Pepsi is launching a PepCoin loyalty program that rewards you for buying both a single-serve beverage and a Frito-Lay snack by sending money to PayPal and Venmo accounts. If you scan enough codes on bottles and bags, you’ll receive a little bit of cash. You’ll have to earn $2 before it goes to your account, but this is real spending money.
How it works:
Buy a PepsiCo beverage and Frito-Lay snack.
Scan the codes on the bag and under the bottle cap with your phone.
Link the program to your PayPal or Venmo.
Once you accumulate $2, the money automatically transfers to your account with Venmo or PayPal.
It’s not a dollar for dollar point system, each transaction earns a person about 37 cents. So, like, 5.4 purchases.
Why it’s hot: Companies with multiple brands are increasingly using loyalty programs as a vehicle to sell across their portfolio and drive awareness of the many different products within it. With the exception of credit and debit cards, that apply cash back as a credit to your account, cash back incentives in the form of actual cash have yet to be tested (as far as I could tell). Truly successful loyalty programs thrive on creating engaging experiences and emotional connections with their consumers — it’ll be interesting to see whether Pepcoin will be able to establish a true connection with customers, past the initial shock and enroll stage and whether it’ll change how loyalty and rewards programs provide benefits to consumers in the future.
Ask questions and interact live with your favorite celebrity chef, such as Guy Fieri or Martha Stewart, right in your kitchen. Linked to your Amazon Prime account. Need a peeler and some limes for this recipe? Amazon will send them over.
From The Verge: “Food Network says it’s specifically modeling its classes after Peloton’s live-streaming model. Food Network is banking on the power of its personalities, and the $7 streaming fee starts to make sense when it’s viewed as an exclusive membership, giving fans the chance to interact with their favorite stars.
Netflix may get Seinfeld in 2021, and Apple TV Plus may have all of, like, 10 shows — but only Food Network Kitchen will give its users the chance to interact with Guy Fieri and ask him cooking questions live. I’m imagining it to be the equivalent of your favorite Food Network personality doing an Instagram Live, but with way better streaming quality (have you ever sat through an Instagram Live you didn’t immediately want to exit?). And maybe that alone is worth paying for.”
Why it’s hot:
Since it’s on Amazon, it’s integrated with Amazon Fresh, so you can choose a recipe you want to learn and have the ingredients delivered to your door before the class begins. Agoraphobics rejoice!
It’s live streaming, but with food celebrities. But it could be any celebrities you otherwise wouldn’t have such intimate access to, doing anything. In a world where most content is given for free, it reinforces one notion of celebrity, in that you have to pay to have access them.
Price Kaki is an app that crowdsources and compiles the prices of daily goods sold across multiple physical retail stores in Singapore. The app enables price comparison of groceries, household items and hawker food, across outlets, thus helping shoppers make informed decisions and get value for their money. Users are invited to contribute real-time updates on prices and promotions, with the most active rewarded with e-vouchers. Developed by Consumers Association of Singapore (CASE), the app is inspired by e-commerce price aggregators, and aims to bring the same level of transparency and consumer empowerment to offline shopping.
Fun fact: ‘kaki’ is local Singaporean lingo for ‘buddies’ .
Why it’s hot: E-commerce is outgrowing physical retail, yet offline still dominates. As a result, businesses pursuing further growth are focusing on revolutionizing brick-and-mortar, by integrating the best aspects (like price transparency) of online retail.
In the Philippines, where almost one third of children under five are malnourished, the Cadbury has created a chocolate bar without milk, the Generosity Bar, and is donating the glass and a half to children in need.
The Generosity Bar launched at a pop-up store in a popular Manila mall and for every candy bar purchased, Cadbury redirects the forgone milk to malnourished children through its partnership with NGO Reach Out Feed Philippines.
So far 200,000 glasses of milk have been donated to Filipino children.
Other chocolate brands might struggle to form a meaningful partnership with a malnutrition charity, but Cadbury found a way to make this initiative feel natural and relevant. Rather than use its packaging and platform to just draw attention to the Philippines’ child malnutrition problem or encouraging consumers to make donations, Cadbury enabled its customers to donate simply by buying the product: a win-win for Cadbury, the children and the consumers.
Why it’s hot:
CSR has become a hot topic in the advertising world, but doing it right isn’t always easy as many times brands sometimes lack the ability to put others first. This is a great example of a brand wholly dedicating itself to a cause and providing an easy way for its customers to participate and give back by doing something they already do, eat chocolate.
