Let’s imagine for a moment that you are starting a new business. For argument’s sake, this business is a boutique adult beverage store. You want to offer the finest spirits and wines that your customers could desire, but you also plan to provide locally produced items as well. Liquor stores aren’t too difficult to come by, so you have to find a way to stand out among the big box options. You will want your potential customers to be aware that you are a specialty store offering a more unique experience.
Right before you are ready to open your doors, one thing you may want to consider investing in when it comes to marketing is promotional incentives. There are several options available, from calendars to paper weights, to choose from that we can customize with your company logo. These are things that you would take around to other businesses in the area to get people talking.
Just like pharmaceutical companies have custom pens and notepads they leave with doctor’s offices, these are items that would be left in view on a daily basis. The other business owners and their employees would see them and so would their customers. Having these custom products readily available to give out will put your business on the map before you even open.
Signs and Displays
Inside your store will be where the magic happens. To bring the people not only to your doors, but inside them as well, you should have an eye catching sign holder with your business name and logo in an easily visible location. You can choose a hanging sign holder that you can place outside your door for the whole world to see.
Once inside, your customers will be impressed with your selection of custom display cases that show just how much thought and care you’ve put into the products you have to offer. If you have an extensive selection of locally grown wines, you can put them in an eye-catching custom plexi display case.
Given the specialty nature of your boutique adult beverage store, you can also have brochure displays informing your customers about the products you sell. It can provide a more detailed background about the vineyard, the grapes in the wine they have chosen, were grown in. This will not only offer a more personalized experience than the usual liquor stores, it also provides exposure for the local vineyards and growers that you purchase from as well. While increasing your own sales you can also bring attention to their business as well.
You can’t forget the small things either. Benchmark Displays also offers the channel sign holders you will need on your shelves to provide pricing information as well. Not only can we give you a well-rounded marketing strategy for your business inside and out, but also we can do it with your personal specifications in mind. Benchmark Displays can work with you to create a successful business model that will not only improve your visibility but increase you chances for sales as well.
“A mediocre person tells. A good person explains. A superior person demonstrates. A great person inspires others to see for themselves.”
An incentive is by definition something that motivates or encourages one to do something. In today’s extremely competitive marketplace, making sales can be a challenge. People are inundated with new products and services, and it is increasingly difficult to stand out. So what is one way to distinguish yourself from the competition and lead sales? Incentives!
Did you know that knowledgeable and courteous employees account for approximately 80% of the reasons that consumers feel satisfied and will come back for more?
Fewer than one in four American workers is working at full potential, nearly half surveyed have said that they do only what is directly asked of them, and up to 75% admit that they could be more effective in their jobs.
70% of customers that have had a bad experience with a vendor will abandon them and move on to someone else.
A 5% increase in customer retention can increase lifetime profits from a customer by 75%. Remember, we’ve talked about this before, it’s about building relationships.
So how can you use incentives successfully in your business?
· Use them to attract new visitors to your store or web site
· Use them to encourage repeat business
· Use them to improve Direct Mail Response
· Use them to Promote Closeout Inventories
· Use them for thank you gifts
· Use them to Upgrade Sales and Purchases
For Employee Incentives
· Use them to acknowledge Milestones and Achievements
· Use them as a reward to exceed sales goals
· Use them to increase employee loyalty
· Use them to reward employees
Remember, everyone likes to feel appreciated, so why not set the precedent and use incentives to inspire others to greatness!
“Imagination is the beginning of creation. You imagine what you desire, you will what you imagine, and at last you create what you will” – George Bernard Shaw
I think we would all agree that it is easier to feel creative when you are enthused about your subject matter. So I suppose that theorem, in and of itself is a good place to start. After all, it’s next to impossible to be motivated about something you have little or no interest in.
There is in fact much debate out there about just what moves a person to be creative. What motivated Picasso to paint all those prolific masterpieces? Or Bach to churn out all those brilliant concertos? I can’t really say, not sure anyone could for certain. What I do know is that Picasso created around 50,000 paintings, but how many of them were considered brilliant? Only a few. The rest quite honestly were not that good. Having said that, I happen to be of the opinion that art, music, an ad campaign….really anything considered creative is subjective.
We tend to think of creative “types” as churning out one great idea after the next, but the truth is, it’s a numbers game. Not every idea you have is going to be a game changer. In fact, most probably won’t be. The point is that we should accept failure, even embrace it. For most of us this may prove to be a challenge, as failure tends to be paralyzing, not mobilizing. However, if we can somehow learn to “Embrace the suck” as one author eloquently put it, and accept that it’s part of the process, doesn’t that sort of take a little pressure off?
BenchmarkVinyl.com’s extensive line of vinyl advertising options gives businesses additional budget friendly ways to display their goods. The new line includes products such as brochure holders, channel strips and shelf talkers.
The launch of Benchmark Vinyl.com provides businesses with a fast new option for getting quality vinyl display products to showcase their goods and literature.
This newest division of Benchmark Displays is an effort to furnish Benchmark’s customers with more specialized solutions at affordable prices, said JoAnne Frohman, the president and chief executive officer of Benchmark Displays.
