The abundance approach.
In our last post about competition, we looked at approaching the market with an abundance mentality strengthened the whole market.
When you carry the abundance view with you, the market opens up. You begin to see micro-economy within the macro-atmosphere of your local market.
There are the vegetable producers. One specializes in tomatoes and leafy greens. One had heads of lettuce and okra. They both pickle cucumbers but one does sweet while the other does dill.
There are artisans who elicit different emotions towards art which either will or will not mean a sale. There are functional artists like potters and woodworkers. Then there are jewelry vendors and painters.
There are natural soaps with different scents and consistency between vendors, all with their supportive followers. The bread vendors all have a following, and the meat and dairy people all bring their clients out. Everyone that takes the time to build a following will each bring a new family to the market. These new market shoppers will intermingle with the other vendors increasing the overall dollar amount funneling into the market and then back out into the local economy.
The other day I saw a post of a market manager who was furious that another market was moving within a mile of their established market. Already the perceived amount was being cut into. Never did it cross their mind that the alternative of more people coming to a food hub area vs. people traveling away from the original to seek out new vendors. This viewpoint was initiated by the market leader. What did the vendor newsletter that went out look like? Us vs. them? Farmer vs. farmer? Is that the type of thinking that goes into building community? “Shop Local” – except for that guy, I’ve been here longer. Rubbish.
I get how hard it is to survive long term in business. That long-term survival has taught me two things. One, there will always be people jumping in and out your market space. Two, most people do not put in the upfront market research to survive. Most people can’t stomach debt and the stress involved with a start up. If you pay attention to client needs and take care of the right ideal client with the right product/service, your chances multiply.
When you spot the small variations in client behavior, buying patterns, and why they choose your product/service you start gaining insight into how you can focus on your client’s why. Why they buy, why they choose to potentially pay higher prices, and why they do not buy from another business.
Preventing the opportunity for abundance.
One of the most common struggles I see is farmers imposing limiting beliefs before they test the validity of their estimations.
“I would never pay more than $2 for a head of lettuce, why would my clients?”
“I want to sell to five-star restaurants, but I have never spent more than $25 for a plate of food.”
“I want to buy that business book; I have learned a lot from their free material. I’m just not sure the lessons would apply to me.”
Projecting your valve limits your earning potential. Not investing in the experience you want to sell and be a feature of limits the depth of your understanding and report with the Chef. Not investing in your education limits your ability to grow beyond what you are capable of.
Buy the damn book. If you spend $30 on a business book and take away one thing, ONE THING, that makes you $30 you break even. If you repeat the lesson daily for a year your $30 investment (plus taking action to read it) turns into a $10,950 return.
Abundance in the market potential, in your actions, and your investments make the difference between those who come and go and the ones who last and thrive. The best part? Abundance compounds. It is also contagious.
When you get done reading this, do something nice for someone. It can be small. Buy the person’s coffee behind you, hold a door open for someone, call a friend who you lost touch with. Have abundance to positive actions.
Work with people. Your community of clients, vendors, suppliers, support system and people coming to the market as a vendor for the first time need more positive examples. When you can find the opportunity in every situation, you begin to see the abundance of the market. If you show your worth, people will pay it. It may take some time to get there but someone pleasant to worth with will have a better chance to insert themselves into the weekly routine of the clients who consume weekly agricultural goods and services.
When we get off the rails a bit and we start talking about subjects that may be a bit outside of your comfort zone, that’s when we grow. I know you may be here for my opinions on farm business. However, I would be doing you a disservice if I did not share some of the things that helped me through the early tough times. And you better believe there will be challenging days. How will you turn those barriers into abundance?