Last year, the Kellogg cereal brand teamed up with the National Federation of the Blind to create specialized “Love Notes” with phrases like “You’ve Got This” to “Love You Lots” written in braille for parents to share with children who are blind. Now Rice Krispies is continuing its mission with a new kind of love note, one designed with children living with autism or on the autism spectrum.
Since not every child communicates love through words, the cereal company partnered with Autism Speaks to create touch-and-feel sensory “Love Notes” so children can actually feel love and support as they transition back to school. The four “lightly reusable” stickers come in a range of supposedly calming colors and different textures, including fleece, faux fur, satin, and velour for sensory-focused kids to feel the love through a tactile experience.
Why it’s hot: Kellogg’s expansion of its “Love Notes” write-able wrappers demonstrates the brand’s commitment to all parents – providing an otherwise under served audience (parents with children with autism and children who are blind) – helping them provide their children with love and support anywhere they are. They found a simple way to make love notes meaningful to any child.
Unilever-owned mayonnaise brand Hellmann’s is so familiar that it can get overlooked in the fridge, along with other ingredients that often get thrown away when we don’t think we can use them.
In the brand’s newest campaign, Hellmann’s highlights the food waste caused by unused leftovers. To prove that mayonnaise can be a key ingredient that turns leftovers into a meal, the agency opened a temporary restaurant in São Paulo, Brazil: The Restaurant With No Food.
Diners were sent Hellman’s branded cool-bags to bring their fridge leftovers, and invited to dine for free at the restaurant. A handful of celebrity chefs then created gourmet meals from the ingredients and Hellman’s mayonnaise. Following the meal, Hellmann’s gave them the recipes for what they had been served.
During its two-day activation, the campaign generated more than 200 news reports and 50 million impressions. Sales of Hellmann’s went up by 8% and it’s estimated that over 2,700 ingredients were saved. The Restaurant With No Food also received an official endorsement from the UN World Food Programme, and Hellmann’s plans to repeat the initiative in other key markets in Europe this year.
Why it’s hot:
This campaign is a perfect example of what a good insight can do. The brand likely saw the decline in mayonnaise purchases, but this unique insight around food waste allowed them to unlock a solution to the problem in a new way. Viewing their business challenge through a wider lens than just “nobody’s buying our mayonnaise” allowed Hellmann’s to tap into a larger cultural conversation.
Drinkworks, a joint venture between Keurig and Anheuser-Busch transforms pods of distilled cocktails into single-serve drinks such as gin and tonics, Mai Tais and Old Fashioned. It’s price point, $399, reminds us of the now infamous Jiucero’s price, not cheap.
Cocktail culture is thriving in the US as more and more Americans ditch beer and the industry giants are ready to play in the field. Each capsule will spout out a single-serve drink and act as an automated bartender for cocktail lovers and home entertainers alike.
“You can get a cocktail in a can, but it’s not the same experience,” Drinkworks CMO Val Toothman told Business Insider. “Cocktails … are a culture. It’s an experience. You want something crafted, freshly made.”
Why it’s hot: Pod machines are under more scrutiny since the Juicero scandal and companies have to bring a real products that really innovate to solve real needs to market.
Burger King got national attention this week for offering 1-cent Whoppers to those who drove up to a McDonald’s location (and then, presumably, drove away to redeem their BK coupons). Key to the stunt was the brand’s smartphone app, which unlocked the offer when it detected users approaching within 600 feet of a McDonald’s.
The “Whopper Detour” sent customers to a rival’s doorstep, and it worked, in terms of both publicity and app downloads.
Burger King today said its app was downloaded more than 1 million times since Whopper Detour launched on Tuesday, and the app is currently No. 1 among free software in the Apple App Store. That puts Burger King’s app, for now at least, above app giants like YouTube, Instagram, Snapchat and Amazon.
(The McDonald’s app, in case you’re curious, is currently at No. 42.)
Why It’s Hot:
Brands trolling other brands has become a sure fire way to go viral, this uses brand trolling in conjunction with location based apps to drive people to a competitor and it worked to drive sales and app downloads.
Haidilao, China’s biggest hotpot chain, partnered with Panasonic and equipped a restaurant in Beijing with a fully robot-run kitchen. That means no humans are involved in the food preparation process.
The location has an automated cold room where robots prepare and deliver raw meat and fresh vegetables according to the orders placed by customers through an iPad at each table.
