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inside the crafters’ mind

and could create a customer for life. Are your crops well attended? If not, perhaps attending a popular local crop yourself, and taking note of what makes it successful, would be wise.

Concept #4:

First Impressions, Lasting Impressions

As the saying goes, we only get one chance to make a first impression. I would add to that, EVERY impression counts, EVERY time!

Do you welcome me, making me feel special and valued even if I am not a “regular” or big spender? Am I offered assistance if I need it, and encouraged to browse to my heart’s content (without being followed around the store)? Do you quickly communicate information about specials, new products, upcoming classes or crops (this can be done on prominent signage as well as verbally)?

Is your store clean, well organized and well lit? Are your crop rooms spacious and inviting? Are the bathrooms kept clean and stocked with supplies (believe it or not, this is a biggie with many shoppers)? Are your displays modern, in good repair and well stocked? Do you highlight the newest arrivals by providing them with a prominent display shoppers are sure to see? Do you proudly display projects made with the products you carry? If not, you are missing out on a wonderful opportunity to inspire your customers into creating, and spending! It’s as easy as offering customers a chance to design for you in exchange for exposure and a few free products.

Concept #5: Loyalty is Priceless

We all know how valuable a happy customer is, right? How many of us show that customer, on a regular basis, and in unique ways, how much they mean to us? Do your loyal customers receive specials that are only available to them? Do you offer multiple ways for them to earn free classes, crop time, products or services? Are your loyalty programs well executed, easy to participate in and worth the effort for the customer? And, do you communicate any changes to your programs, well ahead of the time, in which any changes will take place? Nothing upsets a loyal customer more than feeling they have lost something they earned.

Most customers will remain loyal to any business that provides them with a great offering. And, they might even tell a few people. Knock their socks off with programs that are unique, and they are likely to become a fan for life, and share their enthusiasm with others. You say these programs are too costly? They don’t have to be, you just have to get a little creative. Why not offer customers a chance to be part of your store’s Customer Roundtable? This costs nothing, makes them feel special and provides a great opportunity for you to gather feedback. Or, why not offer loyalists a “Buy One, Get One Free” crop ticket – they might bring a new customer your way!

Concept #6:

Everything is Your Brand

From your website to your staff to the products you carry to the appearance of your store to the communications you send out, it’s all part of your brand. Every touch point is a vital means of communicating what you stand for. Do you stand for quality? For great service? For creativity? If you are not examining every inch of your business, and how

48 scrapbook business

Do you welcome me, making me feel special and valued even if I am not a “regular” or big spender?

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