What do you do when relocating to a new state? Recently, one of my students relocated to another state due to her hubby’s promotion. Her small cottage food business donated about $15000 to the family income. She also worked a part-time job and added another $10,000.00.
Well, she now lives in the Midwest. The cost of living is slightly higher, she just had a baby. She will not be working part-time but wants to continue her cottage food business. Her new home state has a cottage food law, but she shared that she is now starting from scratch.
Her question: How do I start my cottage food business all over again, with no real customers?
Here’s my response. I thought this might be helpful to others who find themselves in a similar situation.
Should an unexpected move happen to you, don’t panic. The U.S. Census Bureau reports that approximately 40 million Americans move each year. And the U.S. Postal Service processes about 38 million change-of-address forms annually. Location is important, but there are times when we can’t choose where we live. Let’s take some of the benefits from the last location with us to the new location.
Plan ahead when relocating
Months before you move, address any tax issues to avoid any unforeseen expenses. Hire an accountant in your new state. Learn about the new cottage food laws and make sure you are compliant.
Go marketing crazy after relocating
When you move out of state, you can’t count on keeping any of your local customers unless you’re selling online. What does this mean? Depending on your product, you will need to start a new marketing mix.
Did you have loyal customers? Did you have Brand Ambassadors who talked-up your business to whoever would listen? Now’s the time to contact these folks an ask for help.
- Ask your previous customers for photos of your product (if they have them) with a testimonial.
- Gather a few customers testimonials.
- Can a loyal customer share a 10-15 second video discussing your customer service?
- Will anyone share an Instagram story wishing you the best in XXXX (your new city)?
Do you see what we’re doing here? Building a foundation for your brand. Was a news article written about you? Contact the journalist and ask if he/she knows someone in your new city who might showcase your business.
Now is the time to hustle. Focus on high-impact local marketing promotions. Facebook ads, and custom coupons for free or discounted products. Join your local Chamber of Commerce if your budget allows. Get involved in a few business Meetup groups, you know, networking. Put on your social butterfly shoes and hit the pavement.
Relocation is tough. Read the blog post Alternative to a Press Release for additional ways to get the word out. Learn about your new city’s demographic make-up. Gather data, information. Give yourself time. Check out the competition and devise a marketing and sales plan.