AI in weather forecasting, prediction and communication
Summer doesn’t feel like summer until you smell delicious food on the grill.
But without the ability to taste flavors online, any effective digital advertising strategy for mouth-watering spices and rubs must find innovative ways to create unforgettable experiences.
To enhance the customer journey, present a unique value proposition, and ultimately increase revenue, food and beverage brands can lean into weather’s powerful influence over consumers’ purchase decisions. 53% of people say they are more likely to buy food or beverages they see promoted during relevant weather conditions.1 68% say summer weather impacts their food choices.2
As one of America’s most recognizable brands, consumers regularly turn to McCormick for ideas about new seasonings and flavors that will delight the taste buds of friends and family at their next cookout.
But the industry is full of competitors large and small, all vying for a spot on the spice rack. McCormick wanted to rise above the rest and own grilling season by capturing consumer attention in moments when weather would inspire cravings and highlight some of their most recognizable products – the Grill Mates line.
With a goal of increasing household penetration and awareness of this line of seasonings and rubs, McCormick built a campaign that could reach people when they were making plans on how to spend warm, sunny days and grilling was top-of-mind.
lift in unaided brand awareness3
higher improvement in unaided brand awareness vs industry benchmark3
increase in brand favorability among purchasers3
higher brand familiarity among purchasers3
The savory taste of premium creative and accurate weather data
McCormick created a delicious advertising recipe to raise awareness and engagement with grillers young and old across the nation. The brand launched a campaign that activated messages on The Weather Channel app when warm and sunny conditions – relative to the season and location – were forecasted in the consumer’s local area, making them more likely to consider grilling.
High-impact ads appeared front and center in The Weather Channel app’s Integrated Marquee, which seamlessly incorporated McCormick’s grilling message into the current hyperlocal forecast. Images and copy in these creatives were dynamically aligned with real-time weather conditions in the consumer’s local area to present a contextually relevant message.
These ads prompted consumers to engage in a 1:1 personalized dialogue that provided grilling tips and recipes by using AI natural language processing. The chatbot also offered a Grill Mates branded local forecast so consumers could plan their grilling based on the weather.
A recipe for success
Using weather cues to delight and guide grillers with relevant messages helped McCormick significantly improve brand awareness and favorability.
The campaign resulted in a 15.7% increase in unaided brand awareness, 4.8x higher than CPG benchmarks for purchase intent and brand favorability. McCormick also improved brand favorability by 10% and saw a 6.9x lift in familiarity among purchasers.
About McCormick & Company, Incorporated
McCormick & Company, Incorporated is a global leader in flavor. Founded in 1889 and headquartered in Hunt Valley, Maryland, McCormick manufactures, markets and distributes spices, seasoning mixes, condiments, and other flavorful products to the entire food industry including e-commerce channels, grocery, food manufacturers, and foodservice businesses.
1 The Weather Company Summer 2023 Behavior Survey, March 2023.
2 The Weather Company Summer 2022 Behavior Survey.
3 Dynata, April 2021 – September 2021.