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What Can Big Grocery Learn from Farmers' Markets Using Social Data?

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What Can Big Grocery Learn from Farmers' Markets Using Social Data?

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Networked Insights analyzed one million social conversations to understand the consumer appeal of farmers' markets and provide recommendations for traditional grocery stores striving to compete.

Networked Insights analyzed one million social conversations to understand the consumer appeal of farmers' markets and provide recommendations for traditional grocery stores striving to compete.

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What Can Big Grocery Learn from Farmers' Markets Using Social Data?

  1. 1. What Can Big Grocery Learn from Farmers’ Markets Using Social Data? September 2014
  2. 2. Summary Findings  With farmers’ markets growing in popularity every year, they offer some marketing ideas and branding lessons for “Big Grocery”  Social media reveals the primary purchase drivers for consumers who shop at farmers’ markets vs. those who shop at grocery stores  Grocery brands can use social insights to replicate the farmers’ market experience and experiment with new marketing strategies
  3. 3. Why grocery brands should care about farmers’ markets
  4. 4. Growing Popularity  Farmers’ markets have increased in number by 365 percent over the past two decades  The organic food market has grown from $11 billion in 2004 to $28 billion in 2013 1,755 2,410 National Count of Farmers’ Market Directory Listings 2,746 2,863 3,137 3,706 4,385 4,685 5,274 6,132 7,175 7,864 8,144 9,000 8,000 7,000 6,000 5,000 4,000 3,000 2,000 1,000 - 1994 1996 1998 2000 2002 2004 2006 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 Source: USDA-AMS-Marketing Services Division. Farmers' Market information is voluntary and self reported to USDA-AMS-Marketing Services Division
  5. 5. Consumer Sentiment  Farmers’ markets raise the bar for certain measures of grocery stores’ brand health  Consumer sentiment around farmers’ markets is 30 times as positive as grocery stores Consumer Sentiment 30% 30% 1% 4% 35% 30% 25% 20% 15% 10% 5% 0% Net sentiment overall Net sentiment post-purchase Farmers' markets Grocery stores Net sentiment measures positive mentions minus negative mentions on social media
  6. 6. How do consumers talk about farmers’ markets?
  7. 7. Social conversation themes  Networked Insights analyzed social conversations about farmers’ markets using its thematic discovery technology  Ten themes emerged as top conversation topics Interest Name Definitions Activity and Event A way to spend free time Availability and Convenience Product availability and convenience Community Aspect Association with the community Freshness of Food Freshness of goods Health and Nutrition Healthiness and nutrition of goods Local Farms and Small Business Support for Local Businesses, Farms, and Economy Organic Food How organic is some of the food? Price Expensive or inexpensive cost Seasonality Seasonal Selection of Goods Variety and Options Diversity of goods offered
  8. 8. Farmers’ market conversations  Seasonality, freshness of food and local food set farmers’ markets apart the most from “Big Grocery”  Consumers also view farmers’ markets as an activity and community event 11.1% 10.5% Farmers’ Market and “Big Grocery” Conversations, by Topic 6.6% 5.6% 4.2% 3.3% 1.4% 1.3% 1.2% 0.5% 18.0% 16.0% 14.0% 12.0% 10.0% 8.0% 6.0% 4.0% 2.0% 0.0% Seasonality Freshness of Food Local Farms and Small Business Activity and Event Organic Food Community Aspect Variety and Options Availability and Convenience Health and Nutrition Price Topic in Farmers' Market Convo Topic in "Big Grocery" Convo Difference
  9. 9. Conversation topic summary Factors that Influence Purchasing Decisions at Farmers’ Markets and Grocery Stores Conversation Topic Farmers’ Market Share of Topic Grocery Store Share of Topic Farmer’s Market vs. “Big Grocery” Sentiment Seasonality 16.3% 5.2% +19.0% Freshness of Food 14.2% 3.6% +14.0% Local Farms and Small Business 8.2% 1.6% +13.0% Activity and Event 10.5% 4.9% +17.0% Organic Food 6.0% 1.8% +11.0% Community Aspect 6.3% 3.0% +22.0% Variety and Options 2.8% 1.3% +12.0% Availability and Convenience 5.2% 3.9% +11.0% Health and Nutrition 5.9% 4.7% +5.0% Source: Price Networked Insights; May 1, 2014 – August 8.3% 1, 2014 7.8% +12.0% Note: Difference = [Farmers’ Market SOV – Grocery Store SOV] Farmers’ Market N = 179,676 Grocery Store N = 756,470 Consumer sentiment in Farmers’ Market conversation is better than sentiment in “Big Grocery” conversation across the board…
  10. 10. What can Big Grocery learn from farmers’ markets?
  11. 11. Emphasize seasonality  Farmers’ market shoppers are more interested in exploring the seasons • Create an experience that varies with the seasons • Offer and promote peak-season produce • Organize events so shoppers can enjoy the weather What I love about spring and summer is all the fresh fruits and vegetables that will be sold at the farmer's market. Source: “ “ http://runninonhealthy.wordpress.com/2014/04/04/spring-means-farmers-market-time/
  12. 12. Think local  Farmers’ market shoppers want fresh food that comes from the local farm ecosystem and supports local businesses • Expand selection of locally produced goods • Label which farmers supply different products • Build a strong connection between the store brand and the local ecosystem I love meeting the farmers, knowing what they do, where they live, what their favorite variety of apple is. It humanizes the food. Source: http://foodriot.tumblr.com/post/55899678763/more-than-anything-i-love-the-communal-aspect-of “ “
  13. 13. Make shopping an event  Farmers’ market shoppers appreciate the festivity of the event, including live music, food samples and the outdoors • Experiment with parking lot mini-markets • Give customers chance to meet local farmers • Consider entertainment and family activities Today started off with a 6 mile run. A sunny one that resulted in some defined tan lines. Post run we refreshed with some frozen lemonades from the Farmer's Market – watermelon for her and habanero lime for him. I love Saturdays in Little Italy because they have the best Farmer's Market. Source: http://dailycupofasheejojo.com/2013/05/18/new-shoes-again/ “ “
  14. 14. Know what doesn’t matter  Some purchase drivers don’t differentiate farmers’ markets and grocery stores in the eyes of consumers • Price and availability of goods are roughly equal in terms of share of voice and sentiment • Consumers weigh health and nutrition equally between the two
  15. 15. Methodology  Networked Insights analyzed over 1 million conversations on the social web between May 1 and August 1, 2014. Through its patented topic discovery technology, Networked Insights identified the top 10 purchasing drivers for consumers who shop at farmers’ markets  Networked Insights compared how often consumers talk about those topics in relation to farmers’ markets and grocery stores (share of voice), and how they factor into purchasing decisions (net sentiment)  Share of voice measures the percentage of total posts about a particular topic  Net sentiment measures the percentage of positive posts minus the percentage of negative posts about a particular topic
  16. 16. About Networked Insights Networked Insights is classifying the social web so marketing professionals can better understand how consumers are talking about products, competitors and the topics that influence purchase behavior. Contact us: http://www.networkedinsights.co m/contact

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