Organic food industry is a continuously emerging market. The demand for all things organic is catching up world over. This puts the onus on organic food producers to adopt and adapt a marketing strategy that will help them retain their brand identity amidst stiff competition. Astro strategist helps organic brands with his specially planned 7-step strategy for branding and rebranding
There is an entire revolution of sorts in the food industry with a heavy slant towards organic foods and vegan products. While food came fresh from the farms in the good old days, industrialisation converted the food industry into tubs of processed food and pre-packed foods.
However, global citizens have realised the importance of going back to the roots and eating clean and healthy foods that not only sustain them, but also nourish them. Today, once again, the market is flooded with brands, yes brands, that are organic and vegan. There is a huge movement to eat foods that are seasonal, have the lowest carbon footprint and come to the table fresh from the farms.
What’s more? Even non-farmers are adopting ways to grow their own produce either for their personal use or community use. We get to hear terms like hydroponics, which is the new in-thing in the food industry.
No more processing in factories, no more pre-packed foods with expiry dates. It’s all about getting back to nature and enjoying the true flavours of fruits, vegetables and flowers.
With such increasing awareness, many brands, big and small have entered the market to cater to the new ‘enlightened’ eater. These brands rely on the need of global citizens to eat well, but eat with minimum damage to the environment and the ecosystem they live in.
And this is not restricted just to fruits, vegetables and flowers. Meats, especially the free range category, are now much in demand. This has thrown open a whole new market in India and across the world for branded organic foods that can be easily procured with little effort. All one needs to do is get on to the website of the brand and simply fill the cart and voila, one has the products at home within a couple of hours.
Branding also works in farmers’ markets, where you prefer a particular farmer or producer vis-a-vis other sellers. Only here, the farmer does not cry hoarse like more commercial brands and instead focuses on subtle marketing techniques.
In all, organic farming has led to branding of food in a totally different context and this is helping both the farming community and the consumers alike.
Why branding for organic foods
Well, the strategy and need for branding organic foods is in principle similar to other branded food or produce. The idea is to create a brand connect, an emotional bonding that will make the customer return to the brand time and again. Variety, comfort and safety drive the organic food market. So, the organic food products must brand themselves in a fashion that the customers immediately connect with their brand.
Let’s just check out a few international organic food brands and some national brands – there is Yeo Valley, Organix, Pukka Herbs, Zaytoun, Rebel Kitchen, Doves Farm, Ombar, etc, that cater to an international audience, to name a few. Similarly, in India, we have organic food brands such as 24 Mantra Organic, Organic India, Pure & Sure, Organic Tattva, Wingreens Farms, Nutriorg, Conscious Food, again to name a few.
You could be selling fresh produce or free range meat or organic food products, but the main goal is to stand apart or stand out in the competition and win customer loyalty. And this is exactly where food branding helps.
Successful organic food branding will give your customers a stable appetite for your products as it will:
a) Create an emotional brand with the customers: The message that you send out through your packaging and your store impacts the customers on the subconscious level. It creates images of coziness, safety, joy, health and all things nice.
b) Sets you apart from competitors: The whole point of food branding is to express personality and uniqueness so that you are not confused with companies trying to ape organic food products.
c) Contributes to holistic promotion: Branding creates a holistic image of your organic food business, which is used in all promotional channels from social media to banner advertising. The logo, corporate colours, packaging and tone of messages will help customers remember and recognise your brand instantly. If you look around, organic food brands have a different strategy to promote their products vis-a-vis regular food products. Green is an all-rounder used in most organic products. The information on the packaging also tells the story of how the food is produced and brought to your table.
How to create organic food branding
It’s important to start with brand and target audience analysis and then move on to corporate strategy and identity. Let’s check the various steps:
■ The idea is to develop a concept: Various concepts need to be answered during this stage such as brand image, target audience and competition.
■ Brand image: What kind of a product are you selling, what their customer value is, what is the nature of the brand, what are the company’s mission and values.
■ Target audience: Which category of people would buy your product, their demographics like age, gender, social and family status; what are the basic needs of the customer, what customer problems the products solve.
■ Competition: what is the size of the market, its capacity; which branding strategies competitors use; why should a customer choose you over others.
This will help you understand your brand DNA and how to go about your promotional strategy.
Create corporate identity: Corporate identity communicates the nature of the brand. The first impression a brand makes on its target audience depends on how it looks, sounds, smells, and talks to the customers. Logo, fonts, colours and shape all determine how a customer relates to a brand.
● It’s important to have a well-researched logo that is simple, concise, unique and memorable.
● Similarly, colours play a major role in the food industry and organic food industry is no different. There is an overdose of red in the normal food industry. But when it comes to organic foods, a splash of green instantly evokes interest and connects with the target audience.
● Shapes of packing products also have various inferences. For example, a circle is associated with harmony and friendliness, a square and rectangle with stability and a triangle with dynamics and innovation. Such details not only communicate company’s activity, but also evoke warm emotions.
