Apr 222009
 

Results:
The client’s industry (U.S. Specialty Retailing) saw sales drop 13% for Q4’08 and looks to be down ~20% for Q1’09.
In this down market, working with me, my client sales:

  • Grew 14% Q4’08 over Q’407
  • Were up 5% Q1’09 over Q1’08

Background:
Specialty retailer with one location, that has been in business for over 30 years and has a great reputation within their customer base. They have maintained best practices including the business systems they use. They have excellent IT integration from vendor ordering, POS (Point of Sales) systems, to their website. Being a small business owner, the client was focused on the day to day activities and was not able to spend any time marketing their business other than historic use of yellowpages advertising. Q1’08 business was down compared to Q1’07 and I was brought in to bring a fresh look at bringing new business to the store.

Goal:
Leverage in-store personnel,
existing IT systems, and NEW Internet Tools to:

  • Effectively compete against three larger multi-store competitors
  • Bring increase in new customers to the store

Tools used:

  • Email Capture in POS system
  • Updated Website
  • Monthly Email Newsletter
  • Controlling Web presence / Social Networking
  • Google Alerts
  • Google Adwords
  • Google Analytics
  • Google Blogger / Facebook / Twitter

Conclusion:
The tools and framework that I provided were only a part of the clients success. The client put a significant amount of sweat equity (Employee Time) creating marketing programs for their customers including product sales, and free demonstrations of their products and services.
What I was able to do was guide the client in the use of free to inexpensive internet tools (Less than the cost of his old Yellowpage advertising – Which they dropped) to get the word of the client’s marketing programs to existing and new customers.

Other indicators:

  • Web activity increase of 3.5-4.5 fold increase in hits / page views from Q4’07 to Q1’09
  • Email capture grew from ~200 to over 2500 in 12 months
  • New customers grew from 22% of business in Q1’08 to 43% of business in Q1’09
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