shopperHow big is your community? Three hundred? Three thousand? Three million?

What does it take to go viral? How long will the notoriety last?

How does your story connect to the typical consumer? I mean that literally.

If you are on the shelf in one of the 40,000 supermarkets* in the US, how does the average consumer know your story?

Maybe you are lucky enough to have 3 SKUs on the shelf in your category. Is anyone going to choose you over the others in that set? Why? Because you have a great story? Because you are eco-friendly? Because you are giving back?

I’m a big believer in all of these niches. However, price matters. People make choices based on price, brand awareness, on functionality, on convenience.

So, make it easy for consumers to choose you once you are on the shelf. Offer price reductions. Often. Pay to be off-shelf, on end-caps, in shipper displays, co-merchandised with like products. Pay to be searchable on Instacart and on the retailer’s website.

Having a great story isn’t enough to translate into sales. These old-fashion promotional activities are still necessary. After the initial purchase, once the product wins over the consumer, the story can enhance, engage, and create loyalty.

But be sure to price it right, promote it regularly and drive sales.

*While your story may be interesting and retailers are enticed by it, the typical supermarket buyer wants to know why his customer will buy it. He must maximize the value of the space he controls in his stores. Know your movement numbers, understand his gross margin requirements and be prepared to talk results beyond the romance of your story.