‘Tis the season for cooking and crafting goddesses to trot out their annual holiday specials, Christmas-crammed issues of their magazines and new products to shove in the stockings of their faithful fans. Facebook, Twitter, blogs and a joyful online presence are essential to these domestic doyennes, and we at Brandsplat were curious to see which homemaking heroine rocks out social media the best.
Rachael Ray, much like sardines or the musical catalog of Ted Nugent, is an acquired taste. Many find the cutesy-speaking Ray to be annoying and unknowledgeable. Ray routinely gets eye rolls and harsh words from domestic grand dame Martha Stewart. And yet Ray’s popularity cannot be denied. Her daytime talk show has won the Emmy for outstanding talk show two years in a row, something La Stewart has never been able to pull off. When it comes to social media, however, Ray is kind of a hot mess. Sure, girlfriend has 443,759 Facebook fans (which tramples Martha’s 134,000 but doesn’t even touch Paula Deen’s 1-million-plus followers), but elsewhere her brand is spread too thin. Ray appears to have Twitter ADD, with several accounts”¦ none of which has garnered massive followers. Ray should take a page from the Book of Paula and just group all Twitter accounts into one. That way, her groupies (Rachaelites? Raytards?) can get all the news in one spot. For a young star in the genre, her social media feels old and out of touch.
Speaking of Stewart, she’d like you to believe that she invented the whole cooking and crafting media maven thing (but would be the first to admit that without Julia Child, she’d still be catering for record executives in Bridgeport, Conn.). Yet when it comes to online presence, Stewart is the originator. Her blog draws in thousands, her website has been cutting edge for nearly 15 years and Miss Thing has 2 million Twitter followers. Although her show is struggling on the Hallmark channel, Stewart is still a relevant brand and her social media marketing is, to quote the goddess herself, a “good thing.”
Stewart’s skill and savvy aside, the clear winner in the battle royale for social media domination is none other than butter babe Paula Deen. The 60-something Deen, whose initial web offerings a decade ago looked like something designed by the computer class at the Ozarks Elementary School, dominates today with tons of followers on Facebook and Twitter, a website filled with videos and the most skillful online branding this side of Oprah. Immediately when you visit Deen’s pages you are met with images of bacon or cookie recipes or Deen’s down-home charm. Deen knows why people love her and therefore delivers the goods on every online avenue imaginable. Recipes for her over-the-top creations and links to her products are always accessible and easygoing, just like the woman herself. Add great site navigation and brilliant cross-social media promotions and Paula’s the clear winner, y’all.