3 key steps to getting your food or drink product listed in farm shops and delis
1. Plan carefully.
It is really easy to get over-enthusiastic and start approaching farm shops and delis before you are ready to sell. Here’s a quick check-list of the things you need to make sure you have in place to help you sell your food or drink product to the farm shop and deli managers:
- Costings – do you have an idea of your rrp (the price the shop will sell your product at) and does your cost price allow the shop to make 40% margin as well as you making a profit?
- Do you know how you will deliver your product – yourself? A courier?
- Is your labelling legal and does it have all the required information on it?
- Have you done shelf-life testing?
- Have you got outer case packaging sorted?
2. How to approach the buyer/shop manager.
- Decide on your approach – are you going to phone to get appointments? Are you going to call on the shops in person with samples on the off chance? (Relish Tip: always make the most of every appointment by doing research and seeing what other stores/sales opportunities might be nearby)
- Make sure you have a hand-out to leave them with all the info they will need to know – price, case size, minimum order quantity, lead time, delivery costs and not forgetting your contact details!
Be knowledgeable – not only about your product – but about competitor products and the wider category. Don’t forget the shop manager might have to make a decision whether to list your product or a competitors – there is only so much space on the shelves!
3. Supporting your listing.
- Once you’ve done the hard work of getting the listing – unfortunately it doesn’t stop there! Don’t forget to tell people where they can get your product (via social media, email lists, website etc).
- Also – offer support to the store – can you do samplings in store for example to help with sales – particularly a good idea at launch to encourage trial and at key seasonal times of the year such as Easter, Mother’s Day, Xmas etc
If you have any questions about this topic we would love to hear from you simply email [email protected] and we will do our best to help.
Don’t forget you can check out our FREE 30-day trial of the Relish Food Marketing Club where there are oodles more resources and mentoring from the Relish team to help you with your food or drink business.
How to Turn Your Leads into Customers
Many people are great at planning for food and drink exhibitions, sparkle on the stand – but then wonder a couple of months down the line why they haven’t got lots of new customers?
The issue being that understandably you are exhausted after an exhibition, probably have lots of stuff to catch up on when you get back to your HQ and you just haven’t managed to convert those leads into sales.
Here are 5 Top Tips to help you next time you are doing a show, or indeed if you have a pile of leads from a recent show that is waiting your attention!
Block out your diary
It is critical to give yourself time after an exhibition or show a) to recover and b) to follow up on those leads. So make sure you block out a day in your diary for follow ups. This may mean you may need to get cover in to help you bake/pack/sell, but it should certainly be worth it if it means you have time to convert leads into sales.
Be effective and consistent at capturing leads
Often there may be more than just you on the stand talking to leads so make sure the team has a consistent way of capturing leads and taking notes – it may be done electronically. However, I find it’s always good to make a couple of notes at the time about each lead – you may think you will remember – but after a few days on a stand talking to lots of people it’s not that easy! And it will make your follow ups much more personal and targeted if you can refer to specific bits of your conversation on the stand.
Prepare for follows up before the show
Sound absurd? But it will save you time afterwards. You can draft a thank you email for the interest and for visiting your stand before the exhibition, that is then ready to go out straight after the show. This then gives you a few days to be able to answer each lead individually. Try and answer all leads within a week of the show.
Be Structured and Persevere
Whatever CRM system you are using – it may be a simple spreadsheet – make sure you are structured in your approach. Note each time you’ve called/contacted them, when to call back, what the next steps are etc . Within reason I always say follow up every lead until you either get an order or a no – and even the “no” is only a “no for now” – capture them somewhere to give them a call in a few months! Perseverance is the key – it may take 7 or 8 calls/emails before you get an answer.
You never know who knows who
You will probably be looking out for “key” people to visit your stand – but don’t forget you never know who knows who. So even if a visitor on your stand isn’t one of your “key” targets make sure you treat them as if they were – you never know who they may recommend your products to.
For more information on how to convert leads into customers, just drop us a line at [email protected] or call Jo on 0772 3351884.