“Customers choose our vinyl displays because they get exactly what they need at great prices,” said Frohman, who co-founded the company with her husband, Dick.
Benchmark Vinyl is a division of Benchmark Displays, which has designed and manufactured high quality displays for products and literature for more than 30 years. More information and the division’s catalog can be viewed at www.benchmarkvinyl.com
The new vinyl product line includes shelf talkers, brochure holders, sign holders, channel strips, tent displays and more. Benchmark Vinyl also offers custom vinyl applications.
Benchmark Vinyl uses sturdy, clear PVC materials and proprietary processing equipment to manufacture vinyl products that last.
“Vinyl products are an integral part of advertising and have a huge impact in the retail industry,” Frohman said. “Now Benchmark Vinyl is making it easy for businesses to get both custom-made as well as commonly-used vinyl displays fast.”
Women and men of all ages and socio-economic backgrounds are turning to the makeup industry to help them look and feel their best. This would explain why the cosmetics and personal care industries continue to see a steady increase in profits from year to year.
What is trending in the beauty world in 2014?
Here are a few that I found interesting… Drinkable skincare for one. Most of us are obsessed with anti-aging, the term growing old gracefully has long gone out the window. The good news is we can forget about having to slather on the anti-aging collagen creams over our overexposed skin. Companies are now introducing Hyaluronic Acid drinks, and collagen boosting liquid supplements are now readily available. Granny perfumes are another new trend for the year. Perfume makers have been working to come up with modern re-interpretations of scents our grandmothers used to wear. So look for scents like rose, violet, gardenia and jasmine to be popular again. I find it a bit of a paradox that we want to look young but smell umm…nostalgic? But hey, that’s just me! Last but certainly not least in my opinion is the Russian banyas (saunas), the latest trend in wellness…in Europe anyway. The steam is supposedly more hydrating which helps with the detoxification process….but here is where things get interesting.. The treatment also involves being lightly, dare I say “whacked” with birch, oak or eucalyptus leaves and twigs to help improve circulation. I’m not completely sold on that one yet, not really my idea of a relaxing day at the spa.. but I may come around.
People are continually seeking new products and treatments to improve their well-being. Every season brings new color palettes, and every year brings new trends geared towards improving one’s self -image. The one constant in all of this is that manufacturers need to come up with clever, unique packaging to go with their new and improved products. Custom Displays will always be an integral part of the equation, as you want to showcase your innovative new product in a way that gets it noticed. Especially is this evident in the cosmetics industry. How many retail stores that sell makeup do you walk into that have their products concealed behind cabinets or in drawers? Most are beautifully presented in an acrylic or plexi display case so as to capture a consumer’s attention as they walk by. The bottom line is that your brand’s success depends on your ability to market your product from packaging to display, so make it stellar all the way around!
Let’s face it, we are all brand experts these days. We have been groomed to recognize and associate with different brands. One marketing guru uses the word pre-eminence when speaking about brand identity, meaning it moves people to action, and their lives are better because you are in it. If you’ve done your job, then people can relate to and identify with you, and your product. There is an emotional connection tied to it. It’s about being able to articulate, or put into words what you stand for and why it’s better than say, your competition.
Your Brand, Your Reputation
Back in the 1990’s, Harley Davidson began considering ways to expand it’s empire, so the company decided to get into merchandising. They started selling patches, mugs, jackets, and other biker related paraphernalia. It proved to be a good move for the company. So much so, that an over enthusiastic marketing manager decided they should try and expand their market even further, into perfume sales. That decision backfired in a big way. They alienated their core audience, bike enthusiasts, (I don’t know about you, but I don’t know many bikers that wear perfume?), even worse, they failed to capture the consumers who like perfume, but don’t ride bikes. What does this tell us? Don’t get greedy! Be loyal to your core audience and stick to the brand values that made you successful in the first place.
In a world where people have so many options, and often times the services that we offer aren’t necessarily needs, but wants, we have to set ourselves apart, by clearly identifying what we are all about. As an example, we here at Benchmark Displays design custom displays for POP retail, as well as merchandisers, awards and promotional pieces. We are also aware that there are many companies that offer similar services to our own. Therefore, our emphasis is on being customer centric and building relationships. A first time client may call because they have a pending project and they need a quote. They probably have specs for the project, a desired quantity, and most often than not, a deadline to meet. Beyond that, they rely on us, to not only design an engaging, attractive display, but do so in a way that keeps costs minimal, and is delivered on time. If we consistently provide a quality, unique product, as expected, then we, as a company, and as a brand will thrive.
When all is said and done, your brand, your identity, takes time to build. It needs to say something about who you are as a company, connect with your target market, motivate people in some way, and always create a sense of loyalty.
If you are in the business of offering a product in retail stores, one of the best ways to attract customers to your product over a competitor’s is by implementing a custom display. If you product stands out and really “pops” so to speak, it will catch the eyes of your potential customers. Studies have shown that visually appealing products on the shelf attract consumers attention, and increase the amount of time spent looking at these products! The best part? A custom display can be designed to target your ideal customer base.
