Two industry members have sparked a new interest in an industry-wide marketing initiative, this time on a grassroots level. A meeting at OFA Short Course drew an invited crowd of about 40 people from all different aspects of the floriculture industry to gauge interest in a basic, comprehensive marketing message that would cover everything from garden retailers (big box and independent) and growers to florists and landscapers.
The message would be in addition to any branding efforts and could appear alongside a retailer or grower brand.
The industry members, Frank Zaunscherb of ZMI Marketing in Canada and Laurie Scullin of The New Product Group marketing company who’s also a Greenhouse Grower contributor, led the discussion. The discussion included creating a simple message and building a website and marketing campaign behind it.
The goal is to build interest in floriculture by communicating directly with consumers. Scullin says there hasn’t been any decisions about how funding would occur, just that it would be voluntary and not forced through a promotion order as has been discussed in the past. He estimated about $250,000 to $300,000 would need to be raised to pay for the program, which would include a website with general plant information and viral marketing tactics through social media (like Facebook, Twitter and MySpace), as well as voluntary inclusion on point-of-purchase materials, retail marketing materials, employee shirts, etc.
Scullin says he’d like to get more feedback from the industry about what a marketing initiative could look like and how many people would be interested in supporting it. To give us your feedback and continue the discussion, go to Fresh Air Forum and let us know what you think.