How Krave Jerky Used First-Party Location Data to Boost Brand Awareness

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Three years have passed since the Hershey Company acquired Krave Jerky, a leading brand of all-natural gourmet snacks, in a deal reportedly valued at more than $200 million. The transaction allowed Hershey to tap into the natural snacks market. But in the years since, the all-natural food sector has gotten tighter, and Krave has been challenged with generating the right kind of awareness among its target consumer group.

The company tapped the location intelligence firm inMarket last year as it looked for new ways to engage consumers at the right moments along the path to purchase. The results of that two-month campaign, just released, show a sharp uptick in brand awareness and a lift in average purchase intent.

What exactly did Krave do to generate those results? According to Dave Heinzinger, inMarket’s vice president of communications, the CPG brand took a multi-pronged online-to-offline approach with the goal of building brand awareness and differentiating itself from more traditional brands in the meat snack category. inMarket focused on cross-digital promotion at the awareness stage. The company also drove product interaction and sales at the decision stage while consumers were inside physical stores that sell Krave products.

“Krave has been an amazing client with an incredibly talented team driving its digital marketing efforts forward,” says Heinzinger. “[They’re] really the perfect type of CPG product to take full advantage of our digital advertising products.”

Using inMarket’s predictive cross-channel solution, Krave was able to identify when shoppers would next be seen at stores selling Krave products and deploy creative strategies across mobile and desktop immediately before those visits occurred.

“Our partner brands can select which retailers they’d like to focus on, and/or deploy different creative regionally or specific to certain chains,” Heinzinger says. “In this case, major mass merch stores like Walmart, Target, and major grocers like Kroger and Meijer were the focus.”

Krave also utilized inMarket’s in-store solution to drive foot traffic and close sales. What that means, exactly, is that the company delivered mobile ads to consumers in the moments after they walked through the front door at certain retailers.

Krave also used an inMarket solution called Moments In-Hand, which involves sending “high-performing, decision-making mobile ad units” to shoppers who are actually holding Krave products. The custom creative in these ads was designed to drive sales without resorting to product discounts.

After running the two-month campaign, from October to December of last year, Krave saw a brand awareness lift of 72%. That figure was determined by asking shoppers which of the following products they would buy if they were planning to buy today, and following up with, “Which of the following brands were you considering?” when consumers responded with the answer “jerky.” Twenty-six percent of shoppers said they were planning to purchase Krave products after being exposed to an ad, which constituted a 3.8-factor lift.

“[Krave is] proof that high tech strategies aren’t just for high tech brands—all CPGs can take advantage of big data in 2018 in turnkey fashion,” Heinzinger says.

Krave’s cross-platform campaign also generated demographic insights about the company’s audience. For example, inMarket found Krave purchasers to be educated, married, high-earning, homeowners in higher-income areas. The company also found that Krave shoppers are frequent customers at higher-end family clothing retailers like Nordstrom, Vineyard Vines, and L.L. Bean.

Krave’s audience is not especially influenced by savings or health. Even though the company’s jerky is a protein-heavy snack, inMarket found that people purchasing Krave products are not particularly concerned about nutrition, though they are interested in physical fitness. These types of insights could influence the direction Krave goes in future advertising campaigns.

“We hope that brands—specifically, emerging brands—look at Krave as an example of accountability in digital advertising,” Heinzinger says. “We’re targeting the right consumers at the most receptive moments in their purchase cycle—and we’re proving the value through real-world sales.”

Stephanie Miles is a senior editor at Street Fight.

Stephanie Miles is a journalist who covers personal finance, technology, and real estate. As Street Fight’s senior editor, she is particularly interested in how local merchants and national brands are utilizing hyperlocal technology to reach consumers. She has written for FHM, the Daily News, Working World, Gawker, Cityfile, and Recessionwire.