Promoting Your Urban Farm Online
by Guest blogger: John Lagoudakis
of Web Agents
Listen to his podcast HERE
If your urban farm has become so successful that you’re producing more than you’re consuming, or if you are producing a lot of a specific fruit or vegetable, there is an excellent opportunity to turn that extra produce into a business. But where do you start? Selling your produce at a local market is a great place to start but that might not be an option for you, or you may not sell enough at the markets. What you could do is promote your produce online. In this article we are going to talk about some simple best practices to help you set up and promote your urban farm business online.
The first thing you need to organize for your online business is an online payment processor. I’d highly recommend setting up a free Stripe account. Stripe is just like PayPal, except it is easier to integrate with your website. Stripe takes credit card payments and deposits your sales into your nominated bank account automatically.
Next is your website. There are a lot of good places you can go to register your domain and build your website. Stablehost is a recommended choice. They are competitively priced, very reliable, great customer service, and they don’t try to upsell you with a gazillion services. Once you have your domain and web hosting all sorted it’s time to build your website! The platform you want to use is WordPress. It’s free, used by many millions of websites all around the world, offers great support and every feature you will ever need. It’s great for websites both big and small. You might be thinking of using other services like Wix, Squarespace or Shopify. Those services are okay, but all of them don’t have the same flexibility as WordPress, and they will also end up costing you more once you start needing certain features, which WordPress offers free.
There are a lot of tutorials on YouTube which will show you how to get your WordPress online store up and running. One of the important free WordPress plugins (add-ons) you’ll be using is Woo Commerce. If you search YouTube for ‘how to set up WordPress Woo commerce online store’ you’ll be amazed at just how many excellent step-by-step guides there are to help you. Your urban farm online business is now up and running! I’m so excited for you! Let’s start promoting it… Some great free ways to get exposure to your new urban farm online business is:
- Promote it on Craigslist
- Create a free Facebook page and product your online store there
- Create an Instagram account and promote your products and store there also
- Create a YouTube channel and promote your online store
Now, here’s a really important tip for getting the most exposure for your online business on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube… DON’T JUST PROMOTE YOUR PRODUCTS. If all you ever post on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube is “Hey, I’ve got some amazing carrots.. you should come to xyz.com and buy some” don’t be surprised if people stop following you. Here’s what you do instead – PROVIDE MASSIVE VALUE. By providing value to your followers, they will come to like, know and trust you (and share your stuff), and want to buy from you. How do you provide massive value? By educating and/or entertaining your audience! For example, if you sell carrots, share great content about carrots. Here’s some examples of specific topics you could create videos about:
- The best time of year to plant carrot seeds
- How much should you water your carrots?
- Do carrots need fertilizer? If yes, what type?
- What different types of carrots are there, and which ones are the best?
- How do you know if carrots are ready to harvest?
- Which pests like carrots the most, and how do you avoid them?
The list could literally go on and on. Of course, at the end of your content you should have a specific call to action. For example, at the end of your videos, you could say something like, “If you liked this video, subscribe to our channel, and make sure you check out our website xyz.com where you can buy our delicious carrots!” So far we’ve talked about free ways to promote your urban farm online business. For paid traffic campaigns, Facebook Ads is highly recommended for local businesses. The reasons for this are:
- You can target a specific radius around your address
- You can target any gender and age
- You can target people with specific interests
Another powerful feature of Facebook Ads is the ability to create ads which only go out to people who have visited your website already, or who have watched your videos on Facebook. This is called re-targeting or re-marketing. And because you can budget as little as $1/day on Facebook, there is little risk in trying it out. We hope you found these tips and strategies helpful. Best of luck with your urban farm business! If you need help with setting up or promoting your business online, contact me here.
About this author:
John is one of Australia’s leading Internet marketers. It all started back in 2007, when he stumbled across affiliate marketing and within two years was able to go from $0 online, to being one of Clickbank’s top 100 affiliates worldwide. He’s been featured in the New York Times bestseller ‘Get Rich Click’, has authored several books, and been the host of a long-running Internet marketing podcast. Today, John helps businesses create lead generation campaigns on Facebook and Google that get results fast.
How to reach John: