Author Topic: Any ideas in finding ways to get more foot traffic to my area at market  (Read 12818 times)

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Online norma427

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Norma:  here is a video on the basic how to-not my way all the way but a general idea to work with. I prefer laying them out on a sheet pan or pizza pan when they come out of the oven and to brush on the olive oil or melted butter. I put them direct on the stone where this guy puts them on a screen for convience.  Even when they cool they taste good.  The long ferment dough flavor really jumps out with these.  Thanks!  Walter

How to make Garlic Knots


Walter,

Thank you so much for posting the video on how to make garlic knots!  Before at market I did make garlic knots at market something like at Reply 442 http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,9908.msg98110.html#msg98110  but stopped making them when Tom Lehmann posted that using fresh garlic in olive oil can cause illnesses.  I didn't want to make any of my customers ill, so I stopped making them. 

I am working on making PJ cheesesticks now something like at Reply 85 http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,25844.msg266176.html#msg266176  with a different kind of garlic sauce.  If I can make enough of a good garlic sauce I think I am set in making garlic knots again too. 

Norma
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Online waltertore

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Norma: You got it!  How about using butter instead of olive oil with the garlic?   Flood that market with free samples of those things and you may find those simple dough products bringing in customers that will buy both them and your pizzas in record numbers.    Walter

PS: Try some cinnamon/sugar sprinkled pretty heavy on some with melted butter.

Offline wahoo88

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Norma, many of us in the younger generation rely heavily on internet information in order to make sure what we're doing is worth our while, at least in our eyes.  Personally, I would not go to the Roots Market without first checking their website for information.  Thus, I went to the market website and quickly found your miniature webpage (http://www.rootsmarket.com/standholders-detail.asp?Image=59).  If I am correct in believing that most younger people would first visit the market website before going, and judging by the number of people at the market, their website must get decent traffic.  My idea is as follows: The managers at the market do seem willing to help you, if not proactively.  Perhaps the main homepage for Roots Market could feature a small stand each week, whereby the Roots homepage displayed the mini webpage of the vendor prominently.  You could write a paragraph or two explaining your product.  Most importantly, however, you could show high-res photos of your product.  I, as do most others here, feel that your product speaks for itself in photographs.  If Roots Market is unwilling to devote homepage space to this idea, then they could possible create a sidebar link on the website called "Featured Vendors" where more than one vendor at a time could  be featured, albeit with less internet traffic.  I don't know the number of small-scale vendors at the market, but even if you could get a week or two per year on the homepage, I believe it would be beneficial. It doesn't sound like the large scale vendors need advertising, nor vendors outside area 4 and the other low-traffic areas.

I don't think that any of these ideas will single-handedly fix your problem, but they could add up in a way that could have a positive impact.

Online norma427

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Norma: You got it!  How about using butter instead of olive oil with the garlic?   Flood that market with free samples of those things and you may find those simple dough products bringing in customers that will buy both them and your pizzas in record numbers.    Walter

PS: Try some cinnamon/sugar sprinkled pretty heavy on some with melted butter.


Walter,

I really don't know if butter and fresh garlic can be left out, but at Reply 12 is one of Tom Lehmann posts about not holding any home make garlic oil over from one day to the next. http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,25423.msg256985.html#msg256985  I usually did make the garlic oil with added oregano and Italian herbs the day before market.  I think even if is was refrigerated there was a danger in causing illness.

Hopefully giving out samples will help.  I will try some cinnamon/sugar sprinkled pretty heavily with some melted butter.

Thanks again!

Norma
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Online norma427

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Norma, many of us in the younger generation rely heavily on internet information in order to make sure what we're doing is worth our while, at least in our eyes.  Personally, I would not go to the Roots Market without first checking their website for information.  Thus, I went to the market website and quickly found your miniature webpage (http://www.rootsmarket.com/standholders-detail.asp?Image=59).  If I am correct in believing that most younger people would first visit the market website before going, and judging by the number of people at the market, their website must get decent traffic.  My idea is as follows: The managers at the market do seem willing to help you, if not proactively.  Perhaps the main homepage for Roots Market could feature a small stand each week, whereby the Roots homepage displayed the mini webpage of the vendor prominently.  You could write a paragraph or two explaining your product.  Most importantly, however, you could show high-res photos of your product.  I, as do most others here, feel that your product speaks for itself in photographs.  If Roots Market is unwilling to devote homepage space to this idea, then they could possible create a sidebar link on the website called "Featured Vendors" where more than one vendor at a time could  be featured, albeit with less internet traffic.  I don't know the number of small-scale vendors at the market, but even if you could get a week or two per year on the homepage, I believe it would be beneficial. It doesn't sound like the large scale vendors need advertising, nor vendors outside area 4 and the other low-traffic areas.

