Trader Joe’s is a specialty grocery store, popular across the United States. Their brand is eccentric, fun, and showcases unique food products and ingredients from around the world to encourage their customers to try new things. Founder, Joe Coulombe, started the business to bring interesting, hard to find products to local communities. Today, Trader Joe’s still follows this mission. With innovative products like Cauliflower Gnocchi and their infamous Cookie Butter, Trader Joe’s fulfills customer’s needs for affordable, diverse, and healthy eating.
Currently, Trader Joe’s is not active on social media, besides their Instagram page where they have amassed over 1.1 million followers. While they do have accounts on both Facebook and Twitter, neither account is established. On Facebook, there is no one serving as a community manager and thus, reviews, questions, and comments go completely unanswered. This one-way conversation is disheartening to customers as they try to connect with their specialty grocer. On Twitter, Trader Joe’s has a singular post sharing a positive article that Buzzfeed created about their company. Other than that, the account has been inactive since 2014.
While Trader Joe’s choice to stay out of the social media sphere has worked for them so far, their competitors are using it to stay top of mind and create communities with their customers. Direct competitor, Whole Foods, has been able to use social media to dominate the healthy eating and specialty grocer sphere. Active on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest, Whole Foods has done a great job sharing their products, customer-generated content, timely deals, and nutritional information. Their followers are extremely active and are pro-Whole Foods although their prices are still higher than those at Trader Joe’s. Even local competitors like Wegmans, have been using social media to create a strong following. Active on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest, Wegmans uses their platforms to directly serve and talk to the community. While their content isn’t nearly as polished as Whole Foods, they put in the effort to respond to dissatisfied customers and their concerns.
For this assignment, I created a potential social media strategy for Trader Joe’s. Please watch the video below to see an abridged version of what I think Trader Joe’s can do to re-establish their online presence. You may download the presentation used in my video for easier viewing here: Trader Joe’s Social Media Strategy.