What was the activity about?
During January 2015, FCC pitched the Persimon® story and sent media materials and a case of fruit to freelance writer, Jennifer MacKenzie. Jennifer was intrigued, stating she would likely write a story for Food & Drink magazine’s holiday edition that would be released in the fall. Given Food & Drink has one of the largest magazine circulations in Canada, this was significant accomplishment.
An English media kit featuring the new recipes was developed. The kit contents included a news release, fact sheet and four recipes. The electronic media kit was disseminated on October 26th to 190 contacts with follow up conducted in early November. During the outreach, select media were offered Persimon® fruit. Journalists from the following three publications accepted the offer and were sent a fresh case of Persimon®: Best Health and Chatelaine magazines, as well as Gourmania, an online food site.
What were the challenges we had to face?
Overall, media were slightly less receptive to pitching efforts this year compared to last for a variety of reasons. For example, a reduction in editorial space means fewer articles are being published; print newspapers are ceasing publication; journalists are being more selective in what gets covered – that they want new information; and, some publications are charging for coverage making content more advertorial (a combination of advertising and editorial). Other feedback was also offered by writers: while there may be an appreciation for the quality and taste of Persimon®, media in general feel that the information has already been covered and nothing new is being reported (i.e., health studies) nor is there a local angle; many remain confused regarding persimmon versus Persimon®, especially at retail.
What was the result?
A multiple page article on persimmons written by Jennifer Mackenzie was published in the 2015 holiday edition of Food & Drink that was released in November. The educational article included general information on the category and varieties and included a brand mention of Persimon®. The article featured diverse ways to incorporate persimmons into sweet and savoury dishes for breakfast, lunch and supper. The recipes were also posted on foodandddrink.ca. This influential magazine is 60% editorial, enjoys a bi-monthly circulation of 500,000 English and 20,000 in French (CCAB) through more than 600 Liquor stores (LCBO) across Ontario. It has 2.25 million total readers who are well educated Ontarians with high disposable incomes.
The media kit generated coverage in the Toronto Sun and torontosun.com on November 18th. Its article, Persimons are here – sweet!, referenced key messages, such as the Ribera del Xúquer region, Persimon® availability and the Roast Chicken with Persimon®, Fennel and Olives recipes. Ottawa Life magazine is no longer doing editorials and offered the opportunity to feature a paid for article. A paid for placement was secured and all four new recipes were featured in the article, Four Fantastic Ways to Cook with Persimon this Holiday Season.
To date, overall English media coverage totals 5 clips, reaching an audience of 3,121,000 with an editorial value of $288,310.