Success Story

Duda Farm Fresh Foods logo

The Power of Experiential PR

The Challenge: Elevate the Value and Versatility of Celery

Duda Farm Fresh Foods sought opportunities to elevate the value of their celery brand and spread the word that Dandy® celery is sweeter, crisper and has less strings compared to other celery. With 100+ years of farming history and a unique seed varietal to set the products apart, Duda had a prime opportunity to bring the company story to food editors so they could taste the difference for themselves. Fresh produce is challenging to pitch to editors due to the nature of the perishable supply chain, so Duda knew they needed to do something big to capture the attention of nationally recognized publications.

Here's how the opportunity was made a reality:

The Strategy: An Editors-Only Experiential Luncheon

As part of the Duda Farm Fresh marketing team—and in collaboration with Duda Ambassador Chef Todd Fisher—we worked to create an intimate experience from start to finish. The goal was to educate and inspire editors to expand their concept of the different ways celery can be used beyond dips and stews. From the initial event invite—which included a personal video message from Chef Todd and a sneak-peak of the menu—to being served by the Dandy team and Chef Todd and leaving with a Dandy SWAG bag full of goodies, Duda engaged editors in a way that would leave a positive impression of the brand and a desire for post-event conversation.

Twenty editors packed out the Meredith Test Kitchen for a luncheon unlike what they normally experience, which was precisely the goal. Editors were greeted with a Celery Lime Rickey mocktail that immediately created opportunities for personal interactions, getting immediate feedback on the cocktail, and setting the tone for an overall engaging experience. From there, every element of the luncheon became more and more interactive. Typically, national editors will spend 45-60 minutes as a captive audience with brands that cater in lunch in order to pitch their new products. While editors leave with a basic understanding of the product, there is not much room for questions or engagement. In this case, we wanted to challenge everything that editors were used to experiencing so they would leave wanting to learn more and feeling inspired by the Dandy brand. Editors were encouraged to ask questions, engage in trend forecasting, and share their experiences with the Dandy event on social media.

The Result: Broadened Horizons and New Media Connections

While we aimed to elevate celery in a new way, we also sought to build relationships that we can utilize for future media opportunities. During the luncheon, many of the editors were actively asking questions and engaging with the brand on social media. We left with a deeper understanding of each editor's needs and preferences, and they left with a greater awareness of the Dandy brand and a healthy dose of inspiration to feature fresh celery differently in their publications. This allowed us to be more intentional with our follow-up by providing answers to specific questions that were asked in a creative way.

Lasting Impressions: Event Social Media Shares

collection of pictures from the Duda luncheon

collection of social media posts about Duda Farm Fresh Foods

Highlights

20 national food editors

in attendance, plus a number of other editors from the building stopped by after hearing about the food from Dandy's luncheon. We were pleased to engage with more media members than anticipated.

5,461 social impressions

as a result of editors taking to social media to share their experiences during the event.

20% follow-up post event

which is significantly higher than standard email follow-up from national media.

Aside from quantitative results, it's important to note that this type of activation lays a strong foundation to build and nurture editor relationships for future editorial opportunities.