TRENTON, N.J. — Over the past few months, I’ve had the pleasure of joining N.J. Secretary of Agriculture Doug Fisher for preseason meetings with many of our retail partners. As with every year, I was reminded of the invaluable role they play in assuring that the Jersey Fresh program continues to set the standard for produce marketing.
For good reason, we spend most of our time talking and writing about the incredible farm families across New Jersey. They’re the ones that make promoting Jersey Fresh so easy, packing and shipping products that are unrivaled in freshness and quality.
Equally important, however, is the commitment of our allied grocery retailers. From category leads to buyers, store owners to produce department managers, we rely on our retail partners as the ambassadors for getting our products into the hands of consumers throughout the growing season.
It’s a partnership we don’t take lightly. That’s why we’re doing more this year than ever before to assure that when retailers make the commitment to support New Jersey growers, they have every tool at their disposal to appeal to consumers seeking out Jersey Fresh products.
Already, we’ve rolled out billboards throughout New Jersey and into New York and Philadelphia encouraging consumers to look for Jersey Fresh asparagus. It’s an aggressive approach to outdoor advertising that will continue throughout the growing season, with new artwork rotated in highlighting different products as they become available. This strategy is a no brainer in a state that ranks second in cars per capita. The way people consume media is ever-changing, but our roadways are more populated now than ever before with cars taking people to-and-from work, vacations and wherever else their lives may lead them.
What’s more, we’ll also be advertising Jersey Fresh via airplane banners from July through August up-and-down the Jersey Shore, appealing to consumers even after they’ve jettisoned their daily commutes for the comforts of vacation or a weekend visit.
We’re also innovating our approach to radio, devoting more resources than ever before to streaming platforms as a supplement to our traditional AM/FM campaigns. Jersey Fresh is a brand that appeals to every strata of grocery shopper, so it’s critical that we diversify our approach to marketing accordingly.
Finally, our presence online will continue its rapid ascent. Last year, we launched www.FindJerseyFresh.com, the hub for all things Jersey Fresh. This year, we’re focused on content development, including the launch of our Jersey Fresh Chef Series, a package of recipe videos featuring chefs, restauranteurs and food bloggers who make Jersey Fresh a cornerstone of their dishes when in season.
Taken together, this mixed-media approach is designed to do one thing: drive consumers to grocery retailers and other hubs for Jersey Fresh products throughout the growing season. That’s why we’re offering our retail partners completely redesigned Jersey Fresh in-store marketing materials this season. Consumers will feel like they’ve finally arrived when they see fantastic Jersey Fresh point-of-sale displays wherever they buy produce.
As you can see, we’ve challenged ourselves to take our marketing strategies to the next level. We’re constantly evaluating our efforts to assure that we are doing everything in our power to support New Jersey farmers.
We’re challenging our retailer partners to do the same. With products as easy to promote as Jersey Fresh fruits and vegetables, it’s a partnership that just makes sense.
— Tom Beaver
director of marketing and development
New Jersey Department of Agriculture