fat has appeared in 162 social posts, reaching 114.5 million people.

The pop-up went through more than 120kg of avocados each week to keep up with demand, with the most popular dishes being ones showcasing avocado in a way people have often never tried. These included the ‘Avoconetto’ – an interesting avocado ice cream dessert, with a tart pumpkin jam; the ‘Avoschetta’ – a house=made pistachio dukkah served with avocado and whipped feta; the ‘ABC Bites’ – avocado, bacon, poached chicken, mozzarella and potato bites, served with a spicy sriracha mayo; and avocado fries served with preserved lemon aioli.


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