3 Facts To Keep Your Retail Business Afloat

brand new interior of cloth storeIf retail is sink or swim, these tips will make you Michael Phelps…

Today’s small retailers have more to contend with than ever before, but sometimes all it takes is a hard dose of reality to cut through the confusion and get back on track.

To that end, here are three facts every small and mid-sized retailer should face up to if they want to keep kicking in the coming years:

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Scratch Your Niche: The Key To Dying Or Thriving

iStock_000059595052_SmallAre you focusing your small business’s efforts on the customers that matter most?

For small businesses, every single customer represents a substantial portion of your revenue…

A big corporate behemoth can afford to let some opportunities slip by, but when every potential sale creates a measurable difference in your profits, it’s important to chase those sales down no matter what… right?

This is the conventional wisdom that many small business owners let guide them.

Unfortunately, they’re dead wrong. Here’s why…

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What We Can All Learn from Nordstrom’s Exceptional Success

Downtown Seattle Retail Shopping District with Nordstom Departme“Improve customer service.”

With these three simple words, Jamie Nordstrom (President of Nordstrom) described the “secret” strategy that has powered the company’s spectacular success…

This may seem more like common sense than a grand vision for the company, but when you consider how this retail superstar performs on a regular basis, it’s worth taking a closer look.

Compared to the industry average, Nordstrom earns double the sales per square foot of retail space, and over the past five years, the company’s share price has risen 120%.

As Nordstrom’s CEO points out:

“Customers will buy more when they’re happy.”

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How To NOT Lose Your Customers

What’s the secret to holding on to your customers?experience conceptual meter

Exceptional customer service.

Check out some of these stats from an American Express survey:

  • 78% of customers have bailed on a transaction or not made an intended purchase because of a poor service experience
  • Seven in ten Americans said they were willing to spend more with companies they believe provide excellent customer service
  • 80% of Americans agree that smaller companies place a greater emphasis on customer service than large businesses
  • Americans tell an average of nine people about good experiences, and tell about sixteen people about poor experiences

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Talking About Habits With “Hooked” Author Nir Eyal

hooked coverA few months ago, I was sent an advanced copy of what turned out to be a very interesting book…

When I first read the title, I knew it was going to be a unique approach (and right in line with my mission to deliver the best value at every turn).

The book is called Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products – and it looks not at how people buy products, but how they actually use them. If you want to sell products that people love, you’ve got to understand how (and why) people develop relationships with the things they use…

Well, not only did I thoroughly enjoy the book (and learned some fantastic stuff), I reached out to the author, Nir Eyal, with some questions…

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How Samsung Won Back Its Reputation

iStock_000038003148_SmallIn the past, Samsung had a reputation for neglecting customer service…

More recently, a reevaluation of sorts has taken place at the company. The electronics brand (like many other companies) has to come to realize just how important delivering fantastic customer service is for the bottom line…

So, what have they done to fix the problem?  [Read more…]

5 “Boring” Companies Succeeding With Content Marketing

Content Marketing ConceptWe know that trust drives loyalty…

And that one of the best ways to build that trust is with informative, entertaining, and relevant content.

To put some concrete numbers to it:

60% of customers say they have a more positive view of companies that deliver custom content.

Author and marketer Seth Godin goes as far as saying that he believes:

“’Content marketing is the only marketing left.”

Technology is empowering consumers to filter the marketing messages they are exposed to…

But content marketing provides a way to reach those consumers through entertaining and educational material that they actually want to dig into.

For some industries, content marketing is a natural fit. Companies like Red Bull and Nike have access to a rich supply of content through involvement with adrenalin pumping sports…

But what if you are in a “boring” industry?

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How Harley Davidson Revs Up Sales

Close up of classical Harley Davidson motorcycleIn the third quarter of 2014, Harley Davidson sales beat an already strong previous year…

Harley isn’t just an iconic American brand, it’s also a fantastic case study of successful marketing.

They’ve managed to stay relevant and build a huge brand despite a changing marketplace and an aging buyer demographic.

Let’s take a look at how they became THE legendary American motorcycle – and how they’ve managed to stayed on top… [Read more…]