A Little Bit of Culture in a Big Way

As you may know, RMD turned 24 this year! In March, we celebrated our anniversary with the intent to continue to be the smartest, strongest and most fun agency around, all while being driven by our trademark values.

Any RMDer will tell you: RMD is all about the culture. So, what makes our workplace one we all love coming to every day?

Tweet: “We will never—and I mean never—turn our backs on our employees.” - Howard Schultz, @Starbucks: http://ow.ly/YFl5l http://ctt.ec/ude0R“We will never—and I mean never—turn our backs on our employees.” – Howard Schultz, @Starbucks: http://ow.ly/YFl5l http://ctt.ec/ude0R

RMD’s culture is like no other. While the formula for a perfect workplace may not exist, we think that by understanding that it is a collaborative effort and that it is something we consciously work to maintain every day, we’ve come pretty darn close. Here’s a taste of what we think makes our agency great!

1. Mojo Lunch. Hey, a team’s gotta eat, right? Mojo Lunch on Friday is a perk this hungry team never takes for granted!
2. Quarterly outings. Team building makes the world, er, RMD go round!

RMD-Blog-TeamBuilding-2016

3. It might seem unnecessary, but the RMDers who plank every day around noon know that all it takes to re-center is a couple of abdominal building minutes!
4. #ThankfulThursday. Teambuilding makes RMD go round, but gratitude is at the heart of all we do, and Thankful Thursday reminds us of that.
5. Hear a dance-worthy song play over the speakers? RMD encourages dancing to put yourself in peak state. Try it. You’ll feel like you can take on the (PR, creative, social media, web) world!
6. You read right. A gong helps us to celebrate the big and small victories audibly throughout the day!
7. #AttitudeOfGratitude. An RMD-inspired way of celebrating the gifts (big and small) we each give to one another every day. #AttitudeOfGratitude to you for giving our blog post a read!

RMD-Blog-RAK

8. Soul train. Whether we’re saying goodbye to a team member for a short while or saying so long for a longer period, our version of Soul Train sends ‘em out in a classic RMD manner.
9. They’re our official Directors of Stress Management, and they do a darn good job!

RMD-Dogs

10. Pro Best. Held every Friday, Pro Best is our time to come together and become the high-quality professionals that help to make RMD special.
11. Mojo follows Pro Best each Friday. It’s our time to reconnect and reflect on yet another outstanding week.
12. Virtual showers. RMD throws one heck of a shower. Wedding and baby showers are our specialties!
13. Community work. Because we’re all like-minded individuals, work like that we do with Wagons Ho Ho Ho is something we have a great deal of pride.
14. Food holidays. National Ice Cream Day isn’t just a fun food holiday to share across social media; it’s also an excuse to indulge in our favorite ice cream brand: Graeter’s Ice Cream!

RMD-IceCream

15. Revolutionizing the way we hold meetings, you have to experience a sprint to see how much more productive they make us!
16. Book club. In our commitment to excellence, we love meeting every Tuesday and Thursday morning to share our thoughts on that month’s industry-related book. Check out a few books worth reading.
17. No, we’re not slacking. We just use Slack as our agency-wide message board to celebrate victories, share ideas and feel connected. Sound off!

What Makes a Love Brand?

vector of love heart

For every “Love Brand” that RMD has had the honor to work with or has helped to shape in the food category, each shares three important qualities that ultimately contribute to its success.

They have the makings of a “love food brand“, which lead to their success in every respect – from concept to creation.

1. People.
Perhaps most critically, the people behind cult brands are passionate in a way that pours into the brand’s story. Energy is injected into the brand from every side of the company. This creates a unique company culture that inspires the quality of work necessary of the most successful brands.

2. Head.
Cult brands also do incredible work serving consumers with the pure intention of becoming a part of their lives, aligning with their pre-conceived notions of what makes a brand honest and trustworthy. It is in this way that they connect with them on both an intellectual and highly emotional level. Relying once again upon one of our current cult brands, Graeter’s Ice Cream proves the power yielded by becoming a part of generations of families that now hold their own Graeter’s experiences and stories close to them.

