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Hunter PR: The Six Food News Consumers You Need to Know

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For the past eleven years, Hunter PR, a leading public relations agency in food, beverage and consumer packaged goods, has conducted an annual Food News Study highlighting the top food stories of the year according to Americans. Last year, with the help of our partners at Libran Research & Consulting, we began taking a deeper look at how Americans consume food-related information and the sources they most trust. From this data, six distinct archetypes of food news consumers emerged.

Meet the Six Food News Consumers You Need to Know. From the Multi-Media Foodie to the Media Averse, understanding the attitudes, behaviors, and media consumption habits of these groups can help food marketers focus their efforts accordingly and deepen their connection to the minds, hearts, and stomachs of their target consumer.

For additional information, contact us at foodnewsstudy@hunterpr.com and keep a look out in early December for the release of Hunter PR's 12th annual Food News Study.

Published in: Food

Hunter PR: The Six Food News Consumers You Need to Know

  1. 1. The Six Food News Consumers You Need to Know OCTOBER 2014 ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research & Consulting
  2. 2. BACKGROUND/OBJECTIVES For the past eleven years, Hunter PR has conducted an annual Food News Study highlighting the top food stories of the year according to the opinion of Americans, providing an understanding of how important food stories overall are to Americans and identifying the effect of food news on consumer behavior. This year’s report continues the tradition as well as expanding on this work by: Examining how opinions on food and nutrition are changing Informing us as to the top sources of food information, be it news, recipes, or nutritional data Segmenting various types of food news consumers from this research into six distinct groups ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research & Consulting 1
  3. 3. ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research & Consulting METHODOLOGY A quantitative online survey was conducted among a sample of N=1,002 American adults. The survey was sent to a sample balanced to the US Census on age, race and region by sample provider ResearchNow, with quotas set for even representation by gender. The study was 13 minutes in length, and in field from November 4th, 2013 through November, 7th, 2013. The vast majority of these respondents (88%) do the cooking and food shopping in their household. Questions covered in the study included: Top stories of 2013 Behavior changes due to 2013 news stories Sources for recipe information, nutrition information and sources of general food news Trustworthiness of food sources Media usage Social media usage 2
  4. 4. ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research & Consulting 3 IMPORTANCE of FOOD STORIES Similar to last year, Americans find food news stories to be particularly important, often more important than other news stories. 32 VERY IMPORTANT SOMEWHAT MORE IMPORTANT 48 IMPORTANT 17 IMPORTANT MUCH LESS NOT AT ALL IMPORTANT IMPORTANT 12 MUCH MORE IMPORTANT 30 43 NO MORE OR LESS IMPORTANT 8 SOMEWHAT LESS IMPORTANT Importance of Food & Nutrition Stories (%) Wen are even more likely to rate them highly (Importance of Food Nutrition stories top 2 Box 85%; Versus other stories 49% top 2 box). Importance Versus Other News Stories (%)
  5. 5. OPINIONS ON FOOD and NUTRITION Americans believe in personal responsibility with regard to what they eat, and they are even more likely to be seeking a healthy diet. However, they are increasingly find-ing too much conflicting information about food and nutrition. 81% People need to take responsibility for what they eat I need to lose weight 58% Eating healthfully is extremely important to me 48% I love to cook 49% There is too much conflicting information about food and nutrition 24% I tend to choose convenient foods over healthful ones 24% I tend to buy national brand products because they are of higher quality than store brands 46% 32% Organic foods are more healthy than non-organic foods 33% I will not pay more for a food just because it is more healthful Disagree Agree ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research Consulting 4
  6. 6. BEHAVIOR CHANGES Among the 50% who have made changes as a result of food news this year, they are looking at food labels more, questioning food safety, seeking out less processed foods, and thinking about the health consequences of their food. Half are also reducing sugar consumption. 58 % 53 % 49 % 53 % 48 % Wen, as well as those who rate food stories as being important are more likely to have made these behavior changes. 44 % 47 % I check food labels more often I’m eating less processed I now pay more food attention to the ingredient list of my foods. I'm eating less sugar I pay more attention to where my food I am paying more comes from attention to the safety of my foods and beverages I'm more likely to think about the health consequences of what I eat % 5 ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research Consulting
