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Article: 2020 Business Resources in Review

01/25/2021
by Michelle Just
2020 Business Resources in Review


 
The NEAFP blog is a space where we share news, launch products, post coloring pages, and provide valuable resources for your alpaca farm business. To begin the new year, we’re highlighting the Business Resources that we shared in 2020, so you can be best prepared as we journey into 2021 together!
 

1.  Harnessing Holiday Sales Momentum in the New Year (Article)

Posted 1/7/2020
Read the Full Article: Harnessing Holiday Sales Momentum into the New Year

Alpaca farm stores across the nation reported that 2019 was a record year for sales of alpaca goods. It was no surprise that the holidays were a huge sales driver, as they were again in 2020. Many business owners find that sales fall flat after the holiday season, but this article offers alpaca farmers advice on how to continue to capture sales into the New Year.
 

2.   Mike and Sean's Adventure in Retailing (Article)


Posted 2/20/2020
Read the Full Article: Mike and Sean's Adventure in Retailing

Mike and Sean reported on their weekend at the 2020 Carolina Alpaca Celebration. With an overwhelming amount of general public, they spent much more time than usual hanging out with end consumers on the retail level. This article details their main takeaways from working a more retail focused alpaca show, with observations and advice that directly transfers to the alpaca farm store.
 

3.  Alpaca Knitter's Yarn Guide (Graphic)


Posted 2/20/2020
Download the Graphics: Alpaca Knitter's Yarn Guide

The first of many graphics-based resources of 2020, our "Guide to Alpaca Knitter's Yarns and The Magic of Unicorn Yarn" highlight the benefits of using alpaca yarns and offers suggestions on which yarns can be used for different projects. This article includes a handy "Alpaca Knitter's Yarn Guide" with information on the yardage and suggested needle size for all of our yarns.
 

4.  Get the Most out of your Fiber Harvest (Graphic)


Posted 3/16/2020
Download the Graphics: Get the Most out of your Fiber Harvest

We condensed our Fiber Harvesting Guide into a single infographic, so you can avoid the most common mistakes in alpaca fiber harvesting to ensure you finish with the highest commercially usable clip! With shearing only a few months away, be sure you're prepared by checking out this useful graphic.
 

5.  Virtual Farm Tours: Bringing People & Alpacas Together in the Virtual World (Article)


Posted 3/19/2020
Read the Full Article: Virtual Farm Tours: Bringing People & Alpacas Together in the Virtual World

In Spring 2020, social distancing was adapted as a widespread precaution against COVID-19. Our article suggested that farms adapt Virtual Farm Tours to remain connected to customers. With restrictions still in place across the country, it's still a good time to consider offering a virtual farm tour. Beyond immediate concerns, a virtual tour is more feasible for someone unable to visit due to distance, finances, or physical ability.
 

6.  Use Gift Cards to Increase Sales (Article)


Posted 3/30/2020
Read the Full Article: Use Gift Cards to Increase Sales

Many farms have seen an immediate pop in sales simply by accepting additional payment methods other than cash. With the steadily growing use of card payments, small businesses are beginning to incorporate not only debit and credit cards, but gift cards as well, due to their convenience and flexibility for everybody involved- the buyer, the receiver and the merchant. This article explains why you should begin offering gift cards at your alpaca farm and ways to go about doing it.
 

7.  The New Normal and a Renewed Support for U.S. Alpaca (Article)


Posted 6/08/2020
Read the Full Article: The New Normal and a Renewed Support for U.S. Alpaca

In June 2020 we took a look at the state of the U.S. Alpaca industry, as communities across the country realized the importance of supporting small business, buying local, and shopping sustainably. U.S. Alpaca continues to be at the forefront of a renaissance in local agriculture, U.S. manufacturing, and a call for more sustainable fashion. Our resilient farmers proved they were able to survive and even thrive under new conditions.
 

8.  Harnessing the Power of Storytelling to Promote your Alpaca Business (Article)


Posted 7/17/2020
Read the Full Article: Harnessing Storytelling to Market Your Business

As e-commerce became even more prevalent last year, the connection that people would normally make face-to-face at a market now occurs more frequently online. The conversations you've had in person, however, educating the public about alpacas and their fiber, can be translated into the digital world through storytelling. Using storytelling or emotional branding can be an extremely effective marketing tool, and we’re certain that alpaca farmers have many stories to tell!
 