The proof is in the fact that “baby’s first ice cream” is now a common Graeter’s fan photo spontaneously shared with the brand from guests in every market. Consumers intellectually trust and feel good about eating the brand, and are excited to build another chapter in their family story that includes Graeter’s Ice Cream. It is a brand their parents trusted before them and is a tradition they hope their children will incorporate into their lives.

3. Heart.
Distinguishing cult brands even further is the fact that they consistently align with consumers’ hearts. Enjoying the brand reconnects them to a time, place or memory. It is emotive.

Graeter’s Ice Cream is an expert in crafting these types of moments. For many fans, the moment their favorite Graeter’s Ice Cream flavor hits their tongue, they are reminded of fond memories as children, summer days spent with friends or celebrations of life’s big moments with family. Food is emotional, nostalgic and woven tightly into our sense of family. Dinner tables oftentimes feature America’s love brands regularly, and consumers feel reconnected to their loved ones when those weekly celebrations occur.

Every food brand certainly can become a cult brand if it commits to the people and passion behind the company. However, not every brand is fortunate enough to be led by a family or a group of people that is as dedicated to the romance that must be cultivated to create that heart and head connection within consumers.

When there is an impassioned group of individuals that are committed to that level of connectivity, magic occurs – the kind that is passed from generation to generation.

24 Things We Learned & Loved at Expo West

RMDAdvertising-ExpoWest2016

There was so much to see at Natural Products Expo West this year! From our clients that were exhibiting to the brands that inspired us, we flew home with our heads full of BIG ideas.

This is our 24th anniversary, so in keeping with the theme, we’ll share 24 trends we noticed as we walked the aisles.

Tweet: 24 #food #trends we noticed at #ExpoWest this year. Take a look, #foodies! http://rmdadvertising.com/blog/ http://ctt.ec/Ydaqe24 #food #trends we noticed at #ExpoWest this year. Take a look, #foodies! http://rmdadvertising.com/blog/ http://ctt.ec/Ydaqe

1. Keep an eye out for bone broth!

2. The entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well in the food industry.

3. The great divide between certifications, such as gluten-free, organic and all-natural, still remains. Consumers have more than ever to decipher as they navigate nutrition.

4. Brands that grow fastest are those that move swiftly and with a great deal of energy.

5. Taste trumps all. All other aspects of a product are irrelevant if it tastes great.

6. The industry grows in direct proportion to America’s love affair with food. We’re entranced with nostalgia and pop culture all at once.

7. Select food brands have become so popular that the entrepreneurs behind the brand name have become celebrities in many respects.

8. The strongest brands are fueled by a food tribe of consumers that love the brand, as well as a team that is passionate about its success.

9. Similar products are saturating the market, the ever-present question is, how do you stand out? Having a unique voice is vital to success right now.

10.Smart on-the-go snacking is still a hot topic as consumers continue to live their busy, fast-paced lifestyles and want healthy options they can feel good about.

11. Transparency is still one of the most important aspects of a product companies continue to feature.

12. In line with the need for transparency is the need for the humane treatment of animals. Consumers continue to be concerned about where their food is coming from. That’s what we like to see! Check out NestFresh for a look at transparency done right.

13. Jerkies, meats and high protein products are still all the rage.

14. Pulses are currently emerging as a hot trend.

15. Interactive marketing had a huge impact on how recognizable a brand was at Expo West.

16. While there were fewer frozen food brands exhibiting, this could be a great opportunity to capitalize on the benefits of frozen food, highlighting freezing as a natural preservative. That’s why we love our frozen food clients, like Mom Made Foods, Tandoor Chef and Graeter’s Ice Cream.

17. Packaging saw a trend towards a clean and modern feel, with a color design of only two to three colors.

18. Clean nutritional panels are a huge draw for today’s health conscious consumers.

19. Candy has expanded to the organic category, offering consumers a new way to indulge.

20. Organic sodas and juices continue to grow in influence, with fruit flavors being the most popular.

21. The granola and energy bar categories are congested. Differentiation in packaging and variety in flavor will likely help it to grow.

22. Dairy brands are focused primarily on yogurt and cheese. However, butter has great potential to take the category by storm … Minerva Dairy, anyone?

