For the food industry, personalized video is a great resource because the web is more hungry for video than ever before. The only risk is that of being boring, irrelevant, and relegating the user to a passive role. This danger can be avoided by making personalized videos.
In the food industry, personalized videos are an indispensable tool for all players, even more so in the current moment, where our behaviors and lifestyles have undergone significant changes.
It is no mystery that the arrival of COVID-19 and the resulting security measures that have been adopted have forced those working in the food sector to transform their business model and the way they compete in the market.
Stores, restaurants, and retailers have all had to deal with a temporary reduction in the importance of the physical component of their business in favor of the digital one.
This means that digital tools have become much more relevant and even indispensable if you want to survive in a context like the current one. But let’s go in order.
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COVID-19 breaks a taboo: Food can also be purchased online
One of the most obvious effects of the pandemic has undoubtedly been to demonstrate that e-commerce is one of the most widespread and promising ways to grow almost any type of business.
There are few retailers who have not activated their own e-commerce service in some way.
For example, large retailers have developed special applications to improve the customer experience and deliver groceries to the home, and small neighborhood businesses have taken advantage of social media during the lockdown to organize home delivery service.
If even before the health emergency, e-commerce was already showing remarkable growth numbers, what is surprising is that the best performer in terms of revenue was precisely the “food and grocery” sector.
This is confirmed by data from the B2C eCommerce Observatory promoted by the School of Management of Milan Polytechnic University and by Netcomm, the Italian Electronic Commerce Consortium. This study revealed that the purchases of Italian consumers in the Food & Grocery sector have reached the value of about €2.5 billion, representing growth of +55%, compared to 2019, an increase of nearly €1 billion.
Going into detail, the most relevant segment for revenue is food, which is represented by the purchase of fresh and packaged food, whose online component has grown by 85%, followed by the delivery of food and wine.
Beyond the numbers, the data is interesting because it shows a change of mentality on the part of Italians, as highlighted in an interview by Riccardo Mangiaracina, Scientific Director of the Observatory with Il Sole 24 Ore.
“With the outbreak of the COVID-19 emergency, the online demand for grocery products has in some cases increased tenfold, putting heavy pressure on ecommerce players. The lockdown and new consumer needs (and fears) have brought down the barriers to using ecommerce channels (and digital payments) and convinced even the most reluctant retailers to change the need to enhance their currently inadequate online offerings.”
In other words, shopping online, buying a bottle of wine from your computer, or ordering dinner through an app has become commonplace for most Italians, who are unlikely to go back to the way it was before the pandemic.
Consequently, operators in the sector must understand that the game will also be played on the field of ecommerce services and that, therefore, they must equip themselves to be competitive and reach as many customers as possible.
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If consumption becomes digital, the offer becomes digital too
From this point of view, bars and restaurateurs know it very well. In recent months, they have combined home delivery with an increase in editorial pressure on their social channels. In doing so, we have seen many examples of big names in the restaurant industry who have rethought their menus to create dishes that are more suitable for delivery or who have even launched new culinary projects and are using social media to tell their stories.
This is the case of Manna, a well-known restaurant in Milan, which has proposed a Gastronomia di Periferia (Suburban Gastronomy) with a few high-quality free-range ingredients, or ROC, the Rosticceria Origine Contraste, an autonomous delivery branch of Contraste, the one-star Michellin restaurant of chef Matias Perdomo.
In both examples, the digital component is fundamental. Manna has created a Whatsapp newsletter where customers can receive regular alerts on new products and the latest arrivals. ROC launched an Instagram account where it shows the dishes that can be ordered, like a sort of digital rotisserie showcase.
Just think, if you can no longer have the analog experience of eating a meal in the dining room, at least you can reproduce the illusion of service by using digital channels.
Food and digital: A winning combination
From this point of view, social networks are undoubtedly an effective tool because food content performs particularly well on the internet. Just think of Instagram. Here, the hashtag “food” is capable of attracting almost half a billion pieces of content, while “foodporn” attracts about 250 million.
The same social content, among other things, can generate not only many interactions, it has also been useful in launching and consolidating new activities in the sector. It’s no coincidence that the most successful food sector initiatives have made social marketing an essential pillar of their strategy (ninjamarketing.it).
Confirming the attractiveness of this type of content is Google itself, which in 2014 released research that pointed out how the number of food-themed videos on YouTube was constantly increasing, and that this type of video was particularly appreciated by millennials, who enjoyed it 30% more than all other age groups. But there’s more.
