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Lisbiz Strategies: Your brand reflects you and your values

August 14/21: Volume 32, Issue 5

By Lisbeth Calandrino

Brands have been around forever, but the theory of branding has changed.

Lisbeth CalandrinoIt used to be that bigger was better and the louder you shouted the more attention you got. Remember when Coca Cola owned the soft drink market? Sure, they still have a huge market share but have big and new competitors. They’ve been sharing the market for a while with Pepsi and the Dr. Pepper/Snapple Group. One of the newest entrants, Red Bull, created a whole new product category called energy drinks.

As the product markets continue to crowd, so does the difficulty in getting brand recognition. “In the old days,” you were in command of your message, and since there was much less competition, the consumer listened. Another big change is the way information is now disseminated. The Internet has changed everything and leveled the playing field. The consumer has become the product marketer and gained control of your brand. If you’re not using the tools available, you will get lost to the sea of sameness.

Businesses are used to starting with their product and telling consumers why theirs is the important in the marketplace. Today’s products are everywhere and by the time your consumer gets to your business, they already know everything about your products.

What they might not know is who you are and what you stand for. Today’s consumers are more interested in your core beliefs and why you do what you do. This can differentiate your product and business from others in the overcrowded marketplace.

Instead of starting with the product it’s more important to begin with core beliefs of the business and why you do what you do. The new branding, as pointed out by Samuel Sinek in his book, “Start With Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action,” motivates consumers to bond to the company because of what they stand for.

There are other examples. Consider Wegman’s Food Market and their value statements. “Caring, High Standards Make a Difference, Respect and Empowerment.” Panera Bread continues to shout about its 100% clean message after eliminating artificial items from their food. “To Panera, a salad is more than a salad.”

One of my personal favorites is the Farmers Insurance commercial, “We’ve seen a thing or two.” Their commercials depict ridiculous things that have happened to their customers. Instead of talking about prices they dialogue about their core values. “Farmers not only prides itself on helping you plan wisely for the unexpected, but also on helping restore order when it occurs so you can keep moving along the road of your life’s plans.”

So what are your values? Do your employees talk about what you stand for and what matters to your company? What do you do that inspires your customers to want to be on “your team?”

To find the answers, ask yourself the following questions:

What do your customers think about you and how much do they share online? What are your customers saying about you? (Be sure to respond quickly to negative reviews.)

How are you educating your customers? Do your blogs explain to customers how to buy your products or what makes a good salesperson? Do you quote your customers in your blogs?

Remember, to your customers, you are just as important as the products you sell.

 

Lisbeth Calandrino has been promoting retail strategies for the last 20 years. To have her speak at your business or to schedule a consultation, contact her at lcalandrino@nycap.rr.com.

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My Take: Ten ways to maximize your store as your brand

August 14/21: Volume 32, Issue 5

By Steven Feldman

 

Screen Shot 2016-07-15 at 3.46.11 PMAs you thumb through this edition, our annual Power of Brands, issue, you will find verbiage submitted by some of the industry’s leading manufacturers on what they believe separates their brand from the pack. That is expressly directed at you, the retailer. But I will pose this question: How do you differentiate your brand to consumers? After all, your store is your brand. If you can’t tell me how your store is different than the one down the block, then you probably aren’t. (Don’t tell me you have better salespeople. They didn’t graduate from MIT and you didn’t hire Ford models.)

Remember, your store is your brand. Most consumers have awareness of only a handful of flooring brands, if that many. So much of their decision as to where to shop and hopefully purchase has to do with your store and brand. With that said, I recently came across an article that delved into the rules retailers should follow for creating a strong brand in their marketplace.

  1. Your brand must communicate your store’s image. Retail brands should serve as reinstatement of your store’s identification. It’s important to note that true brands build customer loyalty, even through economic downturns and recoveries. The quality of the merchandise should be communicated effectively. For instance, you can instantly tell the difference between Target and Saks Fifth Avenue every step of the way, from the exterior to the signage and throughout the interior.
  2. Top management must be committed to supporting the brand’s strategy. Private-label branding should not be a function of individual buyers within a category that are autonomous from each other. Top management needs to synergistically work with a skilled marketing team. Your store brand must be broader than any individual item in the store or single category. XYZ Flooring must encompass carpet, wood, tile, LVT, etc., and be overarching.
  3. Create your store brand cohesively. It’s not usually a good practice to imitate other brands, at least not if your purpose is to build store brand or company name equity. You don’t want consumers to think of you as “like Target” or “like Nordstrom” or like anything else for that matter.
  4. Define your store’s point of differentiation. Retailers need to know and understand their target consumer, and the store brand should reflect the store-branding philosophy and image of the store.
  5. Be unique to generate curiosity. Invest in innovation to maintain the leading edge and reinforce brand equity. Refrain from “look-alike” marketing. Doing so will only breed confusion. You must build consumer confidence that your store is better.
  6. Design and implement attractive store merchandising. Always be aware of the quality perception compared to your competition. Analyze how best to present the products to the consumer and avoid the rubber-stamp approach. You will also want an overall, consistent look that consolidates store brand imaging. (The buying groups do this effectively.) The consumer visualizes a product through merchandising. Then she forms an opinion about value and performance.
  7. Position your store brand effectively in each product category. Retain your stylistic relationship to the overall private brand program.
  8. Your brand must reflect the price, quality and value strategy of your store. In other words, market from the position you’re in. There is such a thing as “over doing” it, and it will hurt your credibility with the consumer.
  9. Renew excitement with each new product you carry. New products deserve attention and fanfare. Retailers own their showroom and the ability to create and stimulate interest. Use advertising, promotions and point-of-purchase displays to create the right attention.
  10. Monitor your brands constantly. Make sure each brand you carry reflects your own brand identity. Analyze consumer shopping habits and performance. Never become complacent. Make modifications if necessary.
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Power of brands: Quality products, service stand out in a crowd

August 14/21: Volume 32, Issue 5

By Lindsay Baillie

Screen Shot 2017-08-22 at 3.51.42 PMA well-known brand has great influence in the mind of the consumer; it can affect her positively or negatively, research shows. According to Latham & Co., a brand consultancy, a strong brand contains incredible power—not just how it is perceived in the world, but also how it redefines the competitive landscape, connects with prospects and influencers, creates memorable experiences, builds lasting relationships and helps leaders better manage people, resources and profits.

For many flooring dealers, brands matter, especially when products and services are backed by the companies they represent. “A strong brand brings awareness of mind,” said Kevin Rose, president and owner, Carpetland Color Tile, Rockford, Ill. “This is good for all flooring retailers as we battle for the consumer’s disposable income.”

