This Hort Innovation Mushroom Fund marketing snapshot has been taken from Hort Innovation’s Hortlink 2018, edition 2.
Hort Innovation is responsible for investing the mushroom marketing levy into a range of activities to grow awareness and consumption, under the Hort Innovation Mushroom Fund. Here’s a look at some of the latest campaign elements…
Australian Mushrooms TV campaign
The Australian Mushrooms advertising campaign concluded at the end of March, after six weeks on air and eight weeks in market. The television activity involved a series of ads (check them out on YouTube here) which appeared in key programs across the period, including in eight of the top 10 shows in the timeframe, such as ratings juggernaut Married at First Sight. The ads were seen at least twice by over 3.3 million grocery buyers.
The Australian Mushrooms TV ad campaign appeared on more than just television screens, through online activity that extended the campaign’s time in market. Australian Mushrooms videos featured on all the key catch-up TV and news sites as well as YouTube across March and April. The content was seen by grocery buyers across some of the biggest Australian sites such as news.com.au, 9now.com, plus7.com, dailytelegraph.com and more. The YouTube activity appeared next to key food channels Gordon Ramsay, Jamie Oliver, Martha Stewart and Nigella Lawson. This mix saw the ads served over 800,000 times, with 660,000 ‘impressions’ (views) on the catch-up TV sites alone.
Online activity with Coles
During March, a campaign involving Coles’ key online assets was run, to promote Australian Mushrooms via direct advertising and product association. This activity showed consumers how well mushrooms go with other products and how easy it is to cook mushies in a meal, then prompted them to “add mushrooms to cart” to order online.
The distinctive Australian Mushrooms caravan gained plenty of exposure at the Sydney Royal Easter Show (which ran from March 23 to April 3), picking up a Silver Commercial Exhibitor Award. The stand wowed event-goers with a mix of cooking demonstrations, food samples and take-home recipe materials. Added into this mix was Australian Mushrooms’ Ambassador, Miguel Maestre, who also performed a cooking demonstration.
At the time of writing, Australian Mushrooms had just taken part in the Good Food and Wine Show in both Melbourne and Sydney during June. A key event in every food lover’s itinerary, the shows provided an opportunity to educate consumers on the benefits of adding mushrooms to their meals. Australian Mushrooms ambassador Miguel Maestre made an appearance at the Sydney event, cooking for the crowds and exciting attendees about mushrooms. These were the final events for the 2017/2018 marketing plan.
Miguel Maestre continues to be the campaign’s resident ‘funguy’ (pardon the pun), drawing in a huge crowd when he cooked up a storm at the Sydney Royal Easter Show in April, which also included a connection to Australian Mushroom Facebook fans via a Facebook live video, and also delighting and engaging audiences at the Sydney Good Food and Wine Show. At the time of writing, Miguel was also busy preparing a suite of new recipes to be shared on Australian Mushrooms’ owned social channels and with media from July. Miguel will also spend one-on-one time with media during a series of media house tours. To further highlight Miguel’s association with the program, the consumer-facing Australian Mushrooms website has been refreshed to keep Miguel front of mind and drive consumers to his delicious recipes.
Public relations activity
Mushroom education and inspiration continues to dominate media, with tips and recipes shared in high-reaching publications such as Body + Soul, BW Magazine (within The Saturday Telegraph), Women’s Health, Women’s Fitness and Westfield’s e-newsletter schedule. As noted above, a series of publishing house tours with Miguel sharing his new recipes will be coming up to continue to generate quality coverage for Australian Mushrooms.
Social media activity
Australian Mushrooms’ owned social channels, Facebook and Instagram, are continually engaging with mushroom lovers year-round, providing a mix of inspiring and educational content to keep mushrooms top of mind. With a strong engagement rate that’s double the industry average, the content continues to resonate with fans. The Facebook page has close to 140,000 fans, with Instagram closing in on 13,500 followers.
Paid mushroom recipe posts featuring ambassador Miguel Maestre continued through April with a variety of recipes targeting the main grocery buying audience – reaching over 850,000 people throughout the course of the campaign.
Food service farm tours
In mid-April the third tour in this series was hosted at SA Mushrooms, and involved chefs and industry experts from venues such as the Adelaide Oval, The Playford Hotel (Accor Hotels), Hurley Group and the Adelaide Hills Convention Centre.
The tour covered the different growing rooms to highlight the various stages of growth and to explain how mushrooms progress over a period of days. From the compost stage, right through to packing, attendees gained a valuable insight into a fascinating product.
The objective of these types of events is to educate foodservice professionals, by giving them firsthand knowledge about how mushrooms are grown. The events are an ideal opportunity to help chefs build a real connection with mushrooms.
These marketing activities are strategic levy investments in the Hort Innovation Mushroom Fund