With food prices up by 13.1% in the summer of 2022, the U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council (USHBC) needed a way to keep blueberries on consumer shopping lists. At the same time, research showed that the number of food-insecure households in the U.S. had more than doubled since the pandemic, with estimates putting one in six children in danger of facing hunger. USHBC knew many blueberry fans are parents who care deeply about children, and that a brand’s social responsibility efforts are important factor in driving preference. Research also identified that consumers experience a physical and emotional “boost” after eating fruits as a snack or part of a meal.
These insights fueled a cause-driven campaign that inspired consumer action and industry involvement. Our month-long challenge, “Grab a Boost, Give a Boost,” held during National Blueberry Month, compelled consumers to actively use their social media voices to help combat child hunger. For every single post tagging @blueberries on social media during July, the U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council would donate $1 to No Kid Hungry, up to $50K, which would help provide 500,000 meals for kids. We amplified this campaign by leveraging health, wellness and food influencers, as well as celebrity partnerships, to tie doing good with feeling good. We supplemented the program with paid advertising (including a Times Square banner), social media and earned media campaigns.
Blueberry fans helped spread the word and raise money for child hunger – and they ate more blueberries as well. We achieved our goal of raising $50k and secured more than 54 million impressions from coverage in 13 top-tier publications, including five in-person interviews with actress Nicole Ari Parker from publications like EatingWell and US Weekly and a Fox & Friends National Blueberry Month segment garnering 1.4 million broadcast impressions. And, along the way, blueberry sales increased by more than 5% during the campaign – with a 5.38x return on dollars invested.