Shark Tank gives it’s viewers a preliminary look at how business discussions involving investments take place, and what may persuade business decisions. From equity and royalties to the products themselves, there are multiple aspects of business that can be taken away from this one hour show. There are many factors as to what the investor wants to hear; current sales and monthly and yearly income are two. Always taking a look at business from a marketing standpoint, some of the sales figures for the products people want the Sharks to invest in, could be improved if they marketed and advertised correctly.
On last week’s Shark Tank episode, two sisters who created edible cookie dough pitched to the Sharks to invest in their company. Sales weren’t all that impressive, and one of the sisters said that they don’t market or advertise. It’s a major mistake that both experienced and inexperienced business owners make, and for a company that sells edible cookie dough, it’s crucial that they spread the word on a product almost every human being wants more of. However, to go from 7 to 50 stores in a week is incredible, especially for a company that isn’t asserting themselves in the market.
A lesson can be learned from this segment for all businesses both big and small. How did Walgreens find out about this product? In the store. While that could have happened regardless of whether they advertised or not, there is a possibility they would have been found much earlier, helping them get into more stores at a faster rate. As the sisters mentioned, the offer to get into Walgreens depended on a distributor, which is where the Sharks came in to make that possible. With proper marketing and advertising in the beginning stages of their company, they may not have needed the money and lost equity as sales and recognition would have been much stronger.
For all the local small businesses who are in the same boat, start by marketing on social media, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and create a blog. If you have a food product, a website or any form of marketing that gives the viewers a visual at what you’re selling is important. You may have created the equivalent of the Fountain of Youth, but if you don’t market or advertise no one will find you, even in the 21st century. For these two sisters, they were lucky to not only get interest from bigger stores, but to have a product that has major selling potential.
It can’t be said enough, you must advertise. It can be the difference from having a good year in sales to having a great one. Marketing does take time out of your day, and for these ladies, if they hadn’t sold their pitch to the Sharks, they would have had to explore advertising options or they’d be in some trouble. Let the world know who you are, what your company does, and what you sell. This message has been reiterated countless times, but if you don’t go public, you’ll find that you’re business has stopped growing and may even shrink.
Shark Tank isn’t just a learning opportunity for investing, sales pitches, and how to distribute a product. Listening to these entrepreneurs individually, understanding why they’re in the Shark Tank, and what they’re doing wrong in marketing strategy and business planning is essential to not making the same mistakes these business owners are making. That’s why this show becomes addicting after you fully understand all the pieces that are on the table.