Smart Tourism Marketing: Taste The Cayman Islands

If you were traveling to Paris, wouldn’t you love it if the French Government Tourist Office sent you some coq au vin and a baguette?  Or maybe a Nutella croissant that is readily available as delicious street food? How about the makings for a café au lait?

Well, in a new and novel move, the Cayman Islands Department of Tourism is going to be sending travelers free meal kits so they can preview a taste of the islands typically known for offshore bank accounts. Since the Cayman Islands hope to reach many consumers who have never visited the destination, their first impressions will come through the meal kits and destination-infused recipes. As a travel marketing expert, a travel content provider, and a food marketing expert, I believe that this is an excellent example of smart tourism marketing. Foodies can rejoice!

Recently, the Cayman Islands Department of Tourism launched a partnership with a Los Angeles-based meal kit delivery company that is named Chef’d; under this unique partnership, U.S. travelers can order meal kits containing ingredients of Cayman Island recipes so that they can get an idea of the exciting cuisine that the island holds in store for them.

This is unprecedented and one of the first examples of a tourism board working with a meal delivery service as part of a marketing campaign. “Unless you try something, you don’t know how successful it’ll be,” said Rosa Harris, director of tourism for the Cayman Islands Department of Tourism. “We were more specifically concentrated on a luxury, millennial, young professional clientele who is cooking at home and open to different kinds of cuisines.”

Chef’d said its customer base favors women but ranges from ages 18 to 65 and older. Consumers don’t need a subscription or membership to order from Chef’d and can place a one-time order for a meal kit.

So how about some chocolate bread pudding? The tourism board worked with four Cayman Islands-based chefs to develop the five meal-kit recipes for selections such as pina colada chicken and other delicacies.  Chef’d sources all ingredients in the promotion in the United States and will ship the kits from either its headquarters in Los Angeles or from a shipping facility in Brooklyn, New York.

For a small island country in the western Caribbean, Cayman Islands boast more than 230 restaurants; they include Ripert’s Blue, which is the Caribbean’s only AAA Five-Diamond restaurant that is definitely worth the reservation.

“We’ve been promoting ourselves as a culinary capital of the Caribbean for quite some time,” said Harris. “Outside of other Caribbean destinations where you have a property that’s all-inclusive, our country offers the option of dining out and having a different kind of experience.”

But while the islands have earned awards and distinctions for its dining scene, it’s a huge challenge to translate that to meal kits thousands of miles away through packaging and shipping facilities before they reach consumers’ kitchens.  The meal kits take between 40 to 90 minutes to prepare and cook.

The Cayman Islands are trying to distinguish itself away from traditional kinds of marketing; with the meal kits, consumers can directly engage with island recipes from hundreds of miles away from the destination. Bon appetit!

Debbi K. Kickham is Chief Content Officer of Maxima Marketing, a boutique full-service marketing firm in Westwood, Mass.,





Why Businesses Need a Presence on Social Media

Social Media Management in Westwood MAWhy Businesses Need a Presence on Social Media

Social media for businesses is a facet that is no longer optional. There are more than 3 Billion internet users and more than half of those users utilize social media in some form. Popular social media platforms have been a staple for some businesses providing beneficial information about how to reach their consumers.

Social media platforms can generate a large amount of data regarding your customers. The information provided on websites such as Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook generate who the consumers are, what they like, where they go (tagged locations), and how they feel about places, products, and ideas. Through engaging with your followers, you can obtain this information, which can assist in making strategic business decisions.

When you have a presence on social media, it can help to increase your brand awareness and gain loyalty from customers. You can connect with your audience socially and increase customer retention, which coincides with brand loyalty.

Being on social media, you can provide a great customer experience. Most consumers turn to social media nowadays for customer service.  If a customer tags your business in a post with a positive message, it is good to send a follow-up message in return. It shows the customer that you cared about their experience in the store. If a comment was less than satisfactory, address them immediately to try and resolve the problem without a future issue. Following up quickly in that situation also shows the customer again, that you cared about their experience in the store and want to improve their future trip.

Social media tracking is a good way to monitor the competition. You can obtain key information about your competitors, which can help you to make a better business move to stay ahead of them. By comparing your business and your competition, you can enhance your services, content, and how you are portrayed online.

Before the ages of social media, marketers were presented with the challenge of being sure their content reached their target demographic. With the numerous social platforms such as Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and Snapchat, a business can share what they want. These sites allow for their messages to be sent quickly and much more easily. All of what you want your consumers or new demographic to see can be sent out through these platforms.

