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Like good ingredients from a market, your business will thrive with quality basics.

Like good ingredients from a market, your business will thrive with quality basics.

As an owner of a food related business, you have people and responsibility pulling you in different directions.  So, if bringing one more task to your attention is not what you want to read now, stop now, and come back later...But know that its not good to ignore the appearance of your business.   It's easy to tell yourself you don't care/it doesn't really matter, or wish them away; but honestly, the customers see these items as undone/incomplete/needing attention.  They don't make you look good.  So I am going to ask you to look at a few today, and file the information.  In the next week, if you have the nerve, just allow yourself to address one of them at a time.  

EMAIL ADDRESS:  I work with owners of really amazing food related businesses.  And this is how I see their incoming email:  nameofbusiness@gmail.com.  This past week I saw this on the homepage of a very classy restaurant nameofbusiness@aol.com.  So, how does the consumer see this:  they think, "huh, are they taking themselves seriously as a business?"  Switching that to tom@nameofbusiness.com only takes about an hour of internet research, maybe even a youtube video to change that!  

LOGO on LABELS (and menus, and all other collateral):  A couple of scenarios surround this topic.  You don't have a label at all.  And yes, I know, I know, they are expensive.  another scenario:  you have a label, but it's a printout.  I know, I know, you've got a guy, who is happy printing out 25 of them when you need them.  Another scenario still:   You have a label idea, you just don't know where to turn to get it done.  Well, if you can hear me out:  this is your public appearance of your brand (and yes, you can admit it. You have/are a brand)  This isn't a play thing, it is a business that like many things in life, needs care. Think of this issue like perishable food.  Know that you can put it aside for a little while, but you don't want it to rot.  You should address the labels question soon.   Having a well designed label, and printing it through a label house is not as expensive as the aggravation of not having a label in easy reaching distance, or of no-one recognizing your business name.  Labels are one item that help with outward appearance regularly.  Business cards and other collateral are good too.  The value of a label in your marketing cannot be understated.

SOCIAL MEDIA:  Linked In, FB, Instagram, Twitter, Pintrest, and so many more.  This is, theoretically the fun part of your business. And honestly, it is.  Especially if you learn enough that it catches on fire.  I encourage all owners whom I work with to sign up on Linked In.  It's a way for conversations to start between you and professionals.  They are the educated consumer who will become a customer for life.  Even an ambassador for your brand. It does not have to be elaborate, but you do need to be attentive to linkedin request/connections.  It's only a click, to accept them, and then they are in your circle.  Once you get enough people into your community you will see the value.  It is less invasive, and there is less creep than true social media.  And how do you choose social media?  Occasionally Cavalletta conducts workshops, exposing you to case studies, and see which method feels good to your tribe.  There are many primers on YouTube.  If you are considering which social media to use, or how to use it, simply put "starting an instagram account with my catering business" and watch a couple.  Mull over the decision of which one/ones you want to add to your daily/weekly calendar.  And put it in your calendar.  Remind yourself "post on social media".  People love food.  Lucky for you, you are not selling widgets that have very little human appeal.  Food has a lot of appeal, and people eat three times a day.

WEBSITE: There are many ways to do this.  It's worth building a simple site yourself when you start. The trick is to understand what the structure and architecture are of your dream website.  Simply pulling out paper, and pretending each page is a different webpage.  That stucture is a huge help.   There may be many hours implementing a site.  This is time well spent. If you have money to hire a web designer, please do.  They can create the magic.  But all the items just mentioned still pertain.  Coming to a designer with  your concept and a simple list of priorities, will ensures that they can turn it into a reality. 

 

I do hope that this is enough food for thought to get you thinking and accepting the idea that your business can be presented well, and will not break the bank.  These things take a while before you see the fruits of your labor.  Time and patience pays off.  

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