The research also showed how these videos can influence a user’s choices. For example, “millennial moms” use YouTube videos to find inspiration for meals to prepare and 68% of them watch videos while cooking (thinkwithgoogle.com).
Similarly, “millennial dads” watch videos that show new cooking techniques. The research shows that 42% of them are even willing to go to the supermarket specifically to buy the products they saw in a video.
On the other hand, 69% of single male millennials, prefer to watch brand-sponsored video content both to find inspiration for their dishes and to have fun and pass the time while cultivating their passion.
All of this data not only certifies that food-related content is interesting, it also shows that anyone who wants to build a relevant digital communication must use video content, regardless of the sector of interest.
The web loves video
More and more, when it comes to digital marketing and social marketing, the winning format is the video format.
Surely the pandemic that forced us to stay home has weighed heavily on consumers, but even before, statistics showed an absolute predominance of video compared to other formats that can be used online.
It’s no coincidence that the We Are Social report, developed in collaboration with Hootsuite, shows that for 92% of users in Italy, watching videos is the main activity carried out online.
This is all the more true if you think about the use of social media, which is the most common and effective dissemination vehicle. Suffice it to say that through Facebook alone, over 100 million videos are viewed per day, which usually create a large amount of user interaction (techchrunch.com). Similarly, the success of social networks such as Instagram and Tik Tok is due to the fact that they have placed videos at the center of their business.
This data would be enough to convince any player to adopt video as a main digital marketing tool, and even more so if we’re talking about activities in the food sector, given the combined results of video and food on the internet.
However, things are not that simple, since video also has some criticalities that should always be considered.
You have to stimulate the appetite of every user
The first problem is related to the attention threshold. Although half of people pay more attention to a video than to another type of content, this doesn’t mean that they watch the video all the way through (omnikick.com). The attention threshold on social media is about 9 seconds, and many believe this number is likely to decrease.
It’s clear, therefore, that in order to capture the user’s attention and make sure that he or she gets to the end of the video, something more must be done.
Also another “problem” with videos is the fact that they are a type of content that is essentially unidirectional, where the user remains essentially passive; this inevitably affects the user’s attention and the effective transmission of the message.
If we add to this the fact that video, by its very nature, communicates “one to many,” we understand that the risk of rapidly losing the attention of consumers is high. This is why innovative and creative solutions are needed.
Doxee Pvideo®: When video gets personalized
One way forward is undoubtedly personalization.
After all, the most important trend on the horizon is that of putting the customer at the center of both the communication and the experience offered.
In this sense, Doxee Pvideo® undoubtedly is an interesting strategic solution to adopt for all players in the food sector and beyond.
The videos created through Doxee Pvideo®, in fact, are not simply personalizable videos, but “personal” videos where the user can have an active part while watching them. On the one hand, the customer receives content that addresses him directly, where perhaps the visual component is differentiated according to his tastes and his browsing habits, for example. On the other hand, he also has the possibility to see only what he wants thanks to the User-Directed-Storytelling (UDS) feature that allows him to choose the navigation and narrative path.
In this way, video becomes an instrument of bi-directional communication, in which the person watches content that he or she has contributed to create and that, consequently, directly interests them
Watching thus becomes an active, participatory action that amplifies the message in turn.
Personalization opens the door to creativity
It’s clear that with a tool like video, you can create interesting content, offering a unique and memorable customer experience when least expected.
Think, for example, of those boring flyers that many supermarkets still create and publish online. Applying Doxee Pvideo® solutions could make them interactive and more engaging. The user could scroll through the different offers of the month and then decide which ones to explore according to his personal needs, without having to watch the whole video.
By personalizing these videos, the products shown would be specifically designed for that particular recipient, perhaps based on their previous purchases.
Another interesting use could be in the restaurant sector and, in particular, in home delivery. There are now many restaurants that offer boxes that customers can purchase to assemble dishes directly at home.
By simply using a QR Code inserted in the box, it would be possible to “assist” customers with their cooking by having them watch personalized videos showing the chef’s advice while preparing the recipe. In this way, video becomes an integral part of the consumer experience, enriching it and making it memorable.
Just as you have to put your creativity to work in the kitchen, personalized videos offer many opportunities for creativity while riding the wave of ecommerce and digitization that the food sector is experiencing.
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