Is there any need to market everyday items, such as eggs? Egg Farmers of Alberta’s Marketing and Communications Manager, David Webb, knows there is. Marketing is so much more than simply creating ads. Marketing is a multifaceted method to communicate your message to a broad or targeted audience, and educate and inform customers leading to the building of relationships and brand loyalty. The Egg Farmers of Alberta began their partnership with William Joseph in 2014, and have collaborated on a multitude of successful tactics since then, including an upcoming, top-secret campaign concept. Check out our interview with EFA’s main marketing man!
Tell us about the Egg Farmers of Alberta!
EFA represents the province’s more than 170 registered egg farming families, who provide Albertans with fresh, nutritious, locally produced eggs.
What are three words that you want people to think of when they hear “Egg Farmers of Alberta” and do you think your marketing efforts have helped to reach that goal?
Progressive, authentic and local. Yes, WJ has helped put those values front and center with our marketing efforts.
What do you believe are the biggest obstacles when marketing a common-place, necessary-yet-basic item such as eggs?
Although there are many issues, myths and misperceptions out there about eggs and egg farming, most people are content to just enjoy their eggs. Consumers don’t seek out information until they have cause for concern, which is typically something they’ve heard from a friend or read online. Building awareness about EFA is critical, to ensure that those concerned consumers reach out to us for information when the time comes.
When the Egg Farmers of Alberta were looking for a marketing partner, what were they looking for on their team?
We wanted a marketing partner that took the time to understand EFA and the Alberta egg industry. On the surface, eggs are a simple staple that everybody knows about. However, there are a diverse array of issues and stakeholders that influence our marketing, communications, and public relations strategies.
Why did you ultimately decide William Joseph was the right agency for you?
WJ was the only agency that did take the time to understand our organization, our industry, and our objectives. Other agencies attempted to fit us into their traditional ‘cookie-cutter’ marketing plan, whereas WJ actually stopped their presentation mid-way through the first meeting, turning it into a learning session for them. The proposal WJ presented displayed a much deeper understanding about EFA, which we took as a clear demonstration of their commitment to focussing on our needs.
What is one thing that surprised you when you went through the Insights/Branding/Tactical plan exercise at the beginning of your relationship with William Joseph?
The biggest surprise was how well WJ ‘got us’. As mentioned above, WJ took the time to understand our industry and our values, and it showed.
Did you initially see the value in the planning and research portion of the marketing plan and what are your thoughts on it post-completion?
Yes, planning and research were integral to the development of both our marketing plan and our working relationship with WJ, given the unique underlying issues that we face.
So far, you have collaborated with WJ on a number of tactics, including your annual report, brochures and specific campaigns. What tactic do you believe has had the biggest impact thus far?
Two projects have had significant impacts, as both the tactic itself, and the longer-term influence they have had on everything our organization has done since. The first initiative was our rebranding, and the second was the publication of our inaugural Sustainability Report, the first of its kind in the Canadian egg industry.
What are the Egg Farmers of Alberta’s thoughts on social media?
EFA is quite active on social media and sees it as a valuable tool for staying in touch with industry partners, consumers, media, politicians, and other stakeholders.
Which marketing campaigns have most inspired you, personally?
The rebranding initiative has been the most inspirational, since it has influenced everything EFA has done since, including the aforementioned Sustainability Report. Our branding has been well received by EFA staff, our Board of Directors, Alberta egg farmers, and consumers.
Are there any marketing tactics that you are weary of or plan to steer clear of?
Not that I can think of.
What are the Egg Farmers of Alberta’s next marketing steps?
We working on our 2016 Annual Report and Sustainability Report, as well as a major educational/marketing/PR campaign that we’re planning to launch in 2017!