Content Brand of the Week: Jamie Oliver, the one-man brand with fingers in many pies

Jamie Oliver

A wideboy chef is Content Brand of the Week – you must be yolking?

Not at all – since his Naked Chef TV launch in 1997 he has become more influential than arguably any other chef, causing a stir in political circles and firmly establishing himself as a philanthropist and social entrepreneur.

Social entrepreneur?

Yeah, unlike other chefs, Jamie Oliver has taken the initiative to immerse himself in the food community early – taking an ambassadorial role in hot-topic political discussions to improve public wellbeing.

I get it, he’s not in for private or personal gain – but why?

Since his 1997 launch – he has thrown a generous helping of public gestures into his mixing bowl, together with plenty of cockney tone and the staple TV shows and cookbooks to create an endearing, and more importantly distinctly unique brand image.

Could you give us an example on how he gives back to the community?

Aside from being Tony Blair’s right hand man when it came to school dinner policies – he has developed numerous apprentice schemes with local councils to reduce youth unemployment, created ‘Ministry of Food’ to tackle national obesity problems, and has started his own ‘Feastival’ for the Better Food Foundation attended by thousands.

Fair, but he can’t be a one-man brand doing it all on his own – how does he sustain the distinctiveness of his brand?

Consistency, relevancy, and visibility. Oliver’s chevy chase is everywhere.

As you might expect his brand has a presence on Facebook, Twitter and Google Plus – but also more content-driven sites like Instagram, YouTube and Pinterest. Plus, he has more apps than you can shake a spatula at.


Outside the digital space, he has more than 40 restaurants worldwide, and has his own print magazine. He has whipped other brands into a frenzy with Sainsbury’s, Tefal, Phillips, DKB, and Merison all wanting a slice of the action.



Impressive – so firstly what aspects of consistency are so important to the Jamie Oliver brand?

As he is the face of every Jamie Oliver campaign (obviously), a knead for tonal consistency across his vast empire is a must. His distinct tone is unswerving across all his content and it sounds like he’s addressing you directly – ‘I really love this barbecue sauce…there are loads of layers of flavours that make it truly insane…go gently with the chopped garlic though…also check out our whopping great beef tomatoes’ – it’s right in line with his ‘boy next door’ image that we’ve come to know so well, and it brings a unique edge to the art of storytelling.

FUN FACT: his tone has become so distinguishable – he has his own parody Twitter account –

Cool as a cucumber… and relevancy and visibility?

Relevancy – by diving into the public domain early, the Jamie Oliver brand has based much of its movements around content that resonates with his ever-growing fan base. Not only does the majority of the brand content feed consumer demand, but is also given away in abundance for free including his book recipes online (most of the time) – thus reflecting his saintly values and in turn retaining and gaining brand advocates.

Visibility – pre-launch this targeted content is checked for consumer based keywords throughout – this helps ensure the brand stays at the top of the search rankings. E.g. if you Google ‘recipes’ Jamie Oliver is number two on the list, way above any other celebrity chefs who’s content is left half-baked. As listed above, it is also this monitored ownership of a wide variety of content channels that maximises the brand’s visibility, using this targeted content to create a ‘hit and stick’ effect with his audiences.

Sounds like they go together like three peas in a pod. So, recap again, why does Jamie Oliver cut the mustard as your content brand of the week?

Jamie Oliver has built his empire based on consumer insight. He has been a smart cookie from the very beginning, listening and learning about what resonates with his consumers and building a strategy around it. His liberal vibes and his cheeky tone are backed up with relevant targeted content that is pushed out across a vast array of digital, print and media channels – it is this consistency combined with relevancy that makes Jamie Oliver so visible, and has left other chefs eating humble pie – the world is his oyster. 

How many food puns is that now?

I think it’s 14, may have slightly overcooked it. 


Where next?
More from Nick van Buuren
Previous content brands of the week
See our work

Author: Nick van Buuren

Account Executive at Speak Media

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