  7. 7. SOURCES OF FOOD INFORMATION: GENERAL FOOD NEWS Food Americans access general food news via many sources. Among these, television is the leading source for general food news, followed by newspapers and websites. Also, one-third access general food news through the radio or in magazines, while a quarter gain this knowledge through social media or direct mail. Women are more likely to access television, magazines, social media, and direct mail for general food information. Those 40 and under are more likely to access social media and blogs. Conversely, those over 40 are more likely to use newspapers, radio and television. 6 ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research Consulting Nutrition Ingredients 59% Television @ B 45% Newspapers 35% Radio 33% Magazines 11% None of these 45% Websites 24% Direct mail email or Newsletters 26% Social Media 19% Blogs 12% Books or Cookbooks
  8. 8. SOURCES OF FOOD INFORMATION: NUTRITION INFORMATION Websites also lead as a source for nutrition news, followed by magazines and television. Women are more likely to use websites, magazines, or books. Those 40 and under are more likely to use websites, social media, blogs, and, interestingly, books. 7 ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research Consulting Nutrition Ingredients @ B 47% Websites 35% Magazine 35% Television 21% Books or Cookbooks 18% Direct mail email or Newsletters 18% None of these 25% Newspapers 14% Social Media 13% Blogs 11% Radio
  9. 9. SOURCES OF FOOD INFORMATION: RECIPES Websites are now inching past cookbooks and magazines for recipe readers’ attention. Further, more than one-quarter of Americans are getting recipe information via social media. Women are more likely to access most of these information sources for recipes. Those 40 and under are more likely to consult social media or blogs for information on recipes. 8 ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research Consulting 57% Websites Nutrition Ingredients @B 27% Direct mail email or Newsletters 56% Books or cookbooks 48% Magazines 27% Television 27% Social Media 21% Newspapers 17% Blogs 13% None of these 5% Radio
  10. 10. 9 KEY FOOD NEWS SEGMENTS Six segments of food news seekers emerged from this research, ranging from those who more often shun media connections, to those who are heavily engaged in media, utilizing both traditional and new media forms. (7%) MULTI-MEDIA FOODIE (14%) NON-SOCIAL WEB SURFER (12%) SOCIAL ENTERTAINMENT SEEKER (29%) TRADITIONALISTS (14%) TV FOCUSED (23%) MEDIA AVERSE ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research Consulting
  11. 11. Multi-Media Foodie 7% of Population Less likely to live in Midwest Do almost all the cooking/shopping in Household Most likely to change behavior as a result of food news Multi-Media Foodies are very interested in food and eating, and rank healthy eating high in importance. They are active media users—both new and traditional—and what they learn through media notably impacts their behavior. Many of their sources involve news media and cable TV. Resolving to eat and cook more at home Very health nutrition focused Most likely to seek organic foods Checking labels more often (73%) Pay more attention to ingredient list (63%) Eating less processed food (67%) Demographics Often employed full time/highest income Pychographics ORGANIC agree that people need to take responsibility for what they eat 10 ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research Consulting
  12. 12. Turn to cookbooks for recipes over any other source (81%) Websites are #2 top source for recipes Television and Websites are equally top sources for general food news (81%) When it comes to nutrition information, they turn overwhelmingly to Websites (94%), with magazines and TV tied at a distant second (58%) Turn to radio (65%) and magazines (67%) for general food news more than any other segment Utilize both new and traditional media Move most seamlessly between online and offline world Most likely of any segment to access the web and social media through mobile Watch a greater variety of TV channels including many cable/secondary stations including Travel Channel (35%) and Cooking Channel (28%) Most likely of any segment to turn to food company websites for recipes (36%) Multi-Media Foodie (con’t) Media Habits NUTRITION INFORMATION SOURCES RECIPE SOURCES FOOD NEWS SOURCES Food GENERAL MEDIA HABITS 11 ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research Consulting
