Today we’re continuing our advice about selling your product at a local farmer’s market. We know that you know your farm, and you know how to manage your land. But many family farms find themselves at a loss when it comes to the marketing side of things. Here are some ideas to get you going:
Invest in Some Modern Tech
Farmer’s markets might conjure up images of the a rustic, down-home, bygone era, but certain items of tech will still save your bacon when the time comes. Customers today expect a certain standard of convenience. Not only will this make the transaction process go smoother and build your customer base, but it will also make you stand out as a smart and modern business.
When customers come without cash (or they purchase more than they were planning) be there for them with Square, or other software that will allow you to charge their card conveniently. This can be easily set up on your phone or iPad.
Encourage customers to follow you on social media, and then keep in touch online. Take some time every few days to let your followers know what’s in season, where they can find you, and what’s going on with your product. This puts the control in your hands. Suddenly, you have a direct relationship with your consumers, and you’re not dependent on one venue or another.
Go the Extra Mile
In the restaurant business, there’s a saying, “give them a pickle”. It’s that little bit of extra that makes something special. It’s the free sample of lotion in the box when you order a new shirt online, or the way that Jiffy Lube vacuums out your car when you get an oil change.
How can you add a finishing touch for your customers? You need something that will set you apart, and bring them back for more. That thing that will make them tell their friends, “oh you have to check out that booth…”
Some Unique Ideas
- Wear a name tag to enable conversations.
- Have some recipes ready for ways to use your produce.
- Have taste samples – either of the fresh produce, or something that you can make out of it.
- Take an opportunity to educate people. Tell them why your apples are special, or teach them how to pick the best fruit. Let them taste the difference between a Braeburn apple and a Jonagold.
- Add flowers or some decoration to give away with each purchase.