During the last fifty years, scientists have identified physiologically active components in foods that theoretically lower the risk of several chronic diseases.
An aging, health-conscious population, technological advances, and the introduction of health-promoting products emerged in the 1990s to create a trend termed “functional foods.” Functional foods are foods that provide health benefits along with basic nutrition. These foods have been designed to correct nutritional deficiencies and reduce the threat of disease. Despite the advantages of functional foods, companies in the preventative care industries are challenged to reach consumers while communicating the value of their products.
Inbound marketing has proven to be an effective marketing method for attracting customers and is particularly apt for functional foods and the preventative care industry. The focus of inbound marketing is to create quality content that will pull-in and engage visitors. This type of marketing method allows companies to align their content with the customer’s interests, which creates natural inbound traffic of consumers already interested in the product. Here are the top four actions for inbound marketing, along with specific examples of how global food, health and nutrition industry leaders are using inbound marketing to raise awareness and encourage engagement with their products:
Content needs to be explicitly designed to attract and answer the basic questions and needs of a specific audience. Content needs to be directed to consumers who are most likely to become buyers, and eventually satisfied customers. PepsiCo’s functional food inbound marketing strategy targets 18 – 35 year olds and centers their campaign with the message “Live For Now.” As part of their functional food campaign, PepsiCo offers low- or zero-calorie beverage options in all global markets and provides clear calorie labeling. Target customers are termed "buyer personas," which incorporates typical goals, pain points, challenges, and personal and demographic information that particular customer types share. Businesses are essentially built around buyer personas. Tools that are commonly used by inbound marketers, include:
Blogging is considered the preeminent way to attract traffic to a website. Blogs contain the educational content that readers are looking for and have questions about. Blogs at Kellogg’s are written by mothers who “all believe in the potential a great start in the morning can unlock in your day.”
- Social Media
Social media puts a human face on the product. Buyers spend their time on different social networks and these platforms are ripe with opportunities for valuable functional food and preventative care content information.
Potential customers must be able to reach your website when they use related terms on a search engine. Keywords need to be analytically selected and pages optimized when creating the website content.
After attracting potential customers to the website, obtaining their contact information is critical. Customers are generally willing to offer-up their contact information when they are provided valuable content that they are personally connected with. A necessary tool for converting visitors is a Call-to-Action, which generates leads. Calls-to Action entice the visitor to download eBooks, whitepapers, or sign up for information. At Coca-Cola, a Call-to-Action is signing up for My Coke Awards.
Once your website has attracted the right visitors and converted them into leads, closing the transaction is the next step. Marketing tools such as email and marketing automation tailor the social media contact to the lead’s specific needs and lifestyle.
4. Customer Satisfaction
Outstanding content will continue to engage visitors, generate leads, and identify existing customers. Businesses that concentrate on providing excellent content with their products will promote customer satisfaction. Satisfied customers mean returning customers that will also help promote your website, business, and products.
The functional foods and preventative care industries are successfully and strategically marketing their products and growing their marketing success. With inbound marketing, these companies now have more tools than ever before that they can use to attract visitors, convert them to leads, close customers, and provide customer satisfaction.