An eight-week Spring campaign to support the red meat industry has generated £9.8m in incremental retail beef sales.
Jointly funded by Quality Meat Scotland (QMS), England’s Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) and Hybu Cig Cymru – Meat Promotion Wales (HCC), the campaign encouraged consumers to ‘Make It’ with locally sourced steak to support producers nationwide as the fallout from the Covid 19 pandemic hit the industry hard.
The revenue growth generated following the campaign equates to 742 tonnes of beef steak sold over the eight-week period. The results also indicate the campaign’s ‘halo effect’ on wider beef sales, with the activity generating a return in retail sales of £24.7m across the primary fresh beef category.
AHDB reported that the £806k push reached 93 per cent of the British population through a mix of TV sponsorship, digital and social media, radio and press partnerships, and video on demand. It was also supported in-store by retailers with on pack stickers and online banners.
A joint statement from the levy boards said: “At the start of the pandemic, the British red meat industry faced one of the most challenging periods in its history, with demand for premium beef cuts dropping overnight as restaurants were forced to close their doors.
“With farmers and processors facing a drop in the value of the whole beef carcass, QMS, AHDB and HCC collaborated on and launched the nationwide ‘Make It’ campaign to help rebalance the market by encouraging consumers when cooking to ‘make it’ using top quality locally sourced beef to create restaurant-inspired meals at home.
“We’re really pleased with the results, which gave a much-needed boost to the beef supply chain and helped redress carcass balance”
Highlights of the media activity included two high impact MailOnline takeovers, which generated over 127 million impressions . Scotch Beef PGI, PGI Welsh Beef and Red Tractor Beef also became sponsors of Afternoon Movies and Drama on Channel 5 with sponsorship bumpers appearing alongside popular shows such as NCIS and Law and Order.
The campaign was also seen on video-on-demand, hosted on ITV Hub, ALL 4 and Sky On Demand. These videos promoted the use of steaks and roasts for simple dinnertime solutions.
Targeted social media adverts were a huge success, generating 47 million impressions and contributing to over 500,000 website clicks to the levy boards’ regional consumer sites across the eight-week campaign period.
With the public now having the opportunity to approach meal times a little differently, through working from home for example, the campaign cleverly tapped into occasions like Steak Nights, the start of BBQ season and getting more out of the family roast to capture the imagination of the British public.
With much of the hospitality sector across all three nations facing varying restrictions on operations, the three levy bodies continue to pool together to find ways to support the industry through one of its most difficult times.
In a follow-up joint statement, they said: “As much of the nation returns to some level of lockdown and is likely to do so for the foreseeable future, we will apply the key learnings from the ‘Make It’ campaign to look again at opportunities to collaborate together to ensure the red meat industry is protected.”