  13. 13. Non-Social Web Surfers 14% of Population More female Do almost all the cooking/shopping in Household Has some concern for healthy eating and food stories Demographics Pychographics Non-Social Web surfers have a narrow range of media interests, revealing a strong preference for online. They are more goal-oriented in their use of media, primarily using media to solve problems or search for answers e.g. looking for a recipe. They are also more rational than other segments. Name brands have less appeal and they are more drawn to functional benefits and are less receptive to coupons and promotions. More than half changed behavior as a result of food news (54%) Noname BIGBRAND NATIONAL Least loyal to national vs. store brands (18%) vs. Least likely to believe that there is too much conflicting information about food (45%) 12 ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research Consulting
  14. 14. Non-Social Web Surfers (con’t) Media Habits 84% get general food news from Websites, more than any other segment, including news sites (60%) and health or medical sites (30%) NUTRITION INFORMATION SOURCES Also turn first to Websites for nutrition information (84%) Almost half are reading newspaper digital editions online (47%) Websites are top source for recipes (82%) www. Media attention is focused on web-surfing Least likely of any segment to source recipes from television (9%), radio (1%), and coupon inserts (0%) Health Least likely of any segment to turn to TV (10%) and newspapers (11%) for nutrition news RECIPE SOURCES FOOD NEWS SOURCES Food GENERAL MEDIA HABITS 13 ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research Consulting
  15. 15. Social Entertainment Seeker 12% of Population Mostly female Youngest Demographics Most likely to Married have children in Household Pychographics This segment seeks to connect with others, including celebrities and other influencers, and wants to be a part of the conversation. They are the most engaged across all social mediums including blogs. Like Multi-Media Foodies, they are interested in food content and what they learn has a reported impact on their behavior. Two-thirds changed behavior as a result of food news (67%) Resolving to save money on groceries (47%) Most drawn to convenience over health than any other segment (29%) GEN X-Y Place importance on food nutrition stories 14 ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research Consulting
  16. 16. Social Entertainment Seeker (con’t) Media Habits Still rely on TV (73%) and Newspapers (55%) for general food news NUTRITION INFORMATION SOURCES Still trust magazines more (50%) Most likely to read blogs for food news (50%) Heavy users of blogs, Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter Facebook is top social source of recipes (44%) Heaviest users of blogs for recipes (50%) Pay attention to celebrity media Still turn to cookbooks (74%) and magazines (66%) as top recipe sources ahead of social media (57%) Most likely to get nutrition news from social sources (33%) and blogs (34%) than any other segment RECIPE SOURCES FOOD NEWS SOURCES Food GENERAL MEDIA HABITS Heaviest readers of fashion magazines (28%) Half (48%) frequently or always engage in social media while watching television, 17% more than any other segment Most likely to access coupons through mobile (38%), and to use a mobile device to build shopping lists 15 ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research Consulting
  17. 17. Traditionalists 29% of Population Second oldest segment Mean age: Demographics are age 48 or older Pychographics Traditionalists are more likely to utilize traditional media for food news. While they are seeking to lose weight, they are confused by conflicting food news and tend to rely on habits and traditional products. Resolving to try to lose weight by eating better More than half agree there is too much conflicting information about food (53%) BABY BOOMERS + GEN X Most likely to believe they need to lose weight (50%) 51 One-third aged 60+ 63% BIGBRAND NATIONAL Noname Tend to rely on national vs. store brands (28%) ? vs. ? 16 ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research Consulting
  18. 18. The highest users of newspapers of any segment Most likely of the segments to reference books for food news, at (20%) Focus attention on traditional media— TV, magazines newspapers, cookbooks Food and cooking magazines are leading source of recipes, more so than for any other segment While 45% get nutrition news from Websites, only 15% turn to social media for nutrition information, and 14% to blogs Traditionalists (con’t) Media Habits NUTRITION INFORMATION SOURCES RECIPE SOURCES FOOD NEWS SOURCES Food GENERAL MEDIA HABITS Low users of social media Cooking Heaviest readers of food/cooking and home magazines TV usage focused on top 3 networks and Fox Newspapers are top source for general food news (66%) Nearly a third (32%) look for recipes in newspapers Magazines are leading source for nutrition news (52%) 17 ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research Consulting
