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Monday, January 19, 2009

Surfaces 09 - Retail Experience Seminar

Will you be attending Surfaces 2009, which takes place February 3 through 5, 2009 in Las Vegas? If yes, consider participating in the educational sessions which focus on the future of floor covering. In fact, I'd love for you to attend my retail experience seminar titled "Your Customer's Experience: How Much Is It Costing You?" It takes place Wednesday, February 4 from 4pm to 5:30pm in the Sands Convention Center.

I guarantee that you will bring something actionable back home from the session. Despite the economic environment - actually, because of it - your customer's retail experience matters now more than ever. If you don't believe me, step back and observe yourself as consumer. You may not be purchasing right now, but you most certainly are considering and researching and making decisions. I bet your decisions are 'negative' decisions. In other words, you are scratching resources off your list. You are narrowing the choices of those you will patronize and doing so based on the ease of your interactions and the overall quality of your experience.

Andy Sernovitz, in Word of Mouth Marketing: How Smart Companies Get People Talking, says that You [i.e., your brand, your store, your service] are the User Experience. Paco Underhill says "amenability and profitability are inextricably linked." I see the two statements as totally relevant to today's retail experience.

Think about it. How convenient and enjoyable you are affects the experience your customers have interacting with you. You are the user experience. Your user experience affects your profitability and the success of your business.

In addition to looking at trends affecting the marketplace [for example, marketing to women, trading up and ageless marketing], we'll examine the retail experience and how to improve it [think Paco Underhill type observations], and review examples of retailers doing it right - including flooring retailers!

What I'm particularly excited about is that I'll be weaving social media into the discussion. After all, social media allows you to extend the customer's experience beyond the physical store as well as engage the community and offer added value. It allows your traditional marketing tools to work that much more efficiently.
[I've also found a wealth of articles referring to the criticality of focusing on customer service, empowered consumers and the customer experience. To be detailed here soon.]

If you have successful examples you'd like to share, I would be delighted to highlight them during the presentation as well as include them here in a followup post.

Also, don't forget to attend the Flooring Industry Wake-Up Call panel discussion general sessions on February 3rd.

I look forward to seeing you then!


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