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New Year’s Resolutions

Tarmac’s Dr Bill looks forward to 2016

2016 has come quickly upon us and most of us will probably, if only mentally, make some form of New Year resolution. Businesses, as well as individuals, can indulge in this process.

Looking back at the previous year (both the good and bad) is often a good start. The eminent Victorian geologist Sir Charles Lyell once stated “The present is a key to the past”, but in reality the present is also a key to the future. If we know what happened last year, we can decide whether to stick with the status quo or to make a change. I would not advocate change for change’s sake, but if last year was disappointing, a change may be part of the solution.

So, what do we need to do to make 2016 a record year?

Are you making the best of point of sale material (remember the ‘Silent Salesman’) and does it look up to date? Perhaps you need to feedback to your suppliers about the quality and ‘freshness’ of their material, encouraging them to bring a New Year feel to your store.

Have your promotions delivered the expected results, was the timing right and were they targeted at the appropriate customer group? How do you capture customer feedback about what they would like see in store and when?

Promotions need to be properly timed to fit with the activity cycle of target customers. As an example, a new ice cream parlour opened near me last December, a strange decision maybe, given that ice cream sales generally struggle in colder weather. Robbed of a high impact launch, it subsequently struggled to make an impact in town and has now ceased trading.

Even in the building materials business, packaging needs to be refreshed periodically. Clean and visually striking bags or tubs draw the eye and encourage purchases of ancillary items.

A lot to think about, but if your New Year resolution is going to drive the business forward, it’s worth giving the ‘little grey cells’ a bit of exercise in the last few days of 2015.

About Guest Blogger - Bill Price

Bill Price is National Commercial Technical Manager at Tarmac’s Cement business

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