Sale season is slowing down for many in the industry and that means you have countless animals out in the world you hope to see big things from. As a breeder you can do a few things to truly set yourself apart. I thought I could write little something giving you a few ideas for creating long term success within your program. Offering value to your customers, and building an excellent following of loyal fans and supporters will pay off dividends in the long haul.
- Create a visual brand that you will become known for instantly. Use the same colors. Same fonts. Same style for everything you do. This will make your customers trust you and have confidence in what you offer. Here is a great example of a consistent look and feel.
- Start an email list and segment your customers verse the interested public. With this information, you can target your readers and provide content that is highly valuable to them. Starting an email list is so easy! I use FloDesk, unlimited subscribers, beautiful email and use my link and save 50% (I'd sign up for a full year and save big)!
- Send tips to your customers about their projects. Something new is learned every year, and you indeed are a wealth of information. Share it in regular tips sent via email to your customers, again adding value to their purchase. You can only imagine how much they will appreciate it and I am sure there is something valuable that they didn't know or hadn't tried.
- Share show dates and deadlines. Many times people don't know where to go to find shows or jackpots let alone nomination deadlines. Compile a list of this information and have it handy at their fingertips. You could go as far as adding this to your monthly email as a special "mark your calendar" section!
- Send camp or clinic dates. If you have a lot of young or first year families send them information on the camps in your area. These are so valuable and a better showman and better prepared animal result in higher placings for your program. It's a win win!
- Email sale dates and sneak peeks. Often you don't have a good way to reach your potential clients and directly "touch" them. It has become very traditional for breeders to only have contact through social media. This is great and effective however not reliable and most importantly doesn't give you ownership of any contact info. You can easily add an email subscription to your website and Facebook subscription tab too. Collect email addresses and reach out for important events and grow your tribe! BONUS TIP... make them feel like a real VIP and send them sale sneak peeks before you post them online!
- Social media posts about your winners. You can see a nice example here. Consistent color and font to stay on brand. Logo and emotional photos take it up a notch. But you can make it more personal with a story telling how you know the family, and a little about their personal story. People are more likely to connect with you.
- Success stories come in many shapes and sizes. Share a story about someone who has successfully shown something you raised or is using one of your breeding pieces successfully in their program. This gives you credibility and also helps people know the direction your program is going.
- Behind the scenes is a fun way for people to get to know you. Quirky Instagram stories, silly Facebook lives, and even Snapchat are simple ways to do this. It doesn't have to be perfect, just has to be authentic, people can spot a fake a mile away.
- Sire and Dam/Donor features. Share information about the foundation of your program. Let people know what they have done both in the show ring and as a producer. This is valuable content you can re-market time and time again. Update it when you have new information to add. Be proud of what you have created and show it off to the world!
- Start a rewards program. This could be as simple to very complex. Here are a few ideas to get you headed in the right direction. Do a gear reward for backdrop photos. Give buyer credit for the following year when a customer has a certain amount of success. Offer a show reward in the form of cash payment. Whatever you want to do it incentivize people to keep coming back to you and to pour their heart into their project. It doesn't have to be too elaborate, make it unique to you!
- Go Live on Facebook or Instagram or record how to videos. A really neat example of this is what Hobbs Show Lambs did this past spring to talk about their sale lots, you can see it here. Another example is Jon Gevelinger's how to videos, you can check one out here.
- Offer a weekly or bi-weekly Q&A. Ask people to submit a question in the comments and go live or record a video later that week where you answer one or two of those. Schedule it, make it a reliable event people can tune in and know is going to happen. You will never understand the value of something like this until you have tried it. Information will get shared over and over again creating new contacts for you.
- Share helpful industry resources. If you know of a resource that could help someone and produce a little success share it! Again, you are adding value and positioning yourself as an expert.
- Two words, gear giveaways! A hat or hoodie isn't too expensive, and they are coveted but did you realize the value they offer you for promotion? This is actually two-fold.... you can hold a contest requiring people to like your account, tag a friend, or join your email list. Which will grow your reach to new people! Next, you do the giveaway of your highly coveted gear and create a second advertising opportunity by having your gear out in the world! Both of these are priceless!
I encourage you to give a few of these a try, I think you will be surprised with the success. I'd love to hear what works and doesn't work for you as well as anything you have tried or thought about trying yourself!