I don't think that any of these ideas will single-handedly fix your problem, but they could add up in a way that could have a positive impact.


Dave,

Good to hear what many of you in the younger generation think about relying heavily on internet information in order to make sure what you are doing is worth your while.

I really don't know what market management is willing to do in terms of featuring a small market stand each week.  Most standholders don't even know they can have photos of their stand on Root's website.  I only found that out by accident.  I really had not much of any say if what was written on that standholder detail page and am not sure if market management would want to update that.  I had no choice in how high the resolution of that photo was either.  I don't know if market management would also show photos of my product, but that is a good point.  I like you “Featured Vendors” idea too.  I have to talk to market after this thread has run its course and see what market management is willing to do.  I really don't think the vendors in the other parts of the market need featured either to get more business, but they might feel slighted if the weren't included.  About 3 weeks ago market management said they would feature my coupon off again on their facebook page, but I didn't see that done yet.  It seems like market management drags their feet too much sometimes, but I guess they are busy with fixing fights between vendors, fielding calls about cars parked in vendors spaces and calling the ambulance if someone becomes ill at market, etc, etc.  You might be surprised how many fights there are, even if they are just shouting fights between vendors.  Just last week I saw the market manager talking to a vendor that was giving them trouble in fighting with a vendor that was next to them.  I also heard many times of other vendors complaining about a fellow vendor when I went up to the office for something.

Thanks so much for your ideas!  It is always nice to hear how the younger generation thinks and how they do things.

Norma 
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I don't have a clue as to how search engines work but.....is there a way that Norma could have a little web page link that comes up on the list of searchable items every time a person does a google search for "Roots Market" ?
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Online norma427

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I don't have a clue as to how search engines work but.....is there a way that Norma could have a little web page link that comes up on the list of searchable items every time a person does a google search for "Roots Market" ?


Bob,

I don't have a lot of knowledge about how search engines work either, but I think if you don't put my name “Norma's Pizza” in the search with Root's Market, not much will come up.

If “Norma's Pizza at Root's Country Market & Auction” is searched (without the quotes) using Google many hits come up, such as these.  https://www.google.com/search?q=Norma's+Pizza+at+Root's+Country+Market+%26+Auction&oq=Norma's+Pizza+at+Root's+Country+Market+%26+Auction&aqs=chrome.0.69i57j69i60l3j69i62l2.3137j0&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

Norma
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Offline wahoo88

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Looking at your Facebook page, I now see that you do have great pictures on the internet. Perhaps you could serve pizza at the Market's other events?  I see that they host several car shows and auctions.  While these customers may never be seen again, it could bolster income until standard market traffic increases.

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Looking at your Facebook page, I now see that you do have great pictures on the internet. Perhaps you could serve pizza at the Market's other events?  I see that they host several car shows and auctions.  While these customers may never be seen again, it could bolster income until standard market traffic increases.
wahoo88, do you know anything about my last idea......when a person does a search for "Roots Market".....amoung the entries/recommended sites....could a "Norma" site be worded so that it too comes up on the list from doing a Roots search?
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Offline wahoo88

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Bob, I don't know much about this but will look into it.


Offline wahoo88

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Just researching search engine optimization is confusing.  I think we need someone with experience.  However, from what I have read, it seems that accomplishing your suggestion would be extremely expensive/time intensive.  Perhaps the existing reputability of Pizzamaking.com could help.

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Looking at your Facebook page, I now see that you do have great pictures on the internet. Perhaps you could serve pizza at the Market's other events?  I see that they host several car shows and auctions.  While these customers may never be seen again, it could bolster income until standard market traffic increases.

Dave,

I did serve pizzas at the one Annual Heart of Lancaster Arts and Crafts Show at Root's in late August when I first started making pizzas.  I was allowed to make the pizzas inside the market and the pizzas were held in the heated holding cabinet I have outside.  My daughter and another person sold pizzas and other things, but I didn't make enough money there to keep continue to do that.  There were a lot of people that walked past that outside stand, but I still can't figure out if the people didn't think I actually was making the pizzas fresh since I didn't make them outside. 

