The lowly potato, while universally enjoyed, doesn’t get a whole lot of love, especially for its nutritional benefits – perhaps because the starchy tuber is often fried, mashed and mixed with non-healthy ingredients.
But the U.S. potato industry, represented by the marketing organization Potatoes USA, is hoping to change that by focusing on real science in a new marketing and advertising campaign. The campaign supports the performance-boosting benefits of potatoes by showcasing how adding potatoes to a workout routine or meals can lead to better results for athletes and those who lead active lives.
Online videos promoted on Facebook and Instagram from SRG (Sterling Rice Group), feature the new tagline “Potatoes. Real Food. Real Performance.” The stories in the short films demonstrate how adding potatoes to a meal can have a positive impact on one’s ability on the soccer field, biking up a mountain, running and other activities.
In one of the films a bicyclist pedals hard up a hill. After a break where we see her eating some potatoes, the film returns to the ride up hill but this time a new image is superimposed on the original bike climb to show the rider going faster and further with copy that declares, “You. Better.” Another features a soccer player and another a runner, all using potatoes – not fried or mashed – to fuel their activities.
“The potato undeniably works in the athlete’s favor,” says Blair Richardson, Potatoes USA president/chief executive. “The message is clear: If potatoes can fuel elite athletes, they can fuel your active life, too.”
The new approach from Potatoes USA also brings real Olympic athletes and other professional athletes to the conversation through influencer and social aspects. Athletes will be posting original content on social media channels and in blog posts. Also featured in the influencer effort are noted exercise physiologist Dr. Allen Lim and Olympic coach, trainer and chef Alan Tran.
Potatoes USA has conducted extensive research on the benefits of potatoes and found that most people don’t consider it a performance food and are surprised to learn of its nutritional benefits. A medium potato with the skin on has more potassium than a medium-size banana and is packed with more nutrients than any other popular vegetable. Other statistics are featured on the Potato Goodness website.
“Our performance strategy speaks to elite athletes and weekend warriors by asking ‘what are you eating?” explained Adam Wohl, executive creative director at SRG. “The advertising and supporting influencer campaigns leverage the science behind the benefits of potatoes to demonstrate that getting the most out of your workout or actual competition isn’t just about how you train, but also about what you eat.”