The 38th annual Natural Products Expo West, the world’s largest natural, organic and healthy products event, held another record‐setting event this year hosting more than 85,000 attendees and 3,500 exhibitors. The show, on March 7th‐11th at the Anaheim Convention Center, brought together hundreds of industry pioneers and a new generation of 600+ first-time exhibitors who are shaping the future of healthy products.
The Organik SEO team took to the Expo West floor to support our amazing partners and get the 4-1-1 on the natural products industry direct from the movers, shakers, and tastemakers leading the movement. If you weren’t able to attend this year, here’s a little taste of what you missed:
Move over Gluten-Free! There’s a new “anti-processed” trend that’s sweeping through the natural products industry. Without question, one of the largest trends this year was the prominence of grain-free bites, snacks, and other tasty treats. Grain-free benefits from a perception of health, are viewed as a less processed diet and fits with consumers’ gradual shift away from processed foods.
“A minimal, recognizable and clean ingredient list has become more and more important each year,” Samantha Abrams, Co-Founder, Emmy’s Organics.
Driven by carb-adverse consumers’ desire for a healthy alternative to white rice and gluten-filled grains, demand for cauliflower has grown steadily over the past few years, but the once “boring” vegetable emerged as a true star at this year’s expo. From cookies, chips and pizza crust to baking goods and sauces, brands at last week’s Natural Products Expo West showcased how they are using cauliflower to make nutrient-dense, gluten-free options of some of consumers’ favorite snacks. – From The Ground Up.
Also on display were the marketing strategies brands are deploying today to drive these products into consumers’ hands tomorrow.
Co-branding has been an effective marketing tactic for decades as brands like Betty Crocker & Hershey’s have partnered together, Pottery Barn & Sherwin Williams and even Nike & Apple. This year, Expo West brands jumped on the co-branding band wagon (pun-intended) with great success. One example: Alpendough, an emerging brand in the organic sweet treats category, partnered with some of their favorite brands like Justin’s, an organic peanut butter company, for a big product giveaway.
Engaging the Experts (Hey, that’s us!)
As more natural product brands move from start-up to industry authorities, they are also moving away from a “we can wear every hat” mentality with their marketing. Particularly in the field of Digital Marketing. There was a wealth of great blog content, video content, and social media content with contests, giveaways, live videos, advertising, and social sharing. Brands are recognizing the power of digital marketing as an effective way to create a relationship with the consumer that has depth and relevance. Increasingly, they are partnering with experts who understand how to leverage digital marketing channels and initiatives for maximum growth and customer engagement.
B Corporation Domination
Many brands at the Expo commented that their fastest growing customers are conscious millennials who are more educated than previous generations on the products they buy and demand more in terms of accountability and transparency from companies. In order to match this customer’s needs, brands such as Mamma Chia, Garden of Life and Herbatint are attaining B Corporation Certification as showcased in their booth signage and in their packaging.
B Corp certification means they meet higher standards of social responsibility, environmental responsibility, accountability, and transparency. The B Corporation website highlights “B Corp is to business what Fair Trade certification is to coffee or USDA Organic certification is to milk.” There are currently 2,457 B Corporations across 50+ countries and 130 industries with 1 unifying goal.
Organik SEO is proud to be a B Corp because we truly believe that the B Corp movement is one of the most important of our lifetime.
For more insights and images from Expo West 2018, or to learn more about some of the Expo West brands that we represent, contact us.