If you are in the Ready-To-Eat (RTE) food industry, then you need to up your branding game to enjoy the larger share of the pie with so many RTE food brands out in the market.

Food product marketing is crucial at this point in time for your business and services to reach more people.

As exciting as it is, the RTE food industry relies heavily only on our five senses. With so much to be responsible for, you need to think of ways to market your products regardless of the size of your business.

So, here are the 10 effective food product marketing strategies that work in 2021.

Brand position your food business

First, decide what you sell and then identify yourself with the type of RTE food you offer.

Then, make people aware that your RTE food products are yummy and many people love it too. On top of that, you could even highlight that your food is easy to cook, is a healthier option or instant to make. Or even, helps busy working mothers to prepare food quickly. Your brand capabilities and how you are different from your competitors are crucial for you to share.

The simplest example of a brand that practices brand positioning is F&N 100PLUS. When it was first introduced in Malaysia, people were not aware of the benefits and goodness of consuming the isotonic drink. But, as years passed people started becoming more health-conscious and more involved in sports getting to know of the 100PLUS brand introduced by F&N.

The most prominent brand positioning done by the branding team was that they identified who their targeted audience was and represented models and characters as the possible consumers. Hence, their biggest success to be the most wanted brand in almost every sports event.

Remember, you do not need everyone to be your customer. You only need to be famous among your group of customers. So, get specific!

Also, you should think of ways to market your products in retail stores around areas where a big number of people are aware of your products as well as your online websites. Be the first one of a kind in that area and people will know you first for your food products and yummy-ness.

So, be sure of your group of the target audience before making any move. More often than not, it is essential to know what you are also expecting from your customers. Study them well and get into action!

Package your food product

Let’s go by the old adage, “A book IS judged by its cover” in the same way a product is judged by its packaging.

One of the biggest ingredients in your food product marketing that every marketing professionals concentrate on is the packaging of the product. It’s not just the material whatsoever. Starting with the basic logo design of your brand to the colours and font as well as the details to display on the packaging before presenting them on the table.

We remember the Coca-Cola personalized packaging once upon a time. It was in fact a brilliant idea to incorporate the messaging, “Share a Coke with…” into their packaging which was simply to place names on their bottles. Not only did the packaging campaign help bring consumers to the soda aisle searching for their friend’s names or their own but it also helped create a more personal relationship with their customers.

So, there’s so much to learn about food product packaging that you may want to stay updated about. Even the colour combination of your packaging can be a trademark for your brand – like Coke Red.

Suggested read: Design your RTE food packaging to market in 2021

Make a statement with your unique selling point

If you’re looking at expanding your food business to international markets, you might also be looking for business partners or investors. The biggest potential that most investors or partners see is the Unique Selling Point (USP)

Not to forget the ROI (Return on Investment) for your food business. Be on a constant lookout for methods your products can continuously attract returning customers and new ones. They can be anything from producing new flavours of munchies every month or even a series of different products targeting different groups of consumers.  

Let’s take Baskin Robbin’s as our role model. From their SWOT analysis, they have identified several elements to continuously attract returning customers and create new ones. They are first a global ice cream chain expanding franchises to increase visibility in any country or area.

They originally had 31 flavours for each day of the month and now has expanded to over 100 flavours made from quality ingredients and flavours that people will definitely love. For a long time before, they limited themselves to their stores to make themselves exclusive. But on a bigger outlook, they have included healthier products as well.

Baskin Robbins is made easily available and have different scoop and quantity options available for their customers. With great customer service, they have maintained a good reputation for serving customers for a long time. Not to forget that they allow their customers to taste the ice cream choices before buying them.

The best of all, Baskin Robbins is keeping up with trends. A good company keeps itself updated with trends. This company had been doing so for a long time as they have made flavours based on popular television shows.

So, with so much to offer, your business will have a continuous sale and investors will be interested to invest in your RTE food business.

