Does your health food marketing need a major boost in 2023? Our health food marketing tips are a great first step! Whether you’re a new business struggling to make sales or a pro health food retailer who is confused about new FTC guidelines for health food businesses, you’re in the right place!
We’ve tried and tested each of these health food marketing tips with our clients, so we know first-hand that these tips can help your foodie brand reach MORE hungry consumers.
👉 Land your products on health food store shelves instead of working the local farmer’s markets.
👉 Increase your profit margin and target more affluent customers who loyally repurchase.
👉 Move your business online to sell to a national consumer base or increase website sales.
👉 Share your health-first mission and send your gluten-free, non-GMO + organic, probiotic-packed, or KETO foods out into the world to HELP people live their best lives! (The do-gooder in us talking! ❤️)
Are these some of your business goals for 2023? Read on to master health food marketing tips for your Whole Foods-bound brand!
1. Invest In SEO Content Marketing ASAP
If you remember anything from this guide, let it be this: SEO is the future of marketing. It can help your website and social channels succeed and it’s super affordable. So don’t sleep on it! It takes time to build SEO value—So START SEO RIGHT NOW.
Does your website have kickass SEO copywriting and an educational blog that helps customers find your brand? Are you converting hundreds of new customers per month with strategic content marketing? If not, get on it! This is one of the most effective ways to ORGANICALLY attract your perfect customer without spending a dime on advertising.
In fact, in lieu of recent FTC guideline updates that are forcing health food brands to be more aware of their duty to substantiate health claims to consumers, many of our health and wellness clients are refocusing a portion of their ads budget on SEO strategies instead.
SEO keyword-rich website copy and blogs can win you more qualified, purchase-ready website visitors. They build trust, give consumers a brilliant reason to come back to your site, and teach your customers how your products can enrich their lives and solve their unique problems.
2. Embrace Video Advertising
Did you know that 84% of people say they’ve been convinced to purchase a product because of a brand’s video content? Yet, most health food small businesses still DON’T EMBRACE VIDEO ADS! We get it—video content can be intimidating. But, while there’s undoubtedly a higher “barrier to entry” for video ads, they are also WAY more effective.
Why hasn’t your health food brand embraced video advertising?
👉 Video ads have historically fallen flat. You aren’t sure why.
👉 What should your video ads be about? You need some strategic guidance!
👉 You are camera-shy and don’t want to be the subject of the video. It feels too cheesy.
👉 It’s expensive to shoot professional videos and you aren’t sure of the return on investment.
👉 You know nothing about video production or what questions to ask to find a good videographer.
All extremely valid reasons! But health-focused video ads typically earn much higher engagement and conversion rates! Health food marketing demands education and awareness, and video is the most effective way to deliver it. So we suggest you find a trustworthy videographer and get to it!
3. Revisit Competitive Research and Market Positioning
Without understanding your competition, your place in the market, and the niche you are filling, you will struggle to SCALE and GROW your health food business sustainably.
Many entrepreneurs get excited and skip the research and development part of the business-building process. While your business can certainly still succeed without this important step, we’ve found that this is one of the most important health food marketing tips for health food businesses of all types and sizes.
Do you need a better grasp of your market, competition, and niche?
👉 Are you selling your products at the right price to be profitable and grow?
👉 Do you need to achieve certifications (certified organic, gluten-free, etc) to earn the trust of high-value consumers and health food retailers?
👉 Should you give more thought to your product lines to diversify OR limit what you sell? Are you considering customer feedback?
👉 How can you adapt your product offerings, branding and packaging, and online presence to appeal to your ideal consumer base?
The health food industry is constantly evolving, and it’s becoming a VERY saturated space. You may need to niche down, re-brand, or simply refine your product messaging to truly grow. And what worked for your health food brand when you launched won’t necessarily work forever! Revisit competitive research and market positioning frequently to stay on top!
4. Understand Your Target Customer
Have you developed a “customer avatar” to help you and your staff understand your ideal customer? Ok YES, it sounds super cheesy, but it works!
Write down the imaginary backstory, likes, dislikes, demographics, and beliefs of the consumer you think would love your products. This is your “customer avatar”, and you can have several to give life to each type of customer you want to target. Some businesses even go so far as to draw or design an image of their customers and give them fun names!