A strong brand can also draw attention to a particular flooring store. As Mary Ann Gore, office manager, Bridgeport Carpets, Alpharetta, Ga., explains: “For example, if a customer is new to an area and does an Internet search on local retailers, she is typically going to look for a product that is familiar to her.”

While name recognition holds a certain importance for flooring brands, dealers can also benefit from established name recognition. Case in point is Ted’s Abbey Carpet & Floor, with multiple locations in Alabama. “We have really tried to market our store’s names to the consumers in our market area,” said Ted Gregerson, president and owner, “We feel like we have done a really good job of it, because consumers in our market refer to us as simply ‘Abbey.’ We feel if our consumers trust us and our own Abbey brand, then they will have confidence in all the products we sell.”

The strength inside the original COREtec floors
Screen Shot 2017-08-22 at 3.39.29 PMUSFloors is regarded as the originator of the WPC category—true disruptors and innovators in the industry. It is committed to providing beautiful and durable floors at an excellent value while minimizing the impact on the environment whenever possible. The COREtec brand is focused on providing an exceptional customer experience throughout the new flooring purchase.

USFloors knows today’s consumers value authenticity over perfection—from brands, experiences and daily life. They seek to engage with brands that mirror that authenticity—brands that stand up for what they believe and deliver upon it. Expectations of a brand’s intuitive nature drive their interest. When it comes to purchasing a new floor, they want to make a smart, practical choice—one that reflects their originality and can be enjoyed for years to come. USFloors addresses these consumer needs in a way that satisfies and delights them from initial inspiration to final installation. COREtec is perfect for expressing the originality and creativity that lives within them. USFloors provides an ever-evolving portfolio of waterproof floors that embody style and strength that can withstand whatever real life has in store for the consumer.

In addition to authenticity, consumers share a common driving need for simplicity in this era of ever-expanding choices. The number of flooring options has expanded dramatically, leaving today’s consumers feeling overwhelmed and under extreme pressure to make the right purchase decisions. With the average floor shopping process lasting more than five months, consumers will reward easy, simple and trustworthy brands. They seek out brands that receive high accolades on style and performance and are recommended by peers with real world experiences.

The entrepreneurial passion that lives within the core of USFloors drives the company to redefine the way consumers discover COREtec floors. Consumers are drawn to attributes that inspire them and shopping experiences that match the high standards they set for the products themselves. Today’s consumer can identify an original, and USFloors believes they applaud an approachable brand that is smart, modern and bold. They can feel the commitment of style and performance and appreciate the result of the American dream. They recognize products that are unique and sustainable and want to be loyal to the brands that deliver on a promise. As the original COREtec floors, USFloors is rewarded by their sense of style and practical purchases.

USFloors is thrilled to be at the helm of this young industry brand. The company sets no boundaries and has an endless future of solutions ahead. COREtec will erupt into 2018 with vigor to share its successful innovations and leadership with consumers nationwide. Throughout it all, USFloors will continue to create value and a healthy platform for growth for its retail partners.

USFloors and COREtec—authentic to the core.

 

The power in the family of brands
Screen Shot 2017-08-22 at 3.39.39 PMMohawk enjoys global brand recognition as the world’s largest flooring manufacturer. With facilities and manufacturing operations across the nation, Mohawk is committed to American-made manufacturing and the communities and families it impacts on a daily basis. From product conception to the manufacturing process to the transportation of products, Mohawk employees are providing the foundations for homes and businesses around the world.
The power of brand and its attributes is vastly important for infrequent purchase categories such as flooring. Strong branding gives consumers peace of mind, allowing them to feel confident about their investment. Retailers–both large and small–leverage the power of the Mohawk brand around the world each and every day.

Mohawk and its family of brands are among the most well known in the flooring industry. These include: Aladdin, American Olean, American Rug Craftsmen, Century, Columbia, Daltile, Durkan, IVC, Karastan, Marazzi, Moduleo, Mohawk Group, Mohawk Home, Pergo, Q-Wood, Quick-Step, Ragno and SolidTech. The company’s vertically integrated manufacturing and distribution processes provide competitive advantages in the production of carpet, carpet tile, rugs, ceramic tile, laminate, hardwood, stone and luxury vinyl flooring. The enterprise-wide innovations yield products and technologies that are differentiated in the marketplace.

The organization invests heavily in the Mohawk brand by way of lead generation, advertising, digital marketing, public relations, merchandising, point-of-sale, innovative products and national promotions, just to name a few. These efforts result in high consumer recognition and increased profit margins for Mohawk’s retailers.

The primary reason Mohawk invests in its family of brands is to deliver qualified consumer leads to its valued retail partners. The current pace of change in the flooring industry requires new programs that give its retailers the inside track to stay ahead of the competition.

 

A brand built on service, innovation and progress
Screen Shot 2017-08-22 at 3.39.44 PMHonesty, integrity and passion set the stage 50 years ago and have served as the foundation from which Shaw Floors was established. Since that time, the company’s values remain true while Shaw Floors has transformed from a single category producer to a leading, total flooring brand with a forward-focused dedication to servicing our customers and the end-user consumer. Shaw is proud of its heritage and grateful for the confidence retailers have demonstrated over the years.

The celebration of Shaw’s 50th anniversary this year is marked by its corporate vision of creating a better future: for its customers, its people and the communities it serves. As Shaw reflects on the important milestones of its past, it is reminded that progress isn’t achieved by resting on previous successes, but by looking to the future and empowering its associates to lead the company into a new era of innovation.

One thing that remains constant is the Shaw Floors brand is synonymous with flooring expertise. The company prides itself on being pioneers of design and innovation and won’t settle for anything less than exceptional service. All of these elements are trademarks of the Shaw brand, reinforced each year through the many surveys and rankings voted on by its valued retail partners. Shaw Floors feels honored that the breadth of its product portfolio earns the company the unique ability to provide consumers with flooring that makes sense for their space. Through our products and services, the consumer’s design vision comes to life.

Shaw Floors has demonstrated continuous leadership not only through its company values but also through cutting-edge innovations such as: its patent-pending Floorté PRO collection, offering the industry’s first direct-glue rigid core products; its completely redesigned EPIC Plus engineered hardwood line featuring the Extreme Nature collection, which boasts the longest, widest hardwood planks made in the USA; its revolutionary LifeGuard waterproof carpet backing technology protecting against life’s mishaps to give consumers the cleanest carpet for healthy living; and its exclusive sound-abatement research and proprietary intelligence depicting a comprehensive landscape of today’s consumer. These products and services, plus many others, provide retailers with solutions that ultimately give consumers confidence in their investment. Shaw Floors will continue heavily investing in its shared industry in an effort to drive market understanding, demand and brand preference, and it appreciate the partnership with retailers.

