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Converting Brand Observers to Consumers Begins with Knowing Your Audience, Says SRW Founder Kate Weidner

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The expert panel led by Weidner analyzed current trends, key strategies, and learnings that can be applied to win in many other categories beyond the natural food realm.

During #SMWNYC, the experts behind fast-growing natural food brands including Love Good Fats, Calbee North America, and Shenandoah Growers came together for an insightful panel on Building Digital Communities That Convert, hosted by SRW Agency.

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Consumers who care about their health and eating habits expect transparency when it comes to nutrition. They want to know what they’re eating, why, and the easiest way to get a hold of the product when it comes to meeting and achieving personal goals. This is where natural food brands come in, with the ability to drive massive awareness and really connect.

Start with your audience

“It’s essential to know who your audience is, define their priorities, and always be authentic,” said panel moderator Kate Weidner of SRW.

Katharine Ashworth, from keto-friendly bars company, Love Good Fats, said that “audience testing” is a good strategy, even with a limited marketing budget. When you know your audience (for example, athletes and keto diet followers) by social listening and discovering what they’re talking about, both online and IRL, you can better understand what they need–and what would sell.

Decide what ‘conversion’ is really worth

“Engagement is the most important thing for Calbee North America,” shares marketing director Paul Laubscher. “Given that we’re healthy food brands, competing against a lot of shiny things, when we look at engagement we’re really looking at dwell time. That time that turns consumers from an observer, to an advocate.”

Put simply, brands (not just healthy food ones) can convert their observers to advocates by talking like real people, providing both helpful product and quality customer service.

Maintain the message

Nadine Williams of Shenandoah Growers, a natural herb company, says brands should also “maintain a fun tone of voice” with the strong content messages — a consumer-first mentality.

“Look at your messaging from your target audiences point of view,” Williams shared. “How does your message tie into what they want? This helps you maintain an amazing relationship. We satisfy their need, and are selling a product because that need exists.”

Don’t just collect data, analyze it

Marketing tools like A/B testing, geo-fencing, and location-based correlation can help you collect data, these health experts finished, but ultimately it’s about understanding what it all means. That’s what will get investors on board.

Williams concluded the session with an audience Q&A and the final words: “Understanding the data and how you’re going to use it, will help you actually use it.”

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