The Content Imperative
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Jennifer Warren
Client Partner

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Image source: Noel Foglia

Which hot beverage brand has the hottest content?

| 12 September 2014

Nescafe was the hot beverage brand to receive the highest amount of Facebook engagements on a piece of content throughout August. Beating all other best-selling hot beverage competitors, Nescafe gained a total of 7,732 engagements on a humorous visual of a granddad and grandma figure pushing one another along in a wheelbarrow. Sound random? That’s probably one reason why the piece of content garnered so much traction.


Content marketing agency Headstream, the agency responsible for delivering the Social Brands 100 for the last four years, compiled a ranking based on the number of engagements incurred on individual pieces of branded content posted across Facebook within a period of one month (August 2014). For the purpose of this report, an ‘engagement’ was deemed a like, a share or a comment. They then weighted each type of engagement due to their value to the brand; awarding one point for a like, two for a comment and three for a share to arrive to a total combined score. 

Headstream monitored Britain’s top selling hot beverage brands as defined by IRI. 

The Ranking

  Brand Followers Total Engagements Combined Score
1. Nescafe 22,221,704 7,732 8,687
2.  Tetley 536,908 5,171 6,594
3. PG Tips 440,660 1,899 3,331
4. Twinings 174,925 1,599 2,530
5. Cadbury UK 583,642 1,296 1,557
6. Yorkshire Tea 183,119 1,203 1,410
7. Douwe Egberts 143,149 396 642
8. Kenco 120,865 100 173
9. Tassimo 137,348 111 132


Facebook is an interesting social platform to analyze engagement because of the recent changes made, moving the social media giant more towards a paid media channel; where brands need to ‘pay to play’. This has been the case since earlier this year when the social media giant squeezed the organic reach of branded posts down to a minimal 2%; forcing brands to place media spend behind content in order for it to reach the timelines of more of the brand’s fans.

This being said, brands’ approach to Facebook has now changed and rightly so, as they are now faced with the challenge of quality over quantity. No longer is there any need to put content out there for the sake of it, as only a small amount of your fan base is likely to see it. Instead content needs to be valuable for the brand, to warrant them supporting it with media spend, but it also needs to be valuable to the consumer and offer them some sort of social currency, in order for them to engage with it and particularly share it. 

This means there are cases now where more money can equal more engagements, however content needs to be of higher quality than ever before to compete for the valuable space on a consumer’s overpopulated timeline. 

There seems to be a noticeable theme interlinking many of the top performing posts listed below, and that theme is a competition; enticing users to engage with branded content to succeed in winning some sort of monetary gain. It would therefore appear that the majority of brands would have supported these pieces of content with paid media as these particular posts all received higher levels of engagements than the brand’s other posts with similar content values. 

Despite the common end decision to support branded content with paid media, each individual brands’ strategy may have differed. For example some brands may have initially intended to support their content with paid media to push it into higher echelons of reach, for more people to enter their competition. Alternatively some brands may have noticed a post doing unexpectedly well, and subsequently decided to place budget being it to further increase performance. 

What value does the top performing content hold?

1. Nescafe (7,186 likes, 137 comments, 409 shares)

This piece of content is so powerful because it provides unexpected entertainment. Without a steaming mug of hot coffee in sight, the visual portrays an image of a loveable young-hearted old man pushing his equally young-hearted wife around in a wheelbarrow. The simplistic nature of the visual, finished with the campaign strap line ‘when the blend’s right you just know’, shows the brand’s quirky personality. It would be hard not to click ‘like’ on such a heart-warming and endearing post.

2. Tetley (4,002 likes, 915 comments, 254 shares)

Featuring the familiar faces of the Tetley Tea folk branding, the key behind the success of Tetley’s highest performing post is that is offers a monetary gain to their fans, a chance to win a family ticket to Thorpe Park. 

This is the post out of all the brands to receive the highest amount of comments and that is due to the clear call to action included in the post, inviting users to comment for their chance to enter the competition. In addition the competition prize was timely because of the time of year and parents looking for activities to entertain their children during the summer holidays.

Kate Diver, Brand Manager at Tetley comments on their strategy of paid media, saying, ‘we currently have an always on approach to paid media, however we do ensure each piece of content we distribute has organic legs’. 

‘We normally activate paid media around campaign related posts, however we have previously boosted reactive and trending posts… we allow 10% of our budget for reactive responses.’

3. PG Tips (1,145 likes, 76 comments, 678 shares)

PG Tips jumped on the back of the hugely topical trend of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.

This is the only piece of video content to make it into the ranking. Successful because it is both timely and relevant, drawing on the wider cultural context of the #IceBucketChallenge. Not only does the video of Monkey getting covered in water entertain, but also holds value as it shows PG Tip’s charitable side. 

4. Twinings (786 likes, 695 comments, 118 shares)

Here Twinings provide a piece of easily snackable and entertaining content for a Tea Time Teaser. Twinings invite their fans to answer a question in the comments box, but further encourage this by throwing in the added incentive of a being in for the chance to win a ‘surprise goodie’ if they do. 

5. Cadbury UK (1,078 likes, 175 comments, 43 shares)

True to the brand Cadbury’s #FreeTheJoy campaign is playful and childish, and this piece of content is no exception. Through a simple image of a Whispa bar in their characteristic purple hue, Cadbury’s call upon their loyal fan base to share with them their love of the chocolate bar. 

6. Yorkshire Tea (1,084 likes, 31 comments, 88 shares) 

Gently ripping off the famous Carlsberg strap line, Yorkshire tea provides an entertaining post featuring a kettle flying over the Yorkshire dales. The brand’s patriotism to their locale offers a sense of personal value and community to their fan base, encouraging shares. 

7. Douwe Egberts (182 likes, 182 comments, 32 shares)

Competitions are often a winning formula for high engagements and here is another post to offer a monetary gain to the community in turn for their engagement, in this case in the form of comments. By Douwe Egberts asking fans to tags their friends for a chance to win a coffee morning, they are receiving engagements whilst increasing the amounts of eyes which see their content at the same time.  

8.Kenco (58 likes, 11 comments, 31 shares)

Similarly only posting a few times across Facebook within the month, Kenco’s activity which caused the most engagements was when they changed their cover photo to a new campaign image. Coffee vs Gangs is the brands latest campaign, and changing their cover photo on Facebook with the launch of the campaign’s website was one of the first hints of the activity. The campaign cover image is successful as although its reach was limited (it is not assumed media spend was placed to support this content), it touched a chord with those that did see it encouraging them to comment on the quality of the project. This content communicates both information and personal value to the user.

9. Tassimo (91 likes, 19 comments, 1 share)

Tassimo represent a handful of the hot beverage brands featured within this ranking. The brand posted very infrequently throughout the month monitored meaning their community would be less engaged than some of their competitors. However this piece of content was successful as it directly asks a question to the community, inviting an answer. What is more it is relevant to the summer months, portraying the Cadbury’s logo as gauge as if on a thermostat. 

It is unlikely Tassimo placed any media spend behind this post, as it does not receive a considerable amount more engagements than the others on their brand page. 




We have a wealth of experience in the FMCG sector.


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