How to Manage Chocolate Innovation in the Social Media Era

Do you consider yourself as a food company with innovative ideas and are you interested in developing your innovation and increasing your brand awareness through the social media presence?

 

Today we want to tell you about a chocolate company which seems to have found the right track: Shockino.

The company works in the design industry, where both product and food are concerned. In our opinion, nowadays, studying and projecting personal design and product customization is the best way to get success. That is exactly what Shockino does.

Shockino’s successful idea lies on the customization of the chocolate composition: leaving easily the composition of the chocolate in the hands of the consumer.

Shockino’s boxes present the product decomposed (the praline is broken down in three parts) and, due to the included guides, it is possible to identify all the different tastes and to easily assemble the praline in just three steps, too.

Defining from the beginning the distribution of tastes according to groups like bases, rings and grains it is possible to provide consumers with an exponential array of combinations.

In our opinion the approach the company is using is a winning one because it increases the importance of consumer’s experience and consumer’s feedbacks, a crucial point for every company operating in this sector.

But what about the media presence? How can it increase the brand awareness and help firms to develop innovation?

“A new and rather innovative product needs to be illustrated” using the words of the entrepeneurs of Shockino. This entails working on every single channel available for the firm, relying heavily on the social media presence. In fact, in order to promote Shockino, they immediately activated the social profiles in 2014 (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Tumblr) and created their website, which represents a virtual showcase and an on-line shop. Facebook and Instagram are obviously the two social media that mainly help the word-of-mouth and the building of a small but increasing community.

Currently, the contents are directly handled by them: it is an important commitment which helps them in better understanding the product’s critical issues that have to be improved and the best, most consistent language in order to promote it. This approach is really important for the SME’s that could not afford the cost of an advertisement agency. But remember: social media are free but not easy to handle, an effort has to be made in order to understand trends and consumers’ behaviours.

The promotion of a product and, specifically, of an innovation does not stop at social media. What really matters are networks and different ways to “get noticed” by important realities. Shockino was inserted in the ADI (Associazione per il Disegno Industriale) network and they were awarded a Distincion at the first Compasso d’Oro International.

They also activated a supporting news agency for the events they attended (e.g. Expo, Salone del Mobile, Vinitaly, Cibus, Host and Vinoforum). They also created a network with other companies in the food and beverage field but most of all with companies that use their same language code, that is, that of the enhancement of the design and of the Italian product.

During these events, they were personally involved in the transmission of the product’s value and distinctive features. They collected a lot of information and direct opinions in a continuous product test environment.

It looks obvious that there is no a winning formula, every company has to rely on its strengths and adapt in relation of its offer and in relation of the trends of the market, and this is exactly what Shockino did. Using again the words of Gabriele and Pierigiorgio “Thanks to the social networking and press-agency activities, we had a good return in terms of brand awareness. The fundamental trend is the creation of the mix and the customisation of the product. Shockino puts together important aspects, such as the experience and the construction of the positive memory. We segmented our target in “conservatives” and “experimenters”, although they both have the passion for chocolate and keep an eye on the news of the food sector. Until now we have built our communication strategy on these aspects: product distinctiveness, experience and customisation in combination with wines, spirits, hot drinks and during special moments during the day.”

We think that they are doing really well, they are using the right channels in the right way, targeting in a way which is consistent with their vision in order to attract new consumers. In conclusion, we want to thank them and wish them good luck with their business, which, in our opinion, is really interesting and could grow exponentially.

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