 

A name synonymous with unique style, fashion and design
Screen Shot 2017-08-22 at 3.39.51 PMDealers and distributors who carry the Provenza brand attest to its association with high style and design. After all, according to Ron Sadri, president, it was Provenza who helped usher in the handscraped trend about 20 years ago. The company said it was also responsible for innovations such as custom-infused colors, oil finishes and other creative surface treatments such as reactive staining—a technique that’s common across the industry today.

“Our focus on setting the trend for fashion and design in hardwood flooring makes us truly unique,” Sadri said. “Our distributors and retail partners see us as the leader in our market while others are followers.”

That industry recognition was demonstrated at Surfaces 2017 earlier this year, when Provenza walked away with a Best of Show award in the category of style and design for its Colour Nation Lighthouse Cove collection, a line of wide-plank flooring featuring multiple stains, colors and surface treatments. “It was a confirmation from the judges and the dealers that our products stand out from everyone else,” Sadri said. “People really understand Provenza and they appreciate the creativity we put behind every line we produce.”

But for Provenza, high style and design doesn’t necessarily have to translate into products that exceed the reach of mainstream consumers. “We always try to make products that are affordable to the consumer,” Sadri said. “That makes it easier for dealers to go to our products and pick everything from good quality and moderate pricing all the way up to a designer look.”

 

A leader in private labeling
Screen Shot 2017-08-22 at 3.39.56 PMBBOSS is a true industry leader when it comes to the specialty of private labeling. Established in 2008, this fast-growing company is intent on raising the bar for private label and providing its clients with new ways to sustain long-term growth in today’s highly competitive wood flooring market.

The BBOSS approach begins with a factory direct relationship and eliminating unnecessary costs. Dealing direct with the manufacturer and U.S. supporting offices gives clients peace of mind that they have both local and international support.

BBOSS attributes its tremendous success to providing clients with a unique partnership, which helps them drive business while reducing their costs. Additionally, BBOSS offers a full breadth of products, from entry level to multiple upgraded visuals, all from one mill, with the flexibility to mix on any order as needed.

With one of the most knowledgeable and experienced teams in the industry, BBOSS stays on top of ever-changing market trends related to engineered and solid hardwood flooring. The team partners with each private label client, guiding them through the process of developing and growing their own brand and designs products that meet consumer trends and are tailored to their specific market. BBOSS provides a high level of customer service, thanks in part to the company’s award-winning education and training programs.

But perhaps the best advantage of all is BBOSS offers differentiation in all facets of private label, which is a unique way for a retailer’s brand to stand out in an otherwise crowded market.

To learn more about private labeling, contact BBOSS at bbossinc.com or call 855-442-2677.

 

Better together
Screen Shot 2017-08-22 at 3.40.01 PMFor more than 130 years, Tarkett has been at the foundation of creating more beautiful spaces and unlocking the infinite possibilities that happen when people come together.

Tarkett is creating together, honoring its values of collaboration to create something worth more than the sum of its parts. The company is building brands together by uniting its family of brands—Tandus Centiva, Johnsonite and Desso—to ensure they are designed to work together.

Tarkett is designing together, working with designers inside and outside the industry to challenge the way floor coverings can be used.
It is also working together to deliver products and ideas that anticipate where the workplace is headed.

Tarkett is inspiring together, pushing the boundaries of design and using its flooring in bold new ways. More importantly, Tarkett is doing good together, leading sustainable business practices and prioritizing the health of people and the planet.

At Tarkett, together is simply better.

 

Providing quality, service and coordinating products for every hardwood floor
Screen Shot 2017-08-22 at 3.40.06 PMPennwood continuously pursues high standards in manufacturing and marketing of flooring transitions, stair products and vents. The Pennwood staff studies and researches trends in design, color and finish.

The company currently matches 6,000 different hardwood floors, ranging in color, style and textures with standard boards all held in the Pennwood Color Library. Pennwood employees take pride in their craftsmanship and as long as the company has the color standard, it can custom produce a retailer’s stair treads or flooring transition with a normal turnaround time of two to three weeks.

Pennwood believes in partnering and can customize a program for a retailer’s specific needs. The company can produce various fixed lengths in moldings and stair treads. It also offers random length flooring transitions up to 12 feet, which is increasingly popular in the builder and multi-family market segments.

Today the Pennwood brand means uncompromising value, known for innovation and a driving force within the industry. Pennwood is synonymous with a “we can do” attitude.

 

A brand is best built in person
Screen Shot 2017-08-22 at 3.40.10 PMA brand is a company’s biggest asset, according to Thomas Trissl, principal, HPS Schönox. Furthermore, cultivating relationships is a crucial part of building a company’s brand.

“All the advertising and marketing we do is important, but nothing replaces the value of face-to-face conversations like those we have on a daily basis on the jobsite with installers, in an office with architects/designers or in the warehouse with our distributors,” Trissl explained. “A brand mirrors the expectation of prospective customers and the experience of existing customers.”

Schönox, HPS North America has developed a promotional strategy of combining multimedia, product education and exceptional customer support while maintaining communication to strengthen existing relationships and establish new ones.

With these relationships, the Schönox brand can grow and build a legacy that presents key qualities in the market.

Exceptional quality, service and knowledge
Screen Shot 2017-08-22 at 3.44.13 PMThe two factors that consistently and unequivocally set a brand apart from others in its category are quality and service, and Bamboo Hardwoods does just that.

From the company’s humble beginnings growing bamboo and innovating products from its own groves to becoming an industry powerhouse, Bamboo Hardwoods’ foundation of bamboo knowledge has always given it a competitive edge. Every product made is done so with meticulous quality and care using premium adhesives, finishes and modern technologies, while taking time to produce the perfect product. In addition, Bamboo Hardwoods has revolutionized bamboo flooring by focusing on what consumers demand most: trendsetting style and design. The emphasis on aesthetics elevated bamboo flooring from a niche product to being regarded as another attractive choice in the hardwood flooring category.

When it comes to customer service, Bamboo Hardwoods transcends the business-client relationship by focusing on establishing rapport and sincere connections with its customers. With multiple warehouse locations across the United States and fully stocked East and West coast warehouses, customers can rest assured knowing they will promptly receive the product desired.

