When Danny Meyersfeld launched DNAlysis he had a small budget that was needed to set up the business, which focused on three products: DNA Diet, DNA Health and DNA Fit. As with so many small businesses, because his budget was so focused on the business, he didn’t have much left for marketing, which is an essential component of business growth – and can’t be ignored.
As a result, he had to be smart about how (and where) he placed his marketing message.
In a nutshell, DNAlysis is an essential tool for practitioners in the business of keeping individuals fit and healthy. “DNA profiling has come a long way in the last decade,” explains Meyersfeld.
“People accept that we can track genes and profile what’s happening in your body as a result. Consumers today are also far more concerned about health and wellness, and we wanted to develop products that would help them do that. It’s easy and accessible to everyone.”
The three products are able to measure what foods a person reacts to, what they need to do to be healthy and lose weight, and how their body responds to different training methods. Each result is uniquely tailored to you.
Creating a product that people want and need, at an affordable rate, is just one component of a successful business. The key is tapping into your available client base or market.
How to do that became key to DNAlysis’ business model, and is an area Meyersfeld has been particularly creative and innovative.
Getting the marketing right
1. Target the right audience
It sounds obvious, but unless you’re pitching to the right audience, all the marketing efforts and spend in the world won’t sell your product. When Meyersfeld first launched DNAlysis, he was focused on GPs – after all, who better to sell a health product to than local and trusted doctors?
“It took me eight months to realise that I was putting all of my energy into the wrong market,” he says. “GPs focus on treating patients once they’re already sick. They don’t focus on preventative lifestyle health and wellness.” But Meyersfeld had another problem.
He didn’t want to encroach on the nutritionalist and dietician industry. “When my partner, Yael Joffe, a geneticist who had been consulting in the US and had strong ties to the dietician community in SA came on board, we realised there was a way to get this right.
She had great contacts in that industry, and we hit on the idea of partnering with them, instead of competing with them.”
This changed the company’s focus, and centered on creating partnerships, rather than simply pitching to the GP or consumer market.
2. Work with the right partners
“Once we knew we wanted to focus on partners, we were able to create a system that works for all of us.
Each partner goes through a short training course, enabling them to use the tests as a tool in assisting their own clients and creating a tailor-made plan for them. Each of our partners has essentially become a marketing ally. They recommend our tests because it enables them to give a more holistic plan.
In return, we are constantly updating our products and ensuring they’re matching the top and most up-to-date research, and we list all our partner practitioners on our website. Many people come to our website, realise they can go through a dietician or nutritionalist, and choose that route instead. It’s a win/win for all of us.”
3. Stay up to date and relevant in your industry
A major factor that many businesses dismiss is the power of networking. “We make sure we’re at all major conferences pertaining to our industry, locally and globally. It’s worked incredibly well for us, because it enables us to ensure we’re on the cutting edge in this field, and it also puts us in contact with the biggest players in the industry.”
As a business owner, you never know the contacts and deals you can close simply by being in the right place at the right time – industry gatherings in particular are excellent starting points, but take every opportunity you can to network. It’s free, and the benefits can be huge.