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An Ugly Produce Solution

We love seeing produce sections neatly stocked with bright and pristine fruits and vegetables. But a TEDxManhattan presentation by Food & Wine editor-in-chief Dana Cowin takes a look at chefs and grocers who focused on ugly produce to help reduce food waste. “Ugly food is beautiful on the inside,” TV chef Jamie Oliver announced on a British TV show. French grocery chain Intermarche led the charge against food waste with it’s “Inglorious Fruits & Vegetables” campaign. Awkwardly-shaped produce that usually wouldn’t make it into the stores were set up at a 30% discount off the normal produce prices. To back up the claim that the ugly produce was beautiful on the inside, the store sold pre-made soups and fruit juices using the inglorious ingredients. Incredible results followed. Stores sold out, averaging 1.2 tons sold in each store during the first two days alone. The chain saw an overall traffic increase of 24% while increasing the awareness of food waste through both traditional and social media. Shoppers are always looking for ways to save their hard-earned cash and inglorious produce is…

Text Me: A look into text messaging marketing

Wouldn’t it be great if you could know that your marketing message or special offer would be seen by nearly everyone you send it to? No need to worry about a mailer getting thrown in the trash without a glance, or an email not being opened or ending up in a spam folder… and that they’d most likely see the message immediately? When you hear your phone beep or buzz with a text message, what’s your immediate reaction? You grab it right away? So do your customers. 95% of text messages are read within five minutes. With text message marketing, you’re getting a list of customers who sign up because they WANT to hear from you via texts. It’s important to reward them with information and offers they’ll enjoy, because it’s not about you. It’s about them. And when they feel special, they’ll keep coming back to your store. What to text Customer Coupons: Make your subscribers feel special with text-only specials. They have to show the text at the register to receive the deal. This is perfect for getting…

Inblog

Coffee with CART (1/15): Better Understanding Your Customers Through Technology

Coffee with CART (Center for Advancing Retail and Technology) on January 15th focused on the recent National Retail Federation Show, which is the major tech show for all retail sectors, attracting 34,000 attendees and more than 500 vendors. Discussions throughout the show highlighted in-store analytics. Andrea touched on the need for shopper intelligence in last week’s Coffee with CART recap. This week, they went into detail about what that actually means. Affordable technology gives you the ability to understand customer traffic throughout your store, much like you’d be able to easily track online shoppers. While you can use loss prevention video surveillance to accomplish this, mobile-based technology allows you to detect a shopper’s wi-fi enabled mobile phone and  anonymously track their movements around the store. You can see the departments and aisles they’re visiting and the amount of time they spend in each location. You can even see how long they spend dwelling on a set of products and if it results in a sale. This can help you learn the effectiveness of your endcaps and displays throughout the store.…

Let’s Get Personal

Your Facebook page is great for sharing helpful information with your community, but as a small business owner, you can get so much more out of it. It offers you the ability to show the personality of your store, your employees, and the community as a whole. While a lot of your customers may be on social media to share what they had for lunch, most people want to be a part of a community and participate in the conversations that are happening online. Customers love to see the personal side of you and your business. Something as simple as sharing a picture of your employees having some fun on the job can create a personal connection with your customers. You know what else your customers like? Free stuff. Stores that host regularly scheduled giveaways on their Facebook and Twitter pages get great participation, while increasing customer awareness online and through word-of-mouth. Customers also love saving money, so they’ll also love learning about special pricing as they scroll through their Facebook page. Some stores highlight a few items from their…