Maxima Marketing Social Media Management Agency in Westwood, MA

Being a local business can be busy at times and managing your social media like Facebook and Twitter can be time-consuming. That’s where we come in to assist your social media needs. Maxima Marketing offers social media management services for local businesses like restaurants, salons, medical practices or clothing boutiques. We can help you gain the followers and awareness your business requires to take it to the next level. Contact us today at (781) 407-9305 for a free consultation and we proudly serve businesses in Boston, Needham, Canton, Dedham, and other areas in Greater Westwood.









Smart Marketing: Stop&Shop And Free Fruit For Kids

Anyone who knows me knows that I am 61 years old and a size 4.  I work hard to stay slim, exercise constantly, and I’m hungry a lot.  But I refuse to eat junk, and I do eat a great deal of fruit, especially smoothies made with almond milk and fruit. Fruit is great – fruit is your friend, people – and there are no points on it in the Weight Watchers Program.  Oprah loves to eat fruit and stated in a recent issue of her magazine that she eats fruit for dessert every night. Fruit is a sweet snack and great for weight control and pure health and filled with vitamins, fiber, and nutrients.

That’s why I was THRILLED to walk into Stop&Shop last week, and to see a display offering FREE fruit as a snack to kids 10 years old and under! What a GREAT idea.  Stop&Shop deserves some kind of award for not only providing something of value that is free to customers but for offering a healthy healthy healthy snack for children.  Off the record, the store manager told me that this campaign has been well-received, and I understand why. It’s a real public service and a great example of smart marketing. As an author of a bestselling marketing book, and a digital marketing content provider, I’m really impressed.

I constantly see that Stop&Shop goes the extra mile – not only are they promoting free fruit, but they also publish a great magazine filled with healthy food ideas.  I love to read it every month and it’s so well-done.  Foodies, you will love it. Another great example of smart grocery marketing.

Stop&Shop also has other things in its repertoire that I love. Its cherry Clear Splash water brand is my favorite thing in the world to drink, and word is, it’s a bestselling flavor.  Yes, it’s made with aspartame, but I can’t stop drinking it, it is so delicious.  (In fact, I am drinking some right now).  I buy tons of it when it’s on sale, then get rainchecks so that I can buy it later. Their raincheck policy is superb – they never expire. As a food marketing expert and a healthy consumer, I can tell you personally and professionally – visit Stop&Shop!

Debbi Kickham is a former Editor of Robb Report Magazine and a Westwood, Mass-based marketing consultant who loves to write about food, beauty, health, spas, and staying young and slim, especially when you travel.  Contact her at and Contact Maxima Marketing at (781)-407-9305 for more marketing tips and get a free initial consultation for your business in the Greater Boston area. We offer creative marketing strategies, public relations, branding, slogan creation, spokesperson, travel writing and other marketing services.



Bad Food Marketing To Children

Do you really want to feed your children Lucky Charms and Coca-Cola? I doubt it. These “foods” have no nutritional value.
As a professional marketing expert who specializes in food marketing, I wanted to tell you all about the Food Marketing Workgroup. According to their website,
The Food Marketing Workgroup is a network of more than 200 organizations and academic experts who are concerned about the proliferation of marketing of unhealthful foods and beverages that targets children and adolescents. This national network, convened by the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) and Berkeley Media Studies Group (BMSG), is dedicated to eliminating harmful food marketing — particularly marketing aimed at those who are most vulnerable to obesity and other nutrition-related diseases — by actively identifying, investigating, and advocating changes to marketing practices that undermine health.
I’m all for an organization that serves to showcase what is nutritional – and what is not – to parents. When you check out their website, make sure to visit the “Wall of Shame,” which pinpoints some serious food offenders. Such as:
1). The new movie, Free Birds, in which a turkey persuades the early Indians to take turkey off the first Thanksgiving menu and replace it with – you guessed it – Chuck E. Cheese pizza
2). Coca Cola, which apparently is training restaurant servers to “cap the tap” to push customers to order soda instead of water. Doesn’t this simply promote obesity?
3). A school in rural Missouri features four – count ‘em – four Pepsi vending machines containing both diet and full-calorie sugary drinks for sale to high school kids.
4). Cap’N Crunch Oops! All Berries is anything but – it ought to be called mostly sugar and food dyes, and should probably be named “No Berries.”
Is it me – or are you infuriated with Big Food and the way that they shove horrible food advertising – and food – down our throats – and also down the throats of children and young adults? Remember, people, that there’s a serious obesity epidemic in this country, and eating junk isn’t going to help the situation.

