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Forum nameMarketing Mix
Topic subjectMarketing an Easy Meal Prep Store
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656, Marketing an Easy Meal Prep Store
Posted by karen1227, Tue Aug-28-07 11:55 AM
We are an easy meal prep store that opened on Long Island in New York - we have done print ads, radio, craigslist, local networking groups, local festivals and nothing seems to be working. We have increased our sales a little, however, not at the rate we need to stay in business. Any ideas would be welcome.

657, RE: Marketing an Easy Meal Prep Store
Posted by rachelmartinez, Tue Aug-28-07 02:25 PM
Here's a couple of ideas:

Market gift certificates as gifts for new moms, newly married couples, etc. Contact HR depts of local businesses as well. Companies often purchase these types of gifts for special occasions or year end. You could also contact local gift basket makers and offer your gift certificates as an optional addon for their baskets.

Provide food (and brochures) for a local moms club (even better, moms of multiples). Here's a start -

Are you a franchise or independant store? Are there some industry groups or franchise resources available to you?

A quick seach came up with There is a marketing guide on the site.

658, RE: Marketing an Easy Meal Prep
Posted by Barcelona, Tue Aug-28-07 03:15 PM
The best way to market your service is to have people try your food!!!
659, RE: Marketing an Easy Meal Prep
Posted by karen1227, Wed Aug-29-07 02:03 AM
Everyone who has tried our food has loved it. We have gone to a couple of events with samples of our food, but with strict Board of Health regulations it is difficult.

Thanks for the feedback.

660, RE: Marketing an Easy Meal Prep Store
Posted by karen1227, Wed Aug-29-07 02:06 AM
Thanks so much for the feedback - we are an independent and are members of the easy meal prep association. I will check out the website link you provided - that looks like a great idea. We haven't marketed the new moms, newly married as much as we should I guess - that is another great idea.

Thanks again.

756, RE: Marketing an Easy Meal Prep Store
Posted by Steve Patrick, Sat Nov-03-07 09:24 AM
In our area, we are working with a business identical to yours. While your budget may not be as generous, there are similar things you can do on a smaller scale perhaps.

1. They decided to hold an "open house" and do a direct mailing with a post card. This is the only way to be absolutely sure of reaching everyone on their target list (see below)

2. We obtained a list of families in their zip code where the wives and husbands both work and the household income exceeds $90,000+/yr. This generated a little over 3,000 records. This gets them in touch with people who both need and can afford the product. Extra post cards are passed out to local area business owners and managers.

3. The store is having a drawing over the next weekend. Food samples will be plentiful. The post cards must be brought in. Phone numbers and email addresses are to be filled in. The grand prize is a freezer stocked with their meals. Other prizes could be a free cheesecake with each purchase.

4. Total cost (not counting freezer and food) including 4 color post card (with appetizing pictures of prepared meals), mail list, addressing services and postage is about 44 cents each.

Not included above but highly recommended would be window signage
as well as a couple of bandit signs out by the street to promote your event.

Last, you may also consider offering home delivery of pre-prepared meals.

Good Luck,

Steve Patrick

757, RE: Marketing an Easy Meal Prep Store
Posted by achievedisplay, Mon Nov-05-07 02:31 PM
I don't know if these are feasible, but what I would like to see if I had one local:

Thanksgiving is coming up - A great time for benefits. See where you can help out and get some free press from it + you get to help someone else.

I think a seriously dynamic website is a necessity. Customers can go online and order whatever they want in their meal, you confirm it, and make it. This way each customer gets exactly what they want. If the place is about saving time, then it has to be in every respect.

My idea is that meal prep is all about saving time, but you want great food that you can cook at your own convenience. I think you have to come of with a gift program - so I can call in a meal for my mother. She works too hard to be cooking anymore anyhow. And then the convenience factor with the gift registers in my mind that, its easy and it tastes good, good enough for a gift.

Is it possible to get hooked up with the convention industry? and possible segway somewhat into light catering? This would bring more people in contact with your food, allowing them to see the value.

Have you thought about contacting local food distributors and getting restaurant style food that isn't available anywhere but at chain restaurants? There was a place here that did solely that. They were moderately successful. So you could go and get the exact same french fries that your favorite restaurant had, but that wasn't available in the grocery store.

What is the atmosphere of your place? People that can afford meal prep services expect something different. Is it all stainless steel glass front freezers? What about hiring a starving artist to paint food inspired paintings or murals? This way, your place would really stand out in their mind.

It's getting cold. What about the most delicious apple cider anyone has ever had when they come in? A free cup. People will stay longer when they are comfortable.

Freshness - I think maybe some homemade dips would be good in complementing. Sundried tomato, feta, etc.

Do you make hummus or anything like that? Is there a market for it?

Now I'm rambling...

Good Luck!