Hi there, I love your podcasts by the way. Ok here’s my question. I have been a customer of a kids powdered nutritional supplement for a few years and think it’s a life saver.
Recently the director and I got chatting and to cut a long story short I am now the main distributor in NSW. As they are a small company and don’t even have an affiliate program so the director encouraged me to register my own company name and promote their products via that so I can track sales. (They drop ship by the way).
The problem is I’ve started a facebook page The Covert Cook and quickly discovering that I’m not an expert in the kids industry or food industry, I’m just a mum with two really fussy eaters who thought other mums would find these products good too. Am I going about this all wrong? I never wanted to give mums nutritional advice, that was the company I represents thing. I feel I’ve started something here that is not what I thought I’d be doing. I’m no t a chef or nutritionist, just a mum that loves this product and wanted to share it in NSW as the main company hasn’t had good representation here for the 12 years they’ve been in business.
Any advice would be really appreciated. I originally thought i’d promote their website and facebook page but they tell me there is no way to track the sales.
Thanks in advance.
Response from Netregistry
by Uyen Vu, Digital Marketing Manager
Your product sounds like an excellent addition to kid’s nutrition and I’m sure mothers would appreciate all the advice and exposure to nutritional value for their kids. Your right in saying that you are unable to track Facebook in terms of sales however you should view social media as a means to reach out and connect to audience that value the same things and want to keep up to date.
Look at it this way, having a website gives you a bigger reach compared with a Facebook presence. If your potential customers were going to do research before they decide to purchase your products, then a website is the best way to engage them initially. Having a website gives you the freedom to design and develop your business online in a professional manner, enabling you to utilise it as an e-commerce and educational medium as well.
On the other hand, a product of this kind requires trust and most likely word of mouth and recommendations from other mothers are an essential element in promoting it successfully. This is where social media is the champion. Facebook is all about networking, connections, ‘Likes’ and recommendations. With the development of Facebook business pages and the social bloom of social media you would be missing out on a large potential audience by not having a presence on Facebook. The first 100 or so ‘Likes’ may be the hardest to get. Getting your brand and product out there can be tedious and time consuming, however this is where your current Facebook friends come in handy.
It’s great that you have already created a Facebook business page and it sounds like your Facebook page is slowly growing. Even though you’re not an expert in the field of child nutrition you can certainly become a ‘body’ of information and resources about nutrition, whilst at the same time promoting your products. By posting facts and links to other blogs or children nutrition websites, The Covert Cook could potentially become a portal of information; you can answer questions from mums by providing them with a link to another site or blog that will give them the answer they are looking for, alternatively you can summarise what you find but ensure that any stats or facts you state you mention the source. Overtime, you will eventually become an expert simply by reading up on information, but you will need to invest time in doing so. If you believe in your product and believe that other mothers will benefit from it then it will naturally take off.
However, nothing comes without a price, you need to work hard at your Facebook page and other social media avenues; make regular updates, about a 2 – 3 posts a day, not too many as that may be considered as spam and be sure it’s not too sales-like but rather informative, personal and relate back to other mothers. Post images of products, write blog like comments on them, maybe even start your own blog on the website and connect it back to Facebook. Take a look at some of Netregistry’s customers such as Lushcups, a small cupcake business in Sydney run by two friends https://www.facebook.com/LushcupsCupcakes; Pinwheel Project, a photographer specialising in wedding and family portraits https://www.facebook.com/pages/PinWheel-Project/266205676768988 and for an example of a blog Flying Penguin a kids toy store in Netwown, Sydney http://www.store.flyingpenguin.com.au/blog.
As mentioned earlier, you are currently unable to track ‘sales’ within Facebook; however you can track other valuable information. Facebook business pages have a feature called ‘Insight Summary’; see the audience you reach, including their age, demographic, sex, language as well as which posts people engaged with the most and more. With that information you can tweak your campaign to reach out to more audience. If you have Google analytics on your website you can also track how many people visit your website through your Facebook page, under the “Social” tab. You can also track the “conversions” you make from the Facebook referrals, and various other social media applications.
Remember, that your Facebook page works with your website to help promote your product and increase sales. Have a Facebook icon on your website, along with any other social media you may have and if you have the time you can start a blog (as mentioned earlier).
If all of this sounds too overwhelming then you can employ a professional that can help you kick start it all off. Some companies like Netregistry offer Social Media packages or Online Marketing packages that help you incorporate your website and social plan.
Final thought, although your not a qualified nutritionist you can position The Covert Cook as the “body” of information for all things nutritional for kids. Hope we have helped answer your question and given you more insight on how to promote your product and use Facebook effectively.
With the explosion of social media, do you think it is more important to have a social media presence before your website or vice versa?