The Idaho-Eastern Oregon Committee uses a two-pronged approach to promote its onions.
The first program represents the revitalization of an old program. In 2016, the Parma, Idaho-based committee re-introduced a broker incentive program.
In the program, brokers who are shipping loads out of the area from shippers who are committee members can accumulate points for every load between Sept. 1 and Jan. 31.
These points can be used to claim high-tech prizes including a Microsoft Surface Pro, drones, cameras and selfie sticks, said Sherise Jones, marketing director for the Idaho-Eastern Oregon Committee.
Three years ago, the committee decided to reduce its promotion budget, which reduced assessments. Jones said the reduction did not affect research or exports.
“The most cost-effective way to reach people was through social media,” she said.
“So the committee ramped up our social media posts on virtually every platform and invested in photography and recipes to keep our presence out there.”
One of the reasons for reducing the assessments was to allow shippers to retain some of those funds so they could institute their own promos, Jones said.
“Many shippers have done that,” she said.