● Fonts are no less when it comes to branding your organic foods. Retro fonts with serif create a serious mood, while minimalistic or handwritten typefaces emphasise a modern and friendly character.
Develop a strategy
Once positioning and corporate identity are done with, it’s time to involve customers. Get your product features set like ingredients, shape and size. B) Figure out point of sale, ie., will customers see it on aisles or will they see the products on the site. C) Product category and customer needs: for organic food natural colours, fruity colours and greens resonate with buyers.
■ If you are selling from a store or a particular spot or a cafe, brand all elements of the place from the sign to the uniform to cups and menus.
■ Let the customers feel the smells and sounds: Organic food sellers can create a cozy, inviting environment that makes one remember nature and make them feel one with nature.
Design your site and social media profile:
■ Websites and social media must shout out what the brand stands for. All the colours, fonts and logo need to be used extensively.
■ Content must be clear, concise and tell a story to bond with customers.
■ Functionality: The site must have ease of use and convenient navigation.
■ As for social media, choose two to three places where your audience hangs out, use the logo as your profile picture and write a brief description of what you do, provide links to the website and other social media profiles.
■ Develop a content plan and publish posts regularly.
Going one step further
A picture speaks a thousand words. So invest wisely in visual content to make it attractive on instagram and pinterest. Here, too maintain consistency. Make sure your photos follow the same style which will help in enhancing the brand image. So, is the case with videos. Make sure to keep them relevant, short and interesting. After all, organic food is all about connecting with nature and all things fresh and healthy.
This is one aspect that will help organic food products reach out to the maximum number of target audience. The idea is to create advertisements depending on audiences’ tastes and product specifics. Offline promotions such as billboards, leaflets help. Contextual and targeted online advertising is necessary.
It’s also necessary to collaborate with bloggers or other associated brands, that reflect your values.
The purpose of organic food branding strategy is to gather as many loyal customers around the company and the product as possible and create a unique experience that will make them come back. For branding to work, it is important to keep it cohesive: to broadcast the same message at all touchpoints, to keep the same voice of the brand across different communication channels, and to stick to the values you claim. Everything said and done, the organic food market is relatively new and is picking up real fast. So sticking to above branding strategies will help make a world of difference and bring in the much-needed business.
A brand could be local or targeted at a world audience. Or you could be a brand looking to reinvest itself, following the initial launch. Astro strategist Hirav Shah has a well-thought out plan of action for your branding and rebranding:
For good business growth and future prospects, astro strategist Hirav Shah says it is important to have the necessary ‘luck’ in the personal chart of an individual. However, apart from that, there are a variety of factors that push forth ‘luck’ in business. The name of the business, its logo, the partner’s luck, etc, all determine the success of a business, he shares.
Hirav Shah insists that whatever hard work one puts in or whatever talents one uses to put in smart work by strategizing and implementing those strategies in terms of advertising, marketing, sales, HR, production or service… things have to move smoothly and seamlessly.
According to astro strategist Hirav Shah, that is called the ‘luck’ of the company. So, if the structure of the company or organisation is proper, it helps in utilizing your potential and growth in a productive and positive manner.
How does food taste without salt?
How does one feel wearing mismatched shoes?
How can a Formula One racer perform if the wheels of his car are not properly aligned?
Similarly, in business, if the structure of the organization is great (ie, business name, great partners, correct registered and administrative address, logo, web-print-digital presence, brand name, etc), by seeking the help of an astro strategist, a business can make and execute decisions within a perfectly timed framework to maximise success.
Here are the 7 factors that astro strategist Hirav Shah considers before giving a road map for branding and rebranding
1. Name of the organisation: Well, many a time one wonders, what’s in a name? However, when it comes to branding, it’s all in the name. Astro strategist Hirav Shah will help you name your organisation or brand or product in sync with numerological and astrological calculations. Look at brands like 24Mantra, Urban Kisaan, or international brands like Rebel Kitchen, Pukka Herbs, etc – they bring out ads or social media inputs that directly target buyers almost on a regular basis. They reach out to customers through various platforms, but the message is unique and consistent.
2. Correct partners: Checking the compatibility, strengths and weaknesses of all partners and administrators is crucial as one weak campaign can mean loss of valuable customers for e-commerce sites, which operate amidst high competition.
3. Percentage of shares of all partners: Hirav Shah ensures that each partner share is correctly balanced, so there are no disputes or disagreements in the long run.
4. Registered address and administrative address: They should be astrologically compatible with the name of the organization and key people in the company.
5. Logo of the organisation: We have already seen how important the logo of an organic food company is in creating a warm and cozy feel as they have to invoke the feelings of being one with nature. Hirav Shah helps you create and finalize the right logo that reflects your values and attracts the right kind of energy.
6. Web, print and digital presence: In today’s world, where one needs to be seen and heard on various media platforms, Hirav Shah ensures that your digital, print and marketing collaterals are aligned and in harmony with your brand’s purpose and vision.
7. Brand: Last, but surely not the least, astro strategist Hirav Shah makes sure that your brand assets are auspicious for the company and have a positive impact on team morale.