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From fast-food giants to leading beauty brands, it seems like everyone went vegan in January.

But did you know that Veganuary was first launched six years ago?

Since its conception, the Veganuary movement has seen a huge increase in participation, gaining support from athletes and celebrities along with the general public.

Vegans make up 1.16% of the population, and as more people are choosing to cut down on their meat and dairy intake vegan food sales have increased by 40% since Veganuary began in 2014.

When you look at these numbers, you can see why so many brands are jumping onto the veganism hype.

But how can a chicken shop target vegans? Let’s take a look…

Where’s the Bandwagon?

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again, joining in with trends is a simple and effective way to get exposure without forking out the cash.

But some trends are worth spending a little more time on, so you can get it right.

In the current social climate, veganism can be a tricky topic to navigate.

From health benefits, animal rights activism and climate concerns, everyone has their own reason for being vegan. So it’s important to capture this niche market without alienating your meat-eating customers.

This is why many brands take a product-focused campaign, allowing audiences to get excited about their vegan venture while still catering for their usual customers. This tactic also gives businesses some leeway when it comes to tackling criticism – hence how KFC, a big consumer of chicken, can get vegans on their side.

KFC’s Vegan Burger was a huge success this Veganuary

The Dreaded Catch 22

As a campaign grows, it gets easier to manage, with new ideas and investments coming in from every angle.

Today, you can walk into almost any restaurant or café and have a choice of vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free and organic options. This accessibility has allowed more people to try Veganuary without the hassle.

But it’s a catch 22. The more vegan options you have, the easier it is to be vegan. But to have lots of options, you need lots of vegans.

So, if you want your campaign to take off, it’s important to make sure the ultimate goal is easily achievable for your audience – in the case of Veganuary, this means having tasty vegan food at the drop of a hat.

All Publicity is Good Publicity

A huge step forward for the Veganuary campaign was having big brands jump on the trend, like Greggs with the launch of their vegan sausage roll last year.

Greggs initially announced the product on social media and through word of mouth, the whole country was talking about it faster than the oven could be turned on.

However, not everyone took to the idea, with many swearing off the product before they’d even tried it, Piers Morgan included.

While it doesn’t take much to get Mr. Morgan riled up, he took it as his duty to try the vegan alternative. His dramatic tasting on national TV encouraged vegans and meat-eaters a-like to give it a try – for better or worse.

The fallout from this campaign led to a huge sales boosts across the business, so it’s no surprise that fast-food giants McDonalds and KFC wanted a slice of the Veganuary cake.

Don’t Give Up!

Whether you love it or hate it, veganism is here to stay.

Since 2014 the Veganuary movement has grown in popularity, attracting over half a million participants in that time. But 250,000 of those newly turned vegans only signed up in 2019.

It just goes to show that campaigns aren’t always about the quick wins. Sometimes you have to play the long game to reap the full benefits of your hard work.

So, if you want a carefully planned campaign that you can build on for years to come, talk to our team today.

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Posted by Rebecca Ellis