How to increase sales during a seasonal decline in a shoe store?
August is the time when trade in general and for shoe stores in particular begins a period of seasonal recession. People think more about where to go on vacation, plan a vacation, finalizing the last weeks and days, and buy at best beachwear, open sandals and slates. However, shops need to sell all of their merchandise and make a profit. Practicing expert Vladimir Thurman talks about how with the help of simple and inexpensive marketing moves you can increase sales several times during the summer seasonal recession.
Buyers come in, examine the goods with interest, touch, ask about the availability of other sizes and colors, even try on them, but in the end they don’t buy anything. A familiar picture, isn't it? Especially in summer. July-August are the dead months in trade, since all working people leave to rest or move out of town before the fall. And even discounts, some special offers and advertising do not work well at this time, practically without raising sales. Some non-standard marketing and advertising events that can stimulate customer activity and increase sales should come to the rescue. Consider this situation on a specific example, when, on the request of one client - the owner of the shoe network - we developed a series of measures that allowed us to solve several problems at once: attract more customers, create a fairly good reputation of this network in the region and increase sales. The figure was impressive - sales growth was 275%!
First of all, you must, based on information about your audience (your customers) and based on your goals, decide on the main idea of the campaign. There must be something specific, some kind of action - a lottery with a prize draw, a special event for customers - for example, a live music concert somewhere in the open air, sports competitions with prizes, a children's party and so on - that will attract customers. Then you need to decide on the dates and venue.
The main marketing move chosen to attract customers and increase sales in our particular case was chosen to hold a lottery among the customers of the shoe network, the main prize of which was a ticket to Turkey. The super prize was supposed to “work” as the main information guide and the main bait for customers. The timing of the action was determined until the end of summer, the tour was scheduled for the end of August, so that the advertising campaign was as long and effective as possible and justified the investment.
The priority of tasks is important.
Next, you must decide on the events that the campaign will consist of, and arrange them according to priority, depending on goals and objectives.
In our case, a special series of events was developed, designed to work comprehensively and aimed at several factors: attracting new customers, increasing the size of the average check and the frequency of purchases, disseminating positive information about chain stores among regular and potential customers, including through word of mouth (customer acquisition on the recommendation). The first challenge we faced was attracting more customers. To do this, a new special offer was positioned through all available channels: “By making a purchase from this to such a number, each client gets the opportunity to win a prize - a ticket to Turkey”. Thus, against the background of competitors, the advertisement that the owner of the chain of stores gave was highlighted. Competitors did not have such an offer, and advertising provided a large influx of new customers.
The next indicator that needed to be worked on was an increase in the size of the average check. Before the launch of special events, the average check in the store was 1800 rubles. In order to increase this indicator, they did the following: when a person came to the store, tried on shoes, the sales assistant told him that if he made a purchase in the amount of 2500 rubles, then on this check he would be able to receive a coupon for participation in the lottery among customers of the shoe network and the drawing of a super prize - trips to Turkey. About 40% of people who made a purchase agreed to this offer.
The buyer, who agreed to participate in the lottery, was asked to fill out a questionnaire, indicating in it his first name, surname, e-mail and phone number. Thus, a customer base was formed with which it was possible to further interact with us to implement the next stage - increasing the frequency of purchases and attracting customers according to recommendations.
To accomplish this task, templates of letters for e-mailing, as well as SMS reminders were developed, aimed at ensuring that buyers came to the store again and purchased shoes for their near and dear ones, or recommended participation in this action (drawing a tour package ) to your friends, relatives, colleagues. These customers had a direct motivation: the more they made purchases, the more coupons were awarded to them, which means that their chances of winning the main prize became higher. In parallel with the newsletters, sales consultants of a chain of stores told customers that after making several purchases, they increase their chances of receiving a super prize, as they have several coupons on hand.
When the time came to hold the draw, the retailer had at its disposal the base of all its potential participants. In order to interest people and motivate them to come to the event, it was decided to give a prize draw only among those people who will be at the event that day and will be able to personally pick up their prize. This information was communicated to potential participants. In addition to the main prize (a week of relaxation for two in a five-star hotel in one of the Turkish resorts), there were also incentive prizes (iron, microwave and other small household appliances). In addition, without exception, all participants in the lottery were awarded a 30 percent coupon for a one-time purchase. As a result, it was possible to gather a large number of people in one of the network stores selected for the lottery, and only on this day sales increased five-fold. The format of such an event should be festive: a performance, a treat (sweets, fruits, champagne), decoration with balloons and flowers of the trading floor, clowns or animators for children.
And if it doesn’t work?
It is such a question that first comes to mind doubting the effectiveness of such special promotions for customers. Here you need to start from pure mathematics. The two-month share increased sales by a record 275%, although this was not originally planned. It was planned that the increase in sales would be about one and a half times. Based on this, prizes were chosen. You must do the same.
In our particular case, a decision was made to invest in advertising and prizes in the amount of 100 thousand rubles, but the figure may be more. The money will be needed to form the prize fund and promotion budget, which must be laid down when planning the action. With prizes you can show creativity and a certain enterprise. We have created a prize fund, however, it was decided to try to get a ticket for buyers for free. And the result has been achieved. We turned to several large travel companies with a proposal for cooperation in the framework of a special campaign. The following was suggested: a network of shoe stores provides one ticket for two of such and such a format, and the network for this for two months advertises a travel agency in the high summer season. A number of travel companies refused, but one became interested in the offer and agreed. A partnership agreement has been reached. In the advertising campaign, the store announced that a super prize (ticket) was provided by a specific travel agency. Thus, the tour was provided by the partner for free, and the prize pool allocated for it was saved. Only incentive prizes were bought, the main means went to promotion and advertising.
This successfully implemented project clearly illustrates and confirms that the negative effect of a crisis or seasonal recession can always be neutralized (or minimized) if you take active steps and make some intellectual efforts in order to create something unusual and interesting, come up with “activism”, in which customers will be interested in participating.
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