How to Market Your Bootstrap Market Garden

The free online version of Bootstrap Market Gardening continues here . . .

Famous management guru Peter Drucker said ‘the purpose of a business is to create a customer’. Marketing is how you create customers.

These are the steps we followed to successfully market our business.

How to find customers
The first step in marketing is market research. This is a fancy way of saying, ‘who and where are our customers’?

We tried to figure out the answer to this question by first asking our friends and business associates if they would be interested in subscribing to a veggie home delivery program like we were proposing (this also gave us good practice explaining our model, as few had heard of the idea).

This actually did net us some customers, and encouraged us to believe ‘the dream’ was possible (thanks, Mike and Marilyn and Tony and Ann). Just as importantly, discussing our plans forced us to think through the details of what we were offering.

We also looked at the characteristics of our friends who joined up. They were well-educated, interested in good food (we knew they threw dinner parties regularly), and had pretty good incomes. They were also busy people, unlikely to garden for themselves. We thought about our local area, and tried to determine how we might find other folks with these characteristics.

We decided that a 30-kilometer radius around our farm would define our delivery area; we could deliver to any point in that circle within a half-hour.

Note: We know of CSA’s that deliver to locations 50 or more kilometres away. They are still managing, so it is possible to do that. Just be aware that increased distance equals increased cost, both in money and time way from the farm.

There is a ‘bedroom community’ within 25 kilometres of us that seemed like a good area for prospecting. We knew the town was booming because of an out-flow of people from Ottawa; these were folks looking for the ‘country experience’. This out-migration was enhanced by the recent completion of a major highway leading to the town.

It seemed to us that people selling homes in the city and moving to a small town in an agrarian area probably had an interest in all things rural, and likely had sufficient cash to be good customers for our program. And other folks in the same communities where the new arrivals settled and built or bought homes were probably also good prospects.

We scouted a few neighbourhoods in that town, searching for the ‘up-scale’ kind of place the folks we were looking for lived in. We found several neighbourhoods that fit the description; these would be our target market for our first year.

That's a wrap for now, more Bootstrap Book to follow.

If you would like to get the whole story right now, you can download the entire Bootstrap Market Gardening Pack including the Garden Planner and Cashflow Planner spreadsheets and sample marketing materials at this link:

Bootstrap Market Gardening Pack

Or, Get the Complete Start Farming Pack here (and save)

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