Small Business Increases Sales 420% in 2012

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Valley Green Naturals, a small business in rural Virginia, engages New York studio Via U! to create photography that helps the manufacturer of personal care products increase sales by 420% in 2012.

I knew from the start that great photography would help increase sales but thought we couldn't afford it.

“I knew from the start that great photography would help increase sales but thought we couldn't afford it,” says Cindy Devore owner of Valley Green Naturals, a small manufacturer of personal care products located in the Piedmont region of Virginia.

After moving from Washington DC to the green hills of Virginia Cindy, and her husband Art, wanted to become more self-reliant. They started making soap for their family and selling it locally. The soaps were a huge hit. In 2009, with a budget of $250, Cindy founded Valley Green Naturals. Her idea was to produce eco-friendly, natural personal care products. Today the company has grown to offer over 30 different products that are carried by large organic retailers such as Whole Foods and sold internationally.

“When I started to get excellent feedback on the quality of my products, I was motivated to take the company to a higher level of sales.” With a background in marketing and communications Cindy knew how important was to show her products at their best. “I needed to upgrade our photography, but we had very little cash flow. Also being in a rural location, I didn't know where to begin to look for a photographer with the skills to make our products look great.”

Cindy worked with New York studio Via U! to photograph her products. Via U! was founded with the idea of making it possible for small companies to get the same quality photography that large brands use to market their products. The company collaborates online with clients from around the world to create customize product photography. The studio delivers retouched, color-corrected high-resolution files for a flat fee of $70 per picture. “Our clients understand their brands and know best how to talk to their customers. We listen and learn, then make some suggestions on the kind of images we think could make the message stronger. Mariano Pastor, founder of Via U!, says “ Cindy was doing her own photography before contacting us. She had a clear idea of how she wanted her products to feel and what she wanted us to help accomplish. The photography we created for her brand is similar to the pictures she was taking by herself - we just did it a lot better.”

If a picture is worth a thousand words, to Valley Green Naturals it has been thousands of clicks. According to Cindy traffic to her website went up by 450%, with about 15,000 monthly visitors, over the first seven months after the upgrade. Sales increased substantially. “We found that by year's end, our sales, compared to the previous year, had gone up by over 400%. In our second year, our revenues had increased by over 1,000%.”

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Carla England
Via U!
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