Friday 30 September 2016

Why a Cookbook is No Longer Just Recipes

In today’s digital landscape, any basic recipe can be found in 100 different ways and with thousands of variations. So how does one make a recipe truly stand out? The answer relies on the modern cookbook. This type of cookbook is not focused on your traditional listing of ingredients and instructions – it’s a much richer story, often expressed visually, which can translate a basic recipe into a memory and experience. Food blogs laid the groundwork for the modern cookbook by sharing not only recipes, but a behind-the-scenes look into the recipe itself. A recipe became a post, and from light-hearted jokes to deeper emotional stories, recipes were brought to life in a new way. From brands to bloggers, the recipe is just the beginning; the story is what brings it to the table.

Connecting Brand + Recipe

When it comes to sharing recipes as a brand, the challenge is not just getting consumers to share your recipes, but become brand loyalists to your overall story and message. Although the recipe is ultimately what the consumer is looking for, a larger vision will help the recipe stand out among the masses of roasted chicken or quinoa dishes. Brands can create a modern cookbook from a variety of angles, but here are a few great examples to get the juices flowing:

1. Leverage Emotional Factors – Food is inherently an emotional experience. Anyone can share a recipe for pancakes, but imagine what happens when that basic pancake recipe is shared within the context of a cozy weekend breakfast setting? The consumer is immediately drawn to a memory and experience that they savor and that recipe becomes more than a list of ingredients. On Pinterest, Chobani shares yogurt based recipes within boards that create a larger story. The boards create an ultimate feeling of healthy living, inspiration and even travel, which brings the product and ultimately the recipes to life for the consumer.

2. Bring Foodies Together – Google+ is quickly emerging within the food space, bringing chefs, brands and food enthusiasts together in one digital location. Aside from sharing recipes and posts with members of your Google+ circles, communities are bringing foodies together from across the globe. One such community, called foodies+,allowed for three strangers in Canada, France and Spain to tackle a challenging recipe together. When it comes to attempting new recipes, half of the battle is building up the courage for consumers to try something new. As brands begin to utilize the Google+ community feature they can bring brand loyalists together to take on new recipes, ultimately making the brand’s recipe and story a part of their family table.

3. Simplicity works –Don’t get lost in a larger and unnecessary vision. The Mushroom Channel* recently shared a recipe for Simple Sautéed Mushrooms across their social channels. On first glance, this sounds like a recipe that can be found a dime a dozen across the internet. The captivating image made the mushrooms look so delectable, that it could even make those questionable about mushrooms encouraged to give them a try. When an image speaks that much volume, there is no need to force a story that is already unfolding naturally.

How do you utilize the modern cookbook, as a brand or consumer?

*The Mushroom Channel is an Edelman Client.

Image credit: pirate jonny

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