Thursday, May 17, 2012

Live from Front End of Innovation 2012: The Power of ‘Pop’-Culture to Launch a Brand

Keith Belling, Serial Entrepreneur, Co-Founder & CEO at Popchips, spoke to us about launching an innovative food product during our Champions/Taste session.

He leveraged health and wellness trend to transform healthy snacking options. There was a void, no real, healthy, great-tasting packaged snacks. they started with "great flavor" that appeal to the whole family. They wanted to create a new category, not just a product.

They continue to innovate. New flavors like Sweet Potato chips, and later this year will launch a new product line.

They were lucky to organically get celebrity taste makers, nutritionists, moms, and high level fans who influenced their followers and audience about the new product, which gave the company lots of social proof and credibility.


Part of their success was in choosing the "right" partners to help build their brands; leading airports, premiere gyms, college campuses....

They do grassroots marketing, lots of social media, they use their spend very, very carefully. They have a field marketing teams and an army of ambassadors covering 15 major markets.

They constantly look for new ways to build awareness especially since they don't have a big budget. They have never paid for product placement but they've been depicted on Twilight, Pitch, ...

They try to tell a story with personality. They are fun, young company, and they want to be seen as healthy, edgy and cool.

Music is a key marketing platform. They do a lot of grassroot and handpicked events like Coachella music festival. Very cost-effective campaigns fueled by social media.

There is so much passion and excitement around the brand. It has resulted in becoming one of the top brands.




Valerie M. Russo is a Senior Social Media Strategist at IIR USA with a technology, anthropology, marketing and publishing business acumen.  She is a published poet and also maintains a literary blog. She may be reached at vrusso@iirusa.com. Follow her @Literanista.   

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