Smart Marketing: Whole Foods Launches Lower-Cost Supermarket Chain

If you’ve ever shopped at Whole Foods, you know that it’s expensive. So much so that the brand is jokingly referred to as “Whole Paycheck.” It’s true. I only shop there when I want to purchase something special. They even recently opened a Whole Foods Supermarket on Maui, and for the life of me, I can’t even imagine how pricey that must be. Food at the regular supermarket on Maui is expensive – so its Whole Foods store must be off the charts.
I shop at the Whole Foods in Dedham, Mass., when I’m seeking a special treat for myself and my husband Bill. But ouch, it always hurts my wallet. That’s why I typically buy my special and organic goodies at Stop&Shop. The prices at Stop & Shop are always low, low, low, and you also get gas points that give you a bargain at the pump. I can’t say enough good things about Stop&Shop.
Back to Whole Foods. In response to its reputation for being expensive, Whole Foods just announced that it will launch a lower-cost chain, which will appeal to cost-conscious millennials. As a digital food marketer, I love hearing this news. Who doesn’t love a bargain on beautiful food?
Click here to read more.

Notorious Marquis de Sade Spurs New Line of Luxury Goods

I’m a former Editor of Robb Report Magazine – “The Millionaire’s Magazine” – and I thought I had seen it all. You know, million-dollar carousels on sale at Christmas for your kid’s pleasure; tire rims etched with your name in gold; diamond-stuffed Frisbees.

But there’s a new kid on the block that still has me in shock.

You know the Marquis de Sade? The famous, notorious, perverted 18th-century writer and libertine, after whom sadism is named?

Today, his ancestors in France are launching a line of luxury goods in his name.

Move over LVMH – you billion-dollar French luxury line, home to upscale brands such as Louis Vuitton, Christian Dior, Celine and Givenchy. You’ve got competition.

According to a feature article in this month’s edition of Smithsonian Magazine, writer Tony Perrottet shares all the insights about the Marquis, including the facts that the famous writer who died in a mental asylum in 1814 is currently enjoying quite the renaissance. He’s apparently now being hailed as a literary genius for writing 120 Days of Sodom, and he’s the subject of museum exhibits, student theses, and Sorbonne conferences.


I guess I shouldn’t be surprised, in this day and age of Fifty Shades of Grey. The American public – and most people in Western Culture – just aren’t shocked by anything anymore.
Now you can relish in the Marquis’ criminal acts, by purchasing wine with his brand on it, as well as scented candles. Tapenade and meats are to come. Get a load of the copy on the Maison de Sade website, invoking you to purchase a scented candle:


You can also get a bronze replica of the Marquis’ skull, for about $5,700.

Let me tell you something – you buy that, and you’ve got way too much money on your hands. As a marketing expert and marketing content creator, I just can’t get my arms around the public embracing a criminal such as this. He makes Charles Manson look like Popeye. This is a bad marketing idea. Who wants junk like that?

I’m Lovin the McDonald’s Ad

I’m as cynical and as skeptical as they come, but I really do like the new McDonald’s ad campaign.

I only saw one ad, and in it, a McDonald’s staffer tells a customer that his money is no good, and that he has to “pay” for his meal with something else: He has to call his Mom and simply tell her that he loves her. Right then and there. Under the golden arches.

Other costs: The price of breakfast? “Dial up your mom, tell her that you love her.” The price of a snack? “Telling me what you love about your son.” The price of a Happy Meal? “One big family hug.” The price of a strawberry sundae? “Dance right now.”

I love this idea.

The Internet abounds with people who hate this ad, and claim that instead of calling your Mom you should just call McDonald’s corporate offices at 630-623-3000 and complain about how their staff is underpaid – and likely spits in your food.

But as an advertising copywriter, and owner of Maxima Marketing in Westwood, Mass., and a marketing expert, I think this ad is timely due to Valentine’s Day.

This concept of paying for something with an act of kindness is something that we all should be inspired to do. Yes, I know that McDonald’s is the kingpin of the junk-food world, and I personally never eat it.

But as cynical as I am, I like the ad and it certainly is in synch with McDonalds tagline: I’m lovin’ it.

Even if it’s schmaltzy.

Bad Food Marketing: Here We Go Again

I am livid.

As a consumer – and professional marketing expert and copywriter – I saw a commercial on TV last night that had me gasping. My jaw dropped.

It is a TV ad for a condiment, and I proudly will NOT name the wretched stuff. It shows two young models at a photo shoot. They take a break and go to eat something. They are greeted by an elderly, gray-haired woman, who offers them a condiment, and proudly proclaims, “I put that s**t on everything.”

Then she shakes her rear end into the camera.

What? Please, spare me grandma’s booty.

I am appalled and disgusted that major brand would resort to this type of vulgarity to sell its stupid product.

