Great Taste Award

Winning a Great Taste award for your fabulous food is a brilliant achievement, so how can you make the most of the PR opportunities that a Great Taste Award brings?

Hooray, you’ve got a Great Taste Award!

One of the big highlights of the year for many start-ups and small food brands is winning a Great Taste Award. If you were one of the lucky lot who now sports a shiny gold star or three, here are 10 ways to make the most of the PR it brings.

1. Get social

Because everyone gets to find out about their win on the same date, you could build the tension or create a countdown to let your followers know that something exciting is on its way a few days before. Now, you’re not guaranteed to win any so have a standby in place – such as a special offer or competition launch – as your followers wouldn’t know this wasn’t your planned ‘thing’.

Once you can spill the beans, fun gifs or boomerangs can show people just how much you’re literally jumping up and down with excitement at the results. Ideally, the images will be of you and/or your product so that people can visually see the faces behind the brand. Creating your own gif is easier than you think if you use an app like Gifit.

It’s obvious but make sure you’re also following @guildoffinefood on Twitter, tag them into the tweet or photo and use the official hashtag #GreatTasteAwards in your tweets. You’re more likely to get RTd by them if you do, which introduces you to their audience, and your tweets will also be found if someone searched either hashtag. Most years people add their own versions of the # so have a quick look at #GreatTasteAward (no ‘s’), #GreatTaste2018 and #GreatTaste18 to see if they’re being used much.

2. Start tapping away

Email your list, share the exciting news and especially any great feedback the judges provided. Anyone who’s already bought from you feels smug that they were in on the secret the whole time, and for those sitting on the fence, it gives them a shove as they realise their taste buds are totally missing out on your award-winning taste. Either way, it’s a good motivator for them to think about buying from you again.

3. Get bloggy with it

Write a blog post about the experience of entering your goodies for a Great Taste award, but keep it real – let people know how nervous you were beforehand, how you went back and forth about which products to send and the reaction you had when you found out etc. People love a bit of behind the scenes action, especially when there’s any kind of drama!

4. Run a special offer

This ties in with all three tips above. No one likes a show off so why not turn a win for you into a win for your customers? When you’re sharing your good news, run a special discount, promotion or competition alongside it as this allows your followers to benefit from your good fortune. Who wouldn’t want to buy or win an award-winning product?!

5. Get your geek on

Update your website copy and images ASAP. If you don’t have access or the budget for a designer use:

to knock up some quick updates or invest a small amount of money in:

They are a cost-effective and quick way to update your images with a Great Taste award. The quality of the work from these sites can vary hugely but something as simple as overlaying the award on your images SHOULD* be pretty risk-free.
* I take no responsibility for the outcome!

6. Value-added packaging

It’s definitely worth updating your packaging to include the Great Taste award badge as soon as budgets allow, but as an interim solution or if money’s too tight to mention, you can go down the manual route and start stickering your products. It’s not the most efficient route but it is a budget-friendly way to show off your success.

7. Tell me something I don’t know…

No one cares when a brand says how great their products are. Luckily, people DO love to hear their friends say great things about your food or, you know, people who know their stuff like Great Taste Award judges. Brands of all sizes are constantly looking out for this kind of social proof from lots of different sources.

Pick out all of the great comments from your feedback and use them as soundbites and testimonials.

Bang them up on pages throughout your website and share them with your followers on social and in emails.

8. Supply and demand

Although it often depends on their size, it’s still worth contacting your suppliers to let them know about the win and to see if they will add extra wording into your product description. The worst they can say is no and the best they can say is yes!

9. Extra! Extra!

August tends to be a slow news month for local press, so a short press release could be a goer. Try and add other interesting angles to it such as:

  • How your product is [location] born and bred
  • How it ties in with an upcoming local event
  • Emphasising how hiring local people contributed to its success
  • Any local roots or history that influenced the creation of your products
  • That your success started from selling at your local market

Trade titles may also be interested although they will have been deluged with press releases from everyone else who won a Great Taste award, which makes it more difficult to stand out from a very crowded inbox.

10. Keep the Great Taste Award party going from dusk ’til dawn

Keep the celebrations going over time. Make sure the Great Taste award becomes a natural part of your product description so that people are constantly yet subtly being reminded of it. Jump on hashtags like #ThrowbackThursday in a few weeks and months to reenact the celebrations. If you haven’t already, sign up for my emails and you’ll get my free downloadable PR planner as a thank you, and you can look at tying the win into national days and events over the next few months.

And if you didn’t win…

It doesn’t matter!

Yes, it’s great to win any award but like everything in the food world, everyone’s taste buds are different when it comes to judging what you like or don’t like. You may have great feedback from one group of Great Taste judges and the opposite from another, I hear this kind of thing all the time.

I’ve heard foodies sharing that their ‘low salt’ product was commented on as “needing more salt”, and a sauce with spicy in its name was judged as “too spicy!”

You can’t please everyone but you can please your customers and that’s exactly what you have been doing both before and after the results. Always listen to anyone’s feedback because they might share something valuable, and it’s you who gets to make any decision changes. 😉

More food for thought…

Hey, Charlotte here, thanks for reading through to the end! If you enjoyed this post, you’ll probably love 11 PR Tips for Small Business Foodies and How to Become a Go-To Expert in the Foodie Field.

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