Selling more of your product around key events
For many of you I am sure January can often be a long, quiet(ish) month where you take time to recover from the busy Christmas, reflect on what went well last year and start planning in earnest for 2016.
There are plenty of “foodie” events coming up as soon as January finishes, starting with Pancake Day, Tuesday 9th February – a personal favourite in our house where each year seems to involve thinking of whackier fillings/toppings we can create on our pancake!
The next key event being Valentine’s Day – whether you love it or hate it, if you have a food or drink business it is certainly a time (depending on your food product) that you could have a surge in sales. Clearly chocolate, wine and champagne are all key favourites at this time of year, but any delicious food or drink item, especially if beautifully packaged can make a wonderful Valentine’s gift. Sometimes, looking for a gift that is specifically tailored for your loved one can really show the care you have taken and the thought that you have put in – which after all is what it is all really about.
Mother’s Day comes hot on the heels of Valentine’s Day on Sunday March 6th and again is another occasion for showing someone how much you care about them. It is often the personal touches that make a gift really special – so do have a think if there is anything you can add to your product that will make it extra appealing for people to buy for their mother’s for their special day. I’m not necessarily suggesting producing completely new packaging (unless your volumes and costs allow)- but maybe a little bow/tag/card – anything that will make it stand out on shelf or on-line as that perfect Mother’s Day Gift.
Easter is early this year with Easter Sunday falling on Sunday 27th March and modern custom is to gift chocolate eggs. Do you have a food product that could be an alternative present to an Easter Egg? It is all about how you position and present it. Easter is a time all about spring and re-birth so if you are thinking of doing specific Easter flavours/decorations on your packaging think flowers, herbs….spring colours.
Easter is a long bank holiday where people visit family and friends, entertain – can your food product fit in with any of these occasions? A lovely box of biscuits as a thank you to your host? Some delicious coffee/tea to share after your Easter dinner? There are lots of possibilities… People will be looking delicious food items and treats for this Bank Holiday so make sure your products are at front of mind. Think about speaking to your store managers to see if they are doing any Easter merchandising – and can you be included?
Don’t forget to remind your consumers about your products for these key events – think social media, blogging, email marketing, sampling in store….
Finally – enjoy all of the above events – as well as selling lots of your products!
What makes your product get noticed?
With many of you entering the Great Taste Awards round about now and with Ocado having just announced the launch of their search for this year’s next Top British Supplier, it started me thinking about what it is exactly that makes these winning products catch the judges eyes and receive the much coveted awards. And following on from that – what makes consumers pick a product up from the shelves?
Clearly a lot of it is about TASTE – after all, delivering a great tasting product to delight the consumer is what it’s all about!
But when consumers haven’t tasted your product, what makes them pick it up for the first time? PACKAGING plays a massive part in this.
If it’s got shelf stand out, it’s going to get noticed. And by this we don’t necessarily mean the brightest, boldest packaging on the shelf. It depends what category you are in. If you are in a category where every other brand is bright and bold, stand out might mean clear white and simple. When thinking about your packaging it is so important to think about it in context of your category and where it will be on shelf. Don’t forget also to think about which bit of the pack (side, top, lid etc) will be most visible to the consumer on shelf and make sure your key messages are there!
Ok – so the first hurdle done and your product’s been noticed, but it’s still not in the basket! So how do you go from being noticed to being bought?? The consumer needs to connect with what they see. Do the key messages, colours, branding engage with your target consumer? Does the packaging intrigue them enough for them to pick it up and take a closer look? Once they’ve picked it up, they need to know that it will fit into their lifestyle easily. Is it obvious when, how and why they would use your product? Don’t assume consumers will always know the answers to these questions – and by giving them guidance here, you will make it more likely for them to buy.
The story behind the product, is another key way you can intrigue the consumer enough to make them want to buy. Do you have a lovely story behind why you make your product, is their something lovely/unusual about where you source your products from for example? If consumers feel warm towards your product because of your story it is more of a reason for them to pop your product into their basket!
If you have many competitors it is so important to think of the one key thing that sets you apart from them – and often it can be your story and journey and how you communicate that.
Finally, if you are targeting specific groups such as Vegans or Gluten Free – don’t forget to make sure that this stands out on shelf so that you are not missing any of your target consumers.
So to all of you who are either busy entering awards, or busy thinking about your packaging I hope these insights have helped. If you want a chat about any of this, do get in touch with me at [email protected] or give me a call on 0772 335 1884.