Thanksgiving orders are beginning to pour in at Beneva Flowers and hopefully your shop as well. This is the perfect time to pull out one of our favorite sales tools… the “turn 2!” Watch this short video, it is less than a minute, to refresh yourself and your staff.
For the last few years, Beneva Flowers has placed feedback forms like the one pictured, on all delivered flower arrangements as a way to gauge customer service satisfaction in addition to introducing themselves to both the recipient and sender.
How it works:
Step 1: The recipient receives the flowers with the feedback form attached. Inside they will find a form, requesting that they take a quick survey in exchange for a coupon.
Step 2: The feedback forms are perforated which allows the recipient to detach the “thank you” postcard and send a handwritten message.
Step 3: When the sender receives the postcard they will FINALLY know your shop name, have the confirmation that the sender loved the flowers and now know to contact your shop directly in the future.
It’s as simple as that!
Update: The Google Maps Are Just Images & Comments from Teleflora and FTD
So first, I would like to ask everyone to please LIKE Beneva Solutions on Facebook as we will continue to update topics like this.
We have just discovered that the Google maps on Ava’s Flowers websites are just images! These people spent a boat load of time doing this to everyone.
Get this! …They BLOCKED my IP address! If you try to click on the link and get a message that reads, “Site being updated,” it means they blocked you too! They don’t want us to see what they are doing. How do I know this? I used another connection and it appears just fine.
They know we are watching them, so don’t be surprised if they may do the same thing to you.
I have been told by Jack Howard, of Teleflora, that he is very concerned and there is a code of conduct at Teleflora. Violations such as deceptive practices will not be tolerated.
FTD caught them not passing along payments from orders and suspended them last summer. Now, after speaking with Tom Moeller at FTD, he told me that he thinks Ava’s is using BloomNet.
The legal department at FTD is looking into these ads and will be working with Google. They plan to use these screenshots and a few of their own to represent their case.
What I have discovered so far is that FTD and Teleflora do not seem to condone this practice what so ever. Reach out to your wire service of choice; they don’t want to see this any more than you do.
BloomNet (owned by 1-800-Flowers) seems pretty desperate for orders and I assume will take anything. In my opinion, and I have not talked to Mark Nance of BloomNet yet, but if the orders are being sent through BloomNet then that is ½ the problem. The florist filling orders from Ava’s is the enabler.
Florists beware; you can only point the finger so far, if you want this to stop, don’t accept the orders!
Original Post: We Have to Stop This Now!
By now you have heard me say over and over again, we need to support each other. Ava’s Flowers, a known order gatherer has gone too far and is deceiving local customers.
During a recent conversation with Keith Riewe of Bice’s Florist, he told me a story about how his shop got caught in an issue with Ava’s Flowers. After further investigation, my team and I have discovered that Ava’s Flowers is now designing pages to look like they are physically located in local areas. Please notice the following in the screen shot below: the Google map displaying their “location,” the city name is listed in multiple places, and the showroom images. What unassuming customer would not believe this shop is local?
This isn’t order gathering, this is deception, period. It is wrong in every way.
Ava’s is currently sending orders through FTD. I have reported this to FTD and Teleflora. Jack Howard, of Teleflora said they will present this to Ava’s Flowers and if these pages are not removed, they will revoke their Teleflora membership. I know they mean business. Do you remember how they dealt with Wesley Berry? This is the kind of support we need from our wire service. It makes me feel good to know that they take this as serious as we do and is one more reason why I want to support them with my orders.
What CAN You Do?
PLEASE contact Google and report Ava’s Flowers. If we all pull together, we can bring light to this situation. Google HATES this. When customers don’t get the results they need from Google, this jeopardizes Google’s future. Google will listen. If enough of us report them, we have a chance. We can help to change our industry for the better by bringing this to Google’s attention.
This is why we all get calls from customers who think they are shopping with us, but are not.
Please take a moment to check your listings and call Google at 866-246-6453.
1. Size: Did you know that most of us absorb over 3,000 visual marketing messages a day? No wonder successful floral websites display large, high quality images that are quick to grab a browser’s attention. Consider these two examples. Which row of designs are you more attracted to?
2. Mobile: Did you know that the average American spends 162 minutes a day on their smartphone? As florists, we want our customers to become engrossed in our offerings and purchase. Mobile websites allow this to happen because our customers are provided a user interface that is responsive and easier to manipulate than a standard website.
3. Apps: Did you know 86% of the time spent on mobile phones is through an app? Apps use mobile features unlike a website, such as “Push” notifications. Notifications are similar to a mailer because they are an effective way to share specials with targeted customers. Notifications can also be location based when an app is integrated with GPS tracking. With this feature, offers can appear on a customer’s phone when they drive by a specified location.
BOTTOM LINE: As mobile use increases, florists need to adjust their online retailing efforts by looking for websites that offer a mobile version and integrate with an app.
Don’t believe us… See for yourself.
Take a look at your Google Analytics for the past six months. We are confident you will see an increase in search results by device.
What a great call! We are still reeling over the points everyone made. Our featured speakers, Charles Carithers from Carithers Flowers, Jim Gainan from Gainan’s Flowers and Steve Buckwald from Surroundings Flowers covered a wide array of topics from getting back to your roots, exceeding expectations and remembering to focus your marketing on your own backyard. Thank you all for taking the time to share your knowledge regarding the future of our industry and (Jim, Art will work on that motivational tape for your car.)
Here are the top 10 takeaways from the Florist Feedback call.
