Tuesday, 18 November 2014

New Customers are not just for Christmas!!! Have you already sown the seeds for a poor January??

So you've finished your review of 2015/16 marketing plan, humming the John Lewis annual hit, had your fill of mince pies and it’s not even December!

Are your new customers just for Christmas, will you be losing loyal customers whilst servicing the Christmas spike? Have you already sown the seeds of a poor January?

We’re not suggesting that businesses should not capitalise from the opportunities that Christmas presents; we’re just hoping they will resist the temptation to drop to the lowest possible standards of service and choice in order to cram in those extra punters.

The Christmas period is great. Many enterprises can expect an increase of customers to their business by 300% or more. If the overall experience for these new customers is positive and memorable half of these could become regulars helping you to ensure January and February make a contribution to profit and helping to create less troughs throughout the following year.

At Barsby Associates Ltd we strongly advise all businesses to ensure their focus on customer satisfaction during the Christmas period will drive loyalty during the first three months of 2015. Far too many businesses see the Christmas period and New Year’s Eve as a bonanza during which “cramming them in” is the name of the game inadvertently undermining the careful positioning and marketing carried out during the year.

Our top tips are;
  • ·         Stand out for great service, value and overall experience
  • ·         Ensure your team has exceptional product and company knowledge
  • ·         Make sure your suppliers and partners understand your market positioning
  • ·         Merchandise, point of sale material, video etc all to be “on message”
  • ·         Devise a hook to entice customers to visit you during January
  • ·         Understand your “target customer” likes, “must haves”  and latest trends
  • ·         Start each shift with a briefing “imagine a successful session” set and agree targets
  • ·         Make time for a debrief, listen to employees feedback as much as customer feedback
  • ·         Clean, tidy and restock before you go home… what-ever the time!
  • ·         Never forget “this is the season of goodwill and party” make sure you and your team enjoy it
  • ·         Start planning for Yuletide 2015 during January and link it to your calendar of events

Most people celebrating Christmas will expect to see a Yuletide offer that is unique to the time of year. The Christmas experience can and should be provided with panache and style by well trained and motivated employees. In the best cases employees are fully aware of what the anticipated average spend per customer the business marketing plan has envisaged thus helping confident employees to deliver their part of a unique overall experience that is good for your business too!

Adrian Barsby, 07921787668, adrian@barsbyassociates.com  Barsby Associates Ltd 

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Head in the sand or enthusiastic embrace… how are you planning for impact of the new law?

Allergen Legislation; Food Information Regulations 2013

Head in the sand or enthusiastic embrace… how are you planning for impact of the new law?

You may be aware that from December 13th 2014, yet more legislation will impact on all organisations selling food. Please don’t let the current anti EU wave allow you to become emboldened to ignore this EU directive becoming British Law for the fines are heavy and be assured enforcement agencies and lawyers are busy preparing targets for criminal and civil prosecutions.

However uncomfortable you may feel at being forced to comply, spare a thought for those plus their family and friends who cannot and do not dine out regularly due to their allergies. In the aftermath of the horse meat scandal most consumers want more not less information and enhanced confidence that we are eating what is says on the label. I think more and more of us will be unsettled by companies moaning that they have to specify what is in their products; I for one react favourably to reference of ingredients with provenance and will buy with increased confidence from those who can readily list ingredients and their properties.

There are many areas where we can quite justifiably campaign for less government and administrative burden, this is not one we can or should fight. As vendors we have both a moral and legal responsibility to our customers and this law will help enshrine best practice by some into basic practice by everyone, benefiting not only customers but all who work in food; processing, manufacturing and service as improved training, better supplier relationships and more informed customers lead to increased confidence and sales.

Having worked with organisations of all sizes throughout the UK and mainland Europe, Barsby Associates has experience of intertwining new legislation into business practice so you can embrace new legislation whilst enhancing your company’s core values;  adrian@barsbyassociates.com  

Barsby Associates Ltd; When you know you could be doing better but just can’t get there… let us help extract that extra value for your hard work and investment!