How Nutrition Brands Invested 64% of Ad Budget into Brand Awareness in 2021

Advertising
Content & Messaging
August 26, 2022
Nutrition & Supplements

Key Takeaways

Nutrition Brands Invested 64% of Ad Budget into Brand Awareness in 2021. Here’s how:

Channel Identification

  • Brand Awareness ads saw the majority spend on channels like YouTube (99%) & Instagram (70%). 
  • DTC ads saw a higher focus on Facebook (56%), Display (98%) and Search (69%) channels. 
  • From Nov. ‘21 to Jan. ‘22, Brand Awareness saw an investment of $3M opposed to DTC at $1.7M.

Advertising Trends

  • From February 2021 to January 2022, the competitive set increased advertising spends by +42%. 
  • YouTube saw the highest spend increase in the second half of the year of +131%.
  • Twitter saw the largest decrease in spend of -96% in the second half of the year.
  • Optimum Nutrition saw the highest advertising spend at $10M.

Ad Creatives

  • Brand Awareness ads focus on health inspiration such as intense workout videos and recipe ideas as well as product education information such as “USDA Organic” 
  • DTC ads focus on shared free shipping benefits and subscription savings as well as product benefits such as how it allows consumers to build muscle. 

The following companies were included in the competitive set for this analysis:

From February 2021 to January 2022, companies in the competitive set increased their digital advertising spend by +42% from the first to second half of the year. October 2021 saw the highest ad spend at $2.78M and March 2021 saw the lowest ad spend at $1.1M

*Ad spend includes Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Display, YouTube and Search

Vital Proteins is the only company that spent less during the second half (Aug. ‘21 - Jan. ‘22) than during the first half of the year (Feb. ‘21 – Jul. ‘21) by -47%. Orgain increased their ad spend the most compared to brands in the competitive set, spending +141% more in the second half of the year.

*Ad spend includes Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Display, YouTube and Search

From February 2021 to January 2022, the competitive set allocated 31% of their digital advertising budgets to Instagram. Twitter saw the lowest spend allocation at 2%.

All advertising channels saw an ad spend increase in the second half of the year except for Twitter (-96%). YouTube saw the highest increase in spend at +131%

All advertising channels saw an ad spend increase in the second half of the year except for Twitter (-96%). YouTube saw the highest increase in spend at +131%

From November 2021 to January 2022, Instagram saw a total spend of $1.8M and an average CPM of $9.63 across the competitive set. Optimum Nutrition saw the highest investment at 58%

On Instagram, brands heavily focused their advertising efforts on Brand Awareness campaigns—58% of ad creatives and 70% of ad spend went towards Brand Awareness*.

*Instagram Story ad creative not available for inclusion in analysis.

65% of Brand Awareness ads within the competitive set were video ads. These ads aim to inform the viewer on the health benefits of the product and its intended use in fitness. 

Spend: $95K | Imp.: 9M | CPM: $10.49

Spend: $16K | Imp.: 2M | CPM: $9.52

Spend: $14K | Imp.: 1M | CPM: $10.08 

Instagram Story ad creative not available for inclusion in analysis.

Direct-to-Consumer ads featured static link posts in 53% of the creatives. Ads usually offer an incentive to buy such as “Free Shipping” or focus on promoting retail locations where buyers can shop for their products online.

Spend: $30K | Imp.: 3M | CPM: $10.49

Spend: $12K | Imp.: 1M | CPM: $10.49

Spend: $9K | Imp.: 885K | CPM: $10.49 

Instagram Story ad creative not available for inclusion in analysis. | *Ads run both on Instagram & Facebook are captured as Facebook ads.

From November 2021 to January 2022, YouTube saw a total spend of $2.2M and an average CPM of $18.07 across the competitive set. Optimum Nutrition saw the highest investment at $1.3M. 15 second video ads saw the highest spend allocation at 79%.

On YouTube, brands heavily focused their advertising efforts on Brand Awareness campaigns — 88% of ad creatives and 99% of ad spend went towards Brand Awareness.