Bamboo Hardwoods is dedicated to continuing its reigning status as a pioneer of the specialty flooring industry.

 

A brand with a vision
Screen Shot 2017-08-22 at 3.44.20 PMThe Novalis Innovative Flooring brand was started in 1984 and began actual production of product in 1986–the first luxury vinyl flooring facility built by anyone in China.

Since that time, Novalis has accomplished a record of other “firsts”: Novalis was the first Chinese LVT manufacturer to achieve ISO 9001 certification. Novalis was the first with an ISO 14001 environmental certificate. And Novalis is the first and only Chinese LVT brand certified with OHSAS 18001. Novalis was very happy to be the first Chinese LVT manufacturer with a fully localized Environmental Product Declaration, Health Product Declaration and Declare labeling, all being introduced in 2015.

On this foundation of sustainable, quality design and engineering accomplishments, Novalis launched its NovaFloor brand in North America over five years ago. NovaFloor is made primarily for the American floor covering retail channel, and is sold through distributors and their dealers for the residential and Main Street commercial markets.

At NeoCon East 2015, Novalis officially unveiled its new commercial LVT brand for North America called “AVA.” AVA stands for Advanced Vinyl Artistry and is made for the commercial specified market. Capri Cork manages the AVA brand in the U.S. and Canada through its extensive list of dedicated commercial agents.

Always guiding the brand’s development is its “vision” that encompasses three key principles: art, quality and nature.

When it comes to LVT, Novalis views “art” as the authentic reproductions of natural elements to create imaginative, inspiring spaces.

Novalis “quality” means an investment in the research and performance to make the best LVT possible.

And the Novalis vision for “nature” is all about producing its product responsibly while conserving energy and resources.

Learn more at novalisinnovativeflooring.com.

 

Innovative brand spread its wings
Screen Shot 2017-08-22 at 3.45.39 PMEngineered Floors, the third-largest carpet company in the world, has continued its singular mission to be the flooring brand of choice. This year Engineered Floors revamped its digital presence with a new website to align its family of brands under a common theme: “We have one mission. Make the best carpet in the world.” The new site (engineeredfloors.com) showcases Engineered Floors’ complete family of brands and its drive to “intersect” with customers’ desires for style, durability, comfort, quality and tradition. It combines new room scene photography, links to the company’s varied social media platforms and advanced functionality to make it easier and more engaging to use.

The company’s new website, along with the new signature for its advertising, reinforces the strength of Engineered Floors in its collection of brands, each aimed at a specific flooring segment. The Engineered Floors family of brands consists of: Dream Weaver for residential replacement; Pentz Commercial Flooring Solutions for Main Street; DWellings for new home construction; and Engineered Floors Multifamily.

The company is also bringing to market new innovations including a commercial polyester fiber, advanced polyester extrusion (Apex SDP) under the Pentz Commercial Solutions brand. The offering includes the styles Revival and Revolution, which join the widely successful original Apex SDP styles Quicksilver and Fast Break.

In addition, Engineered Floors is rapidly completing a new, state-of-the-art carpet tile manufacturing facility in Dalton. The move is in response to the growing demand for modular carpet tile for Main Street applications.

The initial phase of the plant, expected to open in January 2018, will total 520,000 square feet. This will be the fourth new facility the company has built in northwest Georgia since 2009.

 

The power of a strong brand partnership
Screen Shot 2017-08-22 at 3.45.43 PMWith more than 65 years of proven innovation, market leadership and dedication to quality, Scotchgard has the protective products and brand strength to help make our partners successful. A brand partnership with Scotchgard Protector strengthens the value of the host brand and creates opportunities that can:

•Increase edge over competition
•Build brand equity in new markets
•Increase sales
•Grow market penetration
•Expand credibility to both brands

The Scotchgard brand name has been synonymous with protection for multiple generations. Invented in the 1950s and protecting floors from their owners since the 1970s, Scotchgard Protector has become one of the leading brands of stain, spill and soil protection in markets around the world.

When companies have a history of selling products that are dependable, reliable and in line with consumer needs, consumers begin to develop trust in the product and loyalty to the brand. The real power in the Scotchgard Brand is that it represents that one last thing consumers want when they purchase a product—peace of mind. It can close the sale.

 

Where innovation is a way of life
Screen Shot 2017-08-22 at 3.45.48 PMPhenix Flooring is more than just another manufacturer—it’s a flooring experience. From designing and developing premium products to its commitment to advancing research, development and production through the latest state-of-the-art technologies, Phenix makes innovation a way of life. Through this commitment, Phenix continues to grow and serve its customers with passion, values and an unwavering dedication to the production of quality products.

With the launch of the Cleaner Home collection, Phenix delivers on this mantra by offering a line rich in color and design with proactive technologies such as Microban, Opulance HD and Surefresh that provide optimal antimicrobial protection, stain resistance and prolonged beauty at an affordable price.

Above all, Phenix strives to deliver the highest standard of service to its clients. As a Pharr Family company, Phenix is backed by generations of manufacturing genius, flanked by supportive brands.

 

Powered by quality and service for more than 30 years
Screen Shot 2017-08-22 at 3.45.57 PMOffering superior quality products has always been Mirage’s No. 1 priority. Maintaining this quality consistency is the daily challenge and a goal that each employee strives to attain. This commitment to excellence speaks to the dedication, devotion and knowledge of Mirage’s people—from the worker in the plant to the sales representatives in the field.

That quality extends to the service it provides. For more than 30 years the staff at Mirage has pursued a common goal: To go above and beyond customer expectations and adapt to her needs. This is what Mirage’s legacy is built on.

The numerous quality awards Mirage has received in the last decade—more than 30—is a testament to the company’s unwavering efforts. Indeed, quality has powered the Mirage brand for more than 30 years and will continue to for another 30 years. This success does not mean Mirage can rest on its laurels; quality is a journey, not a destination.

 

Steeped in tradition
Screen Shot 2017-08-22 at 3.46.02 PMFor over 60 years, DriTac Flooring Products has manufactured premium-grade adhesives and installation solutions for the wood and resilient floor covering markets.

DriTac was established in 1956, offering one product—DriTac 6200—that continues to stand the test of time several decades later. Since then, DriTac, via its state-of-the-art laboratory and research facility in the U.S., has expanded its product line and is currently one of a few adhesive manufacturers to offer all the major technologies: urethane, MS polymer, pressure sensitive, acrylic and more. DriTac has become a leader in developing wood flooring adhesives that offer sound and moisture control with a single-component, one-step application.

