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My Business Success!


As many readers already know I’ve been relating my efforts of attracting birds to my yard to starting a new business. In the last article in the series I wrote about trying to develop a new market vertical for my burgeoning bird business. So how’s it going?

Like any good entrepreneur I tried a number of different techniques to attract clients to my offering. Applying the marketing principles of product, price, placement and promotion I began testing the market and then evaluating the results.

My wife had given me some bird seed (ie. the product) for Christmas as a present and I scattered these liberally across the lawn and in the feeder. The result, pigeons. I have nothing against pigeons but they weren’t the market I was trying to reach and to be frank with you….they are complete pigs and ate all of the seeds.

This is similar to a new business taking a scatter gun approach to marketing to see if there are any bites on their product or service. More often than not, you get a lot of tyre kickers that talk a lot, don’t buy and waste your time.

After speaking with a consultant about the matter (ie. my neighbour across the road) I discovered that I'd been putting out the wrong seed. Sometimes in business we think we have an awesome product only to discover no one wants it. It's during times like this you have to be brave and listen to the market rather than being completely myopic in your thinking.

I also  began moving the product placement around the front yard. I initially had the seeds sitting in a bird feeder just off the house eaves. The initial results were absolutely hopeless with no birds (ie. clients) even bothering to look at the tasty morsels. I finally moved the feeder under a tree and this seemed to be the spot where I began attracting customers.

If you’re running an online business and what you’re doing isn’t working, then whatever you do switch things up. One of the great things about a website is you can constantly run A-B tests to see if changes produce a positive or negative result. The secret to success is digging into the data and then interpreting what's it telling you.

In terms of the marketing principles of price and promotion I had a little bit of a challenge. The price for the birds was zero but for me I was being paid in satisfaction of watching them enjoy themselves. This works for something like my “bird business” but for a regular business setting the right price can be critical.

Determining the price elasticity of a product or service has a lot to do about trying different price points and researching competitors. I’ve found that many businesses don’t know whether increasing their price by 10% will half the demand or have little to no impact. Understanding what the demand/price curve looks like is all about providing value to customers at the maximum price point they are happy to pay. Don't just set a price by guessing.....set the price by doing some hard and often difficult research.

In terms of promotions…..I really didn’t do anything for the birds. It was more the age-old adage of “build it and they will come”. This strategy may not necessarily hold true for your business.

Measuring the effectiveness of different promotional activities is more than just having a good time because you sponsored an event at a conference. It’s about the analytics of how successful the event panned out in terms of ROI. This can be difficult to ascertain if the ROI is measured over years.

There’s a lot to be learned from launching evening a “silly” business of attracting birds of the right type to my yard. What I do know is there’s an enormous sense of satisfaction when you finally have a successful business that turns over a profit.

Below are a few photos of the birds that are now regularly enjoying the offerings I’m putting out for them. This reminds me……I’d better going and fill up the feeder again!

Have a great weekend!


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Wolftalker on 11 February 2018
Analogy good. And Lorikeets and Cockatoos - fab!

Analogy good. And Lorikeets and Cockatoos - fab!

Analogy good. And Lorikeets and Cockatoos - fab!
mgilmour on 12 February 2018

I must admit that I'm having a great time watching the birds out my window..... :-)

I must admit that I'm having a great time watching the birds out my window..... :-)
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