It’s a known fact that unhealthy foods and beverages are heavily marketed to children. Using social media, toys, games, sports, music, and apps, the food industry largely targets young people as a whole. Chances are your child can already identify a box of sugary cereal based on the character adorning the box or pass by a fast-food restaurant and recognize the logo (even before they can read). Food marketing is everywhere and it’s particularly powerful and effective for vulnerable children and young teens. That’s why food and beverage companies spend a whopping $1.8 billion each year on food marketing to children as young as two years old.
Unfortunately, not much of this investment goes to healthy food advertising for kids. The current diet of children today is full of sugar and fats and too little of fruits, vegetables, lean meats, and whole grains. Research shows that the food environment is largely responsible for this, with over 80% of the advertisements viewed by children and teens marketed towards foods high in saturated fats, trans fat, sodium, and sugar. This high exposure to unhealthy foods can actually increase a child’s risk of obesity. Today, we’re creating some buzz and sharing some healthy food branding tips and strategies to spread awareness during National Childhood Obesity Month.
Incorporating well-known cartoon characters or fun cartoon produce personalities into your healthy food advertising for kids increases the healthy foods’ appeal, studies show. Adding stickers or banners with these amusing characters onto the food (like an apple) or where food is being served (like in a school cafeteria) can be used to promote healthier food choices in a positive way. If your packaging is fun, it will speak to younger consumers.
When marketing healthy foods to children, consider placement. This means choosing places where kids congregate, like schools, in stores, parks, playgrounds, and recreational centers. Today, many children spend a lot of time online, so marketing in the digital world is a must. Many reports show on average, kids ages 8 to 12 spend about 6 hours in front of a screen, and teenagers spend over 9 hours a day online. Whether you’re referencing your brand in an article, social media post, blog, or video clip, make sure it is designed with a child in mind. Colorful, interactive, and engaging advertisements can really help your brand get noticed.
Have Fun with Promotions
Nearly 70% of children encounter food marketed to them at their schools. From fundraisers, incentive programs, company-sponsored classroom materials, lunchroom banners, and logos on snack machines, unhealthy food branding is everywhere. When marketing to children, consider other options like healthy fundraisers, 5k runs or walks, taste tests, and fun holidays like National Granola Bar Day or National Peanut Butter Day to participate in.
Partner up with people in your community who share the same mission! Look to your local grocery stores, foundations, colleges, and schools to share ideas, provide trainings, and come up with new recipes as a fun way to market and advertise your brand of healthy foods. Participate in giveaways or contests where kids can get involved. You’ll not only be spreading the word about the importance of consuming healthy foods for children, but you’ll also be able to network and meet potential partners and customers along the way.
At BrandHive, branding for healthy food lines is what we do. Through logos, new packaging, engaging videos, and advertising campaigns, we can guarantee our healthy food marketing to children will catch your prospect’s attention, communicate your message, and get you noticed. Getting kids to eat healthier is a lot tougher than just saying “no” to junk food, but with our healthy food marketing strategies, you’ll definitely create some buzz. Contact us today to get started.