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