2019 celebrates the 80th birthday of our client Sconza Chocolates, a family-owned confectionary company based in Oakdale, California.

Sconza Chocolates has a colorful history that includes operating under the same family since the day it first began selling candy, and becoming a pillar of presence and employment within its community.

At McLernon & Co., we use this rich backstory as a wealth of resources to market Sconza through personal and captivating storytelling.

Through everyday strategic social media management, McLernon & Co. continues to grow the brand and social credibility of a family-owned company with eight decades of history. This keeps Sconza in position to capitalize on new business opportunities and continue on a growth trajectory, while avoiding the complacency that comes to other similarly positioned companies who avoid innovation.

McLernon & Co. recognized the platform that this momentous celebration year provided the brand. We continue our strategic day-to-day management to engage both current audiences and new visitors, while introducing new marketing opportunities to capture and celebrate this historic milestone.

 

Photography and Videography

A company only turns 80 once. Sconza Chocolates has been a family-owned company since the beginning, which creates a long personal history with the brand for owners and their family.

This 80th milestone needed to be captured and celebrated.

When we set out to create a marketing plan for Sconza’s 80th birthday, it became apparent that photos and videos had not been top-of-mind throughout the company’s history. There were minimal visuals to tell the brand and family story.

From a marketing standpoint, this created a challenge with executing a content strategy focusing on a company’s history. But from a human level, this brought about hindsight on lost history that we wanted to help alleviate.

To solve this problem, McLernon & Co. flew out to Oakdale, California to be on site with Sconza’s factory, owners, and employees for two days.

With this project, we were not just positioning Sconza to sell a product. We were capturing a family, a company, and a community history. We made sure to include both photography and videography within our strategy to produce assets that promote both the company’s personality, as well as its candy.

As art directors for the shoot, McLernon & Co. prepared shot lists and directed on-site to produce content that could be maximized for social media and digital marketing. We captured interviews with owners, longtime employees, and newer staff welcomed as family, as well as b-roll and photos that showcased both the story and the product.

We produced 7 videos optimized for digital marketing, and a library of photography for use anywhere from website and social media to factory walls and company desks.

The end result was a recorded dictation of the company and family history through the eyes of family and employees. It helps to preserve some of the past, while providing strong material for use throughout our Sconza Chocolates content strategy.

 

McLernon & Co. takes a storyteller’s approach for all of our content productions. By executing through this philosophy, we produced highly authentic narratives that help Sconza stand out online among standard commercial clips.

Whether you are looking to enhance your organic and paid social posts, or tell the story of a current campaign on your homepage, McLernon & Co. delivers photography and videography that connects with audiences across many marketing channels, while building genuine affinity for the brand.

Let’s connect about the content needs of your brand, and we’ll help bring your story to life.

 

Paid and Organic Initiatives

Sconza Chocolates initially brought McLernon & Co. onboard to handle social media efforts, because the confectionary company recognized the often overlooked fact that effective social media is more than posting to a newsfeed.

With our day-to-day management of the brand’s social marketing, we produced content for the two delivery channels on social media: paid ads and organic. To efficiently move Sconza toward their brand goals, it was important to ensure that paid and organic content strategically worked together.

We did this with a strategy that focused on two primary areas: Brand Awareness and Page Likes.

 

BRAND AWARENESS

Prior to working with McLernon & Co., Sconza Chocolates had not used social media paid ads as a marketing tool to grow their brand. Although the company was maintaining a consistent organic posting schedule to their profile pages, there was an opportunity for McLernon & Co. to bring the brand to new audiences through social media.

Because brand awareness was an initial goal, we focused our Facebook and Instagram paid campaigns on maximizing the reach of the ads we created. To strategically engage our audience, we first needed to develop it.

To do this, McLernon & Co. cast a wide net, aiming for as many eyes as possible, rather than for clicks and engagement. While targeting this large audience, we kept sight on our target demographic, to establish recognition with the right audience for when our strategy progressed.

