Rediscovering summer with Australian Summerfruit
Hort Innovation is responsible for investing the summerfruit marketing levy into a range of activities to drive awareness and consideration. Here’s a quick look at some of the activities and achievements in 2021/22.
In 2021/22, the Taste Australia consumer marketing program for Australian Summerfruit was live from November 2021 until February 2022. The initial campaign focused on the China market and the delivery of two season launch events at the wholesale markets in Guangzhou and Shanghai. It was then expanded to include social media support and influencer engagement.
The summerfruit campaign in China focused on trade relationships with importers and retailers. Two season launch events were organised at the wholesale markets both in Guangzhou and Shanghai. The main objective of the in-market marketing program was to drive awareness, consideration, and influence conversion to purchase Australian summerfruit. The two events were followed by a media plan to secure high coverage alongside social media support on the Taste Australia official WeChat account and influencer engagement on Weibo.
Highlights of the campaign included:
- Kick-off ceremonies at Jiang’nan wholesale market in Guangzhou and Huizhan wholesale market in Shanghai, with the participation of Austrade representatives, importers, retailers, trade partners and local officials.
- Media coverage with 22 press releases issued post-events, including industry and local media.
- Collaboration with four influencers on the Weibo platform to amplify the campaign’s exposure and reach a wider audience, achieving over 5.7 million views.
- Social media support via Taste Australia WeChat account, with the publication of six articles, achieving over 6,300 views.
The Taste Australia program benefited from additional funds from Austrade through the Agribusiness Expansion Initiative. These funds were used to promote summerfruit in an additional strategic market, Malaysia.
The summerfruit campaign in Malaysia comprised of an integrated approach using e-commerce and retail plans, key opinion leader (KOL) and influencer engagement. Promotional competitions were hosted in-store and in conjunction with ‘gift-with-purchase’ programs.
The initial plan for the campaign in Malaysia consisted of a retail plan including in-store displays, in-store competitions and samplings, key opinion leader (KOL) activity and social media campaigns.
The COVID-19 pandemic had a relatively significant impact on the summerfruit campaign in Malaysia. Fortunately, in-store activities such as sampling were able to move ahead, featuring sustainable packaging to reduce hygiene risks. This way, the objectives and effectiveness of the campaign were maintained.
Social media was a critical marketing channel in 2021/22, with COVID restrictions impacting supply and demand across the market. From December 2021 to February 2022, 31 posts were shared across Facebook and Instagram to drive awareness of the value proposition of Australian summerfruit.
Highlights of the campaign included:
- Retail program launched across 100 stores, including samplings, gifts with purchases, point-of-sale materials and advertisements.
- Influencer activity: 13 key opinion leaders were engaged to promote the campaign via owned channels and encouraged their audiences to enter the competition. A total of 88 content pieces were created and shared.
- Two media events, including a trade event at the High Commissioner to Australia’s residence and a media event to drive coverage.
- Social media content with 31 posts across Facebook and Instagram.
The summerfruit marketing campaign proved successful, despite some challenges and changes due to COVID-19 related delays and restrictions. Challenges included disrupted logistics, shipment delays and difficulties getting stock to some stores. Therefore, having a strong online component was important for the campaign. Embracing social media increased sales and had a positive result overall. COVID-19 restrictions also limited in-store product sampling promotions in particular stores. This dilemma was mitigated by introducing sustainable packaging to ensure hygiene standards were upheld during a period of uncertainty due to COVID-19. It was essential to make sure samplings went ahead, as based on previous years, this activity was integral to campaign success and will be continued for the next campaign.
In 2021/22 the Hort Innovation Marketing function underwent a significant shift in their approach to investing marketing levies. You can read more about this in the 2021/22 Hort Innovation Company Annual Report at www.horticulture.com.au/annual-report-portal.