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Digital Marketing

Man vs. Cocktail

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I’m noticing a trend: cocktail manufacturers are targeting men.

Case in point: Stoli. Interestingly, their research showed that while nearly three of four millennial men liked flavored cocktails, the vast majority 63% claimed that they avoid them in public because they were anxious about what their friends would say.

Nearly half of millennial men said that there was a negative stigma associated with men drinking flavored cocktails because they are seen as a drink for women.

Millennials are more insecure about this than older generations: 41% of millennial men think that their drink of choice is a reflection of their masculinity compared to 32% of Gen Xers and only 15% of boomers.

Stoli chose to tackle the issue head-on with a cheeky new ad campaign focusing on their flavored vodka and easy-to-order cocktails.

Adweek

Others have sought to overcome this perception hurdle by bringing the cocktail experience home. At Food Loves Tech, one of the featured gadgets was Bartesian’s home cocktail maker. Currently in pre-sales mode and seeking funding via a Kickstarter campaign, it takes the public cocktail experience into the home.


PR Industry Trends

3 Principles for Fueling Food Trends

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How did kale become so popular? Why can you not go a day without avocado toast in your Instagram feed? Why do some food trends come and go before you can say Po-Taco and others stick? The Wall Street Journal dove into the topic this week looking at the case of broccoli rabe, and the meteoric rise of avocado toast, which we are very familiar with. While the WSJ piece focused on the use of paid influencers, sometimes it is simply having the right idea at the right time in an easily translatable and approachable context.

popsugar

popsugar.com

The curious case of avocado toast began at Café Gitane in New York City in the summer of 2008. It did not take off immediately, but by 2014, everyone was taking notice. Some credited the increased awareness of the good fats and nutritional benefits along with visual social mediums like Instagram and Pinterest helping it to explode. It also fit into the “clean living” trend which is also ripe for social boasting. Working with APEAM (Avocado Producer and Exporters Association of Michocan), now Avocados From Mexico, we…

Branding

Rise of the Robo-Restaurant: Will Technology Change the Way we Eat?

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image: Tablet Magazine

The topic of technology in restaurants has been stirring up some pretty interesting discussion recently. Touch screens, interactive apps and online ordering have become an increasingly common fixture in fast-casual dining. Meanwhile, new-comers like Eatsa are pushing digital integration to a Jetsons-esque extreme with a dining experience that is almost entirely automated—where customized quinoa bowls magically appear on demand with no human in sight, as if the food itself was constructed from ones and zeroes.

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photo: New York Times

Though operators and consumers alike are showing an appetite for more tech in their diet, there is a growing concern around what this means for the future of food. Will humans in food service go the way of the dodo, or the gas station attendant? Will automated dining change the way we eat forever?

Nope.

Not really.

Look, I love paranoid fantasies as much as the next guy. The first time I ordered a sandwich from a touch screen, I too fast-forwarded to a dystopian future where apathetic humans suckled at the bosom of…

Wine, Food & Nutrition

Why is eating sensibly so uncool?

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I recently attended a conference at the NYU School of Medicine, titled Dietary Strategies for Cardiovascular Risk Reduction. The objective of the conference was to educate health care providers about the importance of diet as a crucial component in the prevention of cardiovascular disease. The diets that were discussed have a body of evidence behind them, (epidemiologic and clinical studies), to help support this recommendation – the Mediterranean diet and the DASH Diet (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension). Overall, both diets emphasize moderate amounts of low-fat dairy, low sodium, low saturated-fat and plenty of fruits, vegetables and nuts.

To me, the Mediterranean diet and the DASH eating plans are not ‘diets’ in the popular sense that we are used to. They are lifestyles that can be sustained for the long haul because they don’t restrict, eliminate or deprive you. They don’t require countless hours of counting and subtracting or require a PhD to help read the labels. This conference made me realize that these plans backed by science have never had their real moments in the spotlight. Where are their Instagram moments?  How come we never hear about a celebrity following the DASH diet?

One popular

PR Industry Trends

Too Many “Celeb” Cooks in the Kitchen?

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As we know by now, the days of Julia Child and “Mastering the Art of French Cooking” are way over.  Today, there are more cooks in the TV kitchen than you can shake a spatula at! It’s probably safe to say that many viewers are often watching these shows for pure entertainment value, with little or no intention to bring the recipes to life in their own kitchen. Trisha Yearwood, Debi Mazar, Valerie Bertinelli, Run D.M.C., Brian Boitano and Tiffani Amber Thiessen are among the many famous actors, rappers and yes,  even figure skaters —who’ve become recognizable as “foodie celebs” in their own right. Even Patriots quarterback Tom Brady has joined in on the fun, releasing a $200 cookbook which, according to Espn.com, has already sold out.

