Spoonful has become a very important and highly valued partner for a lot of companies in the food & beverage industry. They are a creative partner for unique brand story development and food & beverage communications in the German market and helping brands conquering the German speaking markets.
Katharina Wagner (founder andCommunications & POS marketing expert) and Laura Roosenboom (co founder and social media expert) give us an insight in SPOONFUL !
When did it all start for Spoonful ?
SPOONFUL started in 2018, as we decided to use our marketing and food industry know-how to work with innovative food brands (or brands that would like to become more innovative in time) in the German-speaking market. We are specialized in Germany, Austria & Switzerland and support clients with 360° communications in Europe´s largest economy, both online and offline.
Your references on the website are quite impressive, there’s a balance between larger SME’s and startups ?
Exactly. We are a modern and very flexible agency, as we believe there is a lot to learn from both big and small brands and their different marketing approaches. There are a lot of roads that lead to success, and it is very exciting to see what works (and what doesn´t) for different company sizes. With this diverse client portfolio, we have become very good at understanding what really drives consumers, and we love to be able to adapt to our clients needs along the way.
You are a German company, are you only working with German food & beverage companies ?
No, we are working for clients from currently 8 countries. What unites them is that they are all present, or would like to be present, in the German-speaking market.
The Spoonful team consists of specialists in Food & Beverage marketing ?
Yes, we currently are a team of 10, and everyone in the team has a food background in their specific area. For example design, performance marketing, content creation or POS marketing for food retail. This is of course one of the most important topics for us: Being a pro in the food & beverage industry and understanding the special drivers. One of them for example is, that the purchase of food products mostly takes place in stationary retail instead of online, which is a big difference to some other industries like fashion or music. It is important for us and our clients that our team consists of experts in that area.
Influencer marketing is becoming more and more important. What’s important for Spoonful if an influencer wants to cooperate ?
We do a lot of influencer projects, and most importantly we would like to people who are reliable. Our work ethics are to be super reliable for our clients, so they can count on timings, experience, recommendations and so forth. The same we expect from our partners, and so far, this has been working pretty well.
How do you turn niche products into bestsellers ?
A niche product can also be great for the mass market, if the communication is right. And of course, if the product´s taste, texture, packaging and so forth are suitable for the mass market. We always try to take a deep dive into what really drives German consumers in a specific category, and develop all brand communications accordingly. Serving the consumers in their best interest is probably one of the most important factors to succeed in the long run.
It’s important to discover the new trends about food & beverage at the right moment, how can you make sure you’re on time ? It’s a daily challenge for your team?
We believe that it is extremely hard to reach “the right moment” for all of your new product launches. Even with the best preparation, the market can be not ready for what you want to serve them, or already too matured. But there are certainly some indicators that help you know if the time is about right for getting out there with a new trend. One of the most important factors here is market & consumer understanding, as all countries are different.
Online marketing and developing online sales channels became more and more important since COVID19 pandemic entered our planet. How did it change your business and services ?
It definitely changed client requests into a more online-driven direction. We would still say that the actual purchase of most food products is not done online but in food retail, but there is a big difference now: Most brands have come to realize that creating awareness around their brand is super important in order to survive in the long run. Not only because a brand should represent what it stands for and has to offer, but also to not let competitors enter the field without a little resistance from the other side.
Are you available for starting businesses ? What kind of budget is needed for a foreign brand to impress the German market ?
We are always available to talk to startups, and the budget question is really hard to answer without knowing the actual setup of each individual company. What we can definitely say though is that Germany or the German-speaking market is extremely competitive, so investing is super important to gain and especially keep listings. Reinvesting a good amount of a company´s turnover in marketing activities is therefore a good idea.
Is there a significant change in approaching the German market now that important food exhibitions such as Anuga and Biofach are canceled ?
We have a couple of sales partners & distributors we work with, and they of course realize that a lot of trade shows and offline meetings have been cancelled, so it is a little harder to get new listings on the market. For established companies, that part has also changed, but we are surprised how well even the largest brands are dealing with the fact that now everything has to be done online. Overall, we can definitely see it has become a little harder to meet in person, online meetings and decision making processes on the other hand have been speeding up during the crisis. In the end we will see how this whole pandemic will change our ways of working together in the future.
If a company is interested in your services, what kind of information is required to see the possibilities ?
We usually receive a first introduction email where the company tells us what it is they are looking for, and then we set up an intro call. The bigger the company, the better the briefings usually are, but we figure out what to do with all kinds of clients. So there is really no specific “profile” anyone has to match – we love to be flexible, already in the first steps of the process.
Can You give an example of a real growth story with the help of Spoonful?
We could give a lot, but sometimes do not have the allowance by the brand to share our numbers or success stories. To name one case though, we have started working with the Danish brand True Gum about one year ago. True Gum is a manufacturer or plastic-free chewing gum and the brand has been growing tremendously over the past 12 months. We do the German & Austrian PR for True Gum and managed to get countless publications in in the largest newspapers & magazines, with a media value of 70.000 EUR and 13 mio. Issues distributed in only the first 6 months. We are very much looking forward to the next years with this great collaboration, team and product.
What kind of services can you offer a company seeking a re-branding ?
Design is one of the most important pillars in our service list, as almost everything in marketing needs to be professionally designed in order to properly reach the consumer. Re-branding is also something that we do a lot, and we can offer anything from a brand audit and market check to see where a brand stands compared to the competitors & trends, to the whole re-branding project itself, including logo, corporate identity, packaging, website and all other branded materials.
What’s the “next big step” for Spoonful? Where do you want to be, let’s say in 2025 ?
We have grown a lot in 2020, from a team of 4 to a team of 10 now, and we are extremely excited about lots of new projects, clients and learnings next year. As a dream for 2025, we would be a slightly bigger team with high expertise and even more learnings in the food industry, to become even better specialists for our clients. We would probably have a couple of new services by then, to keep on learning and keeping up to date with the latest developments in the marketing industry. And keep having a great team spirit and service level approach, just like now.
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