Words by Samantha Sadler
Once upon a time, we knew Greggs as the best pasty maker in the UK and if you’re from the North East, you know that you’re never too far away from one. Both of these things are of course still true; however, the brand is now quickly becoming known in the marketing world as an exciting example of how to create an innovative, engaging campaign.
There are millions of brands out there, but Greggs’ marketing strategy is easily one of my favourites. Witty and creative, the UK’s largest bakery chain has always pulled out all the stops with its campaigns and regularly entertains its 161,000 Twitter followers, but there has been a noticeable shift in creativity from the brand recently.
Late last year, Greggs decided to highjack the popular unveiling of the Fenwick Christmas window by turning its store sign on Northumberland Street, Newcastle, the opposite way around so that it would show the correct way in photos taken by those viewing the window. This simple idea was so unique and outrageous that it created hundreds of conversations on social media and Greggs didn’t have to spend thousands of pounds.
More recently, Greggs delighted vegans and meat eaters alike with the unveiling of its very own vegan sausage roll, conveniently coinciding with Veganuary. Everything about the launch campaign was a picture of success, with the vegan sausage roll shown in the style of a new iPhone, from a dramatic advertising video to media packs sent to journalists with the sausage roll packaged in iPhone-style bags and boxes with Greggs branding.
Of course, the product was subjected to backlash from none other than Piers Morgan. Outraged at the thought of a vegan substitute for the usual meaty treat, the controversial journalist/television presenter shared his disgust with his 6.5million followers. Although the launch campaign for the product was more than enough promotion on its own, the comments from Morgan and the snappy response from Greggs’ sent media and social media users into a frenzy
Fellow food chains even decided to get on board, with McDonalds and Pizza Hut sharing their vegan ranges to goad a reaction from Morgan. Although this was an attempt from other fast food chains to promote its brand, Greggs was still mentioned and received more free promotion through word of mouth alone.
The drama of vegan sausage rolls has shown no signs of slowing down just yet, as Morgan “”threw up”” on Good Morning Britain which of course generated more conversations. A clever ploy from Morgan to keep himself in that controversial spotlight he so often craves? Regardless, it doesn’t take anything away from one of the most exciting campaigns of this year so far – and we’re only in to the second week of January!
It’s not only Greggs that has been pulling out all the stops this Veganuary. Vegan food brand Hooba Foods recently launched a Crowdcube campaign to raise funds that will enable the brand to secure supermarket shelf space for its delicious, vegan products nationwide and aid company growth. Hooba Foods’ creation of a super tasty meat-free range with a superior ‘meaty’ texture has already secured a loyal army of fans across the UK by offering disruptive innovation in the meat-free and vegan food industry. Perfect for vegans, vegetarians or simply those looking to cut down on their meat consumption, Hooba Foods’ products are made entirely from a blend of exotic mushrooms that look and taste just like meat.
Intrigued? Why not #JoinTheHoobalution and watch the crowdfund video to see what you can be a part of.