A common marketing mistake is starting with the tools: social media, labels, or logos. Instead, marketing starts with: the business story, business goals, and identifying customers.
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Over the past six years, my laboratory, and others, have been conducting research focused on identifying bioactive plant compounds (known as phytochemicals or phytonutrients) and evaluating the biological effects of maple syrup, maple water (i.e. maple sap), and maple plant parts and their derived extracts.
Manual with chapters on setting up sap collection systems, sugarhouse management, selling maple products, finances, and more.
The development of a marketing plan allows the maple producer to evaluate options to determine the most livable and profitable marketing options for selling my maple products in the wholesale and bulk market. The finished plan then allows the producer to focus efforts on what has been decided are the most livable and profitable ways of marketing for the business. For many maple producers who are most in love with maple production the question seems to be ÒNow that IÕve made maple syrup what is the best way for me to sell it?Ó The approach used in developing the marketing plan here is that of asking and evaluating some basic marketing questions will lead to assembling a reasona-ble marketing plan.
Use photography and social media to connect with consumers and market your business. Learn some basics of photography with your smart phone and how to use your photos to engage with an online audience including: best practices for posting compelling pictures and stories on social media, what to avoid, and how to use what you have to take good quality pictures and effectively engage potential customers. With Chadwick Estey (City Market/Onion River Co-op), Jenna Baird (Baird Farm), and Abby Roleau (Gateway Farm).
Advertising your business online can often seem overwhelming if you don’t know where to start and what you’re trying to accomplish. Zac Smith, UVM Extension, and Mike Lannen, Eternity Marketing, show you how to set tangible goals, start small, and expand your online advertising with a variety of tools.
Maple farmers experienced a difficult transition when the COVID-19 outbreak in North America resulted in the shutting down of sugarhouses to the public, particularly during some of the most crucial weekends for in-person maple sales. Sugarmakers had to quickly pivot in order to make up for lost sales in the sugarhouse as well as from wholesale restaurant and school accounts. This shift brought about some creative thinking and innovative solutions to reach customers and promote maple products. Some successful marketing, sales and agritourism strategies have not only helped producers recover lost sales, but have permanently enhanced their future sales approach and marketing plans.
Pure maple syrup is on the rise in a declining overall market for pourable syrups. We are moving in the right direction, but still have a long way to go.
University of Rhode Island researcher Navindra Seeram, who specializes in medicinal plant research, has found more than 20 compounds in maple syrup from Canada that have been linked to human health, 13 of which are newly discovered in maple syrup. In addition, eight of the compounds have been found in the Acer (maple) family for the first time.
In 2020, the New York State Maple Producers’ Association, in cooperation with the NYS Department of Agriculture and Markets, applied for and was awarded a USDA Acer Access and Development Program grant to conduct market research on the US consumer maple target audience. The project was designed to expand research, education, and extension efforts involving market sizing, audience research, and message testing, development, and planning to: 1) identify market opportunities, 2) optimize messaging, and 3) develop a market promotion and evaluation plan. The purpose of this work is to develop marketing tools and methods to increase the awareness of, and a rationale for, choosing pure maple syrup among audiences representing the greatest market opportunity. The program will achieve this goal through the development of research-driven messaging, market promotion strategies, and communications planning.