Staying Ahead of the Direct-to-Consumer Curve

Given the exponential growth in media and marketing over the past few decades, Americans are being bombarded by messages intended to influence their behavior at an ever-increasing rate. Couple that with the growth of ecommerce in the grocery/food space, and the need to influence consumer purchasing decisions before they get to the store—or their computer—has never been greater.

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As consumers look to navigate their way through the clutter and confusion of the modern media landscape—and as they rethink the way they shop for food, it’s crucial that healthy food brands rethink the ways in which they’re communicating with them. Direct-to-consumer tactics have always provided marketers with an opportunity to speak directly to consumers, but in the current environment, are standard DTC approaches sufficient?

What has typically made direct-to-consumer platforms an effective tactic is the ability to:

1. Reach the right consumers
While more traditional marketing methods cast a wide net in hopes of scooping up a few of the right consumers along the way, direct-to-consumer platforms can take a more targeted approach. 

2. Create a personalized experience
No two consumers are exactly the same, and they don’t want to be treated as if they are. Unique consumer information and data to can customize the marketing message to match the consumer.

3. Build a relationship
By eliminating the middleman, so to speak, DTC can help brands build a direct—sometimes two-way—relationship with consumers. 

What this tried-and-true approach lacks, however, are two factors that have become increasingly important in the world of health & nutrition—trust and credibility. How can healthy brands use DTC tactics to build trust and credibility?  

4. Build trust and credibility through trusted advisors
When a brand message is delivered directly to consumers from a source they trust implicitly—their own health professional—the message comes with credibility built right in.

An effective DTC approach for healthy brands is a professional-to-consumer approach, not simply a brand-to-consumer approach. Health professionals are not only an effective way to build trust and credibility, they also build on what DTC already does well—keeping your brand ahead of the DTC curve.