When you have finished your customer avatars, it’s time for some brutal honesty. Would your products truly appeal to this customer avatar? Why or why not? With the help of some marketing psychology research, you can use customer avatars to pinpoint how your brand can improve or adapt to sell more.
5. Earn Trust with Effective Branding
Consumers are more informed than ever about their health, and the health food industry is BOOMING! If you want to compete, you need an authentic, trust-building branding strategy to woo customers.
Many health food brands that come to us for help scaling their business require a re-brand to break into larger, high-value markets. This is usually because branding, logo, and the way your products look have been second fiddle to TASTE! But customers won’t get to taste your product if your unfocused branding prevents them from trying it. If you want to stand out you need a brand story that inspires FEELINGS from your customer that’ll help them remember you.
Could your branding be the reason you’re struggling to reach a more affluent audience? Do your branding and logo truly convey your healthy mission and the benefits of your products? Do they tell a memorable story that will help consumers understand WHY they should buy your products instead of the competition?
Not sure if your branding is up to par? We’re here to help you name your biz, rethink your branding, and choose a color palette that’s just as scrumptious as your health food products! Check out our branding services here.
6. Switch To Eco-friendly Packaging
A major trend in the health food industry is toward more functional and eco-friendly packaging. We suggest you ride this wave to earn street cred with eco-conscious consumers. And because it’s just good business!
Can you switch to recyclable or compostable materials or more earth-friendly packaging like cellulose, cornstarch, and mushroom materials? It’s an added expense to use earth-friendly packaging, but showing your dedication to green ideals allows you to position your product as trustworthy and ethical.
That means eco-conscious customers will be willing to pay more for your products AND be more likely to repurchase because your brand helps them reduce their carbon footprint! We witness major sales increases when our sustainable health food clients embrace eco-friendly ethics, so give the people what they want.
7. Focus on Your Story and “Why”
Whether you like it or not, you and your employees are the faces of your brand. Your customers want to know who makes your products and WHY. The more you share your brand story on your packaging, website, and on social media, the more trust you’ll build and the more sales you’ll make!
Did your grandmother teach you to make your famous secret recipe? Did you found your health food business because you were looking for a healthy product and couldn’t find it without fillers and preservatives? Were you inspired to start your biz by the produce grown in your backyard? What’s your “WHY”?
You may feel like your story is boring and no one wants to hear it. But, trust us, with the help of a skilled health and wellness copywriting team, your backstory can be exciting, trust-inspiring, and…PROFITABLE!
8. Show Them How It’s Made
Modern consumers want nitty-gritty details, especially when it comes to the health foods they purchase. Keep in mind, they may have been misled by disingenuous advertising in the past. The health food industry is riddled with “all natural” products chock full of not-so-natural ingredients.
If you want to earn their trust, the easiest way is to tell and show them how your products are made, where you source your ingredients, and the high standards you uphold at your manufacturing facilities. Plus, all the fun you and your employees have making your product!
We often help health food brands build a “Why Our Brand” or “FAQ” page on their website that gives consumers this information AND is amazing for organic search engine optimization. This can help tempt Google and other search engines to send more customers to your website. If you add video content to this page, it will perform even better!
9. Focus on Ethics, Quality, and Transparency
An overwhelming 77% of consumers prefer to purchase from brands that share their values. Your target customers want to know that they’re giving their money to an honest business that CARES about its employees, customers, and community.
That’s why it’s important for your branding, website copy, ads, blog, signage, and packaging to focus on ethics, quality, and transparency. Because these are your main differentiators! Shared values are why modern consumers want to buy from your brand instead of grabbing the cheapest option at their corner supermarket or on Amazon.
Ways to show that your biz is ethical and transparent:
👉 Add relevant certifications and info about your mission to your packaging.
👉 Donate to worthy causes, like Greenpeace or PETA, and recognize their work on social media.
👉 Consider launching a one-purchased-one-donated program or pledging 1% for the Planet.
👉 Host a quarterly employee volunteer event—like a trail cleanup or tree planting—and add it to social media and your website.
👉 Create an infographic that illustrates the journey your product takes from ingredient source to delivery at their market.
