The artisan food niche is booming. Consumers don’t want mass produced produce any more. They prefer to buy locally sourced meat, fruit, veg and groceries from farmers’ markets and artisan stores. For the local producer, this is fantastic, but it’s likely that you won’t be the only one to have cottoned on to the benefits of this burgeoning niche sector. So how can you ensure consumers are aware of your products?
Marketing isn’t rocket science, but in order to reach the maximum number of buyers, you need to be proactive. This is even more important when you sell food because, by its very nature, your stock has a finite shelf life. Fresh food doesn’t stay fresh for long, so it is essential that produce is taken from farm to fork in the shortest possible timescale.
Local Farmers’ Markets
The best way to get your produce in front of the consumer is to create a strong presence at local farmers’ markets. A wide variety of people attend these types of regular events, from catering Sioux Falls SD companies to local people shopping for groceries. Once you become a regular presence at farmers’ markets and artisan fairs, you will begin to build up a customer base of people who come to buy your produce on a weekly, fortnightly or monthly basis.
Once you have regular custom from attendance at local events, word of mouth will begin to take effect. People love to tell their friends and family about good food, so it won’t be long before you get enquiries from new customers. To make it easy for them to find you, it is essential that you set up a good quality website.
Online marketing begins with a website. Websites perform many functions. At its most basic, it tells customers who you are and what your company ethos is. It also provides contact details so people can get in touch. This is great, but what you really need if you sell artisan food is an e-shop. People love to shop for products online, especially if they live a long distance away. If you open an e-store, anyone, anywhere can buy your products, thus turning a local business into a global one. In today’s global marketplace, you can’t afford to think at local level. If you do, you will be left behind by your more forward thinking competitors.
Once you have a fully functioning website, you can start targeting social media to drum up business. Set up social media accounts – visual works well with food, so look at Instagram and post lots of photos on Facebook. Encourage existing customers to link to your social media accounts and make sure you are active on there.
Target Local Artisan Stores and Restaurants
Develop relationships with artisan stores so you can market your products to local shoppers who perhaps don’t use farmers’ markets. Don’t forget to build relationships with local restaurants also, as artisan food is very big with diners right now.