This quarter’s “Brand in Focus” takes a look at the branding and digital marketing efforts of Bolthouse Farms. The company’s web page promotes their Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram pages. Noticeably missing from the links at the top for me, is the brand’s Vine page as that is how Bolthouse Farms originally caught my attention.
Bolthouse Farms’ web site is appealing to the eye, presenting a colorful display that draws your eyes to particular areas of the landing page. Links at the top direct you to the company’s blog, information about the company itself and its products, and a store locator for where you will be able to purchase Bolthouse Farms’ products. As you will quickly notice on the home page, Bolthouse Farms has committed itself to social media, as under the rotating images are updates across their Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram pages.
Let’s dive into each one of these pages …
With over 450,000 Likes, the Bolthouse Farms Facebook page is the company’s leading social media page in terms of total audience. Once a day, the owner of the Facebook page drops in an update for their followers. With each update you will typically see somewhere between 100-250 “Likes” and at least a handful of comments.
The latter really caught my eye as Bolthouse Farms is responsive to the comments that are put on their page. Rather than deleting negative comments/feedback, the page owners address the customers’ concerns and personalizes the message. Below you will see the team address a false concern about their products. Not only does it clear the air, you can see that others on the page now know the truth about Bolthouse Farms’ products and state they are willing to buy their products once again.
Every post has a colorful image to go with it, but you will also find the occasional, short video as well. These short videos help change things up on the page and, to me at least, help build that engagement between the brand and its customers/followers.
The final item that caught my attention was Bolthouse Farms’ events that they carry over on Twitter. The company sets up Facebook Events to invite people over to their “Twitter Party” and promotes the hashtags to use for each.
Again, the first thing you notice on the Bolthouse Farms’ Twitter landing page is the vibrant colors and banner image at the top of the page. What I really like about their efforts on Twitter are the RT’s they send out to their entire audience. If a customer mentions Bolthouse in their own feed, the owner of the Twitter page is likely to RT that message. These efforts bring a little extra engagement with the audience.
Aside from the RT’s, you will typically see one tweet per day from the Bolthouse Farms account itself. Occasionally you will find a Twitter chat with others on a pertinent/relevant topic like the one here from 12/17 that brings in the #holidayveggies hashtag (or similar):
Bolthouse Farms has over 13.6K followers on Twitter (at the time of this writing), which is significantly less than their Facebook audience. I’m actually a little surprised at the gap between the two given that efforts are consistent between the two platforms. You will find ~10 Favorites and/or RT’s for each message the page sends out to its audience. Something feels off on the “ROI” on their Twitter efforts but I can’t put my finger on it.
In fact, Bolthouse Farms sees a larger audience on their Instagram page (16.3K followers) vs. Twitter and engagement levels are much stronger. With the visual appeal that the brand brings to the table across social media, maybe it isn’t too surprising to see the stronger level of engagement on the more visually-driven Instagram.
The fan base’s level of engagement on Instagram is solid as well – as you will typically see ~200 Instagram “Likes” on their daily update on the site, along with at least a handful of comments per update.
Instagram is (or at least feels like) a perfect compliment for Bolthouse Farms’ SM strategy given how eye-catching the majority of their updates are.
Vine took social media by storm when it was officially launched at the beginning of 2013 under the Twitter umbrella and one of the brands winning on Vine was most certainly Bolthouse Farms. However, the site’s momentum has slowed down over the course of 2014 and the company is no exception, as this is the last Vine that Bolthouse Farms has posted … back on 1/15/14
I certainly don’t blame the company for shifting its social media focus away from Vine. However, it was doing a great job on the site. As mentioned at the beginning, Vine was actually the platform that put my attention on Bolthouse. It was a nice point of difference for the brand but there is likely data that suggested it wasn’t worth the efforts it was making (at least that is my hypothesis).
If there is one point of difference for Bolthouse Farms vs. other food/grocery brands that come to mind, it is certainly the visual appeal. Its efforts across platforms leverage this across banner images on their profile pages and daily updates to their respective audiences. Instagram is a perfect platform for the company to work with and the efforts seem to show.
Where do you think Bolthouse Farms is strong across social media? Where do you see room for improvement?
Let us know in the Comments section below.
Happy 2015 everyone!