1. Being a “Yes We Can*” florist is not just an attitude. It is a way to we all need to run our businesses.
2. You must build trusting relationships with your customers through brand awareness using outlets like social media.
3. Having a marketer’s mentality will always lead to growth.
4. Measuring your marketing efforts will let you know what should stay and what should go.
5. Wire services should be treated like partners. Focus on their tools not their weaknesses.
6. LocalFlowerShop.com provides a rating system for florists. This allows florists to rate their peers.
7. Your marketing efforts need to be diverse just like an investment portfolio.
8. By creating a lost order log you will discover why your shop is not closing sales.
9. Marketing Thanksgiving and using the “turn 2” method will increase holiday orders.
10. You have to figure out what works for your shop and your market.
If you missed the call and would like a recorded version, send an email to Lindsay@Beneva.com. We are happy to share.
*Free “Yes We Can” success kits are available upon request
2 Kinds of service you’ll never forget: Exceptional & Horrible
All the rest are soon forgotten. What experience does your customer receive when shopping with you?
Had a great conversation with a fellow florist yesterday evening. He forwarded me an email from FTD that offered 24 roses for $24 for Mother’s Day. Another shop showed me the Teleflora 20% off deals online. They give us a product for one price then sell it to the consumer for a lower price? Yes. However, there is a solution for them…just exclude the codified product from the discounts. High end dept. stores like Saks and Neiman Marcus do this all the time. They show 25- 50% off deals and exclude the product you most likely wish to purchase. What I am suggesting is that codified product being excluded from discounts protects the integrity of the product and brand along with the value of being Teleflora. This would be a good reason for me to start stocking up containers again like the old days. I like the containers, I really do!
Next you have 1800 Flowers. Jim McCann promises product to customers with FREE upgrades and expects the florist to just add more and NEVER do you see enough $$$ for the requested stem count. Let’s not forget Pro Flowers promising everything under the sun for $19-$29.95 with a FREE vase!
There you have it. Now that you understand, what can you do about it?
1) Stop complaining – Complaining doesn’t help, actions do. Commit.
2) Take action – You must begin with change. Be the change you want to see.
3) Take pride – Take pride in what you do. Treat every customer as you would want to be treated. EVERY customer.
Here is a suggestion: When you’re opening your doors in the morning, keep in mind that nobody needs your product. They CHOOSE to send flowers. In many cases, it is the vehicle for a message delivery.
If your flowers truly hit the mark with the recipient and the flowers last, you have the best chance of seeing another order. However, in many cases, deliver it late, and it doesn’t matter what it is because that valuable delivery that a customer could have spent an hour picking out can become worthless when it is delivered late.
So here is the process, COMMIT.
I started the YES WE CAN program for any florist who wishes to participate. Here is the link. If you are interested, the logos and artwork are FREE. Get it started at your shop TODAY, NOW. Commit to excellence. Commit to saying, “YES WE CAN” (remembering people shop with us by choice).
CHANGE. Review your business plan. Build a menu that offers 24 hour delivery (yes, 24 hour delivery). If I made you look, think about what it would do for your customers. After all, what makes your shop REALLY so different from anyone else. 24 hour delivery is easy. Call me or email me and I will explain the details and how everyone can easily do it. But it will require you to rethink what you are currently doing.
PRIDE. Treat every order as if it was your own. I feel safe stating “Most of your complaints are outgoing orders.” Am I not correct? If so, standardization among us all is paramount. We should all be committed to each other. If you need more $$$ to get an order completed then ask for it. YES WE CAN does not mean give everything away for FREE. Give the service and charge for it.
LASTLY: COMMIT TO SAME DAY DELIVERY!
It is what we all do best. Wire services allow is the ability to deliver same day! Why isn’t this promoted more with in our industry? This is what we do best, bar NONE! You can make all the pretty designs that are offered by Barbara Brooks, but without orders, they are simply a work of art. Let’s take action now to ensure we can continue to create beautiful designs that make people smile using a business model that will insure a future of healthy YES WE CAN florists that understand that every order is a privilege and a form of communication. FTD said it best years ago when they created the phrase, “Say it with Flowers.”
I hope you read this carefully and understand the purpose and for anyone who doesn’t, here is my recap:
The wire services are battling for market share. Each has a strategy of their own, be glad you are not in that battle! Cost per order nationally is enormous! It has gotten very bad and expensive. Most get the 2nd order and grow the customer because it is costing more than you and I (the local florist) would be willing to pay to acquire them. Since this is not the playing field for us…here is your solution.
BUILD a relationship, train your staff. They are your front line. If you can create an experience at your shop of comfort, value and creativity topped off with a YES WE CAN attitude I PROMISE you will see improvements. ADD print marketing and mass distribution you will find more sales. Complete this with fewer offerings on your website and you will increase profit.
Capture your community! As I mention in my video, it was ProFlowers who initialized the ‘flowers in a box’ program, we are now seeing 1-800 Flowers emerge with the same type of boxed service to their customers. Is this really how we would like the industry to be reflected? As local florists, we need to be hands-on at securing our communities so that businesses like ProFlowers and 1-800 Flowers do not get a chance to steal our customer, and worse yet, send out flowers in a BOX.
Most of the people who purchased my catalog for Mother’s Day are using it as a signature design collection on their websites. All these are easy to fill orders that are perfect to send out of town as well. If you take these and the images we made available to you and add 15 of your own, your web offerings should be complete. Now when someone calls looking for advice, your trained staff will suggest from your offerings. You will see just how easy productive change can be without bashing the wire service. Take back your customers one at a time and let’s increase the quality standards amongst each other with a focus on service to earn back the confidence of consumers looking to send flowers out of town using their local flower shop. If we all did our part to improve florist to florist business, maybe we can see wire services focus on being wire services and give us more value working together.
All my best,
#flower #flowers #florists #yeswecan #wireservices #commit #proflowers #1800flowers