The soup base is also prepared by robots with machine-like precision that caters to individual tastes and specific requirements based on special combination of spices, various oil and key ingredients. Each individual combination is automatically documented and uploaded into the cloud.
Why it’s hot: These robots reduce wait time, adds consistency and increases the level of food hygiene.
A kit for Nestle Japan’s nutritional drink. Photographer: Kentaro Takahashi/Bloomberg
Nestle is taking an innovative approach to product development, starting with the Japan market.
According to Quartz News – “Some 100,000 people are taking part in a company program there that gives consumers a kit to collect their DNA at home. The program also encourages them to use an app to post pictures of what they’re eating. Nestlé then recommends dietary changes and supplies specialized supplements that can be sprinkled on or mixed into a variety of food products, including teas.”
Ultimately, the goal for Nestle actually goes beyond this, to creating completely individualized products based on individuals’ DNA that could even be designed to prevent serious diseases like cancer. Quartz’s crude example is “Pizzas that can ward off Alzheimer’s disease, for instance”.
One nutritional scientist says, “This is going to be the manifestation of the future. The one-size-fits-all platform is a thing of the past.”
Why it’s hot:
First, as the largest food company in the world, Nestle could be leading the way into a new era of food production – one that’s almost completely the opposite of its heritage over the last few decades. But most importantly, it’s another example of the shift we’re finally seeing from mass production to ultra-personalized products. While using DNA as the mechanism is not without concerns, what better experience than having food and supplements created for you based on what your body needs to keep you at peak health.
Kellogg’s cereal cafe recently re-opened at Union Square in a space five times larger than its original location in Times Square. This is Kellogg’s attempt to stem sales decline by making millennials eat cereal as all-day snacks.
The cafe is operated by two famous restauranteurs, Sandra Di Capua from Eleven Madison Park and Anthony Rudolf from Per Se.
Why it’s hot: Leveraging food’s social status to make everyday mundane cool.
Mimica Touch, is a food label that decays at the same rate as food. The Mimica label is filled with gelatine, which decomposes in the same way as packaged foods. The gel is calibrated to each product line using shelf-life testing data, and it also takes into account the temperature at which it is stored.
When new, the label is smooth. But as time goes by and the gel decomposes, it becomes bumpy to touch, signalling that the food is no longer safe to eat.
The Mimica Touch was developed with visually impaired people in mind. It is also easy to assemble, so that manufacturers can make the label – which consists of a plastic tray, gel and a lid – on site.
Why its hot? 90% of Americans prematurely threw away food because they misinterpreted sell-by and use-by labels as indicators that food had gone rotten and become unsafe.
Called Bodega, this startup installs unmanned pantry boxes in apartments, offices, dorms, and gyms. It promises convenience, but also represents competition for many mom-and-pop stores. Bodega’s logo is a cat, a nod to the popular bodega cat meme.
Bodega sets up five-foot-wide pantry boxes filled with non-perishable items you might pick up at a convenience store. An app will allow you to unlock the box and cameras powered with computer vision will register what you’ve picked up, automatically charging your credit card. The entire process happens without a person actually manning the “store.”
Why it’s hot? Other than the fact that it has angered all the mom and pop corner bodega lovers
The end of centralized shopping as we know it
“The vision here is much bigger than the box itself,” McDonald says. “Eventually, centralized shopping locations won’t be necessary, because there will be 100,000 Bodegas spread out, with one always 100 feet away from you.”
Personalized Bodega Boxes
“By studying their buying behavior, we’re hoping to eventually figure out how the needs of people in one apartment building differ from those in another. We could customize the items in one dorm versus the next.”
About 40 percent of all food in America is wasted. Much of it ends up in landfills, where it emits dangerous-to-the-planet methane gas. At the same time, one out of eight American households don’t have enough to eat.
Wasted food. Hungry people. How do we get the two to meet?
Last month, food rescue made a leap to a national scale. Feeding America matches donors and recipients with an algorithm. A restaurant can go on Meal Connect to post an offer of, say, eight trays of fried chicken and biscuits. Meal Connect will automatically match that offer with the closest food pantry or soup kitchen that can get it up right away.
Meal Connect makes it possible to rescue prepared food and smaller quantities of food — and to do so quickly. “This allows us to provide real hot meals — virtually at the same time that someone coming off the street and paying for it would get it,” she said.
