Cultivating Brand Love and Product Awareness Around a Holiday Saturated with Competitors

With countless chocolate brands competing for consumer attention on Valentine’s Day, Chocolove needed a fresh and focused approach to communicate to existing and new fans why they should feel good about gifting and eating its special holiday offerings on the day of love.

Client
Services
Communications Strategy & Planning
Media Relations & Influencer Marketing
Industry
Premium Food & Beverage
Awards

CHallenge

As Chocolove’s communications partner, Linhart PR was charged with boosting brand and product awareness, encouraging trial, wooing new fans and securing media coverage that highlighted why Chocolove is the best-tasting, responsibly-sourced choice for gifting and eating on a chocolate-centric holiday with plenty of sweet options for consumers to choose from.

Solution

Linhart PR activated an influencer mailer program and robust news-making strategy that:

  • Encouraged sampling and tapped into existing media opportunities: To taste Chocolove is to love it, so the team offered samples of the limited-edition Valentine’s Day collection to top-tier national consumer outlets, confectionery trades and local Denver media to try, while identifying existing holiday news opportunities, like roundups featuring top gifts for Valentine’s Day, to target for Chocolove inclusion.
  • Created an editorial MAT release: To drive widespread, coast-to-coast awareness of the holiday offerings and where to buy them, Linhart PR crafted a Chocolove editorial feature about the best Chocolove products to give to a loved one on Valentine’s Day, which ran in hundreds of publications in top local markets nationwide. The team wrote and distributed a national wire release as well, to support trade outlet coverage.  
  • Partnered with influencers to connect with new audiences: To generate Instagram buzz, Linhart PR curated Valentine packages for a strategically selected set of foodie, lifestyle and wellness-curious female influencers with interests ranging from home baking to entertaining. The mailers included Chocolove chocolate, items to celebrate Valentine’s Day – like flowers and a candle – and a custom 10% off discount code to further encourage influencers to share mailer pics and information about Chocolove with their followers.

Results

In total, Linhart PR secured nearly 1,100 stories in national and local news outlets, as well as coverage in the top three confectionery trades, plus 17 influencer shares reaching millions of potential new Chocolove fans, all positioning Chocolove as chocolate you can feel good about gifting and eating for Valentine’s Day.

Some specific highlights:

  • 9 reporters from national top-tier news outlets received samples, ultimately resulting in 26 news stories, including a piece in People Magazine (UMV 43,856,034).
  • Linhart PR secured 6 Valentine’s Day trade stories and 4 trade newsletter inclusions. Plus, Chocolove’s limited-edition Valentine’s Day 3 bar pack won the title of Best Gifting Chocolate in Candy Industry’s 2022 Valentine’s Day Products Poll.
  • 28 influencers, with a total audience size of more than 3.5 million, received the holiday mailers. 17 recipients – or 65%, which was the program goal – posted about Chocolove and their boxes; 58% of the influencers who posted shared their discount codes with followers.
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