“If it weren’t for the generosity of both local and non-local communities alike, we wouldn’t have been able to establish our Milk Processing Facility and keep our company alive.”
– Sallie Jones, Co-Found of Gippsland Jersey
Just 18 months ago, Steve Ronalds and Sallie Jones of Gippsland Jersey found themselves in a situation whereby if they didn’t find a solution fast, they would no longer be able to process their milk; and would be saying “goodbye” to their beloved business. Their milk processor decided to no longer support small milk producers, so they had only a few weeks to find a solution.
It was out of this adversity, much like the adversity from which their business was born, that they decided to innovate, and open their own milk processing facility on Sallie’s late father’s farm in Lakes Entrance. However, they had no credit rating, cash or budget to fund the $450,000 themselves.
Sallie and Steve decided to run a crowdfunding campaign through Indiegogo, inviting their customers to pre-purchase bottles of milk in order to raise $100,000 towards the new processing plant. This idea would see customers still receive a return on their investment, whilst helping Steve and Sallie to keep their business dream alive.
They ended up pre-selling milk to over 1000 customers and reaching their crowdfunding goal – but then were left with the question:
How to deliver milk to over a thousand customers without it becoming a logistical nightmare?
Their initial idea was creating a paper list of all the customer names and number of bottles ordered, asking customer service staff to keep track of milk collections manually, and reconciling these between all the collection points at the end of each month. However, it was clear that this solution would be extremely time-consuming and error-prone. Finding a simpler solution meant Gippsland Jersey had to innovate again, and that’s where GippsTech was brought in.
We developed a new WordPress website for Gippsland Jersey to help streamline their online ordering and fulfilment systems. We created an online store which their customers could use to purchase milk and other merchandise directly from their site, as well as a custom-built electronic voucher system to help them track collections of pre-purchased milk. The website was also designed to beautifully depict Gippsland Jersey and its brand, by using custom imagery showcasing their business.
We set up an innovative solution to enable collection of pre-purchased milk as simply as possible, to enable customer service staff at retail outlets to easily manage collections. We set up QR codes which were emailed to each customer who had pre-purchased milk through the crowdfunding campaign. We also implemented a store login so customer service staff at each store would have a unique login tied to the store which they could use to track milk collections through that store.
When a customer collected milk from a participating store, they could just show the QR code email to the checkout assistant, who would scan the email using their own phone, and be able to view the number of bottles of milk the customer had remaining to collect. They could then mark off the number of bottles collected, and this would be tracked automatically against the total collected from that store, to allow payments to be made to the store by Gippsland Jersey afterwards.
Marketing Coordinator | Digital Content Producer - GippsTech
Aldona holds a Higher National Diploma in Photography from London Metropolitan University and has been working as a professional photographer for the last 12 years. She is a business owner and runs a successful art photography practice at www.aldonakmiec.com.
In addition to her photography work, Aldona has worked in digital content production helping startup clients with online presence including photography + video production. Aldona created and implemented Startup Gippsland's marketing strategy and content for 2018/19.