I know I shouldn’t be surprised – there’s more than enough vulgarity in our culture, everywhere you turn, with F-bombs and other language freely expressed everywhere, and especially in the media. Trust me – it’s only a matter of time before you hear the F-word on mainstream media. Walk into any gym or store, and chances are, you will hear people using profanity without lowering their voices. I even attended a business conference two weeks ago, where the “professional speaker” liberally peppered her talk with expletives. I was aghast.

Whatever happened to etiquette in polite society?

I’m disgusted and discouraged.

Fairmont’s Lifestyle Cuisine is Smart Marketing

I’m a food-lover.  Yet, because I’m always watching my weight and trying to eat healthy, I am constantly giving up the things I crave (well, almost).   I always desire all kinds of delicious goodies – who doesn’t?  Such as Nutella.  Or Muesli. Or cheese omelets. Or ravioli filled with wild mushrooms.  I could go on and on.

That’s why, as a hospitality marketing expert,  and a food marketing expert, I’m thrilled – yes, THRILLED – with the incredible Lifestyle Cuisine that is offered by Fairmont hotels and resorts around the world.  In all of my travels, over the past 25 years, I would be hard-pressed to find another hotel brand that offers such a terrific array of cuisines that are Heart-Healthy, Sugar-Balanced, Vegan, and even Raw and Macrobiotic. If you care about your weight, health and well-being – especially when you travel – check out Fairmont and take advantage of its  brand-wide healthy initiatives. You’ll be amazed.

For example, when my husband Bill and I stay at the luxurious Fairmont Kea Lani on Maui, we always take advantage of their delicious breakfast buffet.  One big reason is that I can request a made-to-order, butter-free, dry two-egg omelet made with just one ounce of cheese.  It’s absolutely delicious, and I don’t have to feel guilty. And it’s easy to fill my plate with fresh fruits that are filled with fiber and vitamins. I might even have one of the buffet’s  small bran muffins or an English muffin.

But guess what.  On the breakfast menu are other unbelievable tasty goodies. Heart-healthy entrees include delicious Bircher Muesli; tropical granola made with yogurt and lavender-honey; and wholegrain pancakes.  Dee-lish.

Watching your sugar intake? Have the toasted macadamia-nut waffles or the mushroom omelet.

Vegan? Try the tofu scramble with upcountry vegetables or the banana French toast.

No matter what you order or what your diet is, Fairmont promises that your special dietary needs will be met, and that your dish will be both flavorful and elegantly presented.

This is excellent, excellent marketing, and a welcome addition to the travel world. Fairmont is to be applauded for its Lifestyle Cuisine. It will help you make smarter nutritional choices including those that are low-carb, lowfat, Mediterranean and vegetarian.

There’s even a special Lifestyle Cuisine PLUS, which is designed to cater to people with diabetes, heart disease, celiac disease or food allergies. It’s impressive – especially since the USA is in the midst of an obesity epidemic.

Other wellness initiatives that Fairmont offers include Fairmont Fit athletic gear delivered to your guest room; Fairmont wellness teas at your room’s coffee station; ionizers placed in your guest room upon request; and signature pillow menus as well as hypoallergenic pillows and duvets.

These are all hotel marketing ideas that make taste, not waist.

Get Married At Denny’s – With A Side Order of Syrup

Well folks, now I’ve heard of everything.
As a Boston communications consultant, and a business author of Off The Wall Marketing Ideas, I really shouldn’t be surprised when I hear about the newest and craziest PR campaigns that companies dream up. And the newest one, from Denny’s in Las Vegas – is a doozy, tailor-made for lovebirds and even a few loony birds. This is what I call wacky marketing.
The Las Vegas Denny’s, on Fremont Street, near the Mob Museum, has its own wedding chapel. Apparently, previously, so many couples have married in the diner, for various reasons – it was where they met, or they both happened to work together at a Denny’s — that management realized that they should have a more formal venue.
Here’s where couples can order a Pancake Puppie Wedding Cake, and a Grand Slamosa cocktail toast so they can celebrate their nuptials.
A couple from Iowa — passionate Denny’s fans – were chosen by Danny’s marketing executives to enjoy the chapel’s first wedding ceremony earlier in April, 2013. Said the couple – pardon me while I roll my eyes – “When we reflected on all of our memories made at Denny’s, we knew that getting married there over a plate of pancakes would be our best memory yet.”
If you want to say your “I Do’s”, just fork over $95. That price also includes “Just Married” T-shirts and a Pancake Puppies wedding cake. I can only speculate how many happy couples will take advantage of the “Baconalia” and order the Maple Bacon Milkshake weighing in at 1,150 calories and a whopping 61 grams of fat.