One cappuccino…or four

The word food evokes a largely universal sentiment of happiness. Whether it’s the scent of fresh baked chocolate chip cookies coming out of the oven or an Instagram picture of a bowl of olive oil soaked pasta, food warms hearts. As such, cooking videos like those from Tasty find almost instant success in terms of virality on social networks. From comments to tags to shares, food videos appeal to most every demographic, especially me.

Once you’ve watched one video, you are automatically taken to the next and the next. Before you know it, 30 minutes have passed and you are thoroughly hungry.

Such is the case with online shopping and more specifically, Amazon recommendations. After you make a purchase, Amazon provides suggestions based on what they predict you would also like. It’s easy to then spend the next few minutes browsing and online shopping even more than you intended. When items are hand picked and personalized to your taste, it’s hard to not stay online.

This happened to me the other day, no shame. As I just returned from studying in Europe for four months, my coffee preferences have completely transformed. All I now crave is frothy cappuccinos and cafés au lait.  After difficulty in satisfying this request at coffee shops in Chicago and Wisconsin, I finally purchased a cappuccino frother. It is great, thanks for asking. Regardless, after making this purchase I consequently spent hours browsing through excessive kitchen gadgets and all the coffee machines on the market. Amazon recommendations work and apparently I’m not the only one.

An article by Wired describes the instance where a New York Times bestseller was ousted from shelves on account of a similar book rising in popularity after it was recommended on Amazon to purchasers of the bestseller counterpart. Amazon inadvertently allowed an under the radar book to rise to the top on account of its presence on their site as a suggestion to purchasers of a similar yet more known book.

“It created the Touching the Void phenomenon by combining infinite shelf space with real-time information about buying trends and public opinion. The result: rising demand for an obscure book.”

What then defines a successful marketing strategy? It’s often hard to predict which book, food video or product will experience the most success. Virality is dependent on the real time sentiments of the consumer.

According to a New York Times article, marketing depends much more on an understanding of communication strategies than one would think. As a result, those who thrive in the field of marketing are those most trained in communication both in terms of daily interactions and social media, aka journalists. Me!

“Conventional marketing wisdom holds that predicting success in cultural markets is mostly a matter of anticipating the preferences of the millions of individual people who participate in them.”

Content marketing and social media source Dreamgrow cites that Facebook is the current frontrunner in terms of social networking sites, with 1.79 billion visitors each month. In second place is Youtube, with 1 billion visitors, indicating a preference for visual and interactive networks. Facebook allows users to feel connected to their friends, Youtube allows for a similar feeling of connectedness on account of how visual and personal videos can be. You feel that you are there as the food is being prepared, you feel as if you are on the receiving end of the conversation in the case of vlogs, etc.

After reading these stats and reflecting on which social networks grab my attention the most, I plan to integrate videos into my online presence via vlog-type posts and possibly a Tasty-esque channel, which ties my love for food with the power of video. I’ve already begun via cappuccino demos on my personal snapchat, but the next step is too move this to Youtube.

Stay tuned!

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