By RDBA Executive Director, Annette Maggi, MS, RDN, LD, FAND
Many retail dietitians I talk to right now are in the midst of back-to-school promotions, with focus on healthy lunchbox and afterschool snack ideas. Despite this, the holidays will be here before you know it, and it’s ideal to start planning now for promotions and events tied to this season when shoppers’ wallets are open wide. Consider these ideas for a fresh take on your nutrition services and promotions over the 2015 holiday season.
Offer the Gift of Health.
While indulgence is common over the holiday season, most people come out of the six-week time period looking to re-energize their health. If your nutrition services include one-on-one consults, offer a special price promotion on these consults such as a buy one, get one half price or a two for the price of one deal as a holiday gift idea. The later can capitalize on couples with similar health goals or friends who want to buddy up to build better lifestyle habits. Sell these offers as gift certificates prior to the holidays, and offer the option to have them bundled with a fruit basket as a great present. To measure ROI, track the number sold as well as the number redeemed. Part of the benefit of these types of certificates is that not everyone will redeem them, increasing your ROI.
Become the Corporate Party Favorite.
Many companies still offer some type of holiday party for staff, and they are often looking for new ideas or a different approach. At the same time, employee wellness is a key focus at businesses. Offer hands-on cooking classes on healthy party appetizers or holiday brunch as a corporate event which ties these two business needs together. Split people into groups and create a party atmosphere. Include SWAG bags of a recipe’s ingredients and a key cooking utensil from your retailer. Companies budget for these parties, and if billed as also hitting on employee wellness, they may have additional dollars to spend, so price classes right to benefit your ROI.
Fill a Common Void.
Retailers are so focused on Thanksgiving day itself that they offer forget about one of shoppers biggest issues in late November – what to do with all the leftovers. In October and early November, host cooking classes and demos of what to do with turkey leftovers. Pitch media on leftover concepts that can air on November 27th. Have blogs and social media posts set to run for the 27-30, all focused on fresh ideas for leftovers. Work with buyers and category managers to have an end cap or solution center re-set on the 27th, focused on great ideas for leftovers. Include recipes and tie in private label ingredients wherever possible. Make sure you’re tracking the sales of items promoted, hits in social media, and viewers of traditional media, and position results to your leadership as how you extended Thanksgiving sales into the following week.