Your sales approach too can be of long, medium or short term plan. Whatever the planning, they lie in your hands. Also, don’t forget that the first impression includes your food packaging too.

Blog about your food products and services

Your online approach for your business starts with an online platform. And, your SEO strategy begins with an online blog. The best place to begin is by having your own blog on your business website. You can also integrate the webpage with your social media accounts on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Then, each post gets multiplied and creates a positive impact.

Blogging is one of the best communication channels you can have to create a huge following for your brand. You can as well begin partnering with professional food bloggers and ask them to review or write about your food products, business and services.Doing so, you end up reaching out to more people and can enjoy a more dominant online presence.

Start an email marketing program

You can create a monthly or annual schedule so that your posts are relevant and spaced out throughout a period of time. Just when people are forgetting you, you need to do something so they remember you again. A better way to remind people of your products and goodness is by practising an email marketing campaign.

The biggest most important factor in emails is the email subject. A well-written email subject will automatically increase email open rate. So, are your words intriguing?

Basically, emails are quick and easy to send and all you need is an email listing of your potential and existing customers. Plan your campaign well and enjoy the fruit of the effort.

Thrive through social media marketing

Do you know how much of an impact your Twitter page header design has when it comes to online marketing? A company like Burger King is famous today for being so cool and relatable with the current generation at that time.

Today, Instagram is one of the biggest platforms where RTE food businesses can thrive through social media. People love clicking pictures of food and that includes me and you. So, not only are you posting pictures of your food products and events you host but also reviews that people post of your food with pictures and videos.

Not to forget the 2021 trend, TikTok that assists in creating a bigger number of followers and community virtually. Take advantage of as many social media as possible and learn how to make use of them the right way.

List your food business on websites

There are many e-commerce platforms that are focused on food and delivery such as FoodPanda and GrabFood in Malaysia that you can make use of. Today, you can purchase more than fresh food from these applications. Plus, huge traffic is on the apps and websites. So, why not take advantage of them as well and enjoy a marginal commission to the platform.

Then again, remember to strategize your plans accordingly so every effort that you make in marketing your food product produces positive results.

Host festive and seasonal offers

Even without hosting special events, you can always procure a large number of customers through offers and discounts on occasions. Occasions like New Year, Chinese New Year, Hari Raya, Thaipusam, Malaysia Day, Independence Day, Business Anniversary, Deepavali and Christmas are a few of the best times you can go with offers and discounts.

You can also work with other brands to host giveaways that are a trend today on social media. Highlight the offers and what they save from the usual days.

Partner with other brands

As mentioned above on associating with other brands, it is an opportunity for a more marketable product by simply making sure that your products are highlighted in your marketing campaigns. The most obvious brand that practices this is Coca-Cola. You can see it incorporated with McDonald’s and Dominos which are international brands.

So, this could be one of the best food business expansions you can consider doing being an Asian brand. Affiliations always give consumers more confidence to try your product offering. So, give it a go!

Re-invent your business image

From Madonna to Kellogg’s characters in packaging, all brands go through a revamp over a period of time to stay relevant with the current consumers and by refreshing their image. Looking at the Coca-Cola bottle packaging too makes us realise the evolution the brand has gone through to sustain in the market.

While some companies enhance their logos very often, RTE food joints find it easy to give their products and product packaging a fresh feel and look by simply changing the colour scheme and improving the quality of products.

On a side note, if you plan to enhance your brand logo without disregarding the brand identity, make sure to not overdo it. Then, your regular customer will no longer recognize you.

Strategise, run and trace your food product marketing progress

Your RTE food products not only need you for digital marketing but also stand out on shelves so your consumers stay loyal to you. So, upgrade your food packaging designs, get advanced digital marketing campaigns done and keep improving the quality of your product.

Consistency and details are keys for every food product marketing strategies as well as food packaging designs. 

So, consider hiring a food product marketer for your food business to reach your full market potential.

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