Recently we received an audience “analysis” from one of the social media sites we use for Darn Yarn. It wasn’t very helpful. Basically our audience is between ages of 18 - 65 and lives in the United States. It wasn’t earth-shattering news. But what it did do was confirm what we already knew: as a niche shop, it can be very difficult to effectively advertise.
This is true for most small mom and pop shops - but even more so for those shops that offer a specialty service or product. For example did you know that right here in Harmony we have an olive oil and balsamic vinegar shop (The Enchanted Olive), a natural pet food store and animal chiropractor (Holistic Houndry), a home brew shop (Porter House Brew Shop), and food store that specializes in regionally produced food stuffs (Penn Pantry)? We didn’t even cross into Zelienople, or mention the independent restaurants, gift shops, or antique stores.
What would happen if all of us started to share our favorite little shops with others? Next time you see someone crocheting or knitting in public, ask them what they’re working on, where they like to get their yarn, if they knew about any of the yarn shops in the Pittsburgh area, or wherever you are located. Tell them about your favorite shops, and more importantly, tell them why! Each yarn shop is unique - maybe you like shop A for a particular yarn and shop B for something else.
If you have other specialty shops you like to support, do the same for them. Cyclists? Talk about your favorite local bike shop. Cigar aficionado? Talk up the next event at your favorite cigar lounge. Crazy about rescue dogs, tell other dog owners about your favorite pet boutique. Candy junkie? We’ve got a few candy shops in the area, share the sweetness. Comic book fan? Where do you find your next read? Most small specialty shops are hanging on by a thread, thanks to loyal customers like you. Sharing the location and love of your favorite shops will only strengthen them in the long term - don’t keep them a secret!
There’s an old adage that word of mouth is one of the best forms of advertisement. And with today’s social media and information driven society, we think that’s even more an apt statement. We’ve tried so many forms of advertising, but time and time again, we more often hear something like “Someone I know told me about this place.” or “I need to tell so-and-so about your shop”. So, can you do us a favor? Tell someone about Darn Yarn.