When you start a Personal Grocery Shopping Business, one of your first big hurdles is learning how to affordably market your new business. I’ve been self-employed primarily in home-based food businesses for over 15 years, and I’ve become an expert in cheap marketing plans.
So, what should your Personal Grocery Shopping Marketing Plan be? When marketing a new home-based Personal Grocery Shopping Business, your marketing plan should use affordable or even free tactics. Here are my favorite affordable marketing channels for this kind of business.
- Personal Recommendations
- Brochures / Palm Cards / Business Cards
- Social Media
- Car Signage
- A Website
- Bonus Marketing Gold: The Story
Now let’s dig into each of those marketing channels and explore how you can make each affordable (perhaps even free) and effective.
Marketing With Your Grocery Shopping Service with Personal Recommendations
Nothing holds more value than a personal recommendation from someone we know, like, and trust.
But how do you earn these personal recommendations when you are just starting a Personal Grocery Shopping Business from home?
When we started our first food business (working as Personal Chefs), we first did ‘test’ cooking for family and friends. That was a great way to get personal recommendations.
We’d offer to cook for them as Personal Chefs, but only ask them to pay us for the actual cost of groceries. In return, all we asked was a written testimonial that we could use in other marketing materials and personal recommendations to their friends when it seemed appropriate.
I strongly suggest that you do the same with your new Personal Shopping Business. Not only will you get those valuable recommendations, but you’ll be able to work out any unforeseen kinks in your business plan with people who know you and love you.
Once you actually have a few paying customers, ask each one of them to tell their friends about your service and make a big deal about every time that their recommendation brings you a new client. Home-baked cookies are a winning way to say “Thanks!”
Flyers for Your Personal Grocery Shoppers Business
You must have flyers advertising your new business.
Nearly every grocery store has a community posting board, and your flyer needs to be on everyone in town as well as any other community posting board you can find.
Brochures / Palm Cards / Business Cards For Your Personal Grocery Shoppers Business
You need something a bit more professional than a flyer for more professional locations that will want to help spread the word about your service.
Specifically, the social workers in hospitals, rehab hospitals, and senior service agencies are going to want to know about your grocery shopping service and they are going to want something to hand to potential clients.
This business model isn’t really complex, so I’d encourage you to not spend money on brochures. You just don’t need all the space on a tri-fold brochure to explain what service you are offering.
A business card will probably do the job just fine, but if you want something that takes up real estate on a wall of brochures like you find in many healthcare offices, then you should look into palm cards.
Palm cards are just a double-sided thick advertising piece about the size of a brochure.
Using Social Media To Market Your Personal Grocery Shopping Business
Social Media is free and while most of the social media channels make it hard to get all of your followers to see every post, it’s still worth doing so you have that list of followers to advertise to when the time is right.
You can use any of the social media channels that you love, but you must have at least Facebook. A lot of the other channels tend to have a global reach, and for a local business like this you really need to be able to focus locally.
On Facebook you’ll make a business page and begin to invite friends and family to join that page.
On your business page on Facebook, you’ll tell people about your business, then share fun things to keep them coming back.
How about snapping pictures of cool new items you find while grocery shopping? Or gross things? How about selfies with your clients?
P.S. If you do post selfies with your clients, be sure to tag them in the pictures (with their consent) to greatly increase your reach.
Car Signage To Promote Your Personal Grocery Shopper Business
While you’re working inside of the grocery store, your car should be working outside in the parking lot!
However, remember that if you put signs on your car then your car really has become a representative of your business. That means it needs to be a decent looking car (though not necessarily expensive) and must be clean!
However, if you’re like me and your car isn’t always clean (we live in the country on a dirt road), I can still use car signage on the days that I have actually washed the car.
You can get magnets signs for the side of your car for as little as twenty bucks each and they’ll pay for themselves in no time.
Better yet, you can get one of the delivery car toppers for about a hundred and fifty bucks. Imagine your car parked in a parking spot outside of the grocery store. It will be much easier for people to see the top mounted sign than the ones on your doors.
Grocery store parking lots are a great place to advertise because I guarantee that there are people in every grocery store right now that don’t want to be there.
It doesn’t get any better than offering a solution to a problem at the exact moment that a person is experiencing the pain of that problem.
Using A Website To Market Your Personal Food Shopping Business
When you first start out, you don’t NEED a website, but they are nice to have.
In no time you can put up a good looking site that acts as an online brochure for your business, but as we already talked about, this business isn’t so complex as to need a brocure.
However, a well designed website will help people find you when they ask their phone for a “Personal Grocery Shopper Near Me”. That’s a big advantage, but once again you can wait until you’re making some money to make a website.
In time, you might want to allow people to place their order online, but this is going to be more complex than just an informational website. I’d encourage you to really think about investing this much time or money in a website. It probably doesn’t make sense to have online ordering other than email, especially when you’re first starting.
Home-Based Food Business Marketing Gold – The Story
Okay, it’s not The Story…it’s Your Story.
There was a time when people wanted to do business with the largest business, but those days are gone. Sure we all still do frequent huge businesses, but we really don’t want to. Ideally, we’d all shop local with someone we know, like, and trust.
Your story is what allows people to get to know you, learn to like you (maybe even love you), and to trust you.
When my wife and I tell our story, we talk about how we were traveling for work when we started talking about having kids. We didn’t want to hire other people to raise our babies, so we knew we had to make a change. That’s when we started our Prepared Meal Delivery Service. Now we are blessed to be working from home, raising our own babies while providing a service that makes our community healthier and stronger.
Now that’s a story that customers want to be part of.
So what is your story? How are you going to tell people why they should want to support your local business while you provide them a valuable service?
Once you get your story right, your customers will tell it to friends and family when they explain your Personal Grocery Shopper Business.
As you can see, marketing a home-based Personal Grocery Shopping Business can be pretty easy and affordable. It can even be free until you start making a little money.
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