Learnings from TikTok
By Shari Steinbach, MS RDN, RDBA Contributing Editor
TikTok recently released highlights of their 2021 most important trends and moments. Their Chief operating officer Vanessa Pappas stated in her blog, that …”2021 was a year for connection, and we’ve seen people on TikTok laughing together, entertaining us, starting cultural phenomena and teaching us new things…”. Here are some of the successful ways that this social platform is bringing together a diverse community of individuals and what retail dietitians can learn from their approach.
Personalization - The For You feed is a central feature of the TikTok platform. This feed is about making each individual TikTok experience personal by curating a stream of videos specific a person’s interests. The more someone uses TikTok, the better the For You feed becomes at tailoring content. For supermarkets personalizing a shopper’s wellness journey was identified as a top trend in FMI’s 2021 Grocery Shopper Trends Report as it can help alleviate consumers’ growing concerns about health and wellbeing. By combining nutrition science, AI and Machine Learning with shopper-generated profiles products can be aligned with customers’ health goals. Personalized wellness benefits your shoppers as they can plan shopping around health-supported products and recipe recommendations. Retailers benefits from customer loyalty and the ability to target ads and private label offerings.
Scatter joy – The past two years have been stressful for many consumers so they will naturally gravitate to something that will bring them joy. Whether it’s a funny animal or an adorable child, TikTok is certainly a place to go if you want a video to make you laugh or smile. What can you do to bring joy to your customers? Providing simple, nourishing meal ideas is certainly helpful but could you do it in more lighthearted way? There are many ways to surprise and delight your shoppers through your health and wellness programs. Hold a brainstorming session with your team to identify the possibilities.
Highlight new stars – TikTok recognizes that their video creators are the beating heart of the platform. They entertain, connect with communities and inspire others. Are there ways that you can highlight other individuals with the work you do? Perhaps there is a team member that has had a successful wellness journey and can share their experience in way that will resonate with others. What about partnering with a young chef to help teach kids how to cook simple recipes and snacks. The right individuals could bring new attention to your programs and put a well-deserved spotlight on someone.
Promote positive change – TikTok has always fostered a place where their users can come together and lift each other up. Many creators fight for positive change in their communities and focus on issues of national importance. Identify the key issues of concern for your shoppers and see if there are ways to integrate messages that promote positive change. For example, most consumers are worried about topics such as sustainability, reducing food waste and food insecurity. If your stores are involved in a partnership with food banks you might consider the ways you could use your expertise to promote positive change. A monthly cooking class for food bank recipients, creating a cookbook utilizing key food pantry items, or working with your local media to showcase affordable meal ideas.