As you know, marketing is a vital area to perfect in your business strategy. But how can you enhance your strategy further AND promote your business to a whole new target market?
That’s where food festivals and events come into play.
They’re are a great opportunity to get your business in front of the eyes of not only potential buyers but also potential suppliers, so it’s a great opportunity to combine both a B2B and B2C marketing plan in one.
There are many of these up and down the country and globally, but how do you know which one is right for your business? Or even how to get the most out of the event you’re attending?
Below are 4 tips and tricks on how to create a successful food festival marketing plan.
How to Start Selling at Food Festivals
There are so many food events across the country, so you must find the right one to match your business and brand values.
A good starting point would be to attend some before you decide to pitch at one. You can get a feel for what’s out there on the market already, scout out the competition?
BBC Good Food are ideal for this, it’s an inclusive and generic food festival so you’ll be able to see the competition and how they approach their stands.
The choosing process is all research-based – you need to understand what the event is about so that you are assured it’s ideal for your product.
Remember as well, your chosen festival will attract and carry a specific audience.
If you are looking to attract a wider audience outside your current realm, it’s best to attend one that is more ‘generic’.
Using the example of a plant-based brand, the audience will be varied, both vegan and non-vegan, so it’s a great place to educate customers about your products and expand your audience.
If you already have an established target market and looking for something more niche, it’s best to stick to an event that targets your chosen product.
For example, a dessert/sweet based festival would be great if you’re looking to specifically sell those sorts of products and reach people specifically interested in this.
Specified festivals are a great way to connect with suppliers and producers who are looking for a specific type of product.
Use your Platforms to Promote Your Business
Once you’ve chosen the right festival for you, it’s time to utilise what you already have and get sharing.
Your social platform has a lot more power behind them than you may think and sharing updates with your current audience keeps them engaged and makes them feel like they’re part of your business.
So, post throughout the process – before, during and after the event to keep your audience updated.
Additionally, you may also receive a share from the events the main page, which gives you another area of exposure to potential new customers and clients.
Promoting the event you are at to your current audience will encourage them to attend, share and engage with the post allowing for more exposure for the business.
Word of mouth from your current audience to potential new customers may increase the numbers you have attending the event to see your stand.
Showing that you are networking and attending such events adds to your brand reliability value as a business, and will encourage people to see you as a strong reliable brand who works hard to connect and grow your business.
Know What Sells Best to Satisfy Customers
This may seem pretty obvious, but it’s a really important part of marketing at a food and drink event.
With all the competition and different stands around you, you want to make sure you are attracting people to your business.
Don’t expect customers and suppliers to come to you, invite them in.
Introduce yourself to those browsing or gazing at your stall, it gives a great friendly first impression and immediately affects their perception of your brand.
Making your stand engaging is a great way to get clientele in – you don’t need to have all bells and whistles with flashing lights, just make sure your branding is clear, stands out and is consistent throughout.
It’s not about going over the top with decoration, it’s about making these three things clear from a simple glance:
Who are you? What you are offering? What you stand for?
This simple yet crucial tip will create a buzz around your stall and encourage more people to approach.
How to Engage your Desired Audience
Another crucial part of marketing at a food festival is being social whilst you are there.
Go to other stalls, introduce yourself, see what the competition is about.
There is also the perfect opportunity to try and reach out to potential producers/suppliers to see if there is the opportunity for a business partnership, as well as understanding who they are and what they are also looking for in a partnership.
Networking is key at any type of event you go to, and food festivals are no exception. Just ensure that at least one person is at your stand at all times whilst others are mingling and networking.
What’s on? How will Food Festivals work in 2020?
There are still some food festivals taking place in 2020 which align with the current government guidelines regarding Covid-19. Below are some links to festivals happening in 2020/2021:
How to Create a Marketing Plan During COVID -19
Here at Online Growth Guru, we understand it’s a confusing and hard time for businesses, especially within the food and beverage industry. We’ve created a few articles to clear up any confusion and tips and tricks when it comes to marketing during coronavirus: