Breaking into the supplement business, any advice?

Discussion in 'Growing and Managing a Business' started by Gabriel Chaves, Dec 3, 2014.

  1. Gabriel Chaves

    Gabriel Chaves
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    I am considering starting a supplement business, I already have several ideas as to the different supplements I want to sell (Energy/Alertness Aids, Anti-Anxiety, Sleep Aids and Nootropics/"Smart Drugs"). There are several businesses in my area that are doing similar things and have become quite successful, and I figure that in order to compete I should do something different, something to stand out. My marketing plan so far is broken down into a few phases. Phase one: Develop and maintain a strong customer base using multi-level marketing (similar to Avon or Motor Club of America) and social media to create an online presence and increase traffic to my website where individual customers could purchase products directly. Phase two: Once my sales force has matured I could offer top performing salesmen/women to either move up from the multi-level marketing sales force to working as employees of the company or even incorporate themselves into the business as partners. I figure phase two would both act as an insentive for the MLM sales force to sell more AND increase working capital which would be re-invested into upgrading production capabilities so that we could then market the product to businesses. At first I would market to local business chains in my region, the northwest to create a more predictable and sustainable cash flow, use that money to once again reinvest in production capabilities whilst also beginning a MLM campaign in neighboring regions to create a customer base there and eventually end up marketing my products all over the country/world.

    Does this sound like a good plan? I am well aware that people generally think MLM's are sketchy at best but I am thinking it may be a good option because I can see my client base (Late teens to late twenties) liking the opportunity for additional income as well as a genuine interest in the product(s). I have already run some numbers and have a decent idea of what the products will actually be as far as the ingredients and production costs go but I figured going into detail about it at this point would be a bit of a moot point since I havent done any research and development at this point.

    Thanks! Any questions you have for me feel free to ask, I just want to know if my rough marketing plan sounds like a feasible/good plan and if you have any ideas for me that would be much appreciated!
     
  2. MarkHache

    MarkHache
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    I love the supplement industry but honestly it's pretty darn saturated at this point. You're proposing a couple of huge endeavors: 1) inventing your own supplements and 2) starting an MLM scheme - both of these involve a ton of money to get going. A couple of things to consider: those supplements are already being produced by dozens of manufacturers and white-labelers, how do you plan to differentiate yours? If you do create a ground-breaking product, why not mass market it instead of just building up a localized MLM model? I think affiliate marketing would work much better for you than MLM. MLM only works when someone actually buys the product, but most people who sign up for MLM put all their effort into signing up other people with the hope that THEY will sell the product.
    Another suggestion if you think your locale is prime for opportunity: set up shop or get in with gym owners, xfit boxes, etc to see if they will sell your product. Get some local competitive bodybuilders, powerlifters, other athletes to try out your product for free, convert them, and build a community around your brand to support your shop and expansion of your product line. If you do the shop thing beef up your inventory by carrying a full line of other brands' products so you can draw in new prospective buyers of your brand. Good luck with it, however it takes shape
     
  3. DeniseTaylor

    DeniseTaylor
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    I agree. You're headed for very competitive waters.

    What about starting an affiliate program where webmasters could promote your product for you? Also, what about selling via Amazon or eBay? I would try to put to use some of these very large marketplaces where people are already congregated.
     

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