Category: Touch Point

Are you really open when you’re open?

One of my biggest gripes that happens with bricks and mortar businesses is in regards to opening and closing times.

Businesses that close at 5:30pm, but already look closed at 5:15pm.

Do you think that makes the customer feel comfortable or uncomfortable? It’s obviously the latter, and making customers feel uncomfortable is a problem for business.

Here are three examples:

  1. Being in a cafe and they start taking the garbage out and stacking chairs while you’re there (within the advertised opening time).
  2. Being at a retail store that starts shutting down computers and is more focused on packing up then helping you.
  3. Taking the signs in from outside before you’ve closed so to anyone passing by you look closed already.

You might think it’s an efficient use of time because business is slow in the last 15 minutes, but let me promise you that giving a customer a substandard experience certainly won’t start attracting more customers. You’ll just end up getting quieter and quieter.

Think of the big brands, they generally have a 10 minute and 5 minute call ready for their doors to be closed at that time. There’s a consistency, but they don’t reduce the experience you’re getting so they can get out early.

The benefit behind a bricks and mortar store is that you have the opportunity to immerse your customer in an experience that online stores can’t match.

How good is that experience if you’ve already started packing up or if you’re not ready when people arrive in the morning.

Your customer experience should be like an event. You don’t rock up to a concert and they’re still setting up. The stage is set before you arrive. You don’t want the magic to be tainted because some of the musicians were just hanging out in front of the curtain before the curtain opened.

And there’s another danger – they stop coming because you look closed!

If you’re paying rent for a bricks and mortar store, it’s important you look open when you’re actually open – especially if you’re paying premium rent at a site that has good passing traffic.

Life’s too busy for customers to remember when everyone closes, so if you look shut I just don’t stop. It’s that simple.

Be open when you’re open, and close when you’re closed. If you don’t want to stay till 5:30pm then set the expectation that you close at 5:15pm and delight them if they come to the door and you grab something for them.

The point:
Whatever you do, when a customer interacts with your business give them the full experience and your full attention.

 

Read more blogs on how to delight your customer here, or download our free ebook ’10 things small business must stop dong NOW.’

Why movement matters in retail

Retail marketing assistance consultancy movement merchandising

When something moves, we pay closer attention to it.

But how stagnant is your business?

A couple of weeks ago we had a fun post on our Facebook page with those air filled stick men they often have on top of a Godfreys store denoting a ‘special event’  (yes one of many). But it doesn’t have a sign saying sale, all we know is that it signifies something going on.

Is your Brand an all-round Habit?

Tips on brand building habits every day business

Our ‘Touchpoints’ blog is written to tease out, understand, share and spark action on two important things – brand and touchpoints.

Lets be honest, organisations are recognised for their touchpoints that  either grow or detract from building a great brand. Either could be you!

It doesn’t matter if you’re advertising is great, it doesn’t matter how good your stores look – if your business is flat and doesn’t offer a unique brand to the market then it simply won’t be as effective as it could be. That may not be what you want to hear… #sorrynotsorry.

You must focus on getting the basics simplified so that your teams deliver your values, culture and personality.  Convincingly.

Here’s the fun part! I ask you to answer the following questions (in your mind is fine) within 30 seconds, here goes:

  • What does your company promise in their slogan? (this should be easy)
  • What is your core value to the client i.e. why do they come to you?
  • What is the brand personality of your company?
  • What sets your organisation apart from competitors?

So, I’m hoping you didn’t struggle too much to come up with the answers. But the real test is this:

If you asked these questions of everyone in your organisation would they give the same answers?

Scary Fact: When hosting a trade show in Adelaide a few years ago I encountered a scary situation. Trade shows and exhibitions are a big investment and you want to maximise face time with possible customers. As the host, I pre-warned all exhibitors that I would be back in 10 minutes to discuss a ‘call to action’ and I’d like to know their Point of Difference – what it is that sets them apart from their competitors. Many had 3 or 4 direct competitors in the room. After 10 minutes only 3 in every 10 exhibitors were able to tell something that would stand out. Lost opportunity!