👉 Tell personal, emotional employee stories that illustrate why your employees want to work for your business. How does your business impact the everyday lives of employees positively?
10. Get on Youtube…Fast!
YouTube is owned by Google, so this can really help your overall SEO performance and brand awareness. It also gives your brand MAJOR street cred.
Your viewers love cooking demonstrations, educational breakdowns of common nutrition questions, and Q&A or myth-busting videos from health food brands and nutrition experts. Is this something you can create?
Brand exposure on YouTube is especially helpful if your health food business focuses on a niche customer, like those who eat gluten-free, keto, or paleo. Don’t forget to add relevant keywords and a transcript to your video to reach your audience through search! And make sure not to make any health claims that could land your business in hot water with the FTC!
11. Educate and Become THE Authority
Health food brands often feature innovative, new ingredients and require new ways of thinking about our health!
You may assume that your customers are already aware of the benefits of your healthy food ingredients, but you likely need to TEACH and REMIND them.
From sea moss gel to kombucha, explaining the BENEFITS and TASTE of your health food products in website copywriting and social posts is what will win you that sale. Health food marketing tips for the win!
How can you become a “thought leader” in your corner of the health food industry?
👉 Educational posts on social media, including info-packed Carousel posts and single-image mini infographics.
👉 Add an SEO-enriched FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) section on your website.
👉 Well-planned email campaigns that answer popular questions and offer attention-grabbing, unexpected benefits, product uses, and real customer success stories.
👉 Hold Live Q&A’s on Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok.
👉 Publish in-depth free health guides and e-books to help your audience reach their health goals with your products.
👉 Give in-store demos and boost word-of-mouth recommendations of your products.
👉 Participate in community and national health events as a vendor or sponsor.
12. Team Up With Similar Brands
Do some research and find fellow brands that offer complementary (but not competitor) products that appeal to a similar market. Combine forces for a delish health food marketing campaign!
Ways to collaborate with other foodie small business owners:
👉 Host a group giveaway—a gift basket is always appreciated! Use the giveaway to get email list sign-ups, social followers, or encourage user-generated content, like photos and videos of customers enjoying your products.
👉 Run a social media ad for a free joint webinar to build interest and grow your email lists.
👉 Film a Collab for Instagram or go Live together to tap into other audiences.
👉 Release a limited-edition, seasonal product or kit that combines your best-selling products.
13. Embrace Instagram Reels, YouTube Shorts, and TikTok
Social media and content marketing are quickly evolving toward video content, yet many small business food retailers still aren’t regularly posting video content to social. Not to beat a dead horse, but social media video is what your customers want. Make sure you’re giving it to them!
We find that the main reason health food businesses aren’t posting video is because they don’t have a social media video strategy OR they don’t have the time and staff to capture video content. They aren’t sure what their videos should be about, who will make and post them, and how to optimize each post so it gets the most reach.
Need help? Reach out to LoudBird! We help health food brands get organized with a social media video strategy, train employees to make awesome social media videos, and schedule video content with captions and hashtags that woo customers.
14. Attend Customer, Industry, and Wholesaler Events
While your digital presence is of utmost importance, you should also have “boots on the ground”. Where is your audience actually hanging out? Find out and put your brand front and center at in-person and online events.
👉 If your goal is to land a spot on their health food grocery shelf, you should plan to attend trade shows OR catch decision-makers in a more relaxed environment by attending an in-house event.
👉 To rub elbows with consumers and talk to real customers, crash events at your local health and wellness store, gym, or yoga studio. Or volunteer to teach a class and share your knowledge…and the benefits of buying your products!
👉 Don’t forget about online events! To reach a national audience, teach free online classes or volunteer as a webinar discussion panel expert with a trusted organization in your industry.
15. Earn Industry Press and Awards
Sign up for press inquiry services like Help a Reporter. These daily email digests allow you to respond to journalists writing for Forbes, Shape, Men’s Health, and many other well-known publications that your customer reads.
Plus, you can use any earned press coverage to build trust with your audience. Mention coverage in social media highlights, on your website press page, or ask your web developer to add an “as seen on” section on your Homepage.
16. Share Quantitative Data
Your health food marketing might do a great job of telling your audience about the benefits of your products, but why should customers believe you? You need to incorporate hard data (numbers and stats!) to be taken seriously.
