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18 January 11

Enough Retail Doom and Gloom


Seriously, no wonder retailers are running scared, hanging up their hats and closing their doors. With all this controversy about online shopping, supporting retailers and importing designer labels. Which is being supported then later unsupported by our biggest retails i.e. Gerry Harvey. It is getting way more complicated then what it has to be.

Happy New Year!

May this year be a year of transformation, momentum and growth for you.

wedding bubbles

It starts with one small step…you’ll be fine as long as you take one small step not in the same direction, in a new direction. I have a secret for you. To be honest I am so over hearing the negative crap that we are hearing from our leading retailers and associations. What they don’t tell you is that the majority of people still buy in store and by them making such a fuss they're in fact, driving more people to shop online. Sometimes we forget that the people who buy our product are just like you and I…no different we are actually very loyal and no where more so then Australia, it’s who we are and it’s in our blood. It’s only when we feel that trust is broken and we aren’t being heard that we begin to look else where.

Take a moment to reflect on last year, what worked and what didn’t work. What habits do you have that you need to improve on?

  • Do you stop and start things
  • Do you run marketing or promotions at the spare of the moment hoping to bring in those few extra $$$
  • Would you really like to try that new range but are scared it wont sell
  • Are you continuing to buy a range that always ends up reduced
  • Would you like to be online but are nervous about spending the money
  • Is social media always on your to do list but you never actually do it

You see once you know your habits then you can go about changing them but its starts with one step…one action. Here are some solutions to the problems above:

1. Do you stop and start things?

Make a list of everything you would like to accomplish this year them prioritise them. Do one thing at a time don’t start another one until the current one is completed.

2. Do you run marketing or promotions at the spare of the moment hoping to bring in those few extra $$$?

Create a spreadsheet for the next 6 months and outline how and what you are going to promote.

TIP- I use a WOW status because you need to space out your promotions to ensure you have flow and a constant stream of income, but more importantly you don’t want to overload your data base and customers. For example have an ‘A’ status once a month and a ‘B’ status once a month then use a ‘C’ Status for the majority of the time. Using this technique I generated an extra $500,000 in 6 months into my bottom line.

3. Would you really like to try that new range but are scared it won’t sell

Listen to your customers what do they want, start small and grow it from there so you don’t have a massive outlay. Ensure it has a place in your store, does it fill a gap in your collection? Does it match your target market? Don’t be put off if it’s not widely available be excited by that, customers love unique and in Australia we do not have enough uniqueness.

4. Are you continuing to buy a range that always ends up reduced?

This baffles me, I see it all the time, business owners always buy the same sizing and styles only to have them be put on the sale rack a couple of months later. One business I worked with said “Oh we order …….. but it just sells straight away and we’re left with all the ………….” My response was “Order more of….. Clearly its want your customers want and order less of ……..” it may sound like common sense but common sense is not common practice. Monitor your stock and what sells and order accordingly.

6. Would you like to be online but are nervous about spending the money

I heard a classic line from a friend who designs laptop sleeves and bags from billboards and recycled material called Haul….anyway he recently jokes “ Gerry Harvey just come in looking for a sleeve for his Commodore 64”

Maybe like Gerry you dabbled with a website years ago and when it didn’t reach over night success you tossed it away saying it doesn’t work or maybe you’re thinking it will cost you the earth?

What if I told you that you can now build a site for a few hundred dollars? An online presence is crucial for any business, without one you are commiting yourself to an untimely death. Once you get your head around the online world, you’ll discover it’s not as hard or confusing as you may think. Most lingerie businesses are still not online or doing a poor job so now is the time to take action, do it right and you will succeed.

7. Is social media always on your to do list but you never actually do it

If you stood in the middle of your store and shouted “BUY MY PRODUCT, ON SALE NOW, 20% TODAY” what do you think would happen? Customers would run. What happens when you get a telemarketing call at your house? They are intruding and it really annoys you.

I have not seen ONE retail business that does an awesome newsletter that isn’t just trying to sell me something. You’re spamming do something different. If you have Facebook page, a blog or a Twitter account and you aren’t interacting, engaging and building relationships with people then it will not work for you. It’s about trust, respect and allowing people to get to know you, help people. Slowly over time it will pay off, there is no quick fix. Too often businesses jump online and just promote… try listening, asking questions and get to know your community.

Before you kick off this year go and make yourself a coffee and write down everything you would like to accomplish this year. Then figure out how you are going to achieve it. Success lies in the action…in the process. It starts with one strategy one step. Improve and grow your business one bra at a time.

# Concentrate on building authentic relationships with your customers and you will achieve great prosperity.

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  • Hi Renee,
    I like what I read, I would love to have you as a guest speaker at one of my monthly luncheons at Mosman one day, you would be a very inspirational expert they could hear from.

    from David Newton

  • Hi David,

    Thank you so much! I would love to speak at your luncheon, I’m in Melbourne but happy to travel whenever you need.


  • Renee,

    I couldn’t agree more. So much I just wrote a article too. Keep up the great work! I will be guest speaking at Retail 2011, September will you be around?

  • Hi Stephen,

    Yes I will be going along, which day are you speaking?

    Renee recently posted..15 Most Inspiring Entrepreneurial Quotes of All Time

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