Steve (Ev) my friend here on the forum that has Airstream with a WFO inside tried the same show last year and isn't going back this year. 

The years Steve and I didn't go they have a man from Manheim that has a food truck in addition to a pizzeria in Manheim that made the pizzas.  He is going again this year since Steve doesn't want to go.

I also tried another kind of food set-up just the other year at the same show and really didn't make enough money then either.

Norma
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Offline wahoo88

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Alright.  It seems like the only viable solution is increased advertising.  Of course, the best form of advertising will be people carrying around hot slices of your pies, so you may see an exponential rate of growth. :-D I hope that this thread stays active so we can continue to note changes and results through the weeks.

My only other suggestion has to do with labeling.  I see that you market Detroit style and Boardwalk style pies.  Those of us here on the forum can recognize and appreciate your excellent renditions of both aforementioned styles.  However, I can't imagine that the average Lancaster County resident even knows what the main ingredient in dough is, let alone somewhat obscure pizza types.  Your average customer might be intimidated by a seemingly foreign variety of pizza.  Perhaps you could either 1. keep making the same pizzas but market them as basic-sounding "thick" and "thin" pizzas or 2. switch to making a classic Lehmann NY style and a basic Sicilian pie and label them as such.  I don't mean in any way to belittle the work you put into your perfected styles, but the hoi polloi doesn't necessarily appreciate the nuances of a particular style as we do.  (Personally, I'm a 18 year-old who still lives with his parents.  When I tell my family that the dough that their pizza is made of has been fermenting in the refrigerator for the past 3 days, they make funny faces; it tastes damn good but they don't care how I achieved it.  They then wonder why the heck I decided to put stripes of sauce over the cheese post-bake; they don't care that I'm attempting to recreate a specific regional style.) All I'm trying to get at here is that people, for the most part, are after something familiar --cheesy, hot, and tasty-- rather than after the masterpiece of an artisan.

Best of luck. I've been admiring your work for a while now and would love to make the three hour trip up Rt. 83 to try your pizza in person.

Online norma427

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Alright.  It seems like the only viable solution is increased advertising.  Of course, the best form of advertising will be people carrying around hot slices of your pies, so you may see an exponential rate of growth. :-D I hope that this thread stays active so we can continue to note changes and results through the weeks.

My only other suggestion has to do with labeling.  I see that you market Detroit style and Boardwalk style pies.  Those of us here on the forum can recognize and appreciate your excellent renditions of both aforementioned styles.  However, I can't imagine that the average Lancaster County resident even knows what the main ingredient in dough is, let alone somewhat obscure pizza types.  Your average customer might be intimidated by a seemingly foreign variety of pizza.  Perhaps you could either 1. keep making the same pizzas but market them as basic-sounding "thick" and "thin" pizzas or 2. switch to making a classic Lehmann NY style and a basic Sicilian pie and label them as such.  I don't mean in any way to belittle the work you put into your perfected styles, but the hoi polloi doesn't necessarily appreciate the nuances of a particular style as we do.  (Personally, I'm a 18 year-old who still lives with his parents.  When I tell my family that the dough that their pizza is made of has been fermenting in the refrigerator for the past 3 days, they make funny faces; it tastes damn good but they don't care how I achieved it.  They then wonder why the heck I decided to put stripes of sauce over the cheese post-bake; they don't care that I'm attempting to recreate a specific regional style.) All I'm trying to get at here is that people, for the most part, are after something familiar --cheesy, hot, and tasty-- rather than after the masterpiece of an artisan.

Best of luck. I've been admiring your work for a while now and would love to make the three hour trip up Rt. 83 to try your pizza in person.


Dave,

I really don't know if advertizing will help, but I do have to seriously consider that along with what other members posted on this thread.  As I posted I don't have a lot of extra money for advertizing, but will see what I can do. 

If you look at Reply 36 http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,26435.msg266887.html#msg266887  Mike did propose a different kind of sign for me.

