Flooring The Consumer on Simple Marketing Now

Please visit Flooring The Consumer's new home on SimpleMarketingNow.com where you can subscribe to receive updates to blog articles in real time!

Thursday, June 29, 2006

"What Consumers Really Think"

Meet Sonna and Lis Calandrino from Fabulous Floors Magazine,the first consumer magazine devoted solely to flooring styles as a key element in home d├ęcor. Sonna is the Publisher of Fabulous Floors and Lis, the Director of Consumer Research. Both are extremely well tuned into listening to consumers, particularly flooring consumers.

I strongly encourage you to hear them in a 4 part series on FloorRadio aired 6/25/06 titled "What Consumers Really Think". Sonna and Lis discuss the findings from a recent Fabulous Floors/Floor Radio joint venture consumer focus group. It is fascinating and right on the mark!

Part 1 - the importance of listening to your consumers and using tools like focus groups for a complete pulse check; how floor covering consumers prepare themselves to shop for floor coverings; how they view the shopping experience; how they assess the comfort level of a retail store; how they feel about a salesperson who tries to change their minds.

  • Consumers do a lot of research ahead of time.
  • Consumers want salespeople to be respectful, to listen, to not rush them, to collaborate
Part 2 - the strong feelings consumers have for their homes; how these feelings are reflected in their approach to shopping, their stance on working with designers, the kind of help they want and expect from a retail salesperson.

  • Too much focus on price
  • Too many products to choose from --> help me make sense of the choices
  • Salesperson doesn't spend enough time listening and 'interviewing' consumers
  • "My house is a work in progress" --> strong emotions! "My home has got to be me, so don't try to change my mind. I know what I want."
  • [Consider reading Trading Up by Micheal Silverstein; the home is at the top of the trading up list. "Americans distort their discretionary spending toward the home more than any other category.”]
Part 3 - the attitude women consumers have toward price and their knowledge level with regard to available credit promotions; environmentally friendly product and what they want and expect from samples, vignettes and layout in a retail floor covering store.

  • Salesperson is a reflection of the store
  • Make consumer feel welcome
  • Growing interest in environmental options
  • Consumers are more experimental than retailers; they are curious about how different products might look. Vignettes are invaluable!
Part 4 - consumers show a strong commitment toward finding the perfect flooring product; likes and dislikes about salespeople and the prime points retailers might want to consider to ensure more of their customers have a positive shopping experience in their store.

  • NOTE: Marti Barletta's book Marketing to Women: How to Understand, Reach and Increase Your Share of the Largest Market Segment describes how important it is for women to find the perfect answer when shopping; they approach the shopping process in a less linear [i.e., the spiral path] manner than do men. So be aware of this, understand that women will take more time; listen to her, develop a relationship with her. The benefits are enormous [word of mouth referrals, shorter repeat purchase cycle].
  • Look at what other stores and businesses are doing [kids' area, better parking lot, other ways to visualize product] for inspiration.

Tags: , ,

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

"Women of Flooring America Making Their Mark"

This is exciting news for flooring consumers!

The June 12/19, 2006 issue of Floor Covering News includes an article titled "Women of Flooring America Making Their Mark", featuring 6 women members of the Flooring America/Flooring Canada [a division of CCA Global Partners] who are truly committed to meeting the needs of their consumer:

Genie Shupe, owner of Riteway Flooring America in Durango, CO

Maxine Schneider, owner of Schneider's Flooring America in Vernon, CT

Judith Huck, owner of Classique Floors in Portland, OR

Renee and Tracy Gardner, owners of Gardner's Flooring America in Topeka, KS

Suzanne Brown, president of Dobson Floors in Farmers Branch, TX

These women are not only active in shaping the vision of the buying group, but they also totally identify with how women shop for flooring.

The article can be viewed at this link.Please share the news that consumers in the market for flooring should check out these stores - they 'get' the consumer!

Tags: , ,
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...