9.  Customer Retention: Building Customer Loyalty for your Ecommerce Business (Article)


Posted 8/10/2020
Read the Full Article: Customer Retention: Building Customer Loyalty for your Ecommerce Business

Our August article highlighted the importance of customer retention for your business. The overall experience that you build for your customers throughout each interaction can instill a sense of loyalty to your brand, propelling them to return for future purchases. From your website, to the order process, to the delivery, and regular e-mail correspondence, you can use these tools to build customer loyalty for your ecommerce business.
 

10.  Alpaca Fiber Properties (Graphic)


Posted 8/21/2020
Download the Graphics: Alpaca Fiber Properties

Our Alpaca Fiber Properties Graphic is conveniently sized for 8.5 x 11" printer paper. It features alpaca's most commonly referenced characteristics - so print it out and bring it to your next market!
 

11.  How to Support Alpaca Farms (Graphic)


Posted 8/21/2020
Download the Graphics: How to Support Alpaca Farms

There are a lot of alpaca fans out there who would love to support your farm, even if they don't have the ability to purchase your products. We created this shareable graphic for social media, so you can show your followers that they can still support in other meaningful ways to get your business out there!
 

12.  A Change in the Seasons: Farms Continue to Adapt into the Busy Harvest Season (Article)


Posted 9/11/2020
Read the Full Article: A Change in the Seasons: Farms Continue to Adapt into the Busy Harvest Season

We followed up our June article in September by reviewing how farms were adapting to changes brought about by the pandemic. The harvest season is perhaps the busiest time of year for farms of all types, and the cooler weather typically coincides with the hustle and bustle of farmer's markets and craft fairs that extend into the winter months. Despite restrictions, farms continued to adapt and made the most of their circumstances.
 

13.  Sock and Handwear Comparisons (Graphic)


Posted 9/15/2020
Download the Graphics: Sock and Handwear Comparisons

In addition to September's article, we also created new, free sock and handwear comparison posters. These posters are sized at 8.5" x 11" for at-home printing, and can be posted at the farm or on your website! Perfect signage to help distinguish the difference between some of our most popular products!
 

14.  Form Follows Function: Dressing for Fall and Winter 2020 (Article)


Posted 11/13/2020
Read the Full Article: Form Follows Function: Dressing for Fall and Winter 2020

With cold weather approaching, we forecasted the upcoming trends in clothing and accessories for fall and winter 2020. Based on the rising popularity of outdoor alternatives to common leisure activities like dining and concert-going, we found that customers were searching for new ways to keep warm. As usual, alpaca farm stores were (and continue to be) poised to take advantage of these new trends!
 

15.  Shop Small this Holiday Season (Graphic)


Posted on 11/25/2020
​​​​​​Download the Graphics: Shop Small this Holiday Season

Small Business Saturday is always a big shopping day for Alpaca Farm Stores. We created a shareable graphic to encourage customers to shop small and local not just that Saturday, but all season long!

 

16.  Download Our Sock Photos for your Website (Download)



​​​​​​Download the Graphics: NEAFP Alpaca Sock Photo Resource Folder

We’re often asked whether alpaca farmers can use our photos and descriptions of NEAFP products on their personal pages. The answer is always a resounding YES! Part of our job is to make it easier for you, the alpaca farmer, to successfully run the fiber side of your business.



We hope that these Business Resource Blog Posts have been helpful.
Is there a topic you'd like us to cover in a future post? Write to us at support@neafp.com

NEW Downloadable Content: February Alpaca Coloring Page

01/24/2021
by Michelle Just

Happy (almost) Valentine's Day!

This time of year is always a challenge in keeping the kids happy and entertained, especially with many still remote learning.

With the frigid cold weather in full swing, we are spending even more time than usual cooped up inside.

It's safe to say, the kids and adults alike, are all looking for something fun and lighthearted to do at home.

Our February Alpaca Coloring Page is a mini DIY project to create fun alpaca-fied Valentine's Day gift tags!

Share these coloring pages with your farm's biggest (and littlest!) fans so they can enjoy an alpaca filled calm coloring project at home!

 

 

 

Download the printer-friendly files here!

2021 February Coloring Page

PDF Download - February Alpaca Coloring Page

High-Resolution PNG Download - February Alpaca Coloring Page

P.S. 

Don't forget to download last year's Winter-themed coloring page!


Have an idea for a future graphic? Email us your ideas to support@neafp.com

NEW Downloadable Content: January Coloring Sheet!

