Before the end of 2019 we left you with the news that we were hoping to launch our new flavour into the world. So now the question remains... did we do it? And if so, how did we go? In our first episode of 2020 we talk all things salted caramel, an update on the launch so far, and where we're hoping to go next.
So... what you've all been waiting to know. Have we launched our new flavour?
The answer to the big question: YES! Despite the process being delayed due to quarantine, we managed to roll out our new product with the New Year and it's safe to say we've had a sweet start.
But how did we get it out there?
1. Sent samples and shop packs to existing stockists
If you remember in one of our previous episodes, we spoke about how before our main batch we had sent some samples and the feedback from stockists had come back pretty positive. It's understandable that there's always anxiety around whether or not people will genuinely enjoy the product, so it's safe to say we were unfortunately slightly pessimistic. But, to our delightful surprise, the vast majority who tried it came back saying they liked it (music to our ears!). 3 in 4 liked it, and out of those, half went on to place an order with us.
But what about the people who didn't like it?
1/2 of the samples that we sent didn't get a response. It can be hard to get in touch with the relevant people and a lot of things easily get lost in translation (something that we found with our last launch too). The learning? Prioritise following up. Sometimes people end up trying your product but just don't pro-actively get in touch as they are busy running their own businesses. So don't hesitate to pester occasionally, people are busy and it's okay to be resilient in your efforts. Even if you get rejected, it's all great feedback. Persistence is key.
IMAGE: New flavour in warehouse (top), lots of deliveries being sent out (bottom).
2. Utilised social media (influencers, giveaways, samples)
Last time we launched with our original flavour, we turned to social media and started getting in contact with influencers to get behind our mission and share our product. While we did get to make wonderful new friends and expand our circle, it was hard for us to get outcomes that we wanted, and it turned out not being so cost efficient. So this time, we changed things up a little bit and tried to go for giveaways and contests.
In the spirit of honesty, it wasn't what we expected. We thought that doing these contests would bring in more followers, but despite running 3-4 contests we only gained around 100-200. Not to mention that every shipment costs money ($10 AUD), and provided you send around 5 packets to each influencer it all adds up with one contest alone potentially costing around $50. As a zero profit with no ad budget, in hindsight maybe we shouldn't have done that.
What has been interesting however, is that we've been receiving a lot of support from review posts. Instead of organising for contests and random stories, asking influencers to do honest reviews of the product on their feed is something that we've found to be more cost efficient as well as logistically easier. Also, is it just us, or does there seem to be something more intimate and real about watching influencers genuinely experience the product and write their honest opinion compared to just another ad in a saturated Instagram market.
It seems to be that way!
3. Promos really helped
Another new thing we did was finally send out our shop packs and brought on board promos. Usually if stockists place an order under $200 we charge at cost, but this time if they chose to order salted caramel, the first delivery would be free.
Included in this order we also gave free sampling units, which we feel has worked out well in the shops that have executed on the opportunity. An example is the cruelty free store, which after doing sampling runs, now has us in the top 10 selling products!
Definitely food for thought that has us rethinking on how we price things, something to follow up in the future.
So there we have it! Now our new flavour is out on shelves at 35 stockists in Australia, launched in Hong Kong, and seeing our vision come to life, without a doubt, has been unreal.
IMAGE: Seeing us on the shelves at local grocery (la manna in south yarra), along with the new packaging design of the original flavour
IMAGE: Overseas launch in Green Common, HK
But that's not to say it's always been easy, or that we don't have room for improvement because hey, we're human and every task has it's challenges. Summer heat in Australia means we have to find a better solution for distribution, and having a smaller team working mostly part-time, has incurrences for the efficiency of our sales.
Despite this however, we're eager to keep going, learning along the way and sharing our journey with you so that hopefully we can one day hit our global goal.
With that being said, if you have yet to try our chocolates please feel free to head to our shop finder and see where you can get your hands on a pack! And if you have, then make sure to post a review and tag us, we'd love to hear what you think.