M arketing and selling offspr~ng requires advance selling techniques that can incorporate several types of media including newspaper, magazines, and the internet. Repeat clients can also be a valuable resource for selling offspring. This paper will discuss the concepts necessary to provide an outlet for selling surplus stock.
Perhaps one of the least discussed aspects of breeding birds is what to do when the breeder is successful and produces chicks. Breeders often overlook the selling aspects of their surplus stock until the birds are weaned and ready to go to new homes. For many breeders it is emotionally hard to sell the baby birds that they have raised for many weeks or months. They may .have spent many years trying to breed and never given a thought about what to do once the chicks arrived. Breeding can become so time consuming that the chicks may be ready for new homes before the breeder has thought about who will buy the birds from them. This paper will discuss the steps required to sell your birds in a timely manner.
Marketing Your Birds
How do breeders find the right homes for their birds?
The most successful marketing comes from producing a great bird. A healthy, normal sized bird that is well adjusted is the breeder's best ambassador for future sales. A healthy bird is the breeder's greatest asset and best salesman.
The three primary areas discussed in this paper include marketing, sales and services.
Marketing is the way the breeder finds the buyer of his product or service. It is the art of joining the seller and the consumer. Its primary function
Sales is the agreement on a price and delivering the bird. In addition to an exchange of money, it might include having a pre-purchase agreement or sales contract, which attorney Larry Ring has discussed in more detail (See "Birds and the Law" M V Manual of Aviculture Medicine and Management).
Services are what, if any, extras are provided by the seller to the buyer. Services can include cages, toys, feed, health certificates etc.
There are two methods of marketing the breeder's product, either active or passive (See Table ).
Advantage: Can reach a lot of potential buyers if the advertisements are placed in specialty bird magazines. Possibility that the breeder can meet the buyer in person or at least that the breeder and buyer will talk directly. The buyer is also able to contact the breeder with questions about the breeder's bird. Long term relationships can occur between the breeder and the new owner. Not all clients will be able to come to see the bird therefore allowing the seller to spend more time with the varied duties of aviculture.
Disadvantage: May take one to three months or more to get into a specialty bird magazine. Seller needs to plan ahead. Newspaper advertisement can be costly. All advertisement have the disadvantage of people calling that are price shopping or wanting free information on how the breeder bred the birds. Typically the seller needs to allow one and a half to two hours for a client to come and see his birds. May create a security or disease risk if potential clients come to the breeder's home.
Booths at Bird Clubs and Bird Marts Advantage: Direct exposure of the breeder's birds to potential buyers.
Disadvantage: Direct exposure of the breeder's birds to viruses and potential infections from their exposure to other birds and people. Technically, all birds not sold at the bird mart or show should be isolated from the rest of the breeder's birds when they are returned home. They should be quarantined as if they are new birds.
Bird or Pet Shops
Advantage: No need to deal directly with the retail buyer which saves the breeder time. Low security risk to the breeder.
Disadvantage: Breeder is unable to meet the person that is buying his bird. Will not usually know what happened to it. Lower profit to the breeder than if the breeder sold it to the retail consumer.
Ring, L. 1992. Birds and the Law. Proceedings of the Seminar on Breeding, Rearing and Marketing Exotic Birds. Avian Research Fund, Concord, Calif. Feb. 1 and 2, 1992 pp 149-166.
Ring, L. 1992. Birds and the Law. Proceedings Assoc. of Avian Medicine Avicultural Seminar, Manual of Avicultural Medicine and Management. New Orleans, LA. Sept. 5th, 1992 pp AB3- 1 to AB3-11. c