23. Digital displays with video – showcasing best practices and sustainability – helped a number of brands find success at Expo West.

24. Healthy snacks for children, with a focus on fun, party packs and small sizes, made headway.

24 Reasons to Fall in Love with Frozen Food

RMD-FrozenFood

Frozen food is often underappreciated and underutilized by today’s consumers. When there’s so much to love, we won’t stand idly by and watch America’s freezers fill up with 6 month old pork chops and ice cubes.

Instead, in honor of RMD’s 24th anniversary this month, we’re sharing 24 reasons to fall in love with frozen food again.

Tweet: #FunFact: The 1st frozen #pizza is thought to have been marketed in 1957. #Frozen Food http://rmdadvertising.com/blog/ http://ctt.ec/E50b9#FunFact: The 1st frozen #pizza is thought to have been marketed in 1957. #Frozen Food http://rmdadvertising.com/blog/ http://ctt.ec/E50b9

There are 24 miscellaneous fun facts and reasons we’re stocking our freezers with brands like Graeter’s Ice Cream, Tandoor Chef and Mom Made Foods. Read on!

1. Frozen foods do not require any added preservatives to keep them safe and consumable, because microbes cannot grow on any food that is at a temperature less than 0°F. Freezing is a natural way to preserve nutrients!

2. Despite old wives’ tales, freezing food does not remove any nutrients, unlike other processes that tend to strip them.

3. You don’t need to be afraid of freezer burn or color changes in your properly frozen food. Freezer burn is just the result of air hitting frozen food and allowing the ice to sublimate.

4. Freezing food typically keeps items edible indefinitely. Although taste and quality may diminish over time, some items, such as poultry and meat, can be consumed up to a year after being stored in the freezer. Warm up to frozen food!

5. Although freezing food was used as a storage technique in cold weather climates for many years, it is believed to have first been applied to industrial food sales sometime in the 1800s.

6. Carl Paul Gottfried Linde, an engineer, scientist and professor at the Technical University of Munich, helped pioneer industrial cooling. His plans for an ice machine in the nineteenth century spurred the evolution of the refrigerator.

7. The freezing process has inspired brands like Crunchtables to make vegetables more enticing … and more delicious!

8. The namesake of Birds Eye Vegetables came from the company’s founder, Clarence Birdseye, who introduced the idea of flash freezing to the world.

9. Birdseye’s food was so prevalent that it was actually the first frozen food sold commercially in the United States.

10. The first “complete” frozen meal was not actually the beloved “TV dinner”—it was airplane food! Each frozen meal included a meat, a vegetable, a potato and was meant to be reheated for in-air enjoyment. Even though the term was originally a brand name for Swanson’s frozen dinners, it soon became synonymous with any packaged frozen dinner that could be easily eaten on a tray in front of (you guessed it!) the TV.

11. Ditch the preservatives. Freezing is a simple, preservative-free way to keep the food you love fresh. A ripe avocado? Fresh for a couple of days before it goes brown. Tender boneless chicken simmered and seasoned in a zesty, authentic Indian sauce in our Chicken Curry however, can stay fresh in the freezer until you’re ready to enjoy it!

12. Break seasonal barriers. With the magic of freezing, you can enjoy all of your favorite seasonal veggies year-round. Which nutrient-rich vegetable is your go-to?

13. The frozen aisle helps companies like Mad Mini Foods to bring fun, clean ingredients and portion control to those of us who need a little indulgence without the guilt.

14. Waste less. Did you know that seven in ten households regularly throw away up to twenty items of fresh or chilled food straight into the trash every month? Break the mold and go frozen!

15. Fresh raw fruits and vegetables are often harvested before they reach their peak nutritional value and then ripen “off the vine” while they are transported long distances. On the other hand, vegetables that offer the greatest nutritional value, flavor, color and ripeness are quickly frozen to retain these natural qualities.

16. Frozen food holds so much history for brands like Graeter’s Ice Cream who still used time-tested Old World processes to bring authenticity to consumers.

