The Q&A Archives: Water Saving Solution for Gardens

Question: We recently began marketing a product for retaining water in the ground. It is called Desert Bloom. It has been used by farmers for 8 years now W/great success.

Test have shown double seed germination in many cases. 40% larger tomatoes, etc. Water use is reduced up to 50%. This is NOT a polymer.

Question: Any suggestions on the best way to reach organizations/garden clubs/seed companies to let them know about this product? Are any organizations better than others for gardening? How to get articles published?

Answer: If you want to have articles published, I'd start by crafting a press release, describing the product and its benefits. You can send this to newspapers, garden writers, and anyone else you think might be interested. If you have any hard data, or can get the product evaluated by an independent party, it might have more credibility.

You might want to visit the various national lawn and garden trade shows--you can inquire about setting up a booth. If you have adequate production facilities, then plans for marketing and order fulfillment will be necessary. If you plan to invest some money in this, I'd highly recommend that you come up with a detailed business plan, including market analyses and strategies, cost of goods sold figures, etc. You'll need to decide if you want to sell directly to gardeners, or to stores and/or catalogs. You might also choose to sell through reps. Remember that most products sold wholesale are sold for about 50 percent of the final retail cost--if the product retails for $6.00, you sell it to companies for $3.00. If a rep does your selling, he/she gets 15-20 percent of that $3.00. So it pays to do some careful figuring before you set your prices! Your local Small Business Administration or Chamber of Commerce may be able to direct you to some help.

You might want to pick up some gardening magazines, and/or trade journals (depending on whether you plan to sell retail or wholesale). If you don't want to have all the hassle of marketing and fulfillment, you might consider licensing the product to a manufacturer. If you are considering this option, be sure to consult a lawyer for advice.

Here's the address for the Garden Writers Association of America: 10210 Leatherleaf Ct., Manassas, VA 22111.

Hope this helps get you started.

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