McDonald’s new commercials don’t appear on the brand’s YouTube, Facebook or Twitter pages. And they never even mention the name McDonald’s, preferring instead to name-check Coca-Cola and Google.
It’s all part of a sly campaign by Omnicom agency We Are Unlimited to appeal to teens and twentysomethings, who prefer word-of-mouth and their own research about products and brands to corporate messaging, according to a writeup of the campaign in The New York Times.
The campaign does, however, feature a celebrity, the actress Mindy Kaling, who in several TV spots urges viewers to Google “that place where Coke tastes so good.” Kaling is wearing a yellow dress against a red background in the minimalist ads, but beyond those McDonald’s brand colors, she doesn’t actually say the name of the fast-food chain.
It would be a company called Chowbotics. They just landed $5 mil in Series A, further developing the food service robotic industry.
Its flagship product is called Sally, a salad-making robot that uses 20 different food canister to prepare and serve more than 1,000 types of salad. Number of pilot customers have signed on- restaurants, co-working spaces, and corporate cafeterias.
Sally-made salads can be precisely measured – know exactly how many calories are going into your food.
Data-driven platform can measure both popularity of specific recipes, # of caloric intake, increase or decline of demand on ingredients – all that can help both healthcare and the food industry make better informed decisions.
A startup called Habit is providing personalized nutrition/diet plans and meals based on customers’ DNA. For $299, with few drops of blood and saliva, scientists and nutritionists can tailor nutritional advice specified to your biological make up – what food your body craves, rejects, etc.
Once customers’ metabolic and DNA analyses are gathered, Habit also recommends individual’s health goals through its Nutrition Intelligence Engine algorithm to place them into one of seven Habit types. Each type has different plan specifies the ideal ratio of carbs, protein, and fat in each meal in addition to the TYPES of carbs, protein, and fat their body will respond best to.
Meal plans and access to health coach are further complemented by personalized meals that are delivered fresh to your door – for extra cost of course. Working with biometric devices such as Fitbit, participants can use their devices to monitor their progress and enable Habit staff to input any changes to plans/meals as needed.
Why it’s HOT:
this is a business model around hyper personalization, based on individual biological make up, can’t get more personal that this.
there will be the growth of converging science/nutrition/data to create consumer facing products and services.
Habit was valued at $210 bil by Morgan Stanley Research for its meal-delivery services – with the potential to disrupt and clearly differentiate itself from Blue Apron and other food delivery services.
Not only can you swipe right or left on your smartphone for a date, now you can swipe for food. In a new app called Tender, users swipe to indicate whether they like a particular recipe. Swipe right to indicate yes and the recipe gets saved to your file, which can then be accessed by a menu which allows you to filter your search. Swipe left and it disappears.
Modeled after Tinder, the photos show delicious food and inspire users to save them or not. “Food is about more than just calories, it is art,” claims Tender, as reported on psfk.com. This is what inspired the team behind Tender to create an app that will make it very easy for users to find the most beautiful and mouth-watering culinary creations on the internet.”
The app is simple to use. Only available through the Google Play Store or The App Store, you can sign in or log in via Facebook. Then let your culinary fancy take over and start saving beautiful recipes like Bacon Jam or Citrus Pulled Pork Tacos.
Why It’s Hot
Marrying food and a swipe left/right interface made popular by Tinder means this app is incredibly simple to use and appeals to one of our basic instincts — food. Look for the swipe application to become even more popular due to its simplicity and ease. And put food in any equation and you’ve got instant success.
In an age where the world has gone almost completely digital, granola brand Nature Valley wants its consumers to #RediscoverNature. In their latest advertisement they ask three different generations what they did for fun as children and this created quite the storm on their YouTube channel.
In the beginning of the video we get to hear the grandparents speak about the different things they played growing up. This was a technology less era where nature played a huge role. Some spoke of blueberry picking and fishing Then the parents give their account that also uses nature as the background like playing hide and seek and baseball.
When its the children’s turn to describe what they do to have fun the answers were a stark contrast from what their seniors experienced. The children talk about technology and how it is the center of most their free time. One boy said that when he plays video games it feels as though no else is around, he is just in the game. One girl even said she would die without her tablet and states that she usually is on it from 3-4 hours a day.
The point of view that Nature Valley made that this generation doesn’t understand nature and the idea of playing outside and that technology is slowly taking us away from off line fun has been a real decisive line and many of the comments on YouTube have expressed this sentiment.
Why its Hot?
Working in the digital space sometimes it raises the question are we too digital?
