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Using Barter to Help a Business Succeed Fish vendor Mack Chaffin joined a bartering group to subsidize the marketing services he needed to grow his business.

By Michelle Goodman

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Barter UpBartering is certainly a thrifty way to snag the products and services your young business needs. But what if the product you bring to the table is wild Alaska salmon, halibut and lingcod? How do you find a web designer who's willing to take payment in fish?

This was the issue faced by Mack Chaffin, co-owner with his wife, Diane, of The Elfish Company, a fish distributor. Although he does a decent business selling fish through his website, at farmers markets and to a handful of restaurants and grocery stores, Chaffin wants to expand.

But marketing requires capital that the Dewey, Ariz.-based businessman doesn't have. So at the end of 2011, when he discovered The Barter Group, a trade exchange of 450 small businesses in Greater Phoenix, he leapt at the chance to join. We cast a line to Chaffin to find out more.

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