01/05/2021
by Michelle Just

Happy New Year!

Our Alpacas are enjoying the cold winter weather by hitting the slopes this January!

The more snow, the better!

 

Download the printer-friendly files here!

2021 January Coloring Page

PDF Download - January Alpaca Coloring Page

High Resolution JPG Download - January Alpaca Coloring Page

 

P.S. 

Don't forget to download last year's Winter-themed coloring page!


Have an idea for a future graphic? Email us your ideas to support@neafp.com

NEW Downloadable Content: Christmas Coloring Page!

12/10/2020
by Michelle Just

The Holiday Season is here... and our Alpac-elves are busy at the North Pole getting ready!

Be sure to download and print this year's Christmas Coloring page to spread a little holiday cheer this month!

Don't forget to download last year's coloring page, too!

 

Download the printer-friendly files here!

2020 Christmas Coloring Page

PDF Download - Christmas Alpaca Coloring Page

High Resolution JPG Download - Christmas Alpaca Coloring Page

 

2019 Thanksgiving Coloring Page

PDF Download - Christmas Alpaca Coloring Page

High Resolution JPG Download - Christmas Alpaca Coloring Page


Have an idea for a future graphic? Email us your ideas to support@neafp.com

Shop Small this Holiday Season - Free Graphic

11/25/2020
by Michelle Just

Shop Small - Support your Local Alpaca Farm!


Small Business Saturday is just a few days away, but we hope that customers shop small and local all season long! Download our "Shop Small" graphic and share it on your website or social media pages, and be sure to check out last year's graphic on why shopping small matters!

Download the 2020 SHOP SMALL Alpaca Knit Graphic!
Click here to Download!

 



2019 Free Resources:

Be sure to download last year's graphics below!
 

 

Click Here --> Downloadable Shop Small Alpaca Infographic

Click Here --> Downloadable Shop Small Alpaca Logo

NEW Downloadable Content: Thanksgiving Coloring Page!

11/20/2020
by Michelle Just

Our Alpacas have gathered in the barnyard with their feathered friends for Thanksgiving to remind us that there is always something to be thankful for!

Be sure to download and print this year's Thanksgiving Coloring page in addition to last year's to keep little hands busy over the holiday weekend!

Don't forget to download last year's coloring page, too!

 

Download the printer-friendly files here!

2020 Thanksgiving Coloring Page

PDF Download - Thanksgiving Alpaca Coloring Page

High Resolution JPG Download - Thanksgiving Alpaca Coloring Page

 

2019 Thanksgiving Coloring Page

PDF Download - Thanksgiving Alpaca Coloring Page

High Resolution JPG Download - Thanksgiving Alpaca Coloring Page


Have an idea for a future graphic? Email us your ideas to support@neafp.com

Article: Form Follows Function: Dressing for Fall and Winter 2020

11/13/2020
by Michelle Just


Have you heard the news? The blanket is Fall 2020’s must have fashion accessory. Once the unsung hero of the sofa, blankets have become the trusty companion for all things 2020: from zoom chats, to outdoor dining, to drive-ins. As outdoor alternatives to common leisure activities like dining and concert-going have become extremely popular, venues and customers are finding ways to keep warm, and alpaca farm stores are poised to take advantage of these new trends.
 

A Barrage of Outdoor Alternatives

Outdoor dining has become hugely popular. With cold weather creeping in, restaurants are adapting by providing patio heaters and blankets to patrons. Cities like New York are considering extending provisions that would allow outdoor dining into the winter season. Drive-in theaters have also seen a resurgence in popularity since March, and new venues continue to pop up. Concerts have been sidelined in lieu of drive-in concerts, and drive-thru haunted houses popped up across the country for halloween. Cities are already planning similar events for later holidays, such as Dayton’s Holiday Drive-Thru Parade. It’s expected that winter recreational activities will be extremely popular this year. Just as consumers flocked to stores for swimming pools and bicycles this summer, Minnesota stores are already reporting a high demand for ski gear.

It seems easy to discount the wearable blanket as the newest fad, but our new leisure activities point to an actual need for comfortable, warm, and versatile goods. As an alpaca farmer, you have access to an abundant source of cozy, cold weather accessories available for fall and winter excursions! Here are some trends to look out for.
 