A trailblazer in cultivating environmentally friendly flooring adhesives and installation products, DriTac offers a full line of zero VOC, zero solvent and independently tested products that have been certified by the Carpet and Rug Institute’s Green Label Plus Program for Indoor Air Quality.

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Power of brands: Flooring brands still pack a big punch

August 22/29, 2016; Volume 31, Number 5

By Ken Ryan

A flooring brand isn’t like an automobile moniker, at least not to the naked eye. Virtually every vehicle on the road is adorned with a logo or a name, or a distinct style that defines its make and model. With flooring, the average consumer may not know the brand of carpet or hardwood floor installed in her home.

But does that make the power and influence of a flooring brand any less important than a car brand? To many flooring dealers, brands definitely matter, especially when those brands are backed by people and companies that stand behind their products and programs.

Steve Weisberg, president of Crest Flooring in Allentown, Pa., said while some flooring manufacturers have tried to establish brand equity with consumers “without too much success, it is more important for me to sell the products of those manufacturers who support us with the right quality and service so we in turn know they have our backs.”

Elisabeth Stubbs, president of Floors & More in Marietta, Ga., said given the amount of online research consumers do today as part of their decision making process, consumers are likely to seek out manufacturers with good reputations. “Flooring is expensive and consumers do not want to make a mistake. A well-known established brand synonymous with quality gives the purchaser a sense of security they are making a smart investment in their home.”

Manufacturers aren’t the only ones with brand equity in flooring. Retailers have significant brand power in their own markets. For more than 20 years, The Flooring Gallery has served the Louisville, Ky., metro market, now with five stores. Nick Freadreacea, president of The Flooring Gallery, cited one trend that seems to have taken hold is the importance of the independent dealer to his market. “Many people have come to realize how important it is to do business with a local company that is involved within their community,” he explained. “This has also led to the proliferation of private labeling which has enabled the retailer to put together his own grouping of the best items at competitive pricing. This allows him to be profitable enough to give good service and stand behind what he sells. The private-label items become the retailers’ brand, and that will be the salesperson’s first choice when showing products. We all know the professional floor covering retail salesperson has the most control of what the consumer is ultimately offered, and she wants something that separates it from a big box store.”

 

HF Design: Quality and reputation that stand out from the pack

Screen Shot 2016-08-29 at 1.06.52 PMEstablishing a reputable, quality-driven brand that flooring distributors, dealers and homeowners can recognize is becoming increasingly important in today’s saturated marketplace. There are more import brokers trying to penetrate the market with unsustainable price points just to gain showroom space. Unfortunately, in many cases these brokers cut corners in terms of finish quality, substrate construction, production processes and even delivery. This is very evident when you compare samples side by side.

At HF Design, it is the company’s responsibility to make sure it conveys in its marketing message that the company is FloorScore certified, its raw materials are sourced from legally harvested forests, its plywood cores are CARB II compliant and that it uses the highest quality German finishes for long-lasting floors. More importantly, HF Design’s quality assurance team inspects every plank. Furthermore, by partnering with the best distributors in the industry, HF Design has been able to introduce the newest collections and styles at affordable prices that its retailers can then confidently sell to homeowners.

 

Mohawk: The power in the family of brands

Screen Shot 2016-08-29 at 1.06.58 PMMohawk enjoys global brand recognition as the world’s largest flooring manufacturer. With facilities and manufacturing operations across the nation, Mohawk is committed to American-made manufacturing and the communities and families it impacts on a daily basis. From product conception, to the manufacturing process, to the transportation of products, Mohawk employees are providing the foundations for homes and businesses around the world.

The power of a brand and its attributes is vastly important for infrequent purchase categories such as flooring. Strong branding gives consumers peace of mind, allowing them to feel confident about their investment. Retailers—both large and small—leverage the power of the Mohawk brand around the world each and every day.

Mohawk and its family of brands are among the most well-known in the flooring industry. These include: American Olean, Century, Columbia, Daltile, Durkan, IVC, Karastan, Lees, Marazzi, Mohawk Group, Mohawk Home, Pergo, Q-Wood and Quick-Step. The company’s vertically integrated manufacturing and distribution processes provide competitive advantages in the production of carpet, carpet tile, rugs, ceramic tile, laminate, hardwood, stone and luxury vinyl flooring. The enterprise-wide innovations yield products and technologies that are differentiated in the marketplace.

The organization invests heavily in the Mohawk brand by way of lead generation, advertising, digital marketing, public relations, merchandising, point-of-sale, innovative products and national promotions, just to name a few. These efforts result in high consumer recognition and increased profit margins for Mohawk’s retailers.

The primary reason Mohawk invests in its family of brands is to deliver qualified consumer leads to its valued retail partners. The current pace of change in flooring products and flooring retail requires new programs that give its retailers the inside track to stay ahead of the competition.

 

Scotchgard: The merits of a strong brand partnership

Screen Shot 2016-08-29 at 1.35.19 PMWith more than 65 years of proven innovation, market leadership and dedication to quality, Scotchgard has the protective products and brand strength to help make 3M’s partners successful. A brand partnership with Scotchgard Protector strengthens the value of the host brand and creates opportunities that can:

  • Increase edge over competition
  • Build brand equity in new markets
  • Increase sales
  • Grow market penetration
  • Expand credibility to both brands

The Scotchgard brand name has been synonymous with protection for multiple generations. Invented in the 1950s and protecting floors from their owners since the 1970s, Scotchgard Protector has become one of the leading brands of stain, spill and soil protection in markets around the world.

When companies have a history of selling products that are dependable, reliable and in line with consumer needs, consumers begin to develop trust in the product and loyalty to the brand. The real power in the Scotchgard brand is that it represents that one last thing consumers want when they purchase your product—peace of mind. It can close the sale.

 

Mirage: Nurturing a passion for quality

Screen Shot 2016-08-29 at 1.35.34 PMManufacturing and marketing superior quality products has always been Mirage’s No. 1 priority. Achieving and maintaining this high level of quality is both a daily challenge and a goal that each of the company’s employees strives to attain. Among all the attributes that define Mirage, the two traits it is best known for are quality and consistency.

The quality is not just in the product but also in the quality of service Mirage provides its distribution partners and, in turn, flooring dealers. It has to do with the dedication and knowledge of the people, from the worker in the plant to the sales representative in the field. Mirage’s employees pursue the same goal: Going above and beyond customer expectations and constantly adapting to their needs.