I know most people don't know what a boardwalk style of pizza is, but you might be surprised at how many customers comment on the boardwalk style pizza and say they do taste like a Mack's Pizza, a Manco & Manco pizza, or a Grotto's pizza.  They are pizzas sold at the shore.  I really don't think many people understand what a Detroit style pizza is either, but most people in my opinion think Sicilian pizzas are dense and are surprise at how light the Detroit style pizza are.  A Detroit Sicilian pizza isn't dense at all and the dough is 75% hydration so the crumb is very light.  I am really undecided about what I want to call those two kinds of pizzas.  :-\ I understand where you are coming from though. 

Thanks for the best of luck!  I hope you can come visit my pizza stand someday. 

I talked to another vendor at market today and ask how they got to do what they wanted.  I was told they had threatened to leave market. 

Norma
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Offline Peasant

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When selling food you have a sight and smell to draw people in (taste too if you're giving samples).  I'd be weary of giving less than great samples out though.  We all know a hot pie can only last so long so direct this tactic to the busiest parts of the market that aren't so far away.  You'll also want to distinguish how special your pies are by noting some of the specific differences.  You could even point out that the nearest Detroit-style pies is unreasonably far away.

Sight: your signs (and the new proposed sign) are good at directing people, but you're still not enforcing why they should be chasing after those signs.  A high quality picture of your actual picture might be better.  You could also consider replacing the Market picture of your stand with some pizza.  Ask the Market to link your facebook page (I thought someone mentioned you had one).  Pictures might dispel your standard market goer's notions about your pizza (thinking it's like every other card board cut out pizzeria).  Using some of your key descriptors like "____ cheese from -__ farm," "light & airy crust," or "_____ high quality olive oil" might be good too.

Smell: kind of goes along with the samples; I like the knots idea.  They last longer but even better, if you do garlic, they have lots of aromas that can draw attention to your sample giver.  The smell of butter and garlic is intoxicating and you don't even have to bother with making a garlic olive oil (though you can).  Focus on selling the taste and texture of the dough and get them hooked. If you're throwing out dough anyway, you could bake garlic & onion (with olive oil) pizzas just to create the smell.

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When selling food you have a sight and smell to draw people in (taste too if you're giving samples).  I'd be weary of giving less than great samples out though.  We all know a hot pie can only last so long so direct this tactic to the busiest parts of the market that aren't so far away.  You'll also want to distinguish how special your pies are by noting some of the specific differences.  You could even point out that the nearest Detroit-style pies is unreasonably far away.

Sight: your signs (and the new proposed sign) are good at directing people, but you're still not enforcing why they should be chasing after those signs.  A high quality picture of your actual picture might be better.  You could also consider replacing the Market picture of your stand with some pizza.  Ask the Market to link your facebook page (I thought someone mentioned you had one).  Pictures might dispel your standard market goer's notions about your pizza (thinking it's like every other card board cut out pizzeria).  Using some of your key descriptors like "____ cheese from -__ farm," "light & airy crust," or "_____ high quality olive oil" might be good too.

Smell: kind of goes along with the samples; I like the knots idea.  They last longer but even better, if you do garlic, they have lots of aromas that can draw attention to your sample giver.  The smell of butter and garlic is intoxicating and you don't even have to bother with making a garlic olive oil (though you can).  Focus on selling the taste and texture of the dough and get them hooked. If you're throwing out dough anyway, you could bake garlic & onion (with olive oil) pizzas just to create the smell.

Peasant,

I know when selling food sight and smell do help sell that food.  I have different customers go by my stand and comment that the pizzas baking smells so good.  The things I worry about in giving samples of pizza is the pizzas won't be crisp on the bottom and I know many standholders will gobble up the samples too and how much that is going to cost me with so many people at market.  I used to give some samples of pizza right at the stand I am at, but as far as I know those people that took those samples were standholders or maybe tourists that took those samples.   I am going to try the garlic knots and cinnamon and sugar with butter route today to see what happens for samples, but they will just be given at my stand.  The cheese part of the pizza samples is what would be fairly expensive. 

Your idea about sight on my signs is a good point.  I know my signs are not good at why people should be chasing after my pizzas from the signs.  I think photos of my pizzas would be a better route to take.  I would have to ask market if I could change my photo under standholders with a pizza.  I do have a facebook page for my pizza at https://www.facebook.com/NormasPizzaAtRootsCountryMarketAndAuction I also could ask if market would link my facebook page.  I did do that on Root's facebook page, but that only got posted on the side and I don't think anyone ever saw it.  I like your key descriptors too.