Blankets Galore



 

Consumers are looking for a comfy blanket that looks as good on the bed as it does draped around the shoulders on a cold night out. A Big Cable Alpaca Blanket is perfect for snuggling up under the stars at the next drive-in show, while the Cozy Baby Blanket’s size makes it easy to tuck away for outdoor adventures. While the Convertible Shawl (shown above) feels like you’re wearing a cozy blanket, it can also be worn as a scarf, shawl, poncho, or hood!
 

Toasty Toes


Cold feet can really ruin a good time. Warm, breathable, and odor resistant: Alpaca’s natural properties put it above others when it comes to the perfect footwear for fall and winter 2020. From the lightweight Backpaca, to the versatile Survival, to the full coverage High Calf, there’s a sock for every cold weather adventure. Alpaca Boot Inserts (below) add an additional layer of warmth between you and the cold, hard ground.


 

Stylish Utility



Without the need to dress up on a daily basis, consumers are reexamining their closets with a more critical eye, preferring sustainable pieces that are both better for the environment and their local communities. As cooler weather fast approaches, so does demand for high-quality, timeless knitwear. These consumers will appreciate premium alpaca products like Boucle Mittens (above), Cable Knit Beanies, and Classic Watch Caps. All of which combine the utility of a lining and classic styling, allowing them to be worn year after year.
 

Moving Forward


While 2020 has been unpredictable on the whole, we can predict that winter is fast approaching! As the past few months have illustrated, we often adapt to the cultural changes, and this year our fashion choices have changed along with our pandemic lifestyles. So, when you market your products over the next few months, be sure to keep in mind that your customers may be looking for something a little different this year!
 

We hope that these Business Resource Blog Posts have been helpful.
Is there a topic you'd like us to cover in a future post? Write to us at support@neafp.com

NEW Downloadable Content: Halloween Coloring Page!

10/01/2020
by Michelle Just

Are you excited for the Spooky Season? Celebrate early with our newest coloring page!

Download the printer-friendly files here!

PDF Download - Halloween Alpaca Coloring Page

High Resolution JPG Download - Halloween Alpaca Coloring Page


 

Did you miss last year's Halloween Coloring Page? Be sure to download it below!

As the weather gets cooler, you're sure to be hosting open houses and participating in markets, fairs, and festivals. Hoping to entertain your youngest alpaca fans?

We've got you covered with a free downloadable coloring page!

Download the printer-friendly files here!

PDF Download - 2019 Halloween Alpaca Coloring Page

High Resolution JPG Download - 2019 Halloween Alpaca Coloring Page


Have an idea for a future graphic? Email us your ideas to support@neafp.com

Download Free Sock and Handwear Comparison Graphics!

09/15/2020
by Michelle Just

 


We’re often asked whether alpaca farmers can use our photos and descriptions of NEAFP products on their personal pages. The answer is always a resounding YES! Part of our job is to make it easier for you, the alpaca farmer, to successfully run the fiber side of your business.

We know you’re busy tending your herd, taking inventory of your products, and arranging your next market, so it might not always be easy to photograph products or create business collateral. in 2018 we debuted our Marketing & Collateral section of the website (which can be viewed when signed in to your shopping account) where you can purchase printed and downloadable posters for your favorite NEAFP products.

Our latest edition of free content are two product comparison graphics. Sized at 8.5" x 11" for at-home printing, our sock and handwear comparison graphics can be posted at the farm or on your website!
 


 

DOWNLOAD FREE GRAPHICS
Sock Comparison Graphic Handwear Comparison Graphic
Download Printable JPEG

Download Printable JPEG

Download Shareable JPEG
(web version)
Download Shareable JPEG
(web version)

Article: A Change in the Seasons: Farms Continue to Adapt into the Busy Harvest Season

09/11/2020
by Michelle Just

In June we put the spotlight on the way farms and small businesses were adapting to changes brought about by the pandemic. Alpaca farms got creative by offering drive-through tours, visiting quarantined nursing home residents, and “Zooming” into the homes of alpaca fans around the globe.

The harvest season is perhaps the busiest time of year for farms of all types, and the cooler weather typically coincides with the hustle and bustle of farmers markets and craft fairs that extend into the winter months. Despite restrictions, farms continue to adapt and make the most of their current circumstances.
 

Shared Resources

In the preceding months, organizations like the Cornell Small Farms Program have released resources to support farms as they navigate current challenges. For example, the Program’s “Best Management Practices for Agritourism Farms During the COVID-19 Pandemic” offers guidance to a wide range of farm types based on NY state law. Their best practices are highly valuable to those in and out of NY state looking for alternatives to traditional farm visits or suggested safety precautions. Looking for more resources? Check out NAFDMA / International Agritourism Association’s industry resource page.

