Marketing 101…


Marketing is not just about selling or making money… although that is a goal of marketing. Marketing is also about image, concept, exposure of product, and sharing pertinent information. IF a product is never seen no one will know about it and it will never sell. 

 The product in question is a llama and while selling or making money is “A” goal of marketing the breed it isn’t the only goal.

 We have lovely animals that are intelligent, versatile and useable. We need to let others see and know just how special llamas are.  We can do that through the EACH method.

Exposure: Presenting llamas in a favorable light to the community by showcasing their beauty, gentle nature, usefulness and loveability.

  Advertising: Sharing information about when and where our lovely llamas are going to be, what they are going to be doing, and making everyone welcome to come see them. Also inviting the public to come to open farms to see llamas.

Communication: Communication between llama owners/breeders and the public.    Sharing important information about llamas, how to care for them, basic needs, and contact information for more information or problems.

  Helping Out: Be a responsible owner/breeder by helping out new and old llama owners/breeders with information, problems, support, and just being part of the llama community.

 How can all this be accomplished without being a millionaire, you maybe asking? Well by being a wise llama owner.  Be prepared by knowing about llamas, basic needs, and how to care for them. Have information on hand about your farm and any other local llama group you may belong to. Be open and helpful to those seeking information and contact. Be an active part of the llama community.

Easy, inexpensive marketing tips:

 1.               Contact your local area newspapers. Ask them if they would like to come do a feature on your llamas. Provide them with information on your farm, the breed, and how you use your llamas. Many will do this for free periodically just have something different to present. Many will do this if an animal welfare need comes to the public’s attention. Don’t forget your free local papers!

2.              Contact your local area television stations. Invite them to your farm to see a new baby or just to come see the llamas. They may produce a feature or a local interest item. Offer to be an animal advocacy volunteer or a contact person for llama owners. Don’t forget your local public television or college stations.

3.              Library Days – Contact local library branches and volunteer to make a visit. You can do a story time with a llama book, give out information about llamas, let the kids pet the llamas, take pictures, and send home information about your farm. You can also alert the media you are doing to be there and perhaps a picture or blurb will appear in the paper or on the news.

4.              Local festivals and parades – Many of these are free for participants and organizers are dying to have more units and more people involved. Check around for local festivals… remember even a small founder's day festival gets your llamas seen.

5.              Schools – all of us live close to schools. Be sure to contact the board of education, local teachers etc to let them know what you have to offer. Teachers are always looking for exciting ways to get kids involved!

6.              Boy Scouts/Girl Scouts – Contact local leaders to see if anyone is interested in earning an animal or forestry badge.

7.              Church groups – Many church groups have special emphasis days and they are always looking for something special and new to share with church family and the community.

8.              Local athletic teams – Do you have a hometown ball club? School ball teams? Find a llama that you can slip a shirt or hat on go to the games. Make sure you take a gentle sweet llama for lots of loves and pets. Volunteer to be a mascot for home games.

9.              Midget league/Little league sports – Check with leaders to see if you could come visit a game day or maybe for something special for an awards banquet.

10.           Business cards or pamphlets about your farm, llama and ORVLA in local restaurants, tourist stops, and rest areas.

11.            Contact your local feed/seed to see you can come bring the llamas to help promote a sale they are having or just to have a visit the llama day.

12.           Local museums – some local museums have fundraisers, family days, etc. to raise awareness about the museum and its needs. Why not let them help raise awareness about llamas too? Contact your local museum let them know what you offer… hands on for animals, spinning demos, etc.

13.           4-H/Local County extension agents. Be sure to provide them with updated and regular information about llamas and your farm. Be available to help start a program or to aid in an existing program.

14.           Symphonies/Theater groups – Special Spanish or South American emphasis… how better to show that than a graceful llama? And a high brow crowd to show your llamas to.

15.           Local photography contests – Many communities have local photography contests for different events. Why not put a lovely picture of you llama in? Who knows you might just win a prize too!

16.           Nursing Homes – People in nursing homes are usually starved for attention. Take a llama or two and share some love. You may contact the media and let them know when and where.

17.           Hospice/Ronald McDonald Houses – Contact them and see if they have a need for something special for an event.

18.           Advertise even business card size in llama publications.

19.           Advertise with holiday greetings in local newspapers/magazines.

20.          Contact any local colleges or universities. See if the animal husbandry, art department or child care area would like to schedule a visit.

21.           Contact local daycare agencies. See if they would like to schedule an outing to see the llamas and visit your farm.

22.          Volunteer your farm or local llama group to be a part of a community planning committee.

23.          Put up a web site or at least a home page with llama pictures and information on it. Be sure to include information about your farm and/or local llama group.

24.          Sponsor awards for 4-H or other shows with a small donation in your farms name or llama groups name.

25.          If you have a racetrack local to you contact the owners for advertising on the infield board or perhaps even a spot on a car.

 Sharing our llamas with the world doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. To get started all you need is a little creativity. Take stock of the opportunities around you and capitalize on them. 

 Who knows you might even have a chance to sell a llama or two… if you can part with them.

 And remember the Topline is one of the best and most inexpensive ways around to advertise your farm or your specialty (fiber, pr, show etc.). All it takes is $5.00 and a business card.

 If you have any questions or ideas to share about how we as a united community can show the world our lovelies please let me know.

 Mitzi Ross -Good News Llamas