For 2019, McLernon & Co. created additional interest within these initial connections, by calling attention to the company’s long history and celebration of its 80th birthday. The message carried more weight and intrigue than simple candy promotion.

PAGE LIKES

Instilling a base level of brand recognition with our audience allowed us to now efficiently act on more targeted and measurable goals.

At McLernon & Co., our mission is to keep social media social. This allows brands to capitalize on an often overlooked business opportunity to form individual relationships online, and support business metrics with authentic customer passion and loyalty.

To begin forming relationships with these people online, we invited them to become members of the Sconza Chocolates community through a Page Likes campaign. By optimizing the campaign through Facebook Ads Manager, and continuing with a message that resonated with our audience, we were able to encourage participation with the Sconza brand, rather than just brand recall.

The Brand Awareness and Page Likes campaigns were many consumers’ very first introduction to Sconza Chocolates’ social media presence. Even if there was familiarity with the brand and its candy, the audience needed reason to stick around for Sconza’s organic content.

Sconza Chocolate’s history as a family-owned business of 80 years is a rare and compelling story. McLernon & Co. made sure that resonated with consumers by introducing brand intimacy to Sconza’s profiles and posts, through the use of the names, faces, and the story behind Sconza Chocolates.

Through the course of our paid campaigns, from March – June of 2019, we reached over 1 million people and served 2.1 million impressions. This translated to over 36k clicks to Sconza’s website, 73k post engagements and 205 website purchases totaling almost $6k in sales.

If you’re having trouble managing your social media in a strategic way that tells your brand story and maximizes your business opportunities, we’re here to help. We love telling brand stories through both paid and organic in a compelling way that converts!

Sconza Influencers

Our high-level marketing direction for Sconza Chocolates aims to set the brand above and beyond competitors as a personality that followers can relate and feel connected to before being asked to make a purchase.

To drive this initiative, we designed an Instagram influencer campaign that would carry the right message to the right audience through influential channels. We focused on two types of influencers, knowing that each had their own benefits.

Year-to-date, we have coordinated with 22 paid influencers with followings of 10K-500K to promote Sconza Chocolates. These users provide a wide reach opportunity to connect with many new customers.

McLernon & Co. also continually engages smaller influencers, around 5K followers and under, who provide an increased trust factor with followers. These accounts give Sconza budget freedom through in-kind payment, which allows us to strategically replicate this approach monthly.

A significant obstacle in influencer marketing is control over the message. McLernon & Co.’s goal was to deliver brand consistency while reaching new audiences through this campaign. As a potential introduction to many consumers, the message needed to be consistent with the Sconza story and our goal of relatability.

To maintain brand authenticity and personality through these popular users’ posts, we 1) directed them to include congratulations for the family-owned business’ 80th birthday, and 2) challenged them to write about where they see themselves at age 80.

This strategically allowed the audience to consume both Sconza and influencer messaging in tandem.

Influencer marketing’s impact comes from the trustworthiness consumers feel with the influencers they follow. It is a new-age word-of-mouth recommendation from someone users feel they have built a relationship with through social media. McLernon & Co.’s direction with these influencer posts helped the audience receive the Sconza brand through a voice, and alongside a message, they already put trust in.

 

RESULTS

By incorporating influencer marketing into the overall social media strategy, McLernon & Co. provided Sconza a significant reach delivered through impactful channels for under $6K.

  • Total Influencers Engaged: 22 Total
  • Total Reach: 9,367,000
  • Total Earned Media (IG Posts): 22 Posts
  • Total Earned Media (FB Posts): 16 Posts
  • Total Earned Media (Blogs): 19 Blog Posts

If you’re thinking influencer marketing could move the needle for your brand, let’s chat. We’d love to explore the potential that different social media campaigns could have for your business.

(keep reading: “Sconza Lemoncello Chocolate Almonds Campaign“)