Newspapers once reigned as king as the primary source of information for consumers, but with the introduction of social media in the late-‘90s, the communications landscape has rapidly transformed. According to a study by Backlinko, social networking platforms nearly tripled their total user base in the last decade—from 970 million in 2010 to 4.48 billion users in July 2021.
This dramatic increase of new social media users parallels the year-over-year increase in the number of social media platforms flooding the market. With nearly 300 social networking sites available globally, consumers are now receiving their information about current events from across the web. Beyond social media, news is being delivered through a multitude of other communications channels. This includes newspapers (print and online), e-mail, text messages, apps, podcasts and workplace messaging tools like Slack and Microsoft Teams.
With stiff competition in the communications space, how does one cut through the clutter to elevate their news and reach their desired audience? By leveraging as many of those platforms as possible.
For example, in the past six months, Western Growers has capitalized on both traditional and new media to expand its reach. Below are two campaigns WG recently executed to further its footprint beyond one platform, ultimately resulting in more impressions, reach, engagement and brand ambassadors.
Farm Fresh Video Series
WG produced and released a three-part video series on Facebook demonstrating the extraordinary skills and ingenuity of the farmers and farmworkers who work to bring food to America’s tables.
Main Platform: Facebook
- Press Release: Once the videos started to gain traction on Facebook, a press release was distributed to alert the media (and public) about the series and draw even more attention to the videos posted on both Facebook and YouTube.
- YouTube: To increase the videos’ organic traffic, the three videos were posted on WG’s YouTube channel. Posting the videos on YouTube also helped grow WG’s visibility on search engine results pages.
- The videos received a total of 15 million views
- 392,000 people interacted with the video (comment, like, share)
- WG garnered 15,000 new Facebook fans as a direct result of the videos
- Six media outlets published information about the video series based on the press release, reaching more than 110,000 people
“No Water = No Crops” Blitz
To support federal advocacy efforts to invest in water infrastructure and shed light on the dire impacts of the drought on farms across California, WG released a “No Water = No Crops” video series on Facebook and YouTube. The series featured nine videos where four California farmers (Joe Del Bosque of Del Bosque Farms, Ross Franson of Woolf Farming, Jared Plumlee of Booth Ranches, Vincent Ricchiuti of ENZO Olive Oil Company) speak about the impact the drought is having on their operations and the cascading losses that result to farmworkers and their communities.
Main Platform: Federal Advocacy
Western Growers joined a national coalition of more than 200 agricultural organizations and urban and rural water districts to urge the federal government to invest in the nation’s aging water facilities. Since early 2020, the coalition sent letters to Congress and the president, advocated on the hill, placed op-eds in media publications throughout the west, posted on social media to build public awareness and encouraged respective association members to reach out to their representatives.
- Video Series: WG filmed, edited and posted videos to educate consumers on how the drought is forcing farmers to abandon crops. Each video vividly depicted the crops being sacrificed due to lack of water. The videos also ended with a call to action of urging congressional leaders to invest in aging water infrastructure to prevent further cuts to farms in future droughts.
- Press Release: To elevate the message and further the video reach, WG wrote and distributed a press release to media. The press release contained quotes from farmers featured in the video; embeds of selected videos; and links to all the videos.
- Media Interviews: As a result of the press release, WG facilitated numerous interviews between journalists and farms featured in the videos.
- Social Media: The videos and press release were posted on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter—with a tailored message for each respective audience.
- 13 media outlets covered the story, resulting in a reach of 14.4 million
- The videos received a total of 65,800 views
- 3,000 people interacted with the video (comment, like, share)
- In August 2021, the U.S. Senate passed a bipartisan infrastructure bill that included $8 billion to support water infrastructure in the West