Two announcement this week about Uber expanding their territory:
1. UberEats has officially launched in four cities, including the Barcelona and Los Angeles trial areas as well as two new burgs, Chicago and New York City and that promises to deliver meals to customers in 10 minutes or less.
Uber drivers will go to certain approved restaurants, pick up several bags of a single kind of food — say a special sandwich, or a gourmet salad – and then deliver it to anyone who has requested it from an Uber app. Uber will offer a rotating menu of select items from a handful of restaurants in Chicago and New York and charges a flat delivery fee of $3 and $4, respectively, which goes directly to the drivers.
2. TechCrunch has uncovered documents revealing that Uber is currently testing a system where high-end retailers can use Uber vehicles to make same-day deliveries to impatient customers. According to the site’s sources, Neiman Marcus, Louis Vuitton and Tiffany’s are all in discussions to sign up when the program launches. It looks as if the eventual goal is that all Uber drivers will be able to take both human passengers and commercial cargo, with all of the information routed through the same mobile app.
TechCrunch goes on to speculate that Uber could be aiming to create a rival to Amazon and eBay that leverages the fact that local stores have stock available on shelves. That way, prospective buyers can spot an item, order it and know that it’ll be transported across town in an instant.
A new kind of food processing machine called the Genie can make personalized meals with the press of a button, ready for eating in less than a minute.
The appliance includes the single-portion capsules, ranging from couscous to cake and muffins, and the machine that prints the ingredients into edible foods. Genie can even consider dietary restrictions, including gluten-free and and vegetarian options.
Why It’s Hot: 3D printing is cool but 3D printing food is hot. We have already seen 3D printers that can make chocolate and print pancakes, but Genie expands this idea to make more personalized food and make it instantly. In addition to the fun tech aspect, Genie also seeks to eliminate food waste, as well as curb obesity by controlling consumers’ meal portions.
Fun technology, plus environmental and human benefits sounds like a piece of too-good-to-be-true instant cake to me. The company is already seeing public interest and are in the mass production stage for corporate clients, arranging thousands of orders from Israel (where it was founded), the U.S. and Greece.
South Korea is one of the most sleep-deprived countries out there. And Seoul is known for epic work commutes. So people doze during their morning subway ride – the problem is how to wake up in time for their stop.
Burger King just ran a small, targeted campaign in Seoul with a quirky answer to that dilemma. The campaign offered sleep masks to commuters at five major stations in Seoul. Written across them was a message asking other commuters to wake them up at their particular stop. There were two coupons for free coffee inside the masks, so people could use one themselves and share the other with the person who woke them.
Burger King’s goal was to boast morning sales since they were facing heavy competition from McDonald’s morning menu. After running this campaign in Seoul morning sales at participating stores rose 18.7% in the month from the starting date, Feb. 23, Burger King said. And social-media chatter about the brand jumped 44.5% in the same period.
Why It’s Hot
Burger King’s agency took a very simple observation of how tired people were during their morning commute and used data to back this up 1) South Korean’s on average get less sleep when compared to other countries and 2) South Korean’s commute an average of one hour to work each way. They used these insights to create a buzz-worthy campaign that actually delivered on more breakfast sales for the brand.
PancakeBot is the world’s first pancake printer. A Norway-based American maker of an earlier DIY LEGO Pancake Bot is at it again, this time crowdfunding a smarter batter dispenser that 3D prints drawings in pancake batter and cooks them in the order the lines were drawn, resulting in pancake art.
Learn more and watch a demo video to see how PancakeBot works via Tech Crunch.
Why It’s Hot: Perhaps the only thing better than eating pancakes is getting to design them too. PancakeBot’s success with its Kickstarter campaign proves that consumers are enthusiastic about their pancakes – and technology.
While Tech Crunch notes that 3D printing of food is still a niche market, we’ve already seen other edible applications of 3D printing technology. Humans need to eat to survive, and suffice it to say that most enjoy it. Printing and physically designing food makes eating that much more fun. We’ve seen the lengths of 3D printing being tested in other fields, from treating brain tumors to manufacturing automobiles, but PancakeBot provides a unique user experience by enabling – and requiring – consumers’ participation. We’ll have to stay tuned to see what 3D printing will do next.
McDonald’s pushes global harmony hard in its new brand campaign, which refreshes the long-running “I’m lovin’ it” tagline by putting more focus on the lovin’. The spot is called “Archenemies,” and features pop-culture foes suddenly finding peace.