Are there well-documented third-party studies that prove that your ingredients are effective at improving general health? Have health experts and scientists concluded that one of your main ingredients helps with XYZ? Can you hire a reputable expert to conduct your own peer-reviewed research study that proves the health benefits of your product?
While you can’t make claims in health food marketing, you CAN site relevant studies to back up the benefits of your products.
You can also share results from internal surveys. Survey customers about the benefits of your health food! You can then say that 6 out of 10 people found them helpful…and yummy! Just make sure to specify the number of people you surveyed AND warn consumers that their results may vary.
17. Validate Your Biz with User-Generated Content
Instead of talking about how delicious and nutritious your health food products are, let your customers do it for you! User-generated content is images, videos, testimonials, and other content made by your customers.
Despite the recent theft of the term within the influencer marketing space, user-generated content (UGC) IS NOT paid influencer marketing. User-generated content is made without a budget by real customers and is usually pretty rough around the edges. It’s consumers sharing a product they love because they want others to enjoy it!
Modern consumers trust user-generated content because it’s REAL! It can show your products at their dinner table, on a picnic, or in a lunchbox.
Try running an organic social media contest that asks fans to post a picture of why they love your products! Create a special, branded hashtag for your campaign and give daily shoutouts to the best fan content on your social media profiles and website. Then, create a section on your website or social media accounts dedicated to “Fan Love”.
18. Work with Micro-Influencers
Is your health food brand new? Do you need to majorly broaden your audience to increase sales? Then you’re going to need a realistic social media budget.
One super-effective and affordable way to increase brand awareness is to enlist the help of micro-influencer marketing.
Research 10-15 social media accounts relevant to your industry with under 50K followers or subscribers. Sponsorship rates within this group are often vastly more affordable than “big name” influencers, and smaller influencers tend to have a better engagement rate with followers. That means your sponsored post will likely earn a better response!
19. Grow Your Email Marketing List
Here at LoudBird, we see many small businesses DOING EMAIL MARKETING ALL WRONG. Or, not sending out email marketing campaigns at all! That’s why we had to mention it in our top health food marketing tips for 2023.
Do you have a healthy, engaged email list? This is one of the top ways to not only earn NEW customers but also to keep in touch with loyal consumers who repeatedly purchase your health food products. Trust us, you need content marketing!
The most amazing thing about a robust email list is that it BELONGS TO YOU! Your Instagram or Facebook sales funnels are the property of Mark Zuckerberg. Google’s algorithm controls your SEO traffic. But your email list belongs to you, forever.
We often run social media ad campaigns to convert followers and fans to email list subscribers. You can use downloadable recipe booklets, e-books, or meal plan and diet guides to help you gather email addresses from interested consumers who have never heard of your health food products.
20. Automate Email Marketing with Templates
Email marketing is an oldie but a goldie! But it can take a lot of time and effort to get it right, even if you have a large email list.
Are you sending multiple promotional emails each week with zero response from customers? Do you have a monthly newsletter and blog, but have not invested in SEO optimization to boost website traffic? Are customers nurtured with a drip email welcome series, retargeted if they abandon their shopping cart, and educated about new products and press coverage in a way that makes them want to click?
Template automation can help you avoid common pitfalls AND amp up your email marketing strategy without stress or overwhelm. That’s probably why reusable, versatile email templates are one of our most in-demand content marketing services for health food brands!
How Do I DO These Brilliant Health Food Marketing Tips!?
Is your health food brand hungry for small business growth!? Hopefully, these 20 health food marketing tips will help you take a few small but mighty steps toward growing your empire!
Need some help? LoudBird is THE BEST when it comes to no-bull, compliant health food marketing services like SEO and competitive research, social media, brand strategy, and email and content marketing. Don’t take our word for it…listen to our past and present clients!
Ready to scale your health food business, like, yesterday?! Reach out to me RIGHT NOW to get your free consultation—all you need is 20 minutes, an idea of your monthly or annual marketing budget, and some thoughts about what you’d like to achieve with your marketing. We’ll do the rest!
This article was originally posted in August 2022, but has been updated to give you the most recent and effective health food marketing tips for 2023! We like to keep our images, statistics, and info FRESH. Enjoy!