Marketing Your eCommerce Food & Beverage Business

Topics: eCommerce
By Gavin Write
Woman Looking at CPG Beverage Brand In Local Store After Engaging With eCommerce Marketing Promotion Online

While the food and beverage eCommerce industry in the States has grown to be worth more than $40 billion, there are still some who are hesitant to purchase foods online. This is despite it being the fastest growing area of the US eCommerce industry.

If you’re selling food and beverage products, you will have to work a little bit harder to attract customers. So, with this in mind, we created this article with a number of marketing strategies that are suited to assist CPG Food & Beverage brands to grow online and increase marketshare.

The methods covered don’t have to take up too much of your marketing budget, but they are very effective at driving sales and loyalty.

Let’s begin by looking at one of the most established options - the email.

Email Marketing

Despite often being overlooked by many as a marketing tool, email remains as relevant as it has ever been. In fact, emails from food and beverage companies are something people expect, on the provision that the content is personalized, well-timed, and relevant.

The great thing about email marketing is that it’s a long-form media channel that gives you lots of freedom to get your message across.

You can use it to communicate to subscribers about:

  • Exclusive subscriber offers
  • Soon-to-be-launched products/services
  • Educational information about food & drink
  • Personalized content based on previous purchases
  • Delivery information

Taste is a very subjective thing, so being able to build your messaging around what your customers have previously ordered from you is key to repeat business and keeping your services front of mind.

These personalized messages can also be more finely-tuned when using email marketing segmentation best practices that categorizes customers based on a number of factors. Interests, geographic location, and more can be used to tailor emails to specific people rather than using a much less effective scattergun approach.

Social Media Marketing

What can be another highly effective route to take for eCommerce operators is to make use of the modern-day paradigm of social media. The truth is that social media actually lends itself rather well to food and beverage eCommerce marketing - particularly on Instagram, where people just love to take pictures of their dining experience.

Social media can be used to make potential customers see what you offer as being much more than something to satisfy their hunger. Whichever platform you use, you can use social media to communicate with a whole range of messages, like:

  • Telling the story behind your company and the food/drink you offer. This builds trust in your products and makes them much more likely to try you out.

  • Brand awareness - something you can instill by ensuring your posts all follow your brand guidelines and offer value.

  • 3rd party reviews from food bloggers that again helps people to make decisions about where they buy their food and drink online.

The various social media ads services should not be discounted either, as they can be critical in encouraging people to be spontaneous and buy your products. This is particularly true in food and beverage eCommerce, where decisions are often made on a momentary whim.

Content Marketing

In order for you to make a success of both email and social media marketing strategies, it’s important that you’re creating content that delivers. It needs to ‘deliver’ value by being interesting and engaging and giving your readers/viewers what you’re looking for.

This can come in a variety of forms, such as:

    • Live Streams - there was a time in the relatively recent past when a live broadcast was the preserve of the big companies, as entire film crews and expensive uplinks were required. In the age of the smartphone, anyone can live stream at a moment’s notice and for free!

      You could ‘go live’ and answer customer questions, run competitions or even cook in real-time, illustrating how to get the most out of your products. It’s an extremely popular concept that people can really buy into if you get your approach and message right.

      Also, shoppable social media means customers can buy from your store directly without even leaving your live stream!

  • Blogs/Video Content - consider your recipe video tutorials and blogs to be your bread and butter when it comes to content marketing. Live streaming is great, but not everyone will be free to watch, so your general content is what works for you 24/7.

    YouTube videos and blogs can be marketed via your socials and email marketing and provide highly-relevant educational (How To’s), exclusive offers, and more. Just be sure to mix things up and don’t just sell, sell, sell.

Subscription Services

A popular trend in the food and drink industry is subscriptions, which is what they sound like. People pay a subscription fee to the vendor, who then provides ingredients or fully-formed meals for the price paid. People are attracted to services like these for both the convenience and the excitement of trying something new.

eCommerce subscription services enjoyed a huge surge in popularity during lockdowns, but the demand has remained beyond it. People got a taste for direct-to-door food subscriptions, and it’s still going strong today. Daily Harvest is an example of a brand that has done very well out of the subscription concept.

Offering chef-crafted, organic, sustainably sourced fruit and vegetables, as well as flatbreads, smoothies, and lots more, they’ve been able to generate $250 million of revenue in just 5 years. With merchant payment services like Recharge to help make things simpler, there’s no reason why a whole new revenue stream can’t be created.

The Tools to Market Your Food & Beverage Business Are Out There

If your food and beverage business isn’t getting the sales you want, the good news is that there are plenty of marketing opportunities out there. Whether you decide to start a subscription service, leverage social media or both, you can attract customers and keep them with the right marketing strategy.

At Eventige, we understand success in digital marketing takes time and effort, so if you’re low on time, or don't want to handle this type of work in-house, you can reach out to us and we can create a bespoke program specifically for your CPG food & beverage brand marketing.

With decades of combined experience in ecommerce and digital marketing, we’re well-positioned to get you the traffic and sales you deserve.

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