So, you've started your candle and wax melt business and are getting a few customers but you need help getting more sales?
In this article we have highlighted 6 ways in which you can sell more candles. In these tips we cover social media advertising (specifically Facebook Ads), as well as referral schemes and using influencers.
Let's get into it!
1. Social Media Advertising
Recently Facebook Ads performance has taken a dip thanks to the iOS updates on early 2021.
But, Facebook Ads is still a great tool for getting customers.
Create a compelling offer for that customer, something that stands out from an already well saturated market.
But keep an eye on your ad spend as these can very quickly zap your budgets. Work our your ideal ROAS (return on ad spend), ideally something north of 2.0 is where you'll want to be.
That means you'll return £2 for every £1 you spend.
(if you need help pricing your products, then we talk about how to price your candles here).
This doesn’t have to be a big monetary discount or a big discount code but of course these do help. Sometimes it can be a full priced product, but you’re giving them something else as well. For example;
“Buy candle A and get candle a wax melt for free”
“Buy a reed diffuser and get a wax melt for free”
This way you're still giving a great deal without devaluing your products.
Remember this: people don't expect free forever, but they do expect a discount forever.
Ideally this creative (the thing that potential customers see) should be a video.
Through Facebook you can create slideshows, put some music behind it and some text overlay. However, ideally you want to create your own video that shows your products in use, people like to see what it is they are buying.
You don’t need any fancy equipment, your smart phone will do the job perfectly well. But if you do have a fancy camera, then even better.
You also want to include customer photos and testimonials.
Social proofing is the biggest influence to people when they are buying online. They want to know what other customers think, good or bad, about what you are selling. This can be in the advert or as reviews when they click on your website link.
Next you need to target the right audience.
If you're somewhat familiar with Facebook Ads Manager then great, if not then please go and create an advertising account and familiarise yourself with it.
There are heaps of videos on YouTube on how to create an ad account.
You'll want to create a lookalike audience. This is where you can upload a list of all of your customers and Facebook will find people who 'look like' your customers.
This will be based on their interests, shopping behaviour etc. It's all very clever, if not a little less accurate with the new iOS tracking updates.
Once you've created your audience, you then create your ads and you're away!
Remember to keep an eye on the numbers. It will take around 5 days for Facebook to optimise your ads, so it's best to leave them alone for a few days.
2. Refer a Friend Scheme
Why is Refer a Friend a successful tool in your business?
If a friend of yours said “Buy this candle, it’s absolutely fantastic?” you’re going to trust them and very likely buy that product.
Now as an added incentive for those friends to recommend your candles and wax melts is to offer them something in return.
For this to happen you need to set up a reward for that friend who will be doing the referring and for the referred.
For example, offer your existing customer a £5 voucher for referring their friends, and make is easy for them by also offering their friend a discount on their first order too.
And as you build a base of new customers through this system, you will get more and more referrals.
We recommend www.smile.io who integrate with Shopify.
3. Facebook Competitions
Facebook competitions, when following Facebook's policies, are a great way of building engagement and getting more orders.
This is how I recommend running a Facebook competition:
- Create a post with a beautiful image of your prize.
- Add instructions to the post; like, comment and share to enter.
- Make sure there's an end date of around 1-3 days (for urgency).
- Boost the post to your page followers.
This will get people to engage in your post, think of it like a snowball, the more people share it, the more people see it, the more people enter.
Now, once the competition has finished this is the important part.
- Do a live video to announce the winner, but before you announce them engage with your followers.
- Go to the competition post and next to each name you'll see a 'message' button.
- Send them this message: “Hi [insert name here], you didn’t win this time, however as a thank you for entering, here is a 20% discount code for your next order with us.”
Do this for every entry, it will take time but it works.
Remember that people are entering your giveaway competitions because they like your products. They want to get their hands on it, so give them an opportunity to do so, even though they haven’t won this time.
Instagram is a great tool for selling candles and wax melts.
However, the key isn't to try and sell them, if that makes sense?
You want to get exposure for your brand without asking for sales.
Follow these steps for generating sales through Instagram:
- Use the camera on your phone to take beautiful photos of your products in good light. Instagram is all about photos and videos!
- Use hashtags which are relevant to the photo, not generic hashtags which you think will influence Instagram.
- In the text part of the post provide a nice long description of the product, or if it's a behind the scenes photo talk in detail about it. People love that.
- Search for other relevant brands and engage in their posts.
- Search for home interior profiles and engage on their posts.
- Don't just post 'nice job!' but post meaningful content.
- In product photos make sure you tag your products!
This does take a long time and is something which will take many months of doing the same thing every day until you notice a difference.
But remember, people are lazy, so chances are most people reading this haven't done this - so go do it!
5. Micro - Influencers
Working with micro-influencers is a truly fantastic way of gaining exposure and ultimately selling more candles and wax melts.
Now the trick is to look for accounts with between 5,000 to 50,000 followers.
Any more than that and they will start charging you quite a lot of money to post your brand. Any less than 5,000 followers, then it’s probably not worth it.
Most importantly, make sure they have a high interaction rate.
For example, you want micro-influencers who have at least a couple of hundred likes and 50+ comments on every single post.
Message them with something compelling, like:
“Good afternoon, we are looking to grow our brand and thought that what you do would be perfect for the aesthetic we are moving towards. We will send you a box of X, Y & Z in exchange for a shout out on your profile. Is this something you would be interested in?”
Ask them to create a story, or a number of stories.
This is because they are a lot more prominent. And as a post can very quickly get lost and stories last for 24 hours there will likely be more eyes seeing the shout out.
Ask the influencer to add a shop “sticker” or “link” that will send those potential new customers directly to your products on your website.
Do this as much as you can, make it as part of your main strategies.
Then all you are doing is giving away some free products that are not going to cost you a lot of money.
Aim to work with 10-20 micro-influencers every month and you’ll notice a big increase in likes and follows and course clicks to your website.
This is great for brand exposure!
6. Trade Shows and Festivals
Plan ahead and don’t be fussy about what the trade show or festival is themed around.
In 2019 at Cosy Aromas had a stall at a maritime trade show and at the time this generated more sales in one day than any other (excluding Black Friday) in 2019.
It was incredible for sales, but also for exposure.
A handy tip for when you manage to get a spot at a trade show, is to have a warmer on your stall or a candle lit (if you're allowed.
This will first invite people over with the lovely aromas, but also demonstrate what your products are used for.
Make sure your stall is fully branded up.
This means that you need to invest in some signage. And make sure it can be seen above peoples’ heads as well as where your products are placed.
You want people to leave your stall knowing exactly who you are and what you sell.
Give out leaflets, this will have info about your brand, maybe an origin story. But more importantly, clear and enticing product imagery and a call to action that will direct them to your website, this can be in the form of a discount or deal.
Run a competition for those who come and talk to you. Collect their email address, put it in a big hat and then do a live video announcing the winner.
Of course remember to let them know when this will be. And like in tip 3, remember to send everyone who didn’t win an email thanking them for entering and even though they didn’t win, here is something for them anyway (discount or deal).
Rarely will sales just pop out of thin air, to build your customer base, you will have to put in the work beforehand using these 6 tried and tested ways.
Then watch those sales roll in and your brand expand and evolve.
There are many other ways to sell more candles and wax melts too. Have you thought about wholesale? Here's a handy article all around how you can sell your candles and wax melts wholesale.