24 Jan 2011

Put farmers at centre of campaigns, says marketer

7:22 am on 24 January 2011

A marketing professional says primary producers should be central to marketing campaigns promoting New Zealand products overseas.

Karl Johnson is chief operating officer at Brand Content in Boston - the international marketing company overseeing the push of the Just Shorn carpet brand into the US market.

The luxury New Zealand-made carpet is being sold through the International Design Guild, which has more than 100 stores at the top end of the US market.

The chain has just selected the carpet as its major marketing focus for 2011, so all its stores will feature wool bales, images of New Zealand farms and farmers, and all its carpet samples will have eartags similar to those used on sheep.

An associated online campaign involves sheep farmers talking about the wool that goes into the product.

Mr Johnson says US buyers value the connection to New Zealand farmers, and other primary producers should consider the approach when taking their products global.