Hey folks, this is Brian. Just had some thoughts rolling around my head
Any business attempts to build relationships with its customers. This is part of retaining them. Usually when you ask a small business owner what this means to them, the usually respond with, that smiling and ensure the customer is getting what they want.
Well, if that was the case then SMB’s would never have a chance.
What can you offer that is better than the big chain?
It is the hustle, that is something that the big boys cannot do.
So let’s take the nearly extinct family pharmacy as an example.
A lot of the local guys went out of business because of price pressure. They became not only a pharmacy, but also a food, makeup, and whatever they could stuff inside the store. So what could have a pharmacy done that was different?
Maybe the could have offered home delivery for prescriptions. You could have even extended this to all products purchased at the pharmacy.
Any paperwork for Medicare subsidized medical devices could have been handled free of charge if the device was purchased through the pharmacy.
Having a Family Doctor (Assuming there was enough space). See patients at the pharmacy.
How to classes for … let’s say “proper eating” and you could stock some of the things, such as books, etc that the participants could purchase.
The thing is if you fight on price only, you are going to lose because someone that has greater buying power will beat you on that front.
This is when uniqueness is what matter most.
That is why pet food stores that sell only organic food strive in the face of the Petco’s and Petsmart’s of the world.
That is why a local hardware store sells Radio Flyer Wagons. You are always doing something that the large chain cannot do as well as you.
One thing a large chain will never be able to do. I don’t care how much they try. You see a large chain is motivated by only one thing and it is the primary reason that the exist. That is to produce as much profit as possible.
While profit is important for the sustainability of the business, it is easy to lose sight of the mission and vision of the business if profit is 100% of your focus.
A small business has on huge advantage. That is to really get to know their customers.
That can be done in a variety of ways.Holding outdoor events during the spring or summer. How to workshops are a great idea.
Any event should always strive to get as much information from potential;customers and actual customers.
This will not only be used for promotional selling but also for communication with that personal touch.
With current technology and small business owner can build a profile of their customers. Like and dislikes, birth dates, anniversaries and so forth.
How great would it be to receive and signed Happy Birthday card from a small business with a small gift.
Everyone loves when someone goes the extra mile for them. That action will always stand out in their sea of like memories.
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