Herbal and other natural products always have a following. If you haven’t already, make sure you do market research to identify your prospective followers – people who are already buying or express an interest in herbal personal care products. You can hire a research firm to do a survey within a geographical area or conduct an online survey. With results in hand, get creative with some marketing strategies to get your soap in customers’ hands.

Brand Strategy

Building a brand for your herbal soap should be your first task. Your brand is your promise to your customer, so think about what that promise is. For example, it might be, "gentle, all-natural cleaning without animal testing for the same price as commercial brands." This needs to be reflected in all of your product communications, such as advertising, packaging and point-of-sale displays. It is important that your brand promise resonates with your customers. Don’t try to market it to people who don’t care about natural ingredients.

Direct Mail Strategy

Direct mail is a great strategy for strengthening relationships and prompting an action, such as going to a website or visiting a store. By targeting residents within a specific geographical location, you are keeping costs down compared to a mass mailing. It also allows you to get creative, which makes your direct mail piece more effective and less likely to be thrown away. For example, you can package a small washcloth imprinted with a special discount until a certain date. The washcloth is compatible with your soap, and the dated discount prompts action within a specific time period.

Partnership Strategy

With your market research, you should have enough information about your target audience – your current and prospective customers – to know some of their other habits. For example, they might also frequent “hip,” youthful coffee houses that sell fair trade and organic coffee. Visit these establishments and suggest a reciprocity arrangement where they display and sell your soaps and, in turn, you sell some of their coffee and other products. Other possibilities are hair salons that use organic products or local bed and breakfast establishments.

Community Outreach

Getting known in the community is an inexpensive strategy, all it takes is time and some samples. Offer to speak at chamber of commerce events, a bicycling group or to other groups that fit your customer demographic. Speak about how you got started in the business, the process you use for soap making and any differentiator, such as donating a portion of each sale to a non-profit organization. Provide samples and tell each person to ask for your soap at their favorite retail store. If a store perceives a demand, they are likely to approach you about supplying your product.