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Industry Talk

growth strategies

Floral managers to focus on the shopping setting and customer relationships in 2008.

We were interested in learning about floral departments’ strategies for growth during the upcoming year. We asked five floral managers from across the country:

What part of your floral business are you focusing on for growth this year, and why?

My focus for the coming year will be to invite our guests to stroll through our flower shop each time they enter our store. I have learned by experience that cascading masses of color and hue attract the eyes of our impulse shoppers. With this in mind, creating new and different displays entices them to shop. When our guests come to visit our Dan’s floral shop, it is very important to me that they can always count on finding what they need. We want our floral shop to be a “must see” for every guest.


Janet Boren, floral manager

Dan’s Foods, Store No. 2

Salt Lake City, Utah




I am focusing on the “wow!” to bring customers into an enjoyable shopping experience. The focus at Jungle Jim’s will be signage and home-décor living. To start, we changed the image of the entrance by placing a large, lighted movie-theater-style sign with selected features to draw customers in. We changed the name of the department to “Shasta”—“she hasta have this; she hasta have that”—to let the customers know something new is going on. Each category within the store has signage to tell a story—description, size, price and usage, which is placed in a home-décor setting.


Jeanne Wallace, floral manager and buyer

Jungle Jim’s International Market

Fairfield, Ohio



Our focus is customer loyalty—the customers who come every week for flowers for themselves, not because it’s a birthday, anniversary or holidays. To keep repeat customers and build customer loyalty, it is imperative to cultivate long-term relationships. Know their names and talk to them about their jobs and what you can do to make their days a little less stressful. If I can put a smile on a customer’s face when she walks into our store after having a bad day, I can rest assured she will be in again because she wants that same feeling. Maybe the next time, she will want something for her mother or a co-worker’s birthday, but she will come back.


Judy Ivers, floral specialist

Pete’s County Market

Alexandria, Minn.




For 2008, my goal is to increase deliveries and customers’ awareness that we are a “complete floral service” and not just a grocery store cash-and-carry business. I want our telephone to be the number our customers call to send birthday, anniversary, sympathy and “whatever” greetings with the assurance that they will receive quality products at affordable pricing. I feel that the more contact you can keep with your customers, the better. When customers call for their special occasions, cross-merchandising becomes so easy within the other store departments, and everyone benefits.


Susan McDonald, floral manager and designer

The Grand Food Center, Winnetka, Ill.



We plan to continue to increase our emphasis on education of customers in the areas of care and handling as well as how to combine what they grow in their yards with what we offer in our floral department. I enjoy teaching my customers about the care of their plants and flowers. They are taking home the little old secrets my grandmother taught me. I have developed a lot of happy repeat customers because they do what I suggest and are amazed at how long flowers can last with the proper care.


Pixie Anderson, floral manager

Pacific Market, Sebastopol, Calif. 




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