My apologies for not having my thoughts perfectly organized today, but I wanted to share some observations.
How to Save Christmas
One business owner with a high-end gift shop recently said to me: “Right now, our whole focus is “How to Save Christmas”.
You might not understand this, but in the world of retail, here’s what he means: This owner knows that the Fourth Quarter generates his lion’s share of revenue and profits, all in the months of October, November, and December.
This owner is focusing on “How to Save Christmas” because there might be:
- Another Covid-shutdown, or
- Manufacturers might run out of product, or
- Like before, manufacturers might stop shipping product because their employees get sick, or
- Consumers might get scared and stay at home rather than going out shopping, or
- Something else unexpected might hit the fan.
This owner understands that he needs a plan to still generate revenue during these 3 months if any or all of these scenarios happen.
A Save Your Holiday Sales Plan: You need to have one this year!
Don’t Make Summer Mistakes This Winter
We just finished up a big Summer tourist season here in Colorado. Despite Covid, tourists wanted to be outdoors, in the wide-open spaces doing outdoorsy things, and many mountain towns had huge numbers of tourists flooding into their businesses.
Now, a lot of entrepreneurs don’t know this, but there are marketing studies that show that it takes 10 to 16 times the money to bring a new customer into your business than it takes to bring an existing customer back. Put another way, it takes one-tenth to one-sixteenth the cost (1/10 to 1/16) to bring a customer back to your business for a return visit versus attracting someone new.
One of my workshops that I do for tourism groups is called “If They Stop Here Once, I’ll Sell Them ‘Year Round”. One of the points I make in that workshop is the principle of capturing database information from customers, including tourists. Even though a tourist might not be from your area and they might be in your business just one time, the owner or an employee must make an attempt to invite the customer to provide their contact information, either through a loyalty program or through an e-newsletter sign up sheet, or a register-to-win promotion (to name three common methods).
If the business gets that information, they can reach out to those customers after they return home and you now have the ability to market to them again, getting them to buy something through a phone call, a product catalog, an e-commerce site, a Facebook Live video (and lots of other ways).
Seriously, I’m repeatedly amazed when I go into a business for the first time and no one tries to entice me to sign up for their marketing materials. Sometimes, I really like the business and if they just asked, they could be bringing me back at a huge marketing savings to their business.
A Missed Opportunity in Tourist Business
But now, Summer’s over. Here in Colorado, the majority of tourists are gone. We’re in “shoulder season”, the time between the Summer tourist rush and the Winter tourist skiing rush.
And the opportunity to market again to the tourists who came in during the Summer is gone.
So, if you are a business that has tourists coming in during this upcoming Winter, or if you know a business that does, share this newsletter with them.
Even though a business makes a mistake in the Summer of not capitalizing on capturing customer contact information, they don’t have to make the same mistake this Winter tourist season.
Move On From the Mistake
When an owner makes a mistake in their business, rarely does a single mistake cause the collapse of that business. Instead, mistakes can be small (like the one above), seemingly inconsequential, but they add up. With each small mistake, a business achieves a little bit less than it could, and with each one, the business falls a little bit more behind. Over time, missed opportunities and seemingly insignificant mistakes pile up, until the business just slows under the weight of them.
Not collecting database information is a simple mistake that has a cumulative negative effect.
But don’t kick yourself for not doing it previously. Start doing it now.
As Pulitzer Prize winning historian Will Durant said: “Forget past mistakes. Forget failures. Forget everything except what you’re going to do now and do it.”
Personal Best and Worst Purchases of 2020
I don’t know about you, but as I write this, there are only 79 days to go in 2020, I’m kind of looking forward to 2021, and it made me start thinking about the most valuable products and biggest wastes of money that I purchased this year.
By far, the worst item I’ve purchased this year was my Franklin Daily Planner. Sometimes, I’m just running from one day to the next as the world spins around.
I have two picks for my best purchases of 2020:
- I love my Yeti Pro USB microphone that I use all the time with my Zoom calls. It really helps make my voice strong, clear, and easy to understand on any virtual webinar or keynote, much better than any microphone built in a computer. (Apparently, a lot of other people like it too because it’s currently out-of-stock).
- Then, tied with my Yeti microphone for best purchase are my Coyote Gold Margaritas in their frozen push-up tubes. Think Otter Pops, for adults. These come in quite handy after a day on Zoom calls.
Full disclosure: The owner of Coyote Gold attended my Destination BootCamp and I’m partial to endorsing BootCamp owners’ businesses, but I do not know the owners of Blue Microphones.
That’s it for this blog post. Thanks for being a reader and if you have any questions, you know you can always call our office at 303-774-6522 or email me directly at [email protected]. Jon Schallert