Early Season Retail Promotions Build Demand via In-store and Online Campaigns
Early demand for California avocados is high this year among targeted retailers, with both national chains and regional retailers indicating they are anxious for the start of the California avocado season. In past years, the season kicked off with “first of the season” Big Game or Valentine’s Day promotions at local specialty retailers. This year, due to market and harvest conditions, the early-season promotions at loyal retailer partners’ locations are instead focusing attention on spring and Easter.
Both Gelson’s and Mollie Stone’s responded positively to the California Avocado Commission’s spring and Easter promotional plans, which include a combination of in-store display and sales contests partnered with robust online, social media and digital advertising campaigns. The Commission’s integrated promotional plans recognize that due to COVID-19 safety protocols retailers remain cautious about in-store promotions, such as demos, and that online marketing continues to play a primary role in marketing California avocados this season. Display and sales contests, which elevate in-store merchandising to draw attention to the fruit, also are important tactics in CAC customized retail programs.
Gelson’s “Spring Into California Avocados” promotion ran from February 15 – 25. The upscale retailer hosted display and sales contests at its 27 Southern California locations, ensuring early season California avocados were front-and-center to announce the start of the long-anticipated season. Mollie Stone’s Easter promotion runs from March 22 – April 4, and includes sales and display contests at the retailer’s nine locations throughout the San Francisco Bay area. Both retail chains feature Commission display bins and signage.
For both retailers, the in-store contests are complemented by value-added social media promotions created by the Commission. Posts on the retailers’ social media platforms showcase California avocado centric recipes, photos and messaging that celebrates the availability of fresh California avocados as we swing into spring. The social posts play a critical role in expanding the reach of the Commission’s messaging, promoting the fruit’s versatility in meals and snacks, touting California avocados’ nutritional qualities and showcasing the premium character of this locally grown fruit.