Shared Experiences

 


 

“It’s a different kind of year isn’t it? Our fall agritourism season provides the bulk of our annual income, so we are very anxious about how it will turn out...Unless there are new developments, we believe we will be opening with precautions such as more cleaning and sanitizing, more hand-wash and hand sanitizing stations, facemasks encouraged and so on... We are sure the field trips will be much fewer but we have hopes that families will be hungry for outdoor activities to participate in.”      -Wayne Bishop, Bishop’s Pumpkin Farm, Wheatland, Yuba County

With fall officially beginning in the next few weeks, farms are thinking about how to make the season work. In July, farmers throughout California came together to share their thoughts and for the Fall 2020 season. Though their reactions were varied, they all found ways to pivot their business strategies to the foreseen challenges, whether they plan to move some of their business online or change their site or ticketing to allow for proper distancing.
 

A Fruitful Harvest

 


So how are some of our favorite fall activities adapting? Leeds Farm, a popular spot for pumpkin picking in Ostrander, OH implemented ample sanitizing stations and offers advanced purchase tickets to allow for proper distancing. For those looking for fall blooms, Windmill Meadow Farm in Fredricksburg, CA offers a private tour of their flower farm by reservation, ensuring strict social distancing. Visitors get an in-depth look behind the scenes and go home with their own bouquet.  “U-Pick” orchards have also had to make changes, including limiting group sizes and assigning visitors to particular rows. Some farms have found surprising benefits to new restrictions  - one being that less product is eaten out in the field when masks are worn!
 

Moving Forward


 

It goes to show that farms, alpaca farmers included, have found numerous ways to persevere under our current challenges. As we approach our busy season, flexibility will continue to be key. You may decide to branch out and offer opportunities to virtual learners, like Good Karma Ranch Alpacas. Or perhaps like Chakana Sky Alpaca Farm, you’ll rely on appointments to bring visitors through the door. If one thing is for certain, however, even when the world is at a standstill, farm life carries on. 

We hope that these Business Resource Blog Posts have been helpful.
Is there a topic you'd like us to cover in a future post? Write to us at support@neafp.com

NEW Downloadable Content: September Coloring Page!

08/27/2020
by Michelle Just

We're Ready for Cool Crisp Mornings and Some Apple Cider Donuts...

Our alpaca friends are enjoying all that fall has to offer at their local apple orchard in the latest coloring page!

Download the printer-friendly files here!

PDF Download - September Alpaca Coloring Page

High Resolution JPG Download - September Alpaca Coloring Page

Be sure to share your finished artwork on Social Media with us!



Have an idea for a future graphic? Email us your ideas to support@neafp.com

New Shareable Graphic: How to Support Alpaca Farms

08/21/2020
by Michelle Just

There are a lot of alpaca fans out there who would love to support your farm, even if they don't have the ability to purchase your products. Share this graphic on social media to show them that they can still support in order meaningful ways to get your business out there!

View it on Facebook here and share it with your alpaca supporters!

Download the full-sized version here:

High Resolution JPG Download 

 

Download the Free Alpaca Fiber Properties Handout

08/21/2020
by Michelle Just

 

We’re often asked whether alpaca farmers can use our photos and descriptions of NEAFP products on their personal pages. The answer is always a resounding YES! Part of our job is to make it easier for you, the alpaca farmer, to successfully run the fiber side of your business.

We know you’re busy tending your herd, taking inventory of your products, and arranging your next market, so it might not always be easy to photograph products or create business collateral. in 2018 we debuted our Marketing & Collateral section of the website (which can be viewed when signed in to your shopping account) where you can purchase printed and downloadable posters for your favorite NEAFP products.

We're following up last week's post with some fresh downloadable content, this time on the amazing properties of alpaca fiber! This graphic is conveniently sized for 8.5 x 11" printer paper, so print it out and bring it to your next market!


DOWNLOAD HERE:

Download the Free Alpaca Fiber Properties Handout (JPEG)

Download the Free Alpaca Fiber Properties Handout (High Quality PDF)

 

Article: Customer Retention: Building Customer Loyalty for your Ecommerce Business

08/10/2020
by Michelle Just

Do you have customers who return to you, year after year, to purchase your alpaca products? You might be surprised to hear that these repeat customers could be the backbone of your alpaca business.