17. “Some of the hottest products in the frozen food aisle are portable, ready-to-eat and offer no-mess preparation and easy cleanup.  All this built-in convenience means time-pressed moms and dads can quickly prepare wholesome and tasty meals that allow for more quality time around the table,” according to the Frozen Food Foundation.

18. Frozen foods are real value. They are often lower in cost per serving and have much greater shelf life than refrigerated foods by their very nature.

19. The freezing process can reduce the number of potentially harmful bacteria, which can cause food poisoning.

20. Buying frozen food means you can take fewer trips to get groceries, thereby reducing your individual carbon footprint.

21. Before frozen food became a way of life, any excess fresh crops were simply wasted, thrown away or ploughed back into the ground. Freezing has meant that farmers can sell entire harvests.

22. Frozen food allows brands like Mom Made Foods to bring America’s families simple and nutritious ways to lead their on-the-go lifestyles while not compromising on health!

23. Eco scientists claim that buying frozen is good for the environment. Fresh exotic fish can be flown in daily from nearly anywhere, but frozen fish keeps for long periods in the freezer. This cuts down on your shopping trips and flights for seasonal deliveries.

24. Frozen food is what defines a number of our clients, and without them, we wouldn’t be RMD!

Happy Anniversary RMD!

RMDAdvertising-24Years

March marks RMD Advertising’s 24th anniversary. That’s 24 years of exemplary client service, 24 years of cultivating a culture of intensely passionate, smart-as-a-whip RMD’ers … and 24 years of celebrating the food industry. All month long, we’re shedding a spotlight on what makes RMD great, from the people to our clients.

Tweet: Why do we love #RMD? In honor of our 24th anniversary, here are 24 of our fave things! #AgencyLife http://ow.ly/YFl5l http://ctt.ec/aa36jWhy do we love #RMD? In honor of our 24th anniversary, here are 24 of our fave things! #AgencyLife http://ow.ly/YFl5l http://ctt.ec/aa36j

We asked team members to share what makes RMD special, and this is what we heard:

24: “RMD is a culture of learning, of growing and of failing forward. We believe that if you’re not growing, you’re sinking.”

23: “We plank. We host water challenges. We ring the gong. We do what we can to make RMD more than just a place of work!”

22: “We’re smart marketers, constantly sharpening our skills. RMD works hard to deliver the best of the best for our clients – no exceptions.”

21: “We’re experts in our field and know how to put our clients first. This drives us to think harder and smarter each and every day.”

20: “Puppies in the office! Who else can say that?”

19: “We’ve got a great culture!”

18: “RMD works with truly incredible food brands, many of which are family-owned. What a gift to be able to work so closely to people who are passionate about the food business.”

17: “RMD is a team of people who make the environment what it is: Inspiring, enthusiastic and driven.”

16: “To be able to say I am an RMD’er is a point of pride.”

15: “Every day is a celebration. From National Margarita Day to National Toast Day and from Random Acts of Kindness Month to throwing baby showers for a fellow team member, we make the most of it!”

14: “We get to celebrate our amazing clients by eating their delicious food!”

13: “There is great music pumping through the office all the time.”

12: “We focus on taking care of each other and our clients each and every day.”

11: “Working with amazing food brands and becoming experts in our industry as well as theirs is something I am truly proud of.”

10: “Puppies in the office!”

9: “Who else can say they work with the best stress managers in the world? Dogs!”

8: “RMD is part of the Columbus community, embodying its energy and vibrancy!”

7: “We inspire each other to push farther each day. We push past our creative limits for the sake of our clients, whom we love.”

6: “Did we mention the dogs in the office?”

5: “Our clients inspire us to be better marketers, faster marketers, smarter marketers!”

4: “We learn so much from our clients. They’re the reason we push for success and abandon the status quo each and every time.”

3: “Seeing that increase in numbers each month, whether in the social space or in sales, is so gratifying. It’s something that makes RMD standout.”

2: Working with the RMD team is unlike working on any other team I’ve experienced. The commitment to bringing our clients success is at a caliber I am proud to say is not commonplace in our industry.”

1: “Food is our passion and working with so many family-owned brands is a gift I never take for granted. They’re invested in their company and take an incredible amount of pride in the product they put on the shelves. It is a true honor.”

