This post is Part 1 of the 2-Part Series: Converting The Skeptic.
Part 1: Poking Around (Problem Identification)
Part 2: Licking The Wounds (Problem Solving)
Let’s get started with Part 1:
Outfit Of The Day #ootd
I was wearing a grey hat, not unlike this one, and a sundress. It was, in my mind, a very chilled-out, relaxed kind of day.
Or so, I thought.
When I entered her shop at North Canal Road, Valerie (Val) was sizing me up, she wanted to know what this young looking woman could do for her business. So, my personal mission was to… Convert The Skeptic!
The first thing I noticed was that this doesn’t look like a shop that sold probiotic bento sets, it looked like a ballet studio. On the left side of the floor, there was a counter where the bento sets sat in a cold fridge counter. On the right, there was racks of tutus- princess pink tutus!
I’m not kidding at all. Pink Tutus.
I thought “okay, very.. unique concept… not sure if it would work that well…”.
(Turns out, Good Food Heals was sharing the space with a ballet studio. Pretty confusing for a visitor)
Pro Tip #1: Always Do Your Fact-Finding
As surprised as I was about the pink tutus, I didn’t come unprepared, of course. I did my fact-finding the day before meeting Valerie.
Always, do your homework.
Homework 1, I visited their website:
Verdict: Great photography and nice design, but it can’t make money, so it failed.
Why did it fail?
The Call To Action (aka: Buy My Bento) is weak.
Valerie’s current location was on prime land, the rent was way too crazy and she had to convert this business from a physical store, to an online-delivery model.
With online-delivery, I formulated…
The 60-Second Test
The 60-second test is as follows: If I am a hungry gym-rat, who just wants to tuck in to a meal delivered to my doorstep, will I be able to go on your website and get what I want in 60 seconds?
If I can’t do that, the website fails. I will not want to order from your company online.
I don’t order = The business doesn’t make money 🙁
As a business website, Good Food Heals failed the 60-second online ordering test.
Quick Look at the online menu currently:
and page 2:
PROBLEM: Too messy, Upsells (soup and drink, extra “probiotic shots”) are not done clearly. Also, my gut feeling (probiotic pun intended) is that the menu may be too wide to support current scale of operation.
Nice pictures though, I would keep them for future use.
Compare this to the effective FoodPanda’s site, or your favorite Pizza joint’s online delivery process and you can see that there is room for improvements.
People need to get healthy and delicious bentos- FAST!
Stay tuned to my next post to see how I began to Fix this website to pass the 60 Second Test.
My Rant About Fancy Websites
See, in my experience working at a Singapore-based IT company, a website costs at least $2000+ to create, with an e-commerce backend, it can cost around $10,000 -$15,000 SGD.
It does’t make sense to have an elaborate design, nice fonts, nice pictures and many tabs when it cannot convert (convert, meaning, make money).
Let’s Do Some Math
F&B owners, do you know how many packets of food you have to sell before recouping the cost of the website??
In Val’s case, say, she spent $10,000 on the website.
Let’s price each bento at $10 (profits are probably much lower), she has to sell a grand total of 1000 bento sets.
1000 bento sets, to recoup the cost of getting the website.
This does not even include the monthly website hosting charges!
PROBLEM: Site fails to make enough money. When the site fails to monetize, and money out> money in, it is a bad business decision.
Don’t get me wrong, I love great design.
But great design should never be at the mercy of a sound business decision.
Pro Tip #2: Only Buy Things That Make You Money
Homework 2, I had a look at their Instagram:
I actually really liked her Instagram!
I mean, again, A++ for effort.
It is gorgeous. She knows her angles, her quotes are all on-point, inspirational without being too cheesy.
The Point Of Social Media = ENGAGEMENT
Each of her pictures and videos had over 200+ likes, very well done. Engagement takes quality content, an attractive character and time to build. Concepts that Val nailed, whether or not she realized it.
Her consistency in providing top quality content on Instagram day after day has PAID OFF. HUGE PASS.
Look at her fans!
Since this channel is pretty strong, I decided to capitalize on it- to bring much-needed growth to the business.
Stay tuned to my next post (part 2) to see how I began to Capitalize on her great Instagram presence.
And I also read Valerie’s Blog:
She had many articles with her strong backstory. The brave Valerie had a history of Anorexia, Depression, OCD, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Skin Disease and has gone on to heal herself with probiotic foods and has become a radiant and confident health consultant today.
PROBLEM: Such an inspirational story, but it has lost its impact when it is being shoved down the reader’s throats – the whole backstory and her amazing transformation was typed into a single webpage.
There was no story being built up, no anticipation. It did not take its readers through an emotional discovery journey.
Failure to Build Up The Story kills the brand creation and “stickability”.
Stay tuned to my next post (part 2) to see how I began to help her tell her unique story.
After doing this ground work, I got a relatively good idea of what kind of “theme” the founder was looking for- The new-age, flat-lay, hippie-indie, exclusive, premium “cult”, happy, empowering quotes kind of brand. I mean, it works, but its not FANTASTIC or particularly innovative.
But still, A+ for effort, she has even begun making short-videos – I love signs like this : This means the business was born out of passion, not mere profits.
A successful business realizes that profits is a by-product of passion and providing tremendous value.
I’m so happy and grateful to be able to contribute to the revamping of Good Food Heals!
In the coming days, I’ll show Val how to Drill A Word into her prospect’s mind:
From today, Valerie is Val, the Probiotic Girl.
Summary From Poking Around
1) Good Food Heals had a fantastic back story, she is a fighter, I can see it in her eyes.
2) Founder Val is an expert authority on the topic of probiotic nutrition
3) Founder Val was able to speak confidently about probiotic nutrition
4) Strong Instagram Presence: Engaged audience and raving fan club!
5) Keep eye for design (From the bento photography, to the video-editing and the cute glass bottles where the kimchi is stored, the whole brand experience is beautiful)
6) Reliable food suppliers
7) Received media publicity from The Sunday Times, Simply Her and Gourmet Living, the Lianhe Wanbao newspaper, the Vulcan Post, City Nomads, and Omy.sg
1) Site not optimized for online-delivery (failed 60 seconds test)
2) Rental price and place is bad, need to let go of the lease
3) Business was sustaining on selling bento sets alone, no additional revenue streams
4) Menu was confusing (Skin, Muscle, Vegan, Protein Headers… Not intuitive)
5) Brand story was not crafted deliberately for maximum impact. Did not OWN a word in the prospect’s mind and become the FIRST in the marketplace.
6) No Media Kit = Lost out on fantastic opportunities for brand coverage, no clear Call To Action
7) No Online Sales Page (with strong copywriting, sales video etc)
8) No Upsells (customer value is stagnant! This should not be, always offer happy, paying customers with things of greater value. Buyers are buyers are buyers.)
9) Poor cash flow management
10) Lack of financing options (did not utilize the privileges of operating a business in Singapore)
11) No partnerships with other businesses (Val missed out on her great positioning as an up-and-coming health food store)
12) Did not take full advantage of her location at North Canal Road where all the office ladies are.
In the next post, I will be sharing how I begin to tackle Good Food Heals and Revamp this business in 30 days. Stay tuned to Part 2 of Converting The Skeptic, where I will be Licking The Business Wounds and solving problems.
PS: The errors that Val made here are not uncommon for business owners. Protect yourself from falling into stressful business situations. Take advantage of my limited offer and Download my e-book “Authority” on the right.
x Tavia Wong (Tae)