Brian-KitchenI’ve always enjoyed watching cooking shows on TV and seeing all of the new ideas and techniques on the screen that inspire and teach everyday cooks.  There are hundreds of hours of weekly food programming on stations like the Cooking Channel and the Food Network, but also on major broadcasts like FOX, NBC and ABC. It’s interesting to see how cooking shows

The Booze Bin

Sour Ale: A Beer for Wine Drinkers

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The adult beverage market is as vast as the sea, with ever changing tides to keep marketers on their toes. The explosion of the craft beer movement has brought a lot of recent attention to sour ales, which are popping up all over. Just when you thought you were learning the difference between porter and stout, sour beer is the new kid on the block. Intentionally acidic and/or tart, “sour beers” are the newest trend in alcohol segmentation.

History of Sour Beer

Marketers should understand that many of today’s products have crossover appeal; they are products that target more than one audience. A sour beer so complex, it lures the perpetual wine drinker in for a sip. A spirit aged in beer barrels, so enticing even the most staunch beer drinker would give it a try.

Have you tried Sour Beer yet?

The story of sour ales is almost as old as the story of beer itself. Modern day brewing is a sterile, thoughtful process, but it hasn’t always been so. Before pure yeast cultures were available, brewers of old would use wild yeast to start their…

PR Industry Trends

Three Marketing Musings Inspired by Eating Across Europe

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The Tapas BarI’m grateful for the opportunity to have recently vacationed in Europe again, returning to spend time in two favorite cities and also checking out a new destination. As a food lover and marketer, of course much of my travel enjoyment was punctuated by dining experiences – and in hindsight, several of those culinary moments were good reminders of trends and lessons happening in the world of marketing communications.

1. The Tapas Bar. In the beautiful old city center of Seville, I made a point to take in as much Moorish architecture, flamenco guitar music and tapas as I could in three days. Tapas are great for sharing, but the small plates format is also great for solo dining at a bar. The prawns were fantastic and the artichoke transcendent, but the surprise star of the show at La Brunilda was the beverage in the glass. Sangria? No way. I heeded advice to avoid the insipid “made for tourists” punch and tried what the locals enjoy, especially during the sunny middle of the afternoon: vermouth. Many of us Americans have probably only heard of vermouth in the context of…

PR Industry Trends

Good to the Last Bite

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Take the Earth Day Challenge to reduce waste to help the environment and your company’s bottom line

cereals_en$1 trillion worth of food is wasted annually worldwide. That equates to about a third of the food production worldwide, and it’s a growing issue, not just for the environment, but for millions of hungry people worldwide.

Just this week, more than 80 of the world’s most impactful food system leaders – researchers, farmers, chefs, policy makers, government officials, and students – gathered for a two-day summit called #FoodTank.  Panels addressed topics including nourishing the planet, improving nutrient density, the future of organic, investing in the food movement, legislating change in the food system, and more (you can actually watch the entire summit here).

Last fall, world leaders were served “trash” at the U.N. to shed light on the issue. Dishes such as a “Landfill Salad” of vegetable scraps and rejected apples and pears were given to the leaders to showcase just how edible and delicious these foods, which are typically discarded, can be. As food and agriculture leaders are combating the issue worldwide, consumers are looking to their go-to brands…

Healthcare

World Health Day 2016 Focuses on Diabetes!

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On my way to work today scrolling down my Twitter feed on the subway platform, I saw that it was World Health Day and to my delight this year’s focus is “Beat #Diabetes”!

World Health Day 2016: #Beat diabetes
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This is a topic close to my heart (and my non-working pancreas) and the main reason why food became my passion. Twenty years ago, almost to the exact day, I was diagnosed with Type-1 Diabetes AKA Juvenile, child-onset or insulin-dependent diabetes. On April 16, 1996, my world changed forever and so would my relationship with food.

Like many Type 1’s, I get frustrated at the ignorance that surrounds this disease, as most of the hype focuses on Type 2 Diabetes. My Diabetes, which accounts for approximately 1.25 million American children and adults, isn’t caused by poor lifestyle choices, lack of physical activity or an unhealthy diet. The causes for Type 1 are actually still unknown but over the years there have been many theories as to how this invisible killer comes about: bacteria and/or virus, medicinal drugs, chemical irritants and/or environmental irritants. Even still, there is much ignorance, public misconception and misperception that looms around Diabetes. Media outlets all over the

The Booze Bin

Reviving Beer: Why National Beer Day Matters

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‘Twas the day before #NationalBeerDay, and marketers everywhere

Were scratching their heads and wondering, “Why do we need another made-up “holiday?”

Is it an arbitrary date on the calendar, selected by marketers to increase product promotion?

Does anyone even care?

The story of National Beer day begins during drier times in the United States. Prohibition, which began in 1920, was the nationwide constitutional ban on alcoholic beverages, from production to transportation to purchase. It was repealed 13 years later with the enactment of the Cullen-Harrison Act. Upon signing this legislation, also known as the “Beer Permit Act,” President Franklin D. Roosevelt famously remarked, “I think this would be a good time for a beer!”

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#NationalBeerDay was born on April 7, 1933

And just like that, FDR inadvertently created National Beer Day on April 7, 1933 – the anniversary of the date the bill took effect.

 But history is only one piece of the puzzle, and smart marketers should look to the future to stay connected with their customers.

EMERGING BEER TRENDS

There was a time when beer reigned supreme in the US, and wine…