Selling Specialty Foods: Social Media Marketing Musts for Small Food Businesses

Selling Specialty Foods: Social Media Marketing Musts for Small Food Businesses
Selling Specialty Foods: Social Media Marketing Musts for Small Food Businesses

You want to sell a new food product you’ve invented, but you’re not sure there’s a market for it. How do you figure this out? Well, there are many ways you can do this, but social media is the easiest. Here’s what you need to do.

Define Your Target Market

This is the first thing you need to do. Define your target market. How old are they? There’s a big difference between selling to kids and selling to adults. Do the people in your audience tend to be more one gender than another?

For example, are more of your ideal customers male or female?

Do the people in your audience tend to belong to certain social organizations or association? Are they foodies or just people who like to eat healthy or people who just love unique and interesting food?

This makes a huge difference in how you position yourself. For example, you wouldn’t want to try selling a hot dog product to an upscale foodie market. It would probably bomb. But, it might do well with a fast food foodie market, or even a foodie market that loves diverse and novel food products.

Throw it out there on social media and see what people say.

Search Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, And Pinterest

You’re looking for discussions that would indicate that people are interested in what you have to offer. You might not get people coming out and saying they want your product, specifically — especially if you invented a new class of food. But, maybe there’s a gap in the market for something you can offer.

For example, many people eating a paleo diet miss some of their favorite gluten-free foods. Manufacturers have rushed in to fill this void, but there’s still an undertone in the market that’s dissatisfied with a lot of the current offerings in bread. Most gluten-free bread product taste awful.

Can you innovate here and offer them something that tastes like real bread?

Organize To Find Your Audience

Did you know that sites like Facebook have audience graphs that let you specifically define a user base? They do. You can dig into Facebook and find groups of people who match your ideal demographic.

For example, if you sell an ice cream product, you will probably want families with young children as your “core” audience.

Gear Up

Sites, like Smallwares, use social media to gauge interest in their products using “test runs” and advertisements. You can do the same thing.

Once you’ve found your audience, join their groups, advertise to them through the designated ad platform, and follow their ongoing conversation. Don’t jump in with a sales pitch though. Use the designated ad platform for this.

As your audience gets bigger, get creative. Find new ways to engage them and encourage them to share your products and ideas. This is how your product can go viral on social media. All you have to do is put your mind to it and be persistent. Never give up.

Abbie Ellis is loving life right now; newly graduated she is focusing on building a business from what she loves to do – baking. Now treating this as a real business idea, rather than just baking for friends and family functions, she is ready to get her brand out there!