McDonald’s has never really leaned that hard into the idea of love— often focusing on the “I’m” and “it” parts of the line instead of the “lovin’ ” part. But the brand thinks the time is right for a shift.
“We recognize, and our customers do too, all the negativity that surrounds daily life and we are choosing to celebrate lovin’ more,” it says in a statement. “McDonald’s is in a unique position to use its scale to bring back the positivity with more uplifting content and conversations in the lovin’ spirit.”
The brand feels like it’s on to something here. The refresh will include new uniforms, new packaging, new signage in restaurants and a new focus on being more responsive in social media—which is in line with the transparency campaign it’s been running lately.
Why It’s Hot
McDonald’s, a brand that still doesn’t allow fans to post on their Facebook timeline, is finally taking a step back and understanding the importance of transparency, authenticity and actually listening to what its consumers are saying. The fast-food chain is moving from a philosophy of billion-served to billion-heard, in order to evolve with customers. As the brand is experiencing a difficult time – declines in sales and facing a new type of more ecologically minded customer – can this brand transformation be its saving grace? It sounds like the brand has a few tricks up its sleeve, especially with a return to the Super Bowl with a 60-second commercial that “will reveal a big idea.” Only time will tell if the fast food chain can turn “lovin'” into sales.
Coca Cola’s Share A Coke campaign showed that the soda brand seemed to really understand its drinkers – especially people with popular first names or those with the creativity to make something out of Coke cans. Now Coca-Cola Israel has expanded on this by creating a campaign with 2 million one-of-a-kind bottle designs.
Why It’s Hot: We’ve previously discussed the power of product packaging for a variety of brands. Coca-Cola, like many others, uses its packaging to engage consumers; the “Share A Coke” campaign felt personal, even though as AdWeek points out, it wasn’t personal at all. (If you’re able to find your name printed on a label, chances are that it probably isn’t too unique. Sorry to burst your carbon dioxide bubble.) The Diet Coke campaign, on the other hand, doesn’t leave anyone out and its designs alone are works of art.
I’m a fan of anything that doesn’t require finding “Lili” on a keychain – or in this case, a bottle label. Even as someone who can never find anything with my name on it, I think that a nice-looking keepsake bottle is a lot cooler than seeing my name on a label.
British Airways is due to start matching its in-flight meals with specific music tracks in order to counteract the fact that a person’s ability to taste is reduced by 30% while in the air. These pairings are based on a study that suggests some tunes can influence your taste buds, and they aim to help bring out the flavor of the food.
The airline’s new “Sound Bite” menu will be available on the “Rock and Pop” audio channel on long-haul flights from November. This 13-track playlist features music that has been carefully selected to go with each item on the menu, with the intention of enhancing the in-flight meal experience.
A study conducted by Professor Charles Spence and his team at Oxford University in the UK suggests that certain music can influence a person’s taste buds. This has been labelled ‘Sonic Seasoning’, with specific tracks seemingly able to make food seem up to 10% more sweet or salty.
British Airways’ chef Mark Tazzioli adds that the findings of this study to his list of considerations (which also included taste being altered at altitude) in order to create the new special edition menu. The “Sound Bite” playlist includes Scottish artist Paolo Nutini’s “Scream (Funk My Life Up)” to go with the Scottish salmon starter, Coldplay’s “A Sky Full of Stars” for a classic British main meal, Madonna’s “Ray of Light” for desserts, and “Nessun Dorma” by Placido Domingo to go with a cup of coffee.
The reasoning behind these tracks being selected were that Scottish musicians enhance the providence of Scottish foods, British music should be paired with British food, high tones boost the sweet flavors of puddings, and a tenor’s low tones suit the bitterness of coffee.
It’s nice to see some innovation in customer service in the airline industry, and this “science” is quite interesting. It seems a little unnecessary, but maybe if you enjoy your flight just a little more, it’s worth it. There may be an opportunity (or potential hipster trend?) to try this in the mainstream restaurant industry as well.
As the old saying goes, “There’s no such thing as bad publicity.” Especially in today’s social media world, we can all recognize that this rings true. Botto Bistro, an Italian restaurant in San Francisco, is no exception to the rule. The restaurant has created its own buzz as it seeks the worst Yelp rating in the Bay Area.
Botto Bistro invites patrons to not only share their dining experience on Yelp, but to “hate” the restaurant on the site. Botto will reward those who rate them poorly with 25% off of any pizza.
