USPB's Domestic Marketing Program:

Why do we do what we do?

Published in the April 2012 Issue Published online: Apr 09, 2012 Kathleen Triou, Vice President, Domestic Marketing
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Why do we do it?

That's easy; we grow demand for potatoes and potato products. Everything we do domestically is strategically designed to either directly or indirectly increase potato demand.

How do we decide what to do?

We completely refresh our marketing program every year, taking advantage of new information from our own research and from outside data sources. We leverage this knowledge to refine our strategic platforms and then optimize our tactical activity set to keep our audiences engaged. These strategic platforms enable us to:

Have a clear focus and direction;

Increase efficiency and effectiveness of messaging to each target audience and across the target audiences;

Ensure all staff and agency partners are speaking the same language and delivering similar and reinforcing messages to the same target;

Ensure all research insights and implications are integrated throughout the program and across marketing disciplines (advertising, PR, retail execution).


Currently, the strategic platforms for our consumer target are:

A) Twist on the Traditional

We know: Linda enjoys cooking for her family, and traditional family dinners are relatively more important and common for her. Linda has a more traditional approach to cooking and prepares potatoes in very traditional ways-primarily mashed, baked and fried. The most important considerations for Linda are "something everyone would enjoy" and "flavorful." However, she enjoys trying new recipes, so new usage ideas are motivating powerful factors in increasing her potato consumption.

Key message points: flavorful, inspiring and tasty for all

B) The Fresh Natural Side Dish

We know: Health perceptions of potatoes continue to improve, with the net negative score declining to pre-Atkins levels for the first time since 2002. When choosing food, specifically for a healthy meal, fresh, low in fat and natural are the top health attributes considered. Potatoes perform well on natural, but less so on healthy. Potatoes win over other rice and pasta in being fresh and natural.

Key message points: fresh, natural and healthy

C) Convenient Dinner Solution

We know: Linda currently believes rice and pasta are `easier to prepare' than potatoes. But convenience has many meanings-to Linda, a meal is convenient when it is `something everyone will eat' and has a `shorter prep time (not including cook time).' Stressing her family's acceptance of potatoes is the key to motivating Linda to serve potatoes more often.

Key message points: whole family loves, easy and quick

What makes this unique?

We integrate these strategic platforms throughout our entire marketing program, leveraging our insights into Linda and what drives her behavior. No matter where or how Linda receives our potato messages (in the store, at home, online, in print, radio, TV, etc.), she consistently hears the same points that reinforce positive potato purchasing and consumption behavior. This integrated approach is highly efficient, making a modest budget work much harder across all marketing channels and delivering an unparalleled return on investment.

What will make it better?

Greater use! We have invested in the research, developed the program strategy, built the assets and made all of it available to the industry. The only thing that will make the United States Potato Board's (USPB's) program more efficient is if YOU leverage these resources in your own business.

Start by taking a tour of 1) the Resource Center at and click on the hot link to USPB Resource Center in the lower right-hand corner, 2) the consumer website (, or 3) our Facebook page ( Then let me know what recipe, photograph or nutrition write-up you'd like to use, or if you'd like my team to help you leverage other aspects of our programs. I look forward to hearing from you! PG