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Saturday, November 04, 2006

Bathroom Blogfest 2006 Comes To a Close....

It has been a wild ride! As this Bathroom Blogfest '06 comes to a close, I share these last few comments:

Angie, our Wear-Dated rep. in Pittsburgh, offered 2 flooring store additions to the Bathrooms That Floor post:

+ The ProSource stores in this area have taken extra measures to have spacious and clean bathrooms. They win the award!

+ Another clear cut winner for the Pittsburgh area is a store in a very rural setting called Larry Lint Carpeting. This stores has several bathrooms, on both floors of his store. They are extremely nice: beautiful tile, attractive fixtures, well lit and clean.

And, some non-flooring bathroom highlights:

Jodi says: We have a new Wild Oats market in Tampa and their bathroom is AWESOME.

Candace talks about her Honda Dealership in San Diego: My Honda Dealership Service Center has a lovely restroom...They remodeled and put in a lovely oval mirror above the basin, non-glare/appropriate & attractive lighting and a rich dark wood cabinet for the basin. They have a chest of drawers with flowers, Kleenex and feminine needs in a basket....Ceramic Tile on the floor...Great contrast to the automotive world... This dealership offers good service in a friendly atmosphere. They always meet the timeframe specified... and they take care of the details as the restroom shows!

My friend Benita sent the following message: I love the "Bathroom' blog posts. Every retailer should know how important this is to their customers who might even stop into a store with a great bathroom, just to make this visit. And... one never knows, might just stay to make a purchase.

Kathy in Amman, Jordan sent the following in response to Your Bathroom Is A Work of Art: I am sorry that most bathrooms in my part of the world cannot be recommended as works of art to anyone! However, there is one “green designer” bathroom at the eco-tourism campsite of Wadi Dana run by the Royal Society for Conservation of Nature in Jordan, which would perhaps qualify. It was designed by architect artist Ammar Khammash – has semi- open air roof, vines growing in from outside, recycled materials , etc. Truly the nicest freshest bathroom I have ever seen at a campsite!

These last examples reinforce the message that details matter to women consumers. They tell her that you care about her experience in your store, and you should certainly be caring about her overall experience given how important she is to our industry. In fact, the 10/30/06 issue of Advertising Age has a fascinating series of articles about marketing to women, including one titled She-Noms: They're Not Your Mother's Consumer. Wake Up and Straighten Out the Jargon of Tech Toys, Select the Beer of Fashion Week. If she's happy, then everybody is happy. by TIFFANY MEYERS. It's worth a serious read and is relevant to all industries, including the flooring industry! Some excerpts:

"There are 6 million more women aged 20 or older than there are men. What makes the 21st-century woman a consumer phenomenon is her deep pockets, born of greater education and clout in the workplace. The rise of the female consumer phenom -- or she-nom -- merits an overhaul in strategic thinking. "

"Women value comfortable retail environments, easy-to-use products, and -- the biggest missed opportunity for those seeking to build buzz among women, says Ms. Brennan -- superior service. Not even the burliest man could dismiss these gender-neutral features as too girly. "If you are meeting women's expectations, you're giving men something they didn't even think to ask for," she says. "

""Environments created with women in mind will often be family-friendly," Mr. Syracuse says. "And [in] family-friendly environments, men will be comfortable as well." "

I couldn't say it any better!

And, with that, you have my final thoughts on the Bathroom Blogfest '06! Many thanks to all who participated, shared favorite haunts and provided valuable perspective. And, many thanks to the Bathroom Blogfest '06 participants. It was awesome! Have a great weekend!

The Bathroom Blogfest '06 participants [and their latest postings] include:
+ Maria Palma at Customers Are Always with The Retailer Who Knows How to Design Restrooms
+ Susan Abbott at Customer Experience Crossroads with Wrapping Up The Bathroom Blogfest
+ Sara Cantor at Curious Shopper. Check out an earlier post of hers Make Yourself At Home. It's a gem.
+ Jackie Huba at Church of the Customer.
+ Linda Tischler at Fast Company's blog FC Now
+ Stephanie Weaver at Experienceology
+ Sandra Renshaw at PurpleWren just posted A Fine Ending To The Bathroom Blogfest '06

+ Thanks to Mary Schmidt for posting about the Blogfest on Friday Martini Time
+ Thanks to Fueld Design Inspiration in the UK for posting Wrapping Up the Bathroom Blogfest

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