Brand Awareness ads on YouTube feature the product and content surrounding the feelings, benefits and athletic drive they create for consumers. Orgain built an ad that targets the everyday consumer featuring various demographics while Optimum Nutrition built an ad highlighting the athletic community. 

Spend: $332K | Imp.: 18M | CPM: $18.06 Click to view

Spend: $310K | Imp.: 17M | CPM: $18.06 | Click to view

Vital Proteins was the only brand that ran Direct-to-Consumer YouTube ads. On top of encouraging viewer to “Shop Now”, these ads are primarily educational and highlight the specific benefits of collagen. The video on the right hand side features Vital Proteins’ Education Coordinator.  

Spend: $10K | Imp.: 551K | CPM: $18.06 Click to view

Spend: $10K | Imp.: 551K | CPM: $18.06 | Click to view

From November 2021 to January 2022, Facebook saw a total spend of $1.5M and an average CPM of $9.74 across the competitive set. Optimum Nutrition saw the highest ad spend at $683K

On Facebook, brands focused their advertising efforts on Direct-to-Consumer campaigns with a 70% ad creative and 56% ad spend allocation.

Analysis of all ads greater than or equal to $1,000 in spend

Direct-to-Consumer ads have used static link posts in 70% of the creatives. Brands focus on both the benefits of the product and its versatility as well as how it can be purchased online.

Spend: $27K | Imp.: 3M | CPM: $9.96

Spend: $21K | Imp.: 2M | CPM: $10.05

Spend: $18K | Imp.: 2M | CPM: $10.36

Brand Awareness ads have featured videos in 30% of the creatives. These ads feature motivational fitness content showing the possibilities that brands in the competitive set can help buyers achieve. 

Spend: $34K | Imp.: 3M | CPM: $10.36

Spend: $25K | Imp.: 2M | CPM: $10.36

Spend: $21K | Imp.: 2M | CPM: $9.34 

From November 2021 to January 2022, Display saw a total spend of $932K and an average CPM of $4.34 across the competitive set. Garden of Life saw the highest spend at $747K. Amazon.com is the top publisher seeing 92% of the budget.

On Display networks, brands heavily focused their advertising efforts on Direct-to-Consumer - 94% of ad creatives and 98% of ad spend went towards these campaigns, making Display the top channel for conversion messaging.

Direct-to-Consumer Display ads always showcase product photography along with a call-to-action to “Shop Now”. They also include ways to save on purchases such as “subscribe & save up to 30% off”.

Spend: $60K | Imp.: 16M | CPM: $3.80 Click to view

Spend: $33K | Imp.: 7M | CPM: $5.00 Click to view

Spend: $32K | Imp.: 7M | CPM: $4.81 | Click to view

Brand Awareness ads for Display encourage viewers to discover and explore the uses of their products through benefit guides (such as Immune System Support) or recipe ideas.

Spend: $10K | Imp.: 2M | CPM: $4.43 Click to view

Spend: $2K | Imp.: 999K | CPM: $2.31 | Click to view

Spend: $394 | Imp.: 24K | CPM: $12.16 Click to view

From November 2021 to January 2022, Paid Search saw a total spend of $94K across the competitive set. Garden of Life saw the highest spend at $34.4K.

Brands focused their advertising efforts on Direct-to-Consumer - allocating 65% of ad creatives and 69% of ad spend to conversion campaigns on Paid Search.

In January 2022, Direct-to-Consumer ads use a combination of sharing the benefits of online shopping such as “Free Shipping” or “Subscribe & Get 25% Off Your First Order” with product features such as “Whole30 Approved” or “Gain Strength”.

In January 2022, Brand Awareness ads are focused on stating accreditation such as “USDA Organic” or “Certified Vegan” as well as the quality of the product such as “No Artificial Flavors” or “Every Product Manufactured & Tested at our GMP Registered State-Of-The-Art Facilities”.

Spend is a directional approximation and does not include retargeting, or behavioural targeting.
Only January 2022 analyzed due to high volumes of search ads.

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