Snack Attack this Month!

RMDAdvertising-NationalSnackFoodMonth

National Snack Food Month is more than a celebration of America’s love for the salty, the sweet and everything in between. Especially in the age of the snack-loving consumer, National Snack Food Month has taken on an entirely new meaning.

This month, we’re celebrating our favorite brands and taking a look at how America has changed the way it eats. Gone are the days of the sit-down meal. Today, it’s all about fueling up and hitting the road!

Tweet: #FunFact: 67% of households prefer salty snacks. #NationalSnackFoodMonth http://ow.ly/XOui2#FunFact: 67% of households prefer salty snacks. #NationalSnackFoodMonth http://ow.ly/XOui2 http://ctt.ec/L7r22

“Sales of snacks account for a whopping forty percent of the $370 billion U.S. packaged food market and are set to grow two percent annually through 2019,” according to Food Navigator. As a matter of fact, the snack food industry is driving America’s food scene forward, with sales growing more than three percent a year since 2008.

It’s easy to reap the benefits of this trend as a snack food brand. However, we’ve learned that industry leaders ask why. The answer? Millennials.

While millennials can be pin pointed for moving the needle on some of today’s biggest flavor trends, they are also the culprits of our fascination with snacking. Research says they tend to replace meals with snacks two times more frequently than other generations. Making the most of this trend are brands featuring protein-rich and healthier-for-you grab-and-go options that capitalize on consumers’ focus on nutrition.

Brands can take advantage of America’s renewed interest in snacking by speaking loudly and clearly to consumers’ need for speed. We’ve evolved into a quick-paced culture and our eating habits need to fuel our busy lives!

The best ads of the Big Game

RMD Advertising talks the best ads of the Big Game

Ok, we’ve all talked about the best Super Bowl commercials and most certainly we’ve discussed the truly ugly ones. How about the commercials that got the job done in terms of connecting with their true audience? You know, the audience who will actually buy the product advertised. Here are my top 3 and why these unsung ad heroes are the true winners:

1. WeatherTech floor mats – nothing fancy here. No talking animals or shiny fast driving cars. Just a well produced spot that showcases the hard American worker making a product that isn’t terribly sexy. You can really see the pride in the faces of the employees. And yes, I want to buy from a company that takes pride in the product they sell.

2. Death Wish Coffee – this spot starts with a dramatic scene reminiscent of an action movie trailer. As a ship fights the elements at sea, you get drawn in. It’s tough, it’s scary and the best part, you pay attention … even as the scene unfolds to reveal the sea is actually coffee being guzzled by a caffeinated loving guy. As one party goer professed, “I want to try that coffee”.

3. Budweiser – we see images of regular beer drinkers enjoying America’s best-selling lager. It doesn’t have the cute puppies of past ads (the true Bud drinker never really cared about puppies anyways), but it does have the powerful iconic Clydesdales that gets your heart pumping. I loved the scene where a “seasoned” beer drinker flicks off the piece of fruit that’s wedged on the side of his glass. I imagined him saying, “it’s beer not a fruit salad”.



Donn’s passion for food began while growing up in the culturally diverse city of Detroit. Experiencing the wonderful flavors of the city taught him that there’s more to life than the same old same old. Today, Donn takes that same approach with the creative direction of the agency.

 

Trends kicking off Super Bowl 50

RMD Advertising talks Trends for the Big Game

From bold Super Bowl ads to sappy Valentine’s Day messages to the spirit of giving that makes Random Acts of Kindness Month so spectacular, February is a roller coaster of marketing endeavors.

For RMD, the start of February means two things: (1) Super Bowl ads and (2) #PorkRindDay.

While we’re at Radio Row mingling with our Gridiron Greats and Pork Rind Lovers in San Francisco, many Americans will be tuning in to the Super Bowl at home. While the big game is a time to celebrate great football, the ads have become a tradition that many of us look forward to as well.