Why It’s Hot: It’s a no-brainer that if an establishment garners poor reviews online, consumers won’t be willing to try it out and it will likely go out of business. Botto Bistro flips this logic on its head. By creating social chatter around its notoriously bad service, sarcastic staff and over-charging for things like a glass of water and encouraging patrons to post honest reviews, the restaurant uses its “bad” publicity to its advantage. The social conversation around Botto Bistro inevitably creates curiosity, bringing new patrons in the door to check it out. The restaurant boasts on its website:
WE MADE IT!
Botto is officially the worst restaurant on Yelp!
Thank you to everyone who helped us acheive our one star rating!
I’d give them a one-star rating for a spelling error on their website, but that’s just me.
Many brands are integrating their product packaging with social media campaigns, in an effort to increase buzz and engagement. As a sort of “replacement” for guerrilla marketing, this new integration creates a powerful connection through “excellent product packaging design, especially when that design incorporates an interactive social aspect that taps into a larger social media strategy to create campaigns that are tangible and interactive at every level,” as SmartBrief explains.
Some examples of this new trend include:
Coca Cola’s #ShareACoke campaign, which replaces the company logo on it’s super iconic bottles with any one of the 250 most popular first names in the country. It instantly creates a personal connection for customers, who are then motivated to post on social media/share photos of their personalized drink. People can also visit a microsite to check inventory of local stores for drinks with their names on the label, and enter to win prizes using the #ShareACoke hashtag.
Dole’s #PeelTheLove campaign on their bananas uses the tiny sticker on a batch of bananas to give a witty one-word suggestion for using or consuming the banana, and a simple QR code provides access to a wealth of recipe ideas online so that customers will always know what to do with their bunches. Despite the use of the ever-disappointing QR code, Dole has come up with a creative way to entice people to interact with the banana provider.
Pepsi’s augmented-reality SuperBowl sponsorship uses the app Blippar (QR code 2.0?) to enable customers to visit a microsite to enter sweepstakes to win tickets, and edit themselves into a picture with NFL players to share on social media – all by “blipping” their can. To ensure customers would know how to engage with it, Pepsi made their entire can into an instruction manual, taking users through each step.
Why It’s Hot | It’s interesting to see how brands are finding new ways to increase engagement, aside from just creating advertising campaigns and social media. What better way to further push consumers to engage with brands and share their interaction with brands than to push them to do it directly on the packaging? Packaging will forever be an ultimate salesman, and aside from helping convince consumers to buy a product, now it’s helping encourage consumers to extend their relationships with brands.
As part of their national loyalty program, Auntie Anne developed a new app called “My Pretzel Perks” that rewards loyal customers with points that can be redeemed for free food, discounts and merchandise. Consumers receive a free pretzel for signing up and can then start earning points that accumulate toward prizes and rewards. Some of the rewards include: 20 points with every visit,10 points with every $1 spent, and a FREE pretzel item every 300 points.
My Pretzel Perks plays a key role in how Auntie Anne’s distributes and segments coupons by using purchase behavior to segment offers toward different groups of consumers.
Auntie Anne Pretzel App
Why It’s Hot? People love food, especially free food. As a result, they are more likely to engage with food brands that reward customer loyalty with what they really want: more of the food they love but FREE. This changes the customer experience: everytime a loyal customer buys a pretzel, they will look forward to the time when they don’t. This means they’ll be back for more. Food brands who want to improve customer loyalty can follow suit and change the customer experience to make it a more rewarding and goal-oriented experience.
Hungry? Too tired to dig through a pile of take-out menus to pick something? Now you only have to push a button and food is delivered right to your door – easy as a pizza pie!
Five teens from Brooklyn have created a Push for Pizza app to simplify food delivery. While apps like Seamless already help speed up the process of ordering delivery, Push for Pizza makes it even easier by eliminating the hassle of combing through extra menus and seemingly endless options.
Upon launching, the app prompts users to plug in their address and payment information (to pre-pay for the pizza, delivery and tip), and then connects them to local pizzerias. To simplify ordering even further, users are only offered two menu options – cheese or pepperoni.
Why It’s Hot: Push for Pizza is yet another example of technology being used to cut corners and make our lives a little bit easier. The team has turned a no-brainer idea of a mobile-friendly pizza delivery service into a practical, profitable business. Such a simple concept can be applied to all kinds of food, and maybe eventually, even other services.