To truly appreciate the power of food video, you have to understand how food translates in the medium. At first glance, the idea of using video or other visual content for food products may be counterintuitive. After all, you can’t transmit taste through a visual medium. But our sense of taste doesn’t function in isolation. Food is a multi-sensory experience involving sight, smell, touch, and taste. Just as importantly, our food experiences are tied to the context in which we enjoyed them. Food is woven into our memories of people and place; often these are some of our earliest and best memories.
Although we can’t yet replicate the multi-sensory nature of a food experience via visual content alone, by making the most of what we can replicate, we evoke comforting food memories and trigger positive emotions. At a base level, that means incorporating visually-stunning, mouth-watering images; the type that inspired the phrase “food porn.” Video is a medium already known for facilitating emotional connections. Yet, even more than other product categories, food content is especially predisposed to create emotional connections with consumers. Those connections form the foundation for relationships with a brand; they are what every content creator aspires to achieve from their content.
Food Video Content Has Everything Going For It
Video content for food brands exists at the intersection of many favorable trends. Here are a few, which are explained in greater detail below:
- Video consumption is continuing its upwards trajectory, and consumers have large appetites for food content in particular.
- Market changes have made eCommerce and technology more important than ever for food and beverage brands, requiring them to create videos and other types of visual content to connect with consumers on digital and social channels.
- Consumers are more conscious about the food brands they support and want to know more about what they are eating, where it comes from, and if the brands’ values are aligned with their own.
- Millennials are “gobbling up” food videos and making purchase decisions based on that content.
BizJournals.com covered the top five trends for the food and beverage industry this year, and two of those five are eCommerce and technology. Both of those demand quality digital content for successful execution—in the form of images, product videos, how-to videos, comparison videos, review videos, branded and campaign videos, all formatted for multi-channel consumption.
Citing the rise of online delivery and food subscription services, as well as the fierce competition for shelf space in brick-and-mortar grocery stores, food and beverage brands will increasingly be selling their wares in a digital environment, according to Bizjournals.com. Additionally, consumers are doing more pre-purchase research via smartphones than ever before, requiring food and beverage brands to maintain a greater presence across digital and social platforms, with more content readily available to consumers.
Why Video Continues to Dominate Food Marketing
The dominance of video content for food brands’ marketing efforts is cemented for the foreseeable future. Here are some of the reasons why (taken in part from The Recipe Guru):
- Video represents a huge and growing proportion of all internet traffic. As of this writing, the most current data indicates that 82 percent of all global consumer internet traffic will be IP video traffic by 2021. Internet video to TV will be 26 percent of fixed consumer internet video traffic by 2021 (Source: Cisco’s Visual Networking Index: Forecast and Methodology, 2016–2021).
- Within video traffic, food content continues to hold a place of importance. The phrase “How to Cook That” is among the top ten searches on YouTube, according to OneSpot’s The State of Food Content Marketing Report. Buzzfeed’s Tasty, which focuses on video food content, has almost 97 million followers on Facebook. Demand for food video content is high.
- Millennial audiences, in particular, consume large amounts of food video content on YouTube, with 69% of millennial mothers having purchased food products featured in the videos they’ve watched. 42% of millennial fathers will even make special trips to the supermarket to purchase new products they discover in food videos. (Source: Think With Google report).
Advantages of Video Content for Food Brands
Video content is one of the smartest, high-ROI marketing investments a food brand can make right now. Here are some of the reasons why:
- Unmatched engagement. Video attracts viewers and is highly consumable. RendrFx has found that 92% of mobile video viewers share videos with others.
- Video drives traffic to websites. Search engines tend to favor video content because they serve preferred content, andusers prefer video. A Forrester study found that sites with video content are 53 times more likely to rank on the first page of the search results.
- Food video content directly affects sales. Millennials have acknowledged their propensity to buy products as a direct result of food video content they have watched (Think With Google report).
- Data suggests video converts better. EyeWideDigital has found that having a video on your landing page can increase your conversion rate by 80%.
- Most food content is evergreen. This allows it to deliver greater value over a longer period of time.
What Types of Video Content Are Right for Food Brands?
A Nielsen study of millennials indicates that they want to know more about how their food is produced (81 percent) and want to “see the story behind the scenes,” (80 percent). Millennials are also willing to pay more for sustainable brands (73 percent), so if that applies to your food brand, consider incorporating it into your video content strategy.
Content that informs and educates (such as recipes and how-to videos) is in demand from consumers, according to research from OneSpot. However, you need not limit your video content to those types. Food brands like Whole Foods, Kashi, and Clif Bar have found success with video content about food trends, industry news, health, sustainability, active lifestyles, and behind-the-scenes documentaries about the people who make their food and where and how its sourced.
When a brand understands what their audience is passionate about, they can tap into it in a way that is authentic, creating content that resonates with consumers and makes them feel more confident about buying the brands’ products. By creating content about broader aspects of the brand and its products, you also expand your digital footprint (and opportunities to build trust, loyalty, and stronger connections).
Whatever type of video content you create for your food products, be prepared for intense competition in this space. Brands are constantly searching for new ways to stand out and grab viewers’ attention, so expect to step up your efforts with engaging, inspiring video content. However, viewers’ appetite for video consumption is so great that there is still every opportunity for your food brand to make new emotional connections with consumers.