Candy Maker Sweet on Vine, Instagram After Facebook Reach Drops 73%

Red Vines has 'wake-up call'

Facebook's well-publicized squeeze on organic content has slashed Red Vines' organic reach 72.9 percent over the past year, and Sour Punch's reach is down 78.1 percent, the American Licorice Co. revealed today during a presentation at the ANA Masters of Marketing conference.

Michael Kelly, media and communications manager at American Licorice Co., explained how the shift in Facebook's News Feed strategy has his brand reprioritizing its social efforts, which lean heavily on organic content.

"It just is a wake-up call that we need to recognize how these platforms are evolving and what we need to do with our content and page-view strategies to make sure that we're being heard on these social platforms," Kelly said. "They'll increasingly be an important place to be, but how we use them and how we engage consumers through them is going to change."

Although Facebook is a part of American Licorice's social efforts, the marketer's most creative work arguably takes place on Vine and Instagram.

Red Vines was one of the first brands to launch on Vine, starting out with simple stop-motion videos and evolving to clips that tell stories through products.

Red Vines has run a couple of clever real-time social efforts to build on pop cultural buzz. For instance, when Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos talked about plans for delivery drones during an episode of 60 Minutes last year, Red Vines whipped up an image of a candy-carrying drone in time for the show's premiere on the West Coast after airing on the East Coast.

Interestingly, this kind of nimble and creative social media work is actually helping grow awareness in areas where the company doesn't run traditional advertising.

"What was traditionally a regional brand, we've now grown to a point where we're up something like 20 points in awareness in the East (Coast) where we've never even done any proactive, traditional advertising," Kelly said.