April 23, 2020 PenelopeFry

Vegan Digital Marketing: Strategies that work… fast!

What is vegan digital marketing?

Vegan digital marketing is the use of the internet, mobile devices, apps, social media, search engines, holographic displays, and other channels to reach consumers to promote plant-based products or services (or deliver other targeted messages). It can also be used to reach and influence regulators, investors and other stakeholders.

It’s probably safe to assume that a major part of your marketing strategy is already digital. Just like a photo-booth, it’s not new! Consumers and businesses alike are almost always online and on-the-go — the plant-based market is no different.

You want to be able to reach this special market and observe their behavior where they spend most of their time.

You’ll find that it’s different. And, it may seem as though this ever-changing vegan landscape can quickly become an overwhelming one. How can you efficiently create, fine-tune, and maintain a digital marketing strategy tailored to your vegan products and services?

We’ve put together this list about vegan digital marketing strategies to help you improve your presence and grow better.

A digital marketing strategy is a plan that helps your business achieve specific digital goals through carefully selected online marketing channels such as paid, earned, and owned media.

Digital marketing strategy and digital marketing campaign are often confused. How are they different?

What is a vegan digital marketing strategy vs a campaign?

A digital strategy outlines the actions you plan to take to achieve your overarching digital marketing goal. On the other hand, vegan digital marketing campaigns are the building blocks and actions within your strategy that move you toward a targeted, digital end result.

For example, if the overarching goal of your digital marketing strategy is to generate new kinds of leads through social media, you might run a digital marketing campaign on YouTube. You may create some high-performing vegan product or service related content on YouTube to generate more leads through the channel.

What you need to do to create your strategy.

Now, let’s look at the steps involved in creating a vegan digital marketing strategy for your new plant-based market revenue! 

  1. Plan – Plan for a successful expansion or pivot to engage the vegan market within your sector. Use a data-driven approach to review your current consumer base to identify and understand any plant-based product fans (if you currently have any). Review the effectiveness of your digital marketing in relation to their buyer motivations, customize analytics for the vegan market, set up KPI dashboards and SMART objectives. Use these to create a strategy of prioritized improvements to how you deploy digital marketing media, technology and data to increase leads and sales in the plant-based/vegan market within your sector. The next section of this resource provides more detail.
  2. Reach – Build awareness of your vegan-friendly offering or plan to create one. Build awareness using online marketing techniques which will leverage vegan buyer motivations to drive visits to your site, app, or storefront/POS terminals.
  3. Act – Encourage interactions on plant-based relevant content to generate leads. Cultivate interactions on your website or social media to help you generate vegan-market relevant leads that you can use in the future.
  4. Convert – Use retargeting, nurturing and conversion rate optimization to remind and persuade your audience to buy your vegan or plant-based goods and services. You can drive this behaviour to convert online, through apps, or offline through phone and face-to-face channels if these are important to you.
  5. Engage – Increase sales from existing customers by improving personalized communications relevant to their previous vegan choices. Use web, email, app, and social media marketing. This is where you can help create a movement! Build a market for your next campaign or plant-based product release.

How do you plan your digital strategy?

This is the most important step you will take as you prepare your marketing strategy. Here are the steps we recommend you consider.

1. Create your ‘plant-based’ buyer personas.

For any marketing strategy — digital or not — you need to know who you’re targeting. 

There are two key buyer personas for the plant-based market. Flexitarians and plant-based (vegan or vegetarian). Don’t forget the flexitarians! These non-vegetarians are the largest buyer market!

If you don’t know where to start, have a look at this great buyer personas example from Fresh.

2. ID your goals and the digital marketing tools suitable for vegan your products and/or services.

Your vegan digital marketing goals should always be tied back to your overall marketing strategy and the fundamental goals of your business.

Irrespective of the revenue or other targets you set for your plant-based market results, you need to be able to measure them!

That’s where we use digital marketing tools.

For instance, what platform will you use to bring together all of your marketing and sales data into one place so you can quickly determine what works and what doesn’t?

You can use free tools such as Google Analytics or a premium platform. It doesn’t matter! Just make sure you have an easy way to measure your results because this market can be hard to track!

3. Evaluate your existing assets and channels in the digital space.

Now, it’s time to prepare to have a look at the results that you’ve been getting recently.

List any owned (website etc), earned (word of mouth etc), and paid media (e.g. Google Ads) that you are already using. Decide if any are a good fit for your plant-based strategy.

Our tip is to try to look at hobbies and interests data to see if you might already have an audience that sits within your personas (e.g. interested in animal welfare).

4. Review your previous owned media campaigns and plan actions for the plant-based ones.

Review your existing owned content, and rank each item according to what has previously performed best in relation to your new vegan digital marketing goals.

Also, look for gaps in your existing content. What sort of questions and concerns are important to your buyer personas but missing from your content?

Then, create a content creation plan to fill in the gaps.

5. Review your previous earned media campaigns and plan actions for the plant-based ones.

As before, review your existing earned content, and rank each type according to what has previously performed best in relation to your new vegan digital marketing goals.

Also, look for gaps in your existing earned content. What sort of questions and concerns are important to your buyer personas but missing from your content? This is an especially important question for earned media because of the significance of social proof in the vegan digital market.

Finally, create a plan to address any vital gaps.

6. Review your paid media campaigns.

And again, review your existing paid content, and rank each type according to what has previously performed best in relation to your new vegan digital marketing goals.

Also, look for gaps in your paid content. What sort of paid media is are your buyer personas going to be receptive to?

Finally, create a plan of action and a budget for paid media.

7. Bring your vegan digital marketing strategy together.

You’ve done the planning and the research. Now, you have a solid view of the elements and actions that will make up your vegan digital marketing strategy.


Now, it’s time to bring all of it together to form a cohesive strategy document. For a small simple business, this could be as little as a couple of sets of bullet points! Just make sure you take notes!

Typically, strategies like this have actions that play out over 6 to 12 months.  So, put a timeline against your actions so that you can be ready to act when you need to.

You’re not alone!

Need help to get started?

Here’s what to do next:


With over 17 years in international vegetarian and vegan communities on and off-line, I work hard to follow these niche markets and trends. I have provided menu advice for over 40 restaurants and cafes across 11 countries... and counting! Vegan food is my passion, but I also like sailing and cycling.


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