This is the foundation on which Mirage’s reputation is built. The numerous quality awards received in the last decade—29, to be exact—prove the company’s efforts are producing results. It doesn’t mean Mirage can stop either because of its success; after all, quality is a journey, not a destination. Quality has always been the power of the Mirage brand for over 30 years with no plans to slow down. The company’s tagline says it all: Quality without compromise.

 

Beaulieu America: Quality, innovation and commitment

Screen Shot 2016-08-29 at 1.35.48 PMSome people define a brand by its exterior elements: name, logo, tagline. At Beaulieu America, the true essence of the brand is how people feel about the products and services. Therefore, the company’s main goal is to provide its customers with products that have unique, proprietary features and benefits driven by their needs. Moreover, Beaulieu strives to be known for its personalized service and for customers to feel as though they are valued members of Beaulieu’s extended corporate family.

To keep the Beaulieu America brand as focused and efficient as ever, marketing efforts have recently been concentrated on the company’s name. In the years ahead, the marketing strategy will raise awareness about the brand in its entirety. The Beaulieu name has been around for almost 40 years, and the company has grown to become one of the largest flooring manufacturers. These facts should shine through marketing initiatives. Complementing its core carpet manufacturing business, Beaulieu distributes engineered hardwood, laminate, luxury vinyl, engineered luxury vinyl and carpet tiles. In addition, Beaulieu’s Your HomeStyle is an innovative aligned dealer program and selling system featuring four distinct lifestyles. By understanding the customers’ taste and personal style, retail sales associates can match the product collection to suit their needs.

Quality, innovation and commitment—strong words for strong brand names such as Beaulieu and Your HomeStyle.

 

Urban Floor: Creativity and design at a great value

Screen Shot 2016-08-29 at 1.36.02 PMUrban Floor is proud of the company it has become in its relatively short history. Now entering its 13th year, Urban Floor’s focus has been to offer innovative and trendsetting products, with its management team constantly searching for new trends, styles and ideas from across the globe.

Urban Floor’s goal is to be on the cutting edge with new styles and bring these products to its dealers. New products that are not widely seen in competitors’ stores allow Urban Floor dealers to enjoy much higher profit margins. Trendsetting products such as the Villa Caprisi and Composer collections set the standards for wide/long planks and continue to be strong sellers.

In addition to innovative styles, Urban Floor offers a full range of popular “standards” from entry-level birch all the way up to a reclaimed look, 11½-inch wide European oak. Three additional launches are planned for late 2016.

Urban Floor’s vision is for its brand to be recognized for innovative products and designs at competitive pricing without sacrificing quality and excellent customer service.

 

WE Cork: Five generations of style and new product development

Screen Shot 2016-08-29 at 1.36.14 PMWE Cork represents the fifth generation in the cork industry. During this time the company has navigated through many economic cycles and myriad changes while employing the latest technology to offer the market the highest quality product with innovative visual design and great service.

The WE Cork brand offers the consumer and retailer a piece of mind that it carries a product line that meet expectations in performance as demonstrated by WECU (WE Cork Underlayments) for thermal and sound insulation under hard surface and LVT. WECU has never had a failure since its introduction in 1978.

WE Cork brand assures the due diligence in R&D for new technology as shown in the Serenity Collection, the company’s high-definition printed cork flooring, which can be customized for both residential and commercial applications. Furthermore, WE Cork service provides a live voice on the phone and technical answers within minutes. It’s all about providing the high quality and customer service associated with a strong brand.

 

HPS Schönox: A brand is best built in person

Screen Shot 2016-08-29 at 2.31.28 PMLate last year HPS Schönox announced the opening of its national support center in Florence, Ala. Customers from around the country have used the center for meetings, seminars and hands-on-training sessions.

“All the advertising and marketing we do is important, but nothing replaces the value of face-to-face conversations like those we have at the center,” said Thomas Trissl, principal, HPS Schönox. “Building a brand is tied directly to those personal interactions where you learn about the real-world challenges your customers face.”

The personal approach to building the Schönox brand is reflected in its sales and support teams. Regional business managers are present at jobsites across the country on a daily basis, helping flooring professionals address tough subfloor challenges.

“We have a hands-on approach at HPS Schönox with our team getting involved to work side by side with customers,” said Doug Young, executive vice president, HPS Schönox. “In the field, building the Schönox brand is about fully supporting customers on both the business and technical sides of every project.”

 

Wicanders: Leading the rediscovery of cork’s features

Screen Shot 2016-08-29 at 2.31.43 PMWicanders, and the Amorim family of brands, have become synonymous with leadership and innovation in the realm of cork. In a world in which researchers, architects and designers are embracing ecological and natural materials, Wicanders has positioned itself to lead the renaissance and rediscovery of cork’s features and benefits within the flooring industry.

Over the years Wicanders has developed floor and wall coverings with exclusive properties due to its innovative Corktech technology. By using a unique engineered multilayer structure, which combines state of the art technology with the exclusive natural properties of cork, a higher standard in flooring was achieved. Corktech technology creates products that provide more silence, more thermal insulation, more walking comfort, more body wellness and more impact resistance. Creating a flooring product that is the holy grail of flooring: beauty combined with the functionality and benefits of both a hard and soft surface.

Using and combining different shapes of natural cork, Wicanders’ team of experts and trendsetters created a unique collection that results in a new approach in decoration, in harmony with nature and human emotions.

The style, charm and sophistication of these genuine natural designs create an atmosphere of authenticity and character.

In short, the Wicanders brand is defining the world of cork flooring.

 

DuChâteau: Pursuing innovation and the natural aesthetic

Screen Shot 2016-08-29 at 2.31.56 PMEsteemed by designers, DuChâteau is a luxury lifestyle brand that has set the pace for many of its peers. It’s a visionary company that looks to break the mold of traditional flooring manufacturers to assume a bigger, more luxurious place in the minds of consumers as the sexy “it” brand. No wonder DuChâteau has been listed on Inc. 5000’s Fast Growing Companies several years running.

Thanks to founders Benjamin Buzali and Misael Tagle, DuChâteau cemented itself as the rebellious brand that refuses to accept less than the best—the ultimate in product quality and service. It’s a trademark philosophy that Buzali and Tagle brings to every aspect of their business from its first rate, fashion-forward marketing to the construction of their ultra-elegant headquarters in San Diego. It’s a “live the life” atmosphere, where DuChâteau actually practices what it preaches. Without this, DuChâteau would not be what it is today.