I think the smell of the garlic and cinnamon a sugar knots will help some maybe.  I already did make a garlic buttery sauce for the knots today from the Whirl and maragine products.  I usually don't throw out dough balls, but last week was extremely hot at market and that is why I had so many extra dough balls left over.  I wasn't the only standholder that had a lot leftover.  At least I could freeze my dough balls, but didn't think I would use them all.  I did incorporated some of the frozen dough balls in my batches of dough yesterday and saved some for next week.

I took this photo yesterday of the one sign market put up at the end of the aisle in the area I am in.  As can be seen that sign is very small and someone would have to stretch their neck to see it.  That is where I wanted to get my own sign made and have it hanging down more, but market management wouldn't allow me to get my own sign made.

Thanks for your ideas!

Norma
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Offline deb415611

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Norma,

 I have some online friends that just started a bbq business that is only on the weekends.  They are posting on their facebook page all through the week.  During the week they post their menu.  End of week they do some posts.  They are constantly changing their cover and profile pic.  On the weekends they are posting when the ribs/chicken etc go on and approx time they will be ready.  With the amount of posts I think that anyone that has liked them would be hard pressed to forget them and I imagine they are building the amount of people that like them from other people liking them. 

 I just looked at your page and your pics are great, I can see you are posting often.  I recently went to a veggie stand that I go to every week in the summer and they had a sign that they are on facebook , I had never thought about looking to see if they had a page.   Do you have a sign at your stand that says like us on facebook (i'm sorry if i missed it reading through this thread)?   I think that building that would really help, it's likely to pop up on facebook for other people saying so and so likes Normas and they may check it out and end up becoming customers.  Can some of your family, friends do a suggest page to their friends to try to increase the number of people that like your page.

I didn't look far back but are you posting Monday night/early Tuesday your menu for the day? 

My friend liked your page and said she'd be in for pizza as soon as she is back from vacation.

Deb

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Are you using any local products from the market?   Example - If there is a meat vendor with homemade sausage - can you use their sausage and try to do a cross sell?   A sign at their stand saying Norma's using our sausage in her pizza today with your location (and a find norma at facebook) and then on your sign for the pizza say featuring sausage from the meat stand ?

Online scott123

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Norma, here's my thoughts on the subject.  I've said this quite a few times. World class pizza doesn't need marketing.  And I know, for a fact, that you're capable of making world class pizza. The question I have to ask, though, as uncomfortable as it might be, is, are you selling the best pizza you're capable of making?

In other words, are you selling this?

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,17417.msg169188.html#msg169188

A year and a half has passed, and I still think about these pies.  If you're not making huge profits selling something else, I hate to sound like a broken record, but you should seriously consider selling this pizza.

When I make pizza, I strive for an end product that 7 out of 10 people will say it's the best they've ever had.  If I don't blow 7 out of 10 minds, I've failed. If I don't have 7 out of 10 pairs of eyes rolling back in their heads, my mission was not accomplished.  I foster the same level of ambition in my clients.  There's no marketing/advertising in the whole world that can sell more pizza than a truly ecstatic customer.  If they're that amped, they will tell everyone they meet, infecting people with their excitement. It's like a good virus.  The pizza can't just be really good or even great, though.  The pizza has to be the best in the world.  And that pizza you made (and both Chau and Kelly backed me up on this) was world class pizza.

If you want to improve your marketing there's great ideas here, but you might also take a look at your product.

Also, one other thing you might consider.  No one's taken this route yet, but we're seconds away from someone doing NP mobile with a blackstone.  I've seen Pizzahacker's Frankenwebber and Casey Cryne's LBE setups and they were able to do NP in a very small space.  Perhaps the market management might not have enough outdoor space for a full size stall, but maybe you could sell them on something like a 5 x 5 space.  It would be tight, but you could do it with a blackstone.

You also might be able to remove your convection oven from your inside area and run the blackstone there.  It would generate some heat and some carbon dioxide, but I would think you could run it unvented during the cooler months just fine as long as it wasn't on 24/7.
« Last Edit: July 23, 2013, 09:02:21 AM by scott123 »

Offline TXCraig1

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Norma, here's my thoughts on the subject.  I've said this quite a few times. World class pizza doesn't need marketing. 

Please define "marketing" as used in this sentence.
Pizza is not bread.