Social, Updates

Food Marketing Trends in 2017

Libby Headon Digital Marketing Manager

From Chatbots, Beyond Meat and better ways to measure marketing ROI. Here’s everything you need to know about Food Marketing trends in 2017.

1. Chatbots

Chatbots are computer programs designed to simulate a conversation with human users, and we expect to see a lot more of them in 2017. Their purpose is to reduce customer service costs and pressures, by generating automatic responses to frequently asked questions. Advanced bots can be integrated with existing systems like Facebook. For example, users can send an instant message to your restaurant’s Facebook page, via Facebook Messenger, and instantly book a table, or place an order.

To demonstrate how chatbots work, watch this video of a Burger King chatbot in action.

 2. Vegetarianism

Although vegetarianism may not be to everyone’s taste, the lifestyle is gaining popularity – and is a certain food marketing trend in 2017. According to a report by global food, restaurant and hotel consultancy Baum + Whiteman; Tyson Foods, the United States’ largest meat processor, has secured a 5% interest in Beyond Meat, a plant-based ‘meat’ company. Additionally, Impossible Foods has received support from Silicon Valley investors.

Taking these findings into account, we expect to see an increase in the demand for vegetarian and vegan dishes, as well as a greater variety of options.

Image of Beyond Meat's, Beyond Burger packages on store shelves, highlighting packaging that says, Plant Based Burger Patties. Vegetarianism is a 2017 Food Marketing trend.

3. Online Tracking of Offline Sales

As marketers become more digitally-savvy, the more social networks need to keep up with their competitors, by constantly improving their advertising products. For instance, Facebook’s new store visits tracking feature, which supports their advertising metrics. Although this could be considered as a general trend in marketing, it’s gain traction and becoming a food marketing trend within the industry.

In the past, social advertising objectives could only track awareness, engagements, online/phone bookings and eCommerce sales. Thanks to the introduction of store visits reporting, now advertisers can:

● See how many people come to their store after seeing a Facebook campaign
● Optimise advert creative, delivery and targeting based on store visits
● Analyse results across stores and regions to plan and optimise future campaigns

Although Facebook’s new store visit tool is a step in the right direction, there are still some limitations with this new feature. Facebook’s store visits reporting tool can only be used with Local Awareness campaigns. These campaigns target users geographically, for example, people within a 20 km radius of your store. But doesn’t allow you to target users based on interests or behaviors.

Popdeem: Generating Offline Sales, Online Through Loyalty

Popdeem provides a cost-effective method to promote your business to a targeted audience and tracks footfall. We provide a streamlined, social rewards platform that allows brands to easily reward customers for sharing their experiences on social. For example, you can offer a 10% discount as an incentive if a customer a checks-in, or shares a photo on social networks. After comparing different strategies, we found that social loyalty reward activities boost organic reach and generate highly-prized, peer-to-peer influence between friends, which can help stimulate store visits and/or app downloads.

From an analytics perspective, Popdeem tracks how many people have shared their experience and monitors how many people have redeemed their reward. Giving you clear insights into return on investment, by tracking how many people visited your store to redeem their discount/coupon.

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Within the Popdeem dashboard, you can send a notification about the competition to a targeted audience. You can target users by their level of influence and loyalty to your brand, which you can’t measure or target using social networks.

See Popdeem in action in this video.

If you’re interested in trialing the Popdeem product to grow your business or would like more information, please click here.

4. The Evolutions of Online Ordering

Following on from the success of online ordering over the past few years, the service has evolved into different variations, yet they are all still offering the same convenience. Companies like ChowNow, Olo, FlipDish, and LevelUp, facilitate online ordering services through white-label Apps for restaurants. This is a massive food marketing trend for 2017.

In 2017, we can expect to see more startups capitalizing on this trend. For example, Yuma, Umi Kitchen, and ChefKiss are all homemade food marketplaces, where users can order online or offer homemade food in their community. Over time, it will be interesting to see how these startups pan-out, and the implications they have on food safety/quality assurance practices.

Finally, let’s not forget one of the more notable innovations in online ordering – drone delivery! In November 2016, Domino’s New Zealand delivered their first delivery by air. Although widespread adoption of drone deliveries is unlikely; we’ll still be checking in to see how it evolves and what impact it has on the food industry.

Why not share your thoughts about these trends in the comments section?

Next Steps

If you’re in the market for a social engagement tool that makes it easy for you to reward your customers for brand advocacy and word-of-mouth on social media – please visit

With Popdeem, you can reward customers and brand advocates with coupons, loyalty points, prizes, or charity donations, when they share photos on Instagram, check-in on Facebook, or use a branded hashtag. For more information on how Popdeem works, check out this article, Heine Brothers’ Coffee Unveils Social Rewards Program on

Request a free, personalized Popdeem demo by completing the form below.

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Libby Headon Digital Marketing Manager
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