Natural and organic food retailer Earth Fare is banking on increased sales with the rollout of a digital signage program to nearly half of its 50-plus stores.
Earlier this year, Asheville, N.C.-based Earth Fare piloted custom-designed digital displays from Mood Media in the café area of a store in Charlotte, N.C. Serving up a variety of information, marketing and entertainment content, the displays generated a 10% gain for the café’s eat-in food sales during the 60-day test.
The better-for-you grocery chain now has Mood Media digital signage at 26 stores, including more than 180 screens and 400 media devices. Besides the café area, digital displays are located in such areas as the bakery, bar, seafood, deli, coffee/espresso, smoothie/juice, sushi, sandwich and pizza counters.
“In addition to our commitment to provide clean and healthy food options for our shoppers, we are also dedicated to ensuring that our shoppers have enjoyable and memorable experiences,” Mike Savage, senior vice president of merchandising at Earth Fare, said in a statement. “Mood Media helped us create a branded café environment that positively distinguishes us from other grocers. With new visual technologies and engaging, customized content, shoppers felt invited to eat, drink, lounge and relax.”
For the pilot, launched in mid-2019, Earth Fare developed creative digital media content, which was displayed on five 55-inch, ultra-high-definition LCD screens, supplied and installed by Mood Media. Signage in the café included digital menu boards at the point of sale for food and beverages, Earth Fare branded content and targeted messaging promoting eat-in food options, live sportscasts (specifically for March Madness college basketball games) and local weather forecasts.
Austin, Texas-based Mood Media noted that relevance was key to the digital content strategy for the pilot, given that Earth Fare customers tended to dwell longer in the café than other grocery departments.
“Earth Fare understands the importance of creating an authentic experience that allows customers to interact with their brand across multiple channels while also driving further sales,” commented Trey Courtney, global chief products and partnerships officer at Mood Media. “We were thrilled to partner with them for this latest test, which served to showcase firsthand the difference that incorporating smartly approached, dynamic digital signage elements can make, including to the bottom line.”
Authorized employees at Earth Fare manage the digital media content via Mood Media’s Mood Harmony platform. The tool’s interface lets them instantly change, edit and publish content for one or multiple screens across locations. They also can schedule content in advance, even down to the second, Mood Media said.
“With a clear layout and the ability to drag and drop, the CMS is straightforward and simple to use, and I know exactly where each of our hundreds of pieces of content will live, in this case the café area,” according to Bradlee Hicks, creative director at Earth Fare. “Within seconds, we can schedule content and push updates to several locations, a key factor for a retailer of our size.”
Earth Fare is also leveraging Mood Media’s partnership with DISH by occasionally airing live TV on screens in the Charlotte store’s café.
“We were thrilled to partner with them for this latest test, which served to showcase firsthand the difference that incorporating smartly approached, dynamic digital signage elements can make, including to the bottom line,” Courtney added.
Overall, Earth Fare operates 55 stores across 10 states in the Southeast, Mid-Atlantic and Midwest.