In an ever-growing market consumers are having a hard time leaving the products they are used to, for new, healthier products. How can you help them make that switch?
Why is it difficult to make healthy choices?
Typically, consumers have a pre-conceived notion that healthy foods don’t taste good and are overwhelmed by the choice of products available; leaving them to carry on eating junk.
For many shoppers making the change can be daunting, especially when they have no idea of:
1.The positives of eating healthy
2.How they can make the change
3.Taste of the products
4.Which products to choose from the ranges available
This post covers each one and how they can be used to influence consumers to make that healthy change.
“People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.” – Simon Sinek
Bespoke branding creation for Kellogg’s Special K, highlighting the healthy wholefood ingredients, proposition & flavours
Turning healthy eating into a learning process
As with anything, the best place to start is with the foundation. For this, it’s giving the customers a reason to incorporate healthy foods into their diet. They’re already aware that eating healthy is good for them, but don’t know why.
To win them over, you need to answer the why.
Usually when choosing a new (healthy) product, these questions plague the customer: What makes it healthy? What makes it so special? What ingredients are in this? Why are these ingredients used? What benefits do they have? How do they affect me? – The story of your brand plays a key role in answering these.
Does your story satisfy these?
Here, highlighting the benefits of your product will be advantageous. As it satisfies these questions whilst breaking down their biases towards your products, now they won’t just assume that ‘they just want my money’. Instead they will realise the health and other benefits on offer.
Educating the consumer will have a great influence on them, as it allows you to be more transparent whilst showing the direct benefits of using your product.
Atkins – Giant walk in sugar cube, with an interactive quiz to show how much sugar is in popular confectionary bars.
How they can make the change
Comparisons / alternatives
Secondly customers have a hard time leaving the products they are consuming for something new.
This is due to them being comfortable with their current purchases. They don’t want to stray away from them as they are in fear of not liking the new product; thus, wasting money.
You can influence this by offering nutritional comparisons to commonly consumed items such as crisps, chocolates etc. Defining and comparing the nutritional values of your product against these will be a visual way of showing that your product holds higher nutritional content. Doing this leads customers to evaluate their diet and try a product which will benefit them instead. Offering your product as an alternative to these will also encourage change. As it will clearly show what can be consumed instead of these ‘junk’ products.
This allows the customer to easily make a choice and save time comparing and they will be inclined to give your product a try instead of continuing their normal, comfort buying cycle.
Plenish – In store sampling of non-dairy milk helped reach for a more mainstream market
Taste of the products
Food is usually consumed based on taste; if something tastes good, you eat it, simple. This explains why taste is the main reason why customers are afraid of trying healthy products; they believe them to be foul tasting.
Since they are hooked to high amounts of sugar or other additives, they think that food without these will taste horrible.
One way to combat this is through product sampling. The reason being that sampling offers a chance to try the product before buying it, no commitments need to be made, making it a low risk situation. Sure, it takes money out of your pocket in the short-term but think of the number of customers you will win over in the long-term.
Knowing your product tastes amazing results in the participants lowering their guard and then there’s nothing to stop them from walking into the store to buy it.
Diverse range of products for Crosta & Mollica on display outside Highstreet Sainsburys, but each customer was given a single pack of their flatbreads as an easy introduction to their full range
Which products to choose from the ranges available
Offering a variety of products
Customers are flooded by the choice of healthy products on the market. With so many to choose from, why yours?
Instead of paralysing the customer with 100’s of products to choose from, narrow it down to a manageable product range, whilst still offering a variety for choice.
This can be done by reviewing and refining your product range. If the customers have a small range of flavours or products to choose from, they are more likely to make a purchase. For example, if you they don’t like the original flavour, they may buy the strawberry flavoured one instead. In contrast, if you offer too many products / flavours, you’ll leave them confused and they won’t know which ones to buy, leaving them open to considering other products instead.
So be careful with how much you are offering to the customers as you don’t want to leave them feeling overwhelmed. You need to give them a few options that match their preferences, so they can choose between them. But you shouldn’t offer so much that they’re spoilt for choice.
AVA – Promotional taste sampling for their premium strawberry range outside Morrisons supermarkets.
In conclusion, your product has the power to be the stepping stone for propelling someone into a healthy lifestyle.
However, the main barrier is the one they set up themselves, it all boils down to educating them more by covering the points mentioned above. Doing so will allow them to see your products in a different light, encouraging an initial trial, which can be nurtured into a long-term purchasing cycle.
See how bringing them out of their natural buying patterns benefit you both.
Following up this post will be another, with real case studies of how each of these have been implemented & how effective they were in increasing sales.