How to boost potato consumption? Co-creating an activation campaign with Gen Y

Since the beginning of 2013, InSites Consulting has been running a structural Consumer Consulting Board (an ongoing research community) for VLAM. VLAM is Flanders’ Agricultural Marketing Board which promotes sale, added value, consumption and image of products originating from the Flemish agriculture, horticulture, fishery and agro-alimentary sector in Belgium and abroad.
One of VLAM’s missions is to make the Flemish potato popular again and they kicked off this mission with a new campaign focusing on students. Quantitative research conducted by InSites Consulting shows that almost 80% of Flemish students prepares a hot meal at least once a week, however, fresh potatoes is on the menu for only 41%. Students hate the peeling, but the cooking time required and the lack of tasty recipes are also clear barriers to them.
Tweetaway orangeTweetaway: Making the Flemish potato popular again among youngsters by insit.es/18qre8y @InSites, @Boondoggle & #VLAM
Boondoggle came up with a quick and easy recipe to lower those barriers. This recipe was tested by the participants of the VLAM Consumer Consulting Board. This community with 100 active Flemish consumers has proven its value for tens of ad hoc issues VLAM was coping with (and will continue doing so in 2014). Amongst others, this potato recipe was one of those.
Boem Patat recipeThe first recipe tested (mashed potato with minced meat, cereal, yogurt and jam) was perceived as very weird (even for students in student accommodation). However, many participants made the dish, but even then, only few were convinced about this recipe. Because of this community feedback, VLAM and Boondoggle came up with a new recipe (no longer mashed nor microwave prepared). Now it’s as simple as cutting a raw, unpeeled potato, filling it with ingredients such as cheese, vegetables, meat… and sticking it in the oven. More recipes can be found on the http://www.aardappel.be (in Dutch).
Next to traveling around the country to let students try this delicacy, VLAM and Boondoggle also created an above-the-line campaign in which we see a couple of naïve Flemish mothers entering their son’s room at the most inappropriate moments. The main message of the campaign is: Avoid these awkward situations by taking care of your food yourself!
The spot was also evaluated in preview by the community members; most of them liked the funny and playful message, however some were a bit shocked as well. Have a look at the spot and see for yourself.

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