In the past gut health was always a topic that was only discussed behind closed doors, but in recent years sentiment has shifted, and consumers have become more open to discussing bodily functions that were once considered embarrassing.
Gut health’s surge in popularity aligns with an increase in research and understanding around the function of the gut and the role it plays in our overall health and wellbeing. Not only does the gut play a critical role in digestion, but it has also been proven to be essential for immune function, weight regulation and brain function. It is responsible for 70% of the immune system and it produces over 90% of the serotonin in our body, meaning if it’s in a bad way your overall health will suffer.
One of the results from the pandemic is that we have become a nation more concerned and determined to take control of our own health. With this in mind, there’s no surprise to see Google searches for gut health were up 83% in 2022 – and it’s a trend that has taken social media by storm particularly on TikTok.
New videos are popping up daily of influencers claiming different hacks such as drinking cucumber-ginger juice and eating sweet potato soup at night have cured their digestive woes. The hashtag #guttok has over 900 million views, which according to the New York Times makes it one of the most popular trends of all time.
Below we highlight some of the most popular videos…
@oliveoilqueen Healing the gut is very complicated. EVOO was not the only thing, but my main medicine #fyp #foryou #oliveoil #evoo #extravirginoliveoil #healthyfats #guthealth #guttok #healingjourney #stomachproblems #WomenOwnedBusiness #bloating #constipation #guttok #ibstok #ibs #greenscreen ♬ space song by beach house – ︎
@Oliveoilqueen is a TikTok user who claims that drinking two tablespoons of olive oil every day has cured her bloating, improved her skin and made her periods come back. Her video has over four million views and she describes herself as a health coach, although hasn’t noted any official qualifications.
@brialemaloe vera juice for skin and gut health 11/10♬ original sound – bria lemirande
In a video with one million likes, @Brialem states that taking a shot of aloe vera juice when she wakes up and before she goes to sleep has made her skin and gut health “never better.”
@shaznesswellness I found it best to drink bone broth in the morning on an empty stomach. Drink it everyday and watch magic happen 🪄#guttok #ibs #pcos #candida #bonebroth #goodsoup ♬ good soup – MARVEL FANS
@Shaznesswellness claims that she drank bone broth every day for a year, which cured her gut problems as it “heals and seals the gut lining and reduces inflammation” in a video that has over 2 million views.
With Tik Tok littered with influencers providing advice that doctors wouldn’t necessarily recommend, it can be incredibly hard for consumers to know what advice to follow.
So how can legitimate brands in the space cut through the noise and position themselves as reliable sources of information in an industry that is saturated with false and suspicious claims?
Showcase quality and expertise
Working with a reputable third-party spokesperson, such as a registered nutritionist, lends credibility to your brand and helps to build trust with both journalists and consumers. Having a third-party spokesperson highlight the best practice production processes you follow will draw attention to the quality of your product against others in the market.
Highlight your unique selling point
When the market starts to become saturated with players all providing differing advice, as we’ve already established it can be tricky to gain cut-through. It’s also difficult to promote and communicate the health benefits of kombucha when there’s limited scientific evidence to back claims.
Having an effective communications strategy that’s focused on plugging potential benefits or differentiators against the competition – whether it’s taste, the expertise of your founder, the well-known fans of the product – ensures you stand apart from the rest of the market.
Working with a PR agency that’s well-versed in the nuances of the wellness markets and what we can and cannot say about the product in the public space allows you to effectively develop a comms plan that still helps to promote the benefits of your product, whilst following regulatory guidelines.
Advocate for best practices
Recognising the need for the market to do better and aligning with other UK companies to encourage best practices could help position your brand positively and highlight the superiority of your product.
An effective PR strategy can amplify this activity, through announcements, interviews, and drafting comments on the topic. An agency partner would also help to guide the direction of the campaign, ensuring your brand’s voice isn’t lost, or giving you a clear standpoint that helps to differentiate you from other participating companies or influencers.
If you would like to find out more about how an impactful PR campaign could help your brand cut through the noise and be positioned as a credible business, get in touch today.