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July 30, 2019

Are You Not Entertaining?

Jamie Allebach
Jamie Allebach Chief Executive & Creative Officer

I see soooo many food and beverage brands just pushing out the same old content on social media…nice food pic, talk about how great my brand is, more food pics, maybe a happy kid, throw in a packaging shot or two…predictable, boring, and most importantly …UNEFFECTIVE!

Look, I’m a food guy. I get it. There’s a time and place for food porn and shouting how great you are from the mountaintop. But today, in social media, people want entertainment.

Remember in the old days when people would gather around the TV at Super Bowl time, waiting for the best…funniest…most entertaining commercials? Well, today, people want to be entertained all the time.

67% of consumers say they would engage with a food or beverage brand…IF they were entertaining. And, that’s a big “IF.”

“Entertainment” means different things to different people. But to be truly entertaining, it takes some creativity:

Try being funny. Everyone likes a good laugh. But, funny means funny—not corny. What’s funny to boomers, isn’t necessarily funny to millennials. Although certain types of humor transcend generations. Know your audience.
Here are a few, what I would consider, funny brands: Innocent Drinks, Wendy’s, and MoonPie.

People get captivated and drawn in by a great story. Storytelling has been around for thousands and thousands of years. You may have a brand story that is engaging and entertaining. These brands have done a tremendous job of drawing consumers in with their story, and using it as an ongoing platform: Mast Brothers Chocolate, Burt’s Bees (OK, not food—but close), and Honest Tea.

Sometimes just being off-the-wall, outrageous and absurd is entertainment enough. Nobody does a better job at this than Steak-umm, Corn Nuts, and Taco Bell.

Or, for some one-offs, try being spontaneous and leveraging something relevant in current events or pop culture. Be memorable or disruptive in some way other than normal. Sometimes you can ride the coattails of a viral moment.

Being entertaining with your brand isn’t simply taking a pic of your product with your iPhone and posting it on Instagram. No one is engaging with overly branded, boring content. It takes strategy and creative thinking.

That’s my little song and dance. Hope you were entertained.