Week 5 Guest Speaker Roundup by Hollace Henderson

A Conversation with Sara O’Donnell, Food Blogger, Recipe Developer, Video Producer, YouTube Next Chef and Creator of Average Betty

By UCLA X425 Student Hollace Henderson

Hollace Henderson

Our guest speaker, Sara O’Donnell, provided mouthwatering yet informative advice from her experiences with video blogging or “vlogging” covering all things food, which left the UCLAx425 class hungry for more. Many of us are foodies at heart, and Sara illustrated how to feed your feed by making food “social.” She shared some great tips on how to become a vlogging superstar.

Social media can be a particularly powerful tool for the food industry. Food brands have achieved success with cost effective social media tactics that mobilize their online audiences and grow brand awareness. More frequently, food brands are utilizing bloggers vs. traditional media as a marketing tool. During product launches, brands benefit from the blogger endorsements, which help to heighten awareness of the brand image and align with the target audience. This alone can generate crucial word-of-mouth buzz.

Sharing food is the real social network. Food is, and always has been, a special bond between family and friends. Whether we gather for holiday celebrations, special occasions or the traditional family dinner, food, plain and simple, brings people together. And, with the recent downturn in the U.S. economy, consumers showed a renewed focus on back-to-basics in-home cooking, especially when they can access video demonstrations.

Here’s some food for thought: despite the negativity and naysayers floating around on social media, it’s good to have a sense of humor, always love what you do and to stay positive. Sara reminded us that “average people do amazing things every day. You don’t have to be Oprah or Ellen to make a difference in someone’s life. And sometimes the most important thing you can do for the people you love is feed them.”

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