Local Buzz Comes Just in ‘Thyme’ for Wisconsin Small Business
Although one of the biggest food trends of 2014 is eating locally sourced, organic, and seasonal fruits and vegetables, personal chef Patricia Mulvey says many buyers of fresh produce aren’t sure how best to prepare it.
Consumers’ confusion is what inspired Mulvey (pictured) in 2012 to create Local Thyme, a Madison, Wis.-based seasonal menu-planning and recipe service that helps people “make the most of ingredients.”
“I’ve been a chef for many years, working closely with CSAs [community supported agriculture programs], and I’ve helped write two cookbooks,” Mulvey says. “I’ve been very passionate about eating locally and seasonally all of my life.”
To help people learn to eat locally and more healthfully, Mulvey took on the onerous task of starting a one-woman web-based business. But two years after launch, Mulvey continues to face promotional challenges. In an effort to address them, she recently entered QuickBooks' Small Business Local Buzz campaign.
Marketing Efforts Would Help Further Cause
“We help families put vegetables on their plates, not the compost pile, with our extensive veggie-centric recipe database, shopping lists, veggie ID section, tips and tricks, and cooking videos,” she explains in her entry. “We need social media marketing and a crisp email campaign to reach our growing market, as well as a video to launch a YouTube seasonal veggie cooking series.”
Today, Mulvey learned that QuickBooks will help her business continue its important work by helping Local Thyme generate some buzz with a customized marketing package worth $5,000.
“This is terrific,” Mulvey said upon learning the good news.
“One challenge for me is that I’m not particularly skilled with social media. I am not 20-something years old anymore. I don’t really understand things like Twitter,” Mulvey says. “I really need some good social media training so that I can get the word out. That’s really one of the most important marketing tools businesses are using these days.”
In time, Mulvey plans to start a YouTube cooking series that can generate attention for the business while helping people learn to eat healthier.
“I’d like for Local Thyme to be Facebook for foodies,” Mulvey explains. “I’d like for it to be big and to reach across the country and to really help shape and influence the way people think about eating. Vegetables have to be at the center of the plate, yet so many people don’t know how to do that or how to get the variety of nutrients that are available from vegetables.”
What Are You Waiting For? Get Your Local Buzz On!
Between Feb. 2 and March 16, small businesses have an opportunity to win a customized marketing package worth $5,000. The prize package includes tools tailored to your business, such as a custom video, a social media consultation, and an email template — all geared toward getting more customers, faster. If your small business could benefit from some community buzz, enter now for your chance to win!
Michael Essany is a business writer for Intuit and is passionate about solving small business problems.