Here are a few of the trends you’ll notice this year:

Family First: Super Bowl commercials that incorporate a sexy theme, such as Carl’s Jr.’s racy “All-Natural” spot for last year’s Super Bowl, tend to score nine percent lower with consumers than those without such undertones. Many brands are more cognizant of the fact that families tend to gather around the TV on game day. Furthermore, none of the ten most-liked Super Bowl ads from 2011 through 2015 use sex as an advertising technique.

Soft and Fuzzy: Research has shown that puppies tug at viewers’ heartstrings most. Go figure, right? Four of the top ten ads include puppies and dogs, while two others rely on similarly adorable animals, such as horses and polar bears, to capture consumers’ attention.

Storytelling: Inspiring and uplifting themes perform well with Super Bowl viewers. This year will be no exception. “Many of these types of ads don’t include direct plugs for their products, opting instead to create an emotional link with people tuning in,” notes CBS News. While consumers might not be called to go out and make a purchase the next day, these types of ads are memorable, making a long-term impact on shoppers.

Alexandra Brazie As the Senior Media Specialist at RMD Advertising, Alexandra Brazie makes meaningful media contacts and positions our food clients in the print, on the screens and on the airwaves that make the biggest impact on their Brand. She loves pitching food, talking about food and eating food. She’s a girl after our hearts!

Random Acts of Kindness Month

RMD Advertising Random Acts of Kindness Month

RMD Advertising‘s culture is all about making a difference in all we do. We carry our values with us daily – in our relationships with each other and with our clients. That’s why we’re gearing up for our 5th Annual Random Acts of Kindness Month, celebrating like never before.

We love making a difference in the lives of our clients! Each brand we work with is an extension of our own RMD family. What does this dynamic create? A team of passionate professionals who know that we are only as great as that of our clients’ successes.

In February, we’re reconnecting with the human side of advertising. We’re making a conscious effort to build the relationships that matter most to us: RMD’er to RMD’er and RMD’er to client!

Read on for three ways to spread love all month long in February for Random Acts of Kindness Month:

At RMD, we’ll give one RAK challenge in three parts and invite team members to complete each challenge. Here’s the catch: On the last Mojo Friday of the month, the annual RAK RAD RMD’er Award will be given to the team member who exemplifies the true spirit of Random Acts of Kindness Month (which means one extra day off during the year)!

Tweet: Three unbelievable ways to make this #RAKMonth the best yet! http://rmdadvertising.com/blog/ http://ctt.ec/0c05CThree unbelievable ways to make this #RAKMonth the best yet! http://rmdadvertising.com/blog/ http://ctt.ec/0c05C

How can you broadcast this fun challenge across your place of work? Let us know!

Part One: Give Strong
Weekly challenges will be given on Yammer. Team members are challenged to complete each task and report that they did so on Mojo Friday.

1. Go to Starbucks and buy coffee for the customer behind you.
2. While out, tell someone they dropped a dollar (even though they didn’t) and give them a dollar (or more!)
3. Buy a few grocery staples for your local food pantry on your next trip to the store. Learn about how we boosted our mission for Wagons Ho Ho Ho this way!
4. Send a handwritten note to someone you haven’t talked to in a while. There’s just something so personal about pen and paper, isn’t there? Commit to returning to it this week and put a smile on someone’s face!
5. Going out to eat? Tip a little extra or give a compliment to the restaurant’s manager or chef!

Part Two: Share the Love
Share your love for your colleagues! Whether you buy your officemate lunch or surprise someone down the hall with a few words of encouragement left on a sticky note, put your heart into it! Your energy is contagious and by giving positivity, you’ll attract positivity!

Part Three: Give On
While we love Random Acts of Kindness Month, we believe that the habits we pick up in February should stick with us! Why? Because we are more than an advertising agency. We are more than the amazing results we churn out each and every day. We are only as greats as the love we put into our relationships here.

“Here is the simple truth about people: Love the ones you want to keep.”
– Iain Thomas

Donnelly is a millennial and a food writer based in Columbus, Ohio.  She started writing from a very young age, and her writing skills are a reflection of her passion for food, baking and the creative arts, overall.  She moved to the agency world after a stint as a ballerina.  On her journey, she learned a range of skills, including creative writing, the art of influence in advertising and PR, and how food helps people of differing backgrounds connect on an emotional level.

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