DuChâteau continuously pursues innovation and the natural aesthetic. Launching hard-wax oiled floors in the then-untapped American market was only the beginning. Moving into wall coverings was also a bold step outside the box. This ever-expanding universe of DuChâteau is what makes the brand so attractive. Bold and vivacious. DuChâteau never takes a direction that does not reaffirm its rather unshakeable commitment to sustainability and customer service. These have formed the pillars of a brand that has become a driving force within the industry.

 

MP Global Products: Dare to be different—the story of QuietWalk

Screen Shot 2016-08-29 at 2.32.06 PMAs 2017 nears, MP Global Products begins preparations for its 20th anniversary. While the early days were spent concentrating on carpet padding, the company’s research and development led to the creation of an acoustic underlayment designed to lie beneath a new flooring category that arrived on U.S. shores in 1994: laminate.

MP Global’s QuietWalk underlayment was completely different than the many foam products that were already on the market. Manufactured primarily with recycled fibers from the carpet and textile industries, MP Global created a very unique product that quickly became popular through distribution and large retailers.

The result was a very effective product for protecting and silencing hard surface floating floors, which made them sound more like attached real wood. Not only was it good for the overlying floor, but it was also beneficial for the environment because it was recycled material. You might say MP Global was green before the movement became popular.

MP Global’s company’s focus early on was to build the product brand of QuietWalk vs. the company name—which evolved from Midwest Padding to MP Global Products. The strategy worked well, and although MP Global has other private-labeled products, QuietWalk remains a bestseller.

Today, architects and designers specify QuietWalk by name—it is one of the leading brands for use in multi-family housing to deaden impact noise between floors in condominiums and apartment buildings.

 

Inhaus: A drive to be the best in home design

Screen Shot 2016-08-29 at 2.32.17 PMIn just its 15th year in North America, the Inhaus brand possesses a rich European heritage as one of the pioneers and largest producers of laminate floors. Seeking to be the best rather than the biggest, Inhaus continues to strengthen its position in the industry with a passion for design that is reflected in a few core facets of its brand.

Design forward. Inhaus continually watches global trends and develops new designs. This year, parent company Classen completed a major investment in building a 100,000-square-foot design center in Germany where its team of designers and master carpenters work full-time on new designs, enabling Inhaus, the North American marketing arm, to enhance its product offering with original and constant design innovation.

Boutique excellence. This approach speaks to the personal passion Inhaus has for its products, and to the belief that design is more than just technical performance or surface aesthetic. Inhaus strives to offer a carefully and professionally curated selection of only the most current and relevant on-trend floors.

German engineered. All of Inhaus’ laminate flooring is precision crafted in Germany, which is synonymous with high standards of engineering. This focus on technological developments has led to multiple proprietary technologies, such as Megaloc, the company’s patented angle-drop installation system. With continuous investments in R&D and technology Inhaus is able to enhance its product offering with uncompromising value and production flexibility. The latest product innovation, SONO, due to launch later this year, is an entirely new category of waterproof flooring. It is made from a ceramic composite core without the use of PVC, formaldehyde or phthalates.

Ultimately, all of the attributes that make up the Inhaus brand capture a love for home design that is shared by its customers.

 

Pedross America: Moldings to match every wood floor

Screen Shot 2016-08-29 at 2.32.25 PMPedross America offers the highest quality and perfectly stained-to-match moldings for every engineered and hardwood floor on the market. The company’s unique price point, the superior quality and the unbeaten matching capabilities are key to Pedross’ success. It is a success the company shares with its customer base all across the United States and Canada. The company’s aim is to make its partners more successful and competitive by offering a min/max system to ensure their business can become more profitable.

Pedross recently started production at its new, state-of-the-art facility in Virginia with the goal of providing even shorter lead times and better service to its customers. Once fully functional, Pedross will be able to offer customers a two-day lead time from the time they place an order until it ships. Pedross’ newly developed direct ship program coupled with a wide range of different wood species provide its customers the flexibility they need and gives them the freedom to decide whether to stock moldings at their location or let Pedross help with the shipping. There are no order minimums.

Innovative companies like Pedross America are continuously moving forward. The future of your business cannot wait.

 

Wickham Hardwood Flooring: Committed to customers—and the environment

Screen Shot 2016-08-29 at 2.32.39 PMWickham Hardwood Flooring has emerged as one of North America’s premier flooring companies, winning a Best of Surfaces award at the 2016 show in Las Vegas as well as other prestigious industry honors.

With a critical eye for new looks, colors and textures, Wickham is viewed as a leader in style and innovation. Located near Drummondville in Wickham, Quebec, Wickham Hardwood Flooring was founded in 1989. With determination and years of hard work, the company has come to play a major role in today’s market and earned worldwide recognition for its products.

Wickham Hardwood Flooring has continued to stay on the forefront of the newest and safest finishes the industry has to offer. The company has chosen two of the finest companies in the world to partner with on its oil finishes—Akzo Nobel and Woca. Akzo and Woca are known to the world as innovators and manufacturers of the best finishes.

More importantly, Wickham has always been committed to looking out for the environment and its customers’ well-being and peace of mind. That peace of mind comes from working with some of North America’s most reputable lumber suppliers over the past 25 years—companies that stand behind their products and have gained a level of trust that is so important in today’s marketplace.

Customers can enjoy peace of mind knowing Wickham flooring will not cause any long-term damage to the environment. It is produced entirely in North America, where forest management and timber production are subject to the most strict environmental laws and regulations in the world.

 

Shaw Floors: A brand built on service, progress and growth

Screen Shot 2016-08-29 at 2.32.47 PMHonesty, integrity and passion set the stage almost 50 years ago and served as the foundation from which the future largest manufacturer of carpet was established. Since that time, the company’s values still remain true, but Shaw Floors has transformed from a single-category producer to a leading, total flooring brand with a laser-focused dedication to servicing its customers and the consumer. Shaw is proud of its heritage and even more grateful for the confidence its loyal customers have shown over the years.

The Shaw Floors brand is synonymous with quality, service and flooring expertise. That is reinforced each year through many surveys and rankings voted on by retail partners. The company is honored that the breadth of its product portfolio earns Shaw Floors the unique ability to provide consumers with flooring that’s right for them. Through Shaw Floors’ products and services, the consumers’ design vision comes to life, enhancing their safe haven and oftentimes largest investment—their home.

Shaw Floors has demonstrated continuous leadership through its company values and cutting- edge innovations such as R2X, the industry’s premier stain and soil resistance protection; the completely redesigned Epic Plus engineered hardwood; the award-winning shawfloors.com; the revolutionary FloorVana app; and the company’s exclusive LifeGuard technology found in Shaw Floors carpet and enhanced vinyl plank, Floorté, which protects against spills and life’s mishaps. These products and services, plus many others, provide retailers with solutions that ultimately give consumers confidence in their investment.

