The New Local…Well, Newer

We’ve talked about local for years—particularly in food marketing. Years ago food became all about local sourcing, meaning finding your ingredients within a 100-mile radius. Even that measurement was hotly debated, and eventually “local” became about what was local to you.

That meant that my local might be traveling back to Lancaster County, PA, where I frequented a local farmer’s market that carried the best meats, fresh from the farm. Even though I now live multiple states away from Pennsylvania, that feels like my best selection of local foods.

“Local” could even be the jam made in by Richie’s Real American Diner in southern California that I love so much I have it shipped to me every six months or so, or the honey made in Oregon that I support because a family member raises the bees…even though I know truly “local” honey is what you are supposed to eat if you have allergies to fight.

Perhaps all of that self-definition of what local means to us is why brands are beginning to center their messaging and marketing around an individual—be it a single person or a single business. We identified this is our Q1-2019 Report earlier this year, recognizing that “local” is being celebrated in a new and personal way.

Here are a few examples:

  • Chipotle has an employee-driven campaign that aims to make the company more transparent, giving behind-the-scenes views of actual employees in its advertisements. In the process, Chipotle makes the large food chain seem more like eating at home, and like you are doing business with a local restaurant.
  • Mercedes-Benz’ short film, My Father’s Dream, highlights a father and son mechanic from Alsip, Illinois and includes their business address at the end of the video, encouraging watchers to visit them.
  • Trader Joe’s is demonstrating the value of employee appreciation throughout its company by having managers and employees participate in a podcast called, “Inside Trader Joe’s.” The podcast gives the inside scoop on the Trader Joe’s experience from the people who work to make it happen, thereby empowering local employees in a way that is relatable to consumers.

See more about this movement toward a “newer local,” and more, in our Quarterly Report. If you’d like to see the Q1 Report, just link to our current newsletter: https://mailchi.mp/545560d2c63e/whole-body-health-363217

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