Many businesses focus their efforts on acquiring new customers, but from a financial standpoint, retaining past customers is a more cost effective strategy. Consider that repeat customers make up 65% of revenue for a typical online store. Satisfied customers are more likely to make larger purchases in the future, versus new customers who may make a smaller purchase to test out your product. Repeat customers are also more likely to recommend or review your business in a positive light. Remember, word of mouth is still the most powerful (and free!) form of marketing available to small businesses. 

The overall experience that you build for your customers throughout each interaction can instill a sense of loyalty to your brand, propelling them to return for future purchases. From your website, to the order process, to the delivery, and regular e-mail correspondence, you can use these tools to build customer loyalty for your ecommerce business.

 

Before the Sale

Businesses often utilize loyalty programs or subscription-based ordering to cultivate return customers, but gaining customer trust can be built into the experiences you already offer.

If you have a standalone ecommerce website, consider customer accessibility. Make sure that it’s easy to use and streamline your order process to make it as simple as possible to make a purchase. If possible, test out your website on a willing “outsider.” Ask a friend or family member to go over the website as if they were a customer. Does the information make sense? Do they have trouble ordering? Chances are that they will see things you don’t with fresh eyes!

If you are selling on a different platform like Etsy, your focus instead will be on making your brand stand out from your competitors through your copywriting and product photography. 

Regardless of the platform, customers are interested in more than just your products, they want to know the values behind your brand. 89% of customers are likely to be loyal to a brand if it’s values align with their own. Keep your customers coming back with interesting content like email newsletters with store updates, blogs that captivate their attention, and by engaging with them on social media. The content you create should be consistent with the feel of your brand and its values across all customer experience touchpoints, including your website, social media pages, product photography, blog, packaging, and emails. Need some hints on where to begin creating your brand story? Check out our previous article on Harnessing the Power of Storytelling to Promote your Alpaca Business. 
 



After the Sale


A purchase isn’t necessarily complete after you receive payment. Customers continue to gauge their experience throughout the buying process. Something as simple as an order confirmation or shipping notification can instill a stronger sense of trust in your brand.

This order confirmation from Polaroid provides the necessary shipping information, in addition to pointing customers to their FAQ to get started learning about their products.
 

When making sales face-to-face, you may sell your products in branded gift bags, but what about orders going out by mail? Today, almost anything can be ordered online and shipped to your door, so it’s important that your delivery stands out when it arrives alongside other packages, especially as the unboxing experience has become just important as the product inside, for those individuals who savor the excitement and anticipation of opening a gift. Heighten the customer experience with a well-presented product in a unique, branded package. Something as simple as neatly wrapped tissue paper and a handwritten note goes a long way in making a good impression!

More and more, companies are opting to ship using bespoke packaging that is more inline with their brand's story. Think of ways to incorporate your brand's story clearly into your packing materials. Do you focus on alpaca's environmentally friendly characteristics? Opt for recycled packing materials! Do you want your customers to feel connected to your animals? Include a bio of one of your alpacas in every purchase!

Branded packaging, decorative tissue paper, and green shredded paper give this box its unique and memorable appeal.

 

Following Up


Once you’ve sent out an order, be sure to follow up with an email to keep your business fresh in the customer’s memory. The email can be a simple “thank you,” or perhaps an action-oriented email.

A follow up email is a great opportunity to get customer feedback on their shopping experience. It can also be a good time to recommend other products for future purchase. Be sure to ask customers to review or give feedback on your products. Positive customer testimonials can then be included in future marketing materials!


Your follow up can be a simple "thank you," or you can use it to keep your customers engaged. This email from Revolution Tea rewards customers for taking part in a survey after their previous purchase. As shown in the email, they received useful customer testimonials through offering the survey.

Regardless of how you are making sales (in person or online) it’s always smart to compile an email list of your past customers. If you plan to run any promotions, these are the individuals you want to target! Remember, email is your most powerful e-marketing tool, so make sure you use it! 

 

Focus on Acquisition AND Retention!


Take some time over the next few weeks to pay attention to who your customers are. Are they first timers or repeat customers? Do they frequently visit your website and make purchases? You can even use a formula to calculate your Customer Retention Rate. Survey or interview some of your most loyal customers to find out what resonates with them about your business. Take that information and utilize it when you are crafting your overall customer experience. While it's always important to attract new customers, don't forget the importance of retaining past customers!