 

USFloors: A label that personifies power and performance

Screen Shot 2016-08-29 at 2.32.59 PMA successful brand requires laser focus and a consistent message that resonates with the consumer. For the last 15 years, USFloors has carved out a message as a leading manufacturer and distributor of unique and sustainable flooring in the bamboo, wood, cork and COREtec/WPC segments.

As the world leader in WPC flooring, USFloors understands the importance and power of brand—specifically the patented COREtec brand. Today, COREtec The Original is the most widely recognized and respected brand in the WPC category. USFloors leads the segment in innovation and design with an excitement level that has not been seen since the emergence of laminate in the mid 1990s. COREtec offers consumers a worry-free flooring option along with numerous features and benefits that cannot be found in luxury vinyl plank, sheet vinyl, laminate or hardwood.

USFloors also continues to lead with its latest introductions—COREtec Plus HD and COREtec Plus Design. The HD Collection features embossed in register technology along with a four-side enhanced bevel edge in 15 rustic wood décor SKUs. The Design collection consists of multi-tonal and multi-width plank and tile visuals in 10 SKUs. With these 25 summer 2016 introductions, USFloors again sets a standard that others will chase.

USFloors will continue its leadership role in innovation and design, bringing to market the designs, decors and technological advancements that today’s consumers demand.

 

 

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Power of brands: The importance of loyalty, trust, promises

Aug. 17/24; Volume 30/Number 5

By Jenna Lippin


Screen Shot 2015-08-26 at 11.37.31 AM
Brand recognition plays a major role in a company’s ranking in the marketplace, with customers being more inclined to buy from a name they know and trust. Consumers connect with brands on deeper levels as they represent visual, emotional and cultural images associated with a company or product. While the most popular brands in the marketplace are typically associated with an image, logo or tagline, these things aren’t necessary for a business to create branding.

According to How-To-Branding.com, a website that offers tools for successful branding and marketing, a business’ brand is “the sum of everything your organization is, says and does.” A key for any business is having control of a brand. With less control, there is less recognition—and therefore less trust—in the marketplace.

Consumers will pay a premium for products under a brand name that will serve them best. Think of luxury car brands like Mercedes-Benz or Lexus—higher quality, performance and top-notch customer service are synonymous with these brands, making people more inclined to buy from them. How about Starbucks? Coffee that is double the price of that from a store like Dunkin’ Donuts, but a high-end image with personalized service, makes the cost worth it for Starbucks’ loyal following.

Screen Shot 2015-08-26 at 11.39.00 AMThe brand experience

In “How Starbucks’ Branding Brewed More Than Just a Cup of Coffee,” Giana Pacinelli wrote about “The Starbucks Experience,” explaining why the chain represents so much more than a morning cup of java. One important element of the experience is a marketing strategy that illustrates it.

In the fall of 2014 Starbucks launched an advertising campaign called “Meet Me At Starbucks,” in which the brand focused on the customer experience rather than products. “[T]hat more than coffee feeling that you get from being at Starbucks,” Pacinelli wrote. In the campaign the brand created a sort of documentary filmed in 59 stores in 28 countries over one 24-hour period. In a 60-second spot, the commercial chronicled people who gathered at Starbucks for more than a caffeine boost. Along with TV spots, a YouTube channel and display ads, Meet Me At Starbucks promoted the #HowWeMet hashtag for Instagram, encouraging customers to take photos capturing how people have met. The campaign has been present across all social media channels, giving more consumers the opportunity to connect with the brand on a more personal level.

Gaining trust, loyalty

A key finding in Q1 of 2014 by Huge, an international digital marketing firm that helps “transform brands” and “grow business,” was that a brand is built over time thanks to trust “that results from the fulfillment of promises made by the brand to the customer. However, this trust is fickle. If a promise is not fulfScreen Shot 2015-08-26 at 11.38.03 AMilled in other interactions (e.g. point of sale, in the product itself, word of mouth, etc.), it will not grow.”

As any consumer knows, there is an extreme amount of brand competition in the marketplace today, and it is constantly growing thanks to social media, digital marketing, etc. Thus, brands have to do more to differentiate themselves—to appeal in a unique way and deliver on promises in order to build brand loyalty.

Brand loyalty isn’t based on prices or what a consumer will spend, but relies upon shoppers’ perceptions, which are developed through marketing, advertising, reputation and previous experiences.

As per Retention Science, an organization that helps marketers understand customer data and predict customer actions, “Customers who are loyal to a brand remain customers because they believe you offer a better service and higher quality than anyone else, regardless of pricing or other financial reasons.” This, in essence, is the goal of any and every brand.

So, how does a company or business build brand loyalty? Lauren Maillian Bias, founder and CEO of Luxury Market Branding, offers seven tips:

1. Keep quality high.

Stay consistent with the quality of goods and/or services. There is a certain expectation of quality and consumers will go back to the brands they know won’t let them down.

2. Engage customers.

Staying in touch with the target market consistently will keep a brand top of mind. Update them on the latest and keep communication fresh—let loyal shoppers feel involved with the company.

3.Solicit feedback.

Maintaining contact with customers means asking for their opinions and allowing them to rate services to express whether expectations were met. Show that the business cares and be sure to meet demands. Customers must get what they want in order to return.

4. Give a reason for customers to come back.

Offering incentives to repeat customers encourages them to come to a specific store over competitors. Loyalty reward programs are helpful, offering special status and non-cash incentives.

5. Stay relevant.

Be sure to stay on top of what the competition is up to and what the latest trends are in the industry. Update marketing strategies so they remain relevant to the market—the message must remain valuable.

6. Provide value.

Repeat business means customer loyalty, which is invaluable. Work on creating a plan to give a percentage of loyal customers’ expenditures back to the consumer somehow. Maybe perks with a purchase or a bonus service—added value for a brand is key.

7. Show appreciation.

Don’t forget to send thank you notes and holiday cards to customers. They want to know their favorite brand cares about them and not just how much they spend.

While consumers are purchasing more goods online thanks to mobile websites and associated perks from websites like Amazon Prime, they expect the same value from brick-and-mortar outlets when they choose to shop in-store. First-come, first-served deals like those on Groupon are not always helpful to consumers as they are short lived. Brands with physical stores can capitalize on consumers who miss special offers by providing some sort of added value and quality that proves a company’s worth