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Gluten-Free Fans Carry Torch for Betty Crocker

2009 July 13

In an article in today’s Advertising Age, Emily Bryson York writes that by using Social Media channels, General Mills can address specific niche segments of their market without spending large sums of money.

In this case the story revolves around General Mills and the Betty Crocker Brand introducing Gluten Free products.

Gluten Free foods are sought by the small percentage of the population with Celiac disease.  And though the total numbers may be small, they are very well connected.

According to Dena Larson, marketing manager-baking products at General Mills, since those with Celiac disease were already clamoring for gluten-free news, General Mills knew consumers would carry the message.  And they were correct!  Rumors that General Mills was developing gluten-free baking products spread across Twitter like wildfire.

To further their message, the company also partnered with the major Celiac disease foundations, and invested in search-engine optimization because the first thing a person does when diagnosed with Celiac disease  is turn to search engines to figure out what they can eat.   And when they do, General Mills and Betty Crocker want them to be directed to their websites when they enter ‘gluten-free’ or ‘Celiac’.

Is there a segment of your audience that shares a passion with one of your product niches?  Take a few minutes today to think about the market segments you serve.  There’s probably an niche audience that’s more than willing to passionately share your story with everyone in their network.  It costs a lot less than a typical media buy.  And because your fans are telling the story – and not just you – the story itself is more believable.

Just make sure your product is good before you throw it into the Social Media Mix.  Remember, the customer is now in control.  Looks like Betty Crocker has a hit on their hands with their new Gluten Free Cake Mix!  See the video below.


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