 

We hope that these Business Resource Blog Posts have been helpful.
Is there a topic you'd like us to cover in a future post? Write to us at support@neafp.com

 

 

 

 

NEW Downloadable Content: August Coloring Page!

07/28/2020
by Michelle Just

Beat the Summer Heat with our Latest Free Coloring Page!

These alpacas are taking off to the local Farmer's Market to beat the heat and have a bit of fun!

Download the printer-friendly files here!

PDF Download - August Alpaca Coloring Page

High Resolution JPG Download - August Alpaca Coloring Page

Be sure to share your finished artwork on Social Media with us!



Have an idea for a future graphic? Email us your ideas to support@neafp.com

Article: Harnessing the Power of Storytelling to Promote your Alpaca Business

07/17/2020
by Michelle Just

Storytelling is not restricted to books or movies, though you’d probably agree that a good story can make or break either! A good story can also bolster your marketing efforts and showcase your business. Don’t dust off the typewriter just yet, however, as today’s audiences are looking for stories that span multiple platforms beyond the written word. Using storytelling or emotional branding can be an extremely effective marketing tool, and we’re certain that alpaca farmers have many stories to tell!

Your story can showcase the values of your business, farm and products to your potential biggest fans. When people resonate with you on a value level, they will be much more willing to support your business. Consider your values as a business owner and an alpaca farmer and how you can showcase those to your potential audiences. With e-commerce becoming even more prevalent this year, the connection that people would normally make face-to-face at a market is occurring more frequently online. Now, the conversations you've had in person, educating the public about alpacas and their fiber, can be translated into the digital world through storytelling.
 

What Makes a Good Story?

How can you harness the power of storytelling to promote your business? Begin by considering what makes a good story.
 


Odds are that you remember at least one of your favorite childhood stories: Perhaps it was a fairy tale that taught a valuable lesson or simplify a complex concept, or maybe it was a narrative meant to inspire change in the reader.

Most stories have a number of commonalities that make them easily consumable: they are easy to understand, memorable, believable, useful, or inspiring. These aspects of traditional storytelling can translate to the story you want to tell about your business.
 

 

Where and how can you tell your story?


At NEAFP, we tell our story in various mediums across a number of different platforms. We use text, photographs, and videos on our website, blogs, and social media accounts to tell the story of our business, the products, and the animals and farms that make it all possible.
 

We encourage you to think outside the box with these storytelling methods:

Text-Based

Have you ever found yourself scrolling through someone’s blog like it was a good book you couldn’t put down? Text-based storytellers dominate on blog posts, websites, and throughout other forms of social media. Of course, they may also grab audiences in more traditional forms like articles or essays.

Image-Based

They say a picture says a thousand words: a good one can certainly do so for your business! Whether it’s an infographic, illustration, or photograph that grabs the attention of your audience, images are the storytelling device of choice on many social media platforms, such as Instagram.

Video-Based

Whether shared on your social media page, website, or directly to YouTube, a video is a great way to tell your story because it combines audiovisual elements. Music, speech, and video footage can combine to create a narrative that resonates with your audience.
 

What are some examples of successful storytelling?


Companies both big and small utilize different forms of storytelling to captivate and interact with their audiences.
 

Text-Based Storyteller: Bee Haven Acres
 

Bee Haven Acres is a blog run by farmer Bee Haven Bev, who documents daily farm life in great detail. Her posts include detailed textual descriptions along with photographs that give a feel for the passing of the seasons on the farm, and the people and animals who are a part of the farm. Her writing style, coupled with her almost daily updates, makes for a very intimate reading experience.
 

Image-Based Storyteller: Shinola Detroit
 

Shinola Detroit is a luxury goods company based in Detroit, MI that manufactures watches, bicycles, and leather goods, among other artisan products. A quick look at their Instagram tells you that their identity is intertwined with their Detroit roots. This story comes across in the photos that they share, that feature not just the products, but the city and members of the community.
 

Video-Based Storyteller: Warby Parker
 

Warby Parker’s “How Warby Parker Glasses Are Made” tells the viewer not only the problem their company set out to solve in it’s creation, but also how their product is made in great detail. The video goes, step-by-step through the process of creating affordable, high quality glasses.
 

What is YOUR Story?


So alpaca farmers, what is YOUR story? As you continue to update your websites, and post to social media start thinking about sharing the following:
 

  • How and why did you start your farm/business?
  • What made you decide to raise alpacas?
  • What are your favorite aspects of alpaca ownership?
  • What is the story behind your favorite alpaca products?
  • How has your farm and or business helped you and your family?


