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Marketing snapshot - Hortlink 2017, edition 1

Publication date: 28 February 2017

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

Australian Mushrooms events

Consumer events are a fantastic opportunity to get mushroom samples, recipe ideas, health information and more to a receptive audience. In recent months, Australian Mushroom has attended…

  • Newtown Festival, on November 13, 2016, in Sydney, New South Wales. With some 80,000 people in attendance, this event was a great opportunity for mushroom sampling and education. The Australian Mushrooms crew handed out 2900 samples in just six hours, with wok-cooked mushroom noodle stir-fry and Thai mushroom meatballs proving popular with the crowds. There were also keen discussions on the health benefits of adding mushrooms to everyday cooking, and the recipe brochures handed out to the crowd.
  • Taste of Melbourne, from November 10 to 13, 2016, in Melbourne, Victoria. This event boasts world-class chefs, mouth-watering dishes and drinks, live entertainment and a host of artisan producers. At this event, Australian Mushrooms was focused on delivering key messaging to the higher-end customers and food service crowd while they sampled an Aussie mushroom burger and a perfectly cooked portabella mushroom with beetroot relish, cheddar and greens. About 20,000 paying guests attended the festival over four days, and a total of 4200 mushroom-dish samples were handed out.

As part of the industry’s public relations activities, there was also a ‘#mushiesonsourdough’ media event in December 2016. For the event, in New South Wales, eight top-tier media representatives and influencers got hands-on in the kitchen with Brasserie Bread co-founder Michael Klausen and dietitian Lyndi Cohen to find out why mushrooms and sourdough are the perfect match. After a tour of the bakery, and learning about the benefits of eating single-origin wheat sourdough over commercially baked bread, the media crew had a cooking class with Michael and were assisted in plating up their dishes. The event encouraged the uploading of images to social media accounts using the hashtag #mushiesonsourdough. Results in ‘long-lead’ media, such as magazines, will be seen shortly.

Mushies in Summer’

The ‘Mushies in Summer’ program was developed to encourage people to include mushrooms in everyday recipes over the summer period, when mushroom usage typically slows. Using the industry’s existing messaging, ‘Much Healthier, Much Tastier’, the program was overlayed with additional messaging to give consumers a reason to eat mushrooms right now.

To help inspire consumption, digital recipe book Make Summer Much Better with Mushrooms was developed to provide an easy resource for consumers to find tasty and light mushroom recipes. At the beginning of February, there had been over 11,450 downloads of the recipe e-book.

High-reaching social influencers were also engaged to create content and share simple summer usage ideas with their audiences. At the time of writing, there had been 32 pieces of content developed by influencers, with three top influencers including Dani Stevens, Jessica Sepel and Fat Mum Slim having a combined reach of 3.1 million people.

Australian Mushrooms’ own social media channels acted as additional platforms to communicate summer mushroom eating. During the summer campaign, the Facebook page grew by close to 8000 fans between December and January, while 200 new followers were accrued on Instagram.

TV campaign and more

Australian Mushrooms television advertising came back on air this on February 5 and will run until March 25, headlining the latest industry promotion campaign. Supporting activities include shopping centre advertising, in place from February 5 until April 8, plus point-of-sale kits and in-store demonstrations.

  • The mushroom TV burst launched in the second week of popular cooking show My Kitchen Rules being on air (a show drawing over one million nightly viewers). Spots were booked in every market during this week, with ads also appearing during high-rating programs including Married at First Sight, The Project, 800 Words and House Husbands. The ads will be strategically times, so the recipe involved will be appropriate to the time of day. For example, the new Breakfast Omelette ad (watch here) will be screened before midday, while ads for Mushroom Pizza and Spaghetti Bolognese will screen after midday.
  • Shopping centre and major retailer advertising. Out-of-home advertising is in place in major shopping centres as part of the campaign, with digital advertising panels displaying this content (view here). To support this component, a mushroom pizza ad will appear in Coles Magazine. Major supermarkets are also providing further promotional opportunities, with Coles featuring in-store point-of-sale material and Woolworths highlighting mushrooms through the use of aisle ‘fins’ in the mushroom sections of the store.
  • Activity in independent stores. The 400 best-performing IGA and Super IGA stores across the country are also driving the mushroom messaging, with point-of-sale kits including A3 posters, recipe brochures and shelf wobblers used in store during February. One hundred in-store cooking demonstrations were also to be conducted in Super IGA, IGA and high-traffic independent stores in February.
  • Further in-store demos: mushrooms and onions. Teaming up with the onion industry, cooking demonstrations have run throughout the summer period, taking a break over Christmas.

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