Food companies need to develop online personalities to successfully connect with savvy consumers who expect a human connection, according to nutritionist and social media guru Jenny Westerkamp.
Speaking to FoodNavigator at Food Vision 2014 in Cannes, the registered dietician, nutritionist and author said for that for younger consumers, food and social media went hand in hand.
“Generation Y is such a heavy user of social media and we’re so used to having that human connection all the time… Generation Y is very much ready for more food interaction on social media,” she said.
Crucial: Shaping and tailoring your company personality
However, Westerkamp said that to successful engage with these consumers, brands needed to develop online personalities – like humans.
“Because on social media we expect to engage with people, if brands can act like people then they’re going to be much better received by the consumer. That’s the main point.”
She said companies should carefully consider their personality choice - be that funny, a thought-leader or a company that asks and responds to questions – but what really mattered was the likeability factor.
“That’s all that really matters – how likeable you are,” she said.
Asked if companies needed to consider varying personality style across different platforms, Westerkamp said yes, that was essential because consumer had different expectations from Twitter versus Facebook, for example.