We've compiled a list of these and other helpful questions into a worksheet to get you to start thinking about the story you want to tell you customers!

***Download a free full-sized PDF version here!***

There are numerous aspects of your business that you can approach from a storytelling perspective. Audiences are eager to learn more about the how and why of your business, and interact with you as you tell that story, so get brainstorming!

 

We hope that these Business Resource Blog Posts have been helpful.
Is there a topic you'd like us to cover in a future post? Write to us at support@neafp.com

 

 

 

 

New Product: BOLD Survival Socks - Tie Dye Edition! (Limited Small Batch)

07/01/2020
by Michelle Just

The Unicorns are getting restless and have started adding a splash of flair to more of our U.S. alpaca products.

Introducing their latest creation:

BOLD Survival Socks - Tie Dye Edition

These truly unique and one of a kind Tie Dye lots are perfect for someone looking for an excuse to buy another pair of their favorite socks.

Due to the nature of these Tie Dye edition socks, no two pairs are exactly the same!

New Tie Dye socks can be found in the Limited Small Batch section of the website, which can only be viewed when signed into your shopping account. Our Limited Small Batch products are done in small lots and are not part of our regular production items. If you see a colorway you like, be sure to scoop it up as we will not keep these items in regular stock.

Available in our 2 most popular sizes: Medium and Large

Our Survival Sock is a terry loop lined mid-weight sock designed for a wide range of outdoor activities and climates. The soft alpaca terry loops are combined with a durable nylon outer shell. Reinforced foot arch band and a ribbed knit ankle support ensure a proper fit every time. This warm and comfortable sock is our best selling style across the country!

Alpaca is naturally Hypo-allergenic, Odor Resistant, Temperature Regulating when dry or wet, and Moisture Wicking, making it one of the best natural fibers on the planet!

Contents: 78% U.S. Alpaca, 20% Nylon, and 2% Lycra.

Care Instructions: Machine Wash and Dry, See Label

Color: Varying Pink and Blue Tie Dye, no two pairs are the same!

New Products: BOLD All Terrain & BOLD Fingerless Gloves

06/26/2020
by Michelle Just

We're launching BOLD versions of some of most popular alpaca gloves!
 

Our All Terrain Gloves and Fingerless Gloves are now available in BOLD Versions! Find them in the Fiber Pricing and Wholesale sections of the website under "BOLD All Terrain Gloves" and "Bold Fingerless Gloves." Available in two popular colors, Slate Grey and Mulberry, these two new styles will make quite the statement when paired with matching BOLD hats and alpaca scarves!
 



BOLD All Terrain Gloves

Our popular All Terrain Gloves are now available in BOLD dyed colors! These classic mid-weight alpaca gloves will keep your hands warm during a wide range of outdoor activities! Alpaca's natural characteristics, it's semi-hollow core and moisture wicking properties, make it a great fit for gloves. BOLD gloves look great with a matching scarf or hat!

Contents: 80% U.S. Alpaca, 20% Nylon

BOLD Fingerless Gloves

Our popular Fingerless Gloves are now available in BOLD dyed colors! Mid-weight Fingerless Gloves have the same construction as our All Terrain Terrain Gloves, but are perfect for tasks requiring a sure fingered grip or cellphone use.When you want the warmth of alpaca, but require the practical use of your fingers, the Fingerless Glove is a great option. BOLD gloves look great with a matching scarf or hat!

Contents: 80% U.S. Alpaca, 20% Nylon

NEAFP will be closed for our annual summer break starting on July 3rd

06/23/2020
by NEAFP Co

We will be closed for our annual summer break starting July 3rd and will be back in the saddle starting Monday, July 13th.

If you have a time-sensitive order, be sure to get it in by July 1st so we can make sure it's on its way to you before we close for our summer break.

We hope you all have a safe and relaxing holiday!

NEW Downloadable Content: July Coloring Page!

06/19/2020
by Michelle Just

Let Freedom Ring!

Celebrate the 4th early by coloring a trio of alpacas who have gotten into the spirit of the holiday.

Download the printer-friendly files here!

PDF Download - July Alpaca Coloring Page

High Resolution JPG Download - July Alpaca Coloring Page

Be sure to share your finished artwork on Social Media with us!


Have an idea for a future graphic? Email us your ideas to support@neafp.com