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Marketing & Development

What market are you targeting? 

What makes your product special?

You should think carefully about answering these questions before you start.The consumer needs to know why they should buy your products. You cannot compete with the supermarkets on price so don’t even try. You are selling your story on production, traceability and quality so don’t be coy about it. If you do not believe how good your product tastes then you can’t expect the consumer to - be passionate about what you produce!


A New Start to Agriculture: Building a Brand and Telling Your Story

This video looks at advice and guidance for people who want to make a new start with agriculture. Food & Enterprise Consultant Calum Johnston looks at building a brand and telling your story – what do you need to do to sell your business online and build a dedicated following?

Brand Building Part 1 - Where Do I Start? 

“Woodside Farms” Sound familiar? Tesco got into some hot water over the ‘fake farm scandal’ in 2017. But why bother to brand produce with a farm brand name? Covid19, Brexit, Who knows what’s coming next? Why Branding can help to connect you to your communities and your customers. In this recording of the webinar, we join Kerry Allison, Senior Brand and Marketing Consultant at SAC Consulting for our first of two webinars looking at building a brand for your farm. This webinar will cover the basics, Why Bother? Where do I start? What’s the pay-off? What’s the damage?

Brand Building Part 2 - What Comes Next?

Visual Asset, Favicon, E-commerce, Tik Tok… Sift through the noise and learn in simple terms the nuts and bolts you will need to design a brand, use it well, and share your stories. In this recording of the webinar, we join Kerry Allison, Senior Brand and Marketing Consultant at SAC Consulting for our second of two webinars looking at building a brand for your farm. This webinar discusses: The Design Process – what to expect The Web Element – What’s important Social Media – How do I use Social Media to share my brand?

Becoming a member of QMS offers the chance to become part of the whole Scottish meat branding that they promote.

Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) promotes the Scotch Beef PGI, Scotch Lamb PGI and Specially Selected Pork brands in the UK and abroad. QMS also delivers a range of activities aimed to promote, support, develop and protect the Scottish red meat industry.  QMS’ quality assurance schemes – which make animal welfare a priority -  cover more than 90% of livestock farmed for red meat in Scotland. For more information visit or follow QMS on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram by searching @qmscotland.

Starting out

  • Do the research, talk to prospective customers about what they want – small joints, large joints, sausages?   Cauliflower, Carrots, Kohl Rabi, Rainbow Chard?  Visit local farmers markets to see what is on offer and what sells.  Don’t view other producers purely as competition.  Collaboration can be a good way to get the best deal for your product so check out any local ‘food hubs’.     Consider how you are going to sell – delivery or market etc.
  • Start small and sell to your friends, family and neighbours and ask them to be honest about your produce – good or bad!  This will help you understand and improve your product.
  • Boxes for delivery or collection.  These can be all meat or veg.  Mixed boxes can be a good opportunity to collaborate with fellow producers and offer your consumers a more complete product.

So, how do I promote my produce? 

Do I need a website?

Never forget that ‘word of mouth’ is your best promoter.   If your consumers like your product they will tell their friends and family all about it at no cost to you.   Social Media can be a powerful and inexpensive marketing tool but never forget it can work both ways if something goes wrong.   If you decide you want to take your produce to the next level and you are not entirely confident of your skills in Social Media then you can:-

  1. Look at paying someone to help - look for small marketing and promotion companies in your area that can help you get set up on social media. Once set up you can go it alone if you feel confident or, if costs allow, they can continue to manage the social media for you.


  1. Local Authorities often run courses through Business Gateway and many of them are free. Click on the link to see what is happening in your area.


Social Media for Small Scale Producers

SAC Consultant Ashleigh Forster chats to Carianne MacDonald of Ardbhan Highland Cattle, North Uist and crofter Donald Macsween of Air An Lot, Lewis. Carianne and Donald both use social media to tell their farming stories. In this podcast we talk about how they both started to use social media and how they feel it has benefitted their businesses today. Listen in to hear about their experiences and what their advice would be to other crofters and small scale producers thinking about using social media too.

A New Start to Agriculture: The Power of PR

In a new video in our series looking at advice and guidance for people who want to make a new start with agriculture, Food & Enterprise Consultant Kerry Hammond looks at PR, what it is, how you can use it to boost your business and top tips from experts.

In this video, Kerry talks about three podcasts – you can find these here:

We also have an infographic on PR that you can download here

A website is a useful but not essential promotional tool and will probably be unnecessary if you are sticking to small scale local selling. However, if you want to take your produce that step further then  there are companies that offer self-build website hosting and  the opportunity to set up your own website with little or no cost involved.

Click on the links to see some examples

There is a risk that your efforts at building your own website can appear amateurish and you may wish to enlist the help of a professional to at least get you set up.  This would be highly advisable if you want your website to offer online ordering which has other financial and GDPR security issues.

There is further advice on social media from Scottish Governments Farm Advisory Service (FAS) if you click this link

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