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Microsoft and partners may be compensated if you purchase something through recommended links in this article.



Microsoft and partners may be compensated if you purchase something through recommended links in this article.

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How InnovAsian put itself on America’s menu

Duncan Channon helped Chinese food brand InnovAsian overtake their biggest rival. Read about the unconventional strategy the team used to stand out from a tired menu of brands, while maximising a tight budget. This entry was the winner in the Consumer category at the US arm of The Drum Marketing Awards in 2020.

The challenge

Chinese frozen food brand InnovAsian was living in the long shadow of category leader, PF Chang’s. According to an Attitude & Usage Study, conducted in 2019, 55% of frozen Asian food buyers had never heard of it, but almost everyone knew the PF Chang’s brand – thanks to the restaurants popular across America. So when customers walked up to the freezer aisle, they tended to reach for the name they recognized. The client’s request was simple: “Fix that.”

The team at Duncan Channon was tasked with two specific goals:

  • Increase unaided awareness of the brand.
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What is Umamicart? This company is changing Asian grocery shopping

Andrea Xu always found it difficult to find all the Chinese ingredients she wanted to cook with in grocery stores and markets. So, earlier this month, the 28-year-old launched a streamlined online grocery service called Umamicart with hundreds of Asian products all in one place.

Growing up in Spain with Chinese immigrant parents who owned and operated a Chinese restaurant, Xu was used to enjoying her family’s cuisine at home. But out at Madrid’s markets, it was nearly impossible to find the products she craved.

“My parents served Chinese food, but they had to conform to what is it considered Chinese food in Spain, they had to have certain things on the menu,” Xu told TODAY Food. “For Umamicart, I wanted to create something that’s not determined by something else. Getting rid of that undo definition is part of this.”

Andrea Xu as a girl with her mom
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