  19. 19. TV Focused 14% of Population Oldest segment Demographics Pychographics TV Focused individuals do seek out healthy eating, but they are not as heavily involved in media as other segments. Their focus is on more traditional media, often network TV and at times, newspapers. Moderately influenced by food news as compared to other segments. 48% have changed behavior. BABY BOOMERS More likely than other segments to be comparison shopping for lower prices (49%) ...and drinking healthier beverages (49%) 18 ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research Consulting
  20. 20. Heaviest TV watchers—major networks Most likely of any segment to turn to TV cooking shows for recipes (35%) as well as TV channel or show websites (24%) TV Focused (con’t) Media Habits NUTRITION INFORMATION SOURCES RECIPE SOURCES FOOD NEWS SOURCES Food GENERAL MEDIA HABITS Television is top source for general food news as well, 2X more than any other medium TV watching more focused to top 3 networks Low social media usage Least likely to watch instructional video on a mobile device (4%) 2x Turn to Websites (52%) and TV (53%) equally for nutrition news 19 ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research Consulting Nearly 2/3 (65%) source evening news and 54% morning news for food news 44% source magazines and 28% newspaper articles 27% specifically mention TV News health experts
  21. 21. Media Averse 23% of Population Mostly male Demographics Lowest Income Pychographics The Media Averse have low levels of interest in food or healthy eating and do not actively seek out food information. In fact, they report very little trust in what the media reports. They are therefore not very open to news stories or affected by them Least likely to change behavior as a result of food news Among those who have, checking food labels more often is leading change (42%) Least food and cooking focused Least likely to have a food related resolution Nope! PIZZA Lowest interest in food news or in eating healthfully 20 ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research Consulting
  22. 22. (59%) do not seek out recipes from any media source Media Averse (con’t) Media Habits NUTRITION INFORMATION SOURCES RECIPE SOURCES FOOD NEWS SOURCES Food GENERAL MEDIA HABITS TV is top source for general food news (37%), including the evening news (16%) Low social media usage 22% Only 2% turn to social media for nutrition information Watch fewer TV stations, primarily major networks get nutrition news from TV 24% source from Websites and 20% source from books or cookbooks mention newspapers as a source for food news Low readership of newspapers or magazines Least likely to be engaged in mobile technologies Least interested in nutrition than any segment 20% 21 ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research Consulting
  23. 23. SUMMARY Segments differ from one another based on the relative importance of these underlying key dimensions, and where on each of the dimensions they reside: Broad vs. Narrow Media Usage Multi-Media Foodies and Media Averse represent the two extremes of this dimension, with the remaining segments falling in between. Traditionalists and TV Focused fall just inside the extremes, with Traditionalists closer to the broad end of the media spectrum and TV Focused, the narrow end. Traditional vs. New Media TV focused and Traditionalists are less engaged in newer forms, such as mobile and social media. Multi-Media Foodies and Social Entertainment Seekers embrace newer medias and use to both access information and connect with others. Receptive vs. Non-Receptive to Media Media Averse are at one end of this spectrum i.e. they are the least receptive to media. On the other hand, Multi-Media Foodies are highly receptive to and engage well with media. Emotional/Social vs. Rational/Functional Social Entertainment Seekers seek to connect with others, including celebrities, whereas Non-Social Web Surfers seek to connect with information. Hence, Non-Social Web Surfers will often seek out more information based sites, versus people based media. (7%) MULTI-MEDIA FOODIE (14%) NON-SOCIAL WEB SURFER (12%) SOCIAL ENTERTAINMENT SEEKER (29%) TRADITIONALISTS (14%) TV FOCUSED (23%) MEDIA AVERSE Broad Media Usage Narrow Media Usage Traditional Media New Media Receptive to Media Non-Receptive to Media Emotional/Social Rational/Functional By understanding the attitudes, behaviors, and media consumption habits of these six distinct consumer archetypes, marketers can deepen their connection to the minds, hearts, and stomachs of their target consumer. 22 ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research Consulting
  24. 24. For additional information on the annual Hunter Public Relations Food News Study, The Six Food News Consumers You Need to Know, and putting these insights to work for your brand, contact: Jane Mount Libran Research Consulting www.libranresearch.com 207-219-8350 Jane.mount@libranresearch.com Samara Farber Mormar Hunter Public Relations www.hunterpr.com 212-679-6600 X251 smormar@hunterpr.com 23 ©2014 Hunter Public Relations in Partnership with Libran Research Consulting

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