Advertising techniques

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by WIchickens, Mar 1, 2015.

  1. WIchickens

    WIchickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So I am going to start raising meat chickens and turkeys this spring. Friends that know about it say they are interested. But who knows who of my friends will actually buy, right? So, those of you who have a small business raising birds, how do you advertise? Just word of mouth? Craig's list? Facebook? Any other ideas?

    Also, do you ever have people preorder, or do you just raise a certain amount, put them in the freezer and hope they sell?

    And how do you sell them? By the pound or per bird?

    Sorry for all these questions, but I am a newbie and want to do it right!:D
     
  2. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    Try all those ideas but craig's list will bring out the bargain hunters. This enterprise will cost a lot so I suggest having your own website, price them so you can make money and people will find you. Always do the preorder and prepay or at least get a non-refundable deposit and you won't be plagued by second guessers.
     
  3. WIchickens

    WIchickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That is a great idea about a website! Hadn't crossed my mind yet. Now if I can just get started with some customers I will be set. That and figuring out how to keep the costs down. I am sure this will be a work in progress!
     
  4. TEXAS715

    TEXAS715 New Egg

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    The Craigslister's will try to low ball you every time. But is a good place to get started.

    Around here the Farmers Markets are big and are a good place to get top dollar. Need to be processed, and here in Texas requires all sorts of permits and inspections, so check you local laws.

    We also have flea markets that you can sell livestock at. Here you can sell them live.

    Check with you local school ag teacher. They usually know people that will buy them. They know because they will help the FFA people sell their culls when showing.

    I sell by the bird. I have sold them on contract before the birds hit my ground and extras to people on all the above.

    Hope that helps.
     
  5. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Chicken Obsessed

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    The people I've heard of that do it usually presell and apparently they have a big following.

    If you sell them processed and fresh or frozen, they'll likely need to be processed by a certified USDA facility.
     
  6. WildfireSmitty

    WildfireSmitty Chillin' With My Peeps

    My first year, I started with 400 Cornish X. All of which were butchered on the farm (not inspected) Just from advertising at a farmers market and by word of mouth I was able to sell most of them. They were all farm pick-up as well (not sure about the regulations on farm gate sales in the US)

    I do 800 now, all of which are pre-sold. Just by word of mouth, farmers markets, website advertisement, and local online farmers market distributors.

    Most people prefer by the pound. It also allows you to offer size ranges. Some people like single guys, or couples without kids would rather take smaller birds.

    It might take a couple seasons, but you'll develop a nice clientele that truly appreciates locally grown.

    Good luck with your sales this year, and hope it all works out for you!
     
  7. WIchickens

    WIchickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for all the advise!

    400 birds? holy cow!! I don't know if I am brave enough to do that many my first go around! You have a good point about offering different sizes. Mind if I ask you what you charge per pound? I think the WI rule is that I can sell them from my farm, but not bring them to a farmer's market unless they are processed in a usda facility. My aunt and uncle have a side business of butchering, so I plan to go that route.


    I know the Cornish X is the most efficient bird to raise, but how do they taste compared to a slower growing bird, like the freedom ranger? Any other breeds you would recommend?

    Any body here to turkeys as well?
     
  8. WildfireSmitty

    WildfireSmitty Chillin' With My Peeps

    400 birds, it's easier than you think :D

    I live just north of the border (southern Manitoba) right now, I am getting $3.75/LB on the carcass weight. So that is bagged with the neck/heart inside. Livers and feet we keep and sell separate.
    Last season my birds averaged 9 lbs.

    As for best tasting breeds. It's kind of an up and down topic. Everyone has their own values on taste and fat content. I think any meat bird that is "Happy" and is given the proper growth time is going to taste good. When you start pushing and trying to finish fast, that's when you start getting tougher (stressed) meat and off flavoring in your meat.

    Stay away from to much flax.

    What are you doing for a diet?
     
  9. WIchickens

    WIchickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Ok, I think I will stick with the Cornish X my first round. As for feed, I am still researching. I about a month or so before I start this process (I have 15 new layers and 10 turkey chicks coming april 1st that I will need to get out of the brooder first!). Sounds like our local feeds mill cannot compete with bagged feed from our local farm &fleet. I was just going to feed them starter and then the broiler feed they have. Runs about $11 for a 50lb bag. Is there an alternative feed that I should look into?

    Thanks so much for your advice! It is very much appreciated!
     
  10. slingshotandLAR

    slingshotandLAR Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I just started with pastured poultry...

    I use eggs to find customers, sell someone a dozen of the best eggs they've ever had in their life and they want to try a chicken.

    I sold out on beef last year from egg customers, eggs get you in their home and in their head. They start thinking if the eggs are this much better what will the chicken taste! Actually I sold out of turkeys, beef and pork all from eggs.

    You need to be a sales person through and through and you business will grow. Bring some samples to a few local restaurants and see if they want to offer a farm to table special.

    I was planing on starting with 25 birds but after a cold call meeting to a local store they want 50 birds a month! That's minimum 250 per season a single customer from one phone call!

    I have a few other ideas I'm working on I'll let you know how it works out
     

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