The Shining light: One exhibitor that did ‘stick’ in my memory is Kumho Tyres. Their point of difference that they quickly delivered was their culture of innovation and trying new things – their slogan being: “What’s next is already here”. They’ve invented an aroma tyre that smells of Lavender. I’m told (but it’s not mentioned in their advertising) that it was originally a trial to see if ‘burning rubber’ could smell any nicer. Once they trialled it they also found it had superior handling and lower road noise. The point is that these guys knew their brand and had an example to back it up.

Effective Naturally champions the 4 pillars of ‘promise, value, personality, difference’ as the foundations to a strong and consistent brand. They allow organisations to confidently advertise a promise they know they can consistently deliver. Consistent delivery is what builds trust and it’s only when trust has been earned that an organisation could expect to the positive word of mouth and customer loyalty that is enjoyed by the best brands in the world.

If you want to read more on the benefits of positive word of mouth read my blog on brand evangelism, or take action right now and check out our coaching opportunities.

What damage is your Facebook competition causing?

Last week my news feed on Facebook was clogged with ‘like and share’ competitions.

Some were great offers, but what I really wanted to see was what my friends were up to.

That moment compelled me to share these insights in to the “best practice” of Facebook competitions. Many people may simply not realise they’re breaking the rules and it’s hurting them.
If you’re a business owner and your social media people are doing these competitions, then it may be putting your whole social investment at risk.

1. Nobody likes spam.
By forcing people to share your competition, your information starts clogging up the newsfeeds of their friends who might not really appreciate it. You could actually be pushing your potential customers away and they may even click ‘hide or block’ to posts from your page. This will hurt your organic reach meaning you’ll have to rely more on paid boosting.

 

2. More ‘likes’ is about ‘vanity’
Having 10,000 or 100,000 likes on a page might look good but it doesn’t necessarily add value to you, your business or your followers. People are probably only liking your page because they want the free stuff not because they value a relationship with you. Competitions are best used when you’re gathering useful information from your followers that are most likely customers, not just quick answers from any person chasing a prize.

 

3. It’s not ethical
Shares can’t actually be seen or measured by the business holding the competition. Likes and comments are OK, and people can share and tag if they like but making a share a condition of entry isn’t truly fair because it can’t actually be checked. The only difference to this rule is that using a third party competition app actually DOES have the ability to measure shares.

 

4. It screws up the Facebook algorithm
A like and comment competition is fine. It could actually give you some great answers to a question and be a bit of fun – it’s encouraging quality conversation. However, asking people to share as a condition of entry artificially creates an influx of data to the facebook algorithm which can skew what people really want to see. Imagine if a multinational company did a ‘like and share’ competition it would lock up news feeds. Sure lots of people will see you, but will they respect you, trust you and can you sustain their interest?

 

5. What’s the punishment?
If impeding quality engagement, or having potential customers blocking you isn’t enough there’s always the chance that Facebook will dish out a direct, more obvious punishment like closing your page. Last year I saw a business who had a personal profile labelled as their business and had collected several thousand friends. This was against facebook rules and out of the blue that rule was enforced, resulting in the business losing all of those contacts overnight with no warning. You may not get punished for breaking rules immediately, but you’re taking a massive risk.

 

6. You might be breaking the actual law
Just like raffles and competitions that we see in the flesh, promotions online may also need permits. These laws change from state to state and country to country. In the online realm your competition knows no state boundaries. So just make sure you have the right permit for where ever your followers may want to enter from. For example, in Tasmania a permit is not required, but if someone in another state was to enter they’d be entering illegally because we don’t have a permit in that state.

 

Let’s make sure you’re not making any of these mistakes, and in our next edition we’ll share tips on how to run a great competition that adds true value to your business and your followers. Oh… and just in case you love reading rules, here are the promotion guidelines for Facebook.

 

To help identify your ideal target customer download a copy of our FREE Buyer Persona worksheet and think about who you’re really connecting with. Your best customer isn’t everybody. 

Buyer Persona worksheet download