Blogger Outreach Boosts Food Lion Private Brands

The following is a guest post from my colleague Jim Cusson President of Theory House, a retail branding and marketing agency in North Carolina. Jim and I will be walking the floor next week in Chicago at PLMA, make sure you say hello and ask us how we can help you build brands.

Blogger Outreach Boosts Food Lion Private Brands

It’s not uncommon for retailers to have a blogger outreach program. But Food Lion, the U.S. division of Brussels-based Delhaize Group, recently took blogger engagement to a whole new level with its “Frugal Cook-Off” challenge. The NC-based retailer took over the Driftwood Restaurant in its backyard of Raleigh and invited area bloggers to use the restaurant’s kitchen to create nutritious, low-cost meals for a family of four using only Food Lion Private Brands, as well as fresh produce and protein options available only at Food Lion.

Food Lion FrontThe bloggers were judged on creativity, taste and awarded points for being frugal.

The winning blogger team created an entrée with two sides in 45 minutes using items shopped from a temporary, onsite Food Lion pantry of store brand products. The total cost of the meal was $15.00.

Food Lion Frugal Cookoff_0004_1My team from Theory House produced the event and we were onsite with Food Lion’s digital team to monitor and support the social media activation. Just an hour into the event, thousands of social media impressions had been generated, and with promotional assets being delivered to the bloggers that number will really climb.

Food Lion Frugal Cookoff_0003_2This event really makes sense for Food Lion as women still do the majority of household food shopping and most read blogs. National women’s blogger network BlogHer found in a survey this year that 49 percent of all women, and 74% of those aged 25 to 34, read blogs. The network said blog readers trust product advice from bloggers they know, and turn to blogs more than any other social media form to research purchase decisions.



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Christopher Durham

Christopher Durham is the president of My Private Brand and the co-founder of The Vertex Awards. He is a strategist, author, consultant and retailer who built brands at Delhaize-owned Food Lion, and lead strategy and brand development for Lowe’s Home Improvement. He has consulted with retailers around the world on their private brand portfolios including: Family Dollar, Petco, Staples, Office Depot, Best Buy, Metro (Canada), TLW (Taiwan) and Hola (Taiwan).

Durham has published five definitive books on private brands, including his first book, Fifty2: The My Private Brand Project. In 2017, he will debut his newest book, Vanguard: Vintage Originals, a visual tour of innovation and disruption in private brand going back to the mid-1800’s.
Dynamic in his presentation while down to earth and frank in his opinions, he has presented at numerous conferences, including FUSE, The Dieline Conference, Packaging that Sells, Omnishopper and PLMA’a annual trade show in Chicago.

Durham lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife, Laraine, and two daughters, Olivia and Sarah.