Marketing manager for Neff Jo Eyers explains how the cooking brand is using social media to talk to consumers. What can retailers learn about its communication for their own channels?
Q: How important is social media to the Neff brand and how has that developed over the past couple of years?
A: It’s extremely important. We launched our Facebook channel in 2012, it was a very different outlook and mindset then.
In 2012, it had little to no brand or product information around it, it was really focused just on baking.
Back then, brands weren’t to be associated with promoting themselves on social media. So, there was no brand recognition or tie-in to Neff.
Now it’s changed, as social has become more and more popular. People now expect the brand to be present across all the social mediums now.
It is more about rich content and engagement now than it is about the ‘likes’.
So the content we put out there, we want to see high engagement to the people we are serving that content to, to make sure they are finding it worthwhile.
Once you have that engagement, we hope they will stay with us forever more.
Q: Which social media channels do you use and what is the most popular?
A: Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram. Facebook is one of our biggest channels. We have 467,000 followers on our Facebook page alone, which is huge for us.
The algorithms in Facebook constantly fluctuate, so you have to find different ways to be able cut through it to make sure the content is being delivered and we are reaching that huge following.
The product information there is rich, with recipe content as well.
We have 37,000 followers on Twitter and Pinterest is a growing channel for us.
It’s somewhere you can get kitchen inspiration and link the product into desirable kitchen design, as well as baking and cooking recipe content. We are growing that constantly.
Instagram has taken off as well. It’s where everyone just drools over food imagery. It’s perfect for us.
The core ethos of the brand is ‘cooking with enthusiasm’, and that’s what we try to evoke in everything we do.
Delivering recipe content and linking that back to the features of our product is really important. We have some really lovely imagery to support the Instagram channel.
Q: Who are you talking to on these channels? Is it the same demographic?
A: We only talk to consumers. It’s practically an even split between men and women but with a slightly higher skew to females.
Q: What posts have been the most engaging to capture consumer interest?
A: Recipes: everybody thinks about food from morning to night.
It’s the first thing you think about when you wake up, and the last thing you think about when you go to bed – what you are cooking tomorrow?
I think people just want to be inspired by gorgeous looking food. We try really hard to then push people through the funnel and link that back to the features within our products.
We use influencers on our channel as well, to really support us in telling a different type of story, with food bloggers Nicky Corbishley of Kitchen Sanctuary and Jane Sarchet of The Hedgecombers.
Nicky Corbishley tells her story within the kitchen and generates a lot of recipe content for us, including video and photography.
Jane Sarchet talks about the provenance of the food and where she goes to shop for it, as well as how to grow it. She then comes into the kitchen to cook recipes using her Neff appliances.
We also acknowledge the majority of our followers are Neff owners and want that recipe content delivered. So, we are able to support them once they have purchased, as well.
Q: How would you describe the way Neff communicates?
A: Our tonality, in the way we speak to people, is very casual and informal. We are passionate and inspiring but not really overpowering.
It’s the people who are important to us and that is what inspires us as a brand, so the way we speak to them is ultimately just as important.
It’s about having fun, and ultimately enjoyment, and about engaging and communicating with Neff.
Twitter is one of those platforms where you do have to be quite flippant, on-conversation, and quick to respond.
You need to be present and quite reactive should there be any conversations that are relevant for you to jump on to.
Q: What can kitchen retailers learn from your social media activity?
A: Interestingly, we have just been at an event, Big Festival in the Cotswolds.
It’s a three-day event [combing food and music] where we heavily present [cooking using the brand] across four stages.
It’s the second year our MasterPartners have attended and we wanted them to see Neff in a different light and how we are utilising our social media channels for promotion.
It’s attracting consumers in a different way, so they will talk to you before purchasing and even after the purchase.
Q: Do you provide digital assets to help your retailers reach consumers?
A: We do. Whether it’s just a social campaign or an above-the-line campaign, we provide them with a suite of social posts and content for them to be able to schedule into their calendars.
It’s so important that we all share the same content. It’s so much more powerful and has so much more impact. We try to support our dealers with as much social content as we can.
I think the challenge for them is utilising it properly and I think moving forward we’ll do our best to help support them in understanding what we can do. I think at the Big Feastival event we really showcased that.
We briefed our MasterPartners with a content pack prior to that, so they could communicate out.
We also gave them a talk on-site, with regards to the expectations of the content they should capture to push out to their own customer base.
Q: Can you categorically state social media has translated into sales for Neff?
A: Without a doubt! We track every piece of content we do to see where that lands on our website.
It then gets translated from a page view to a dealer location search. That dealer locator search, to me, shows intent to find out where to go to ultimately purchase the product.
It shows the money we invested on social media has an impact. Social media can not only be effective from a sales perspective, but also a brand awareness perspective.