Putting your Display to Work
So let’s say that your company is looking to put your product up for sale, and let’s say for the sake of argument that you sell cosmetics, and you want to put them in a retail location, or maybe your product is a specialty beverage that you want to sell in an upscale liquor store. A well thought out custom display can, and will increase visibility. Taking into consideration the amount of time a customer will spend scanning the sales floor before heading to one display or another, keep in mind that consumers unconsciously tend to search for environments that create a positive mood and are inviting. Why? Because most purchasing decisions are emotion driven. Using the most optimal display type, whether it’s acrylic, plexi, vinyl or chipboard, and being mindful that size, shape and color can all be deciding factors for increasing sales, you want to give your display a great deal of thought. Given the fact that according to POPAI (Global Association for Marketing at-Retail) 60% of purchases are decided right in the store, why leave it to chance? Give your brand the boost that it needs! Put Benchmark Displays to work for you and let us show you what we can do to increase your product’s sales!
By definition it means given, or felt by each other toward the other, as in mutual respect, or corresponding, matching, complimentary, equivalent. It’s an adjective, so it conveys action. And why is it important? Because in business, as in everyday life, it can mean the difference between success and failure. It’s about letting your customer’s know, through your actions, that they are important to you.
As a personal example, I have started bringing coffee in for some of my co-workers on Friday mornings as a sort of “we survived another work week” celebration. I get the coffee at a Starbuck’s that is a little bit out of my way (yes, I know there is usually one on every corner) but this one is not along my usual travel route. The reason I go to this one in particular is because the barista’s at this location have made it a point to remember my name, my usual order, and they even put smiley faces on my cup! Now, it may not seem like a big deal in the grand scheme of things, but it makes me, as a customer feel like a VIP, so I am a loyal patron there every Friday morning. The point is, making a customer feel special doesn’t necessarily involve some grand complex gesture, sometimes it simply means answering the phone with a smile, or remembering a person’s name without having to ask twice. These are small gestures that can go a long way towards eliciting a positive response from the receiver, namely, developing a long standing relationship with a client or customer.
Not Only Meeting, But Exceeding Expectations!
Many of us are familiar with the company Zappos, at least most women will be. They are an online store that specializes in shoes and clothing, and they have become extremely successful the past several years, despite the fact that they do very little advertising. The key to their success? Word of mouth. I personally learned about them through a couple of friends who had made purchases, and both told me that they were pleasantly surprised by the expedited shipping, with items being delivered within a day or two of purchase. In fact, Zappos often gives surprise free upgrades to overnight shipping for customers, though their website reports that delivery will take two to five business days. Talk about under promising and over delivering! Another noted example of their stellar customer service was when a woman called to return a pair of boots for her husband because he died in a car accident. The next day, she received a flower delivery, which the call center rep had billed to the company without checking with her supervisor. It is examples like these that explain why Zappos has become so successful, and why 75% of it’s business is from repeat customers.
The moral of the story may seem obvious, but in a world where most individuals have an abundance of options when it comes to purchases, these examples show that sometimes even small kindnesses matter, and that even one small act of goodwill can mean the difference between a one- time purchase, or gaining a customer for life.
Benchmark Displays is pleased to announce the launch of it’s newest website, benchmarkvinyl.com. In addition to our other great products, including acrylic and styrene point of purchase displays, by offering vinyl we are able to give our budget conscience buyers an affordable alternative for advertising their must have products! Remember, we’ve mentioned in previous posts, the importance of grabbing a consumer’s attention right out of the gate, or I should say, right through the front door.
This is where rigid vinyl shelf wobblers, otherwise known as shelf talkers, danglers and shelf strips come in handy. As a customer is making their way down the aisle, these little guys are what get your product noticed. For example, I recently walked into a wine superstore for the first time, and as I meandered up and down the aisles, I was a bit overwhelmed by the huge selection. An employee must have noticed my furrowed brow, because she asked me if I needed any help.. “We have over 800 different Pinot Noir’s she said, and if you’re confused now, don’t go down the cabernet aisle, we have over 1100 different cabernet’s to choose from”. Not that I need an inducement to drink, but it can be hard to make a decision when faced with row upon row of libations, every bottle starts looking the same after a while. So what helps me, along with countless other customers make a decision? Shelf talkers for one. They get your attention and tell you just enough about a product to help you decide for or against. Please note, I did say “just enough” about a product. In other words, you don’t want to overwhelm your customers with too much information, otherwise they won’t read it at all. Make it easy to read, perhaps add a fun little tidbit about the product, and above all else, avoid adding disclaimers and terms of sale, as this can be off-putting.
One other thing I noticed was that companies are also putting QR codes on the shelf talkers that you can scan with your smart phone. They usually take you to a landing page on their website where you can learn more about the company and their products. Clever! Most of these shelf talkers, wobblers, danglers, silent salesmen, whatever you want to call them, are made of rigid vinyl, a low cost, high impact way to advertise, that offers you the flexibility to change them out about once a month as you bring in new merchandise or offer sales and special pricing. By the way, in case you were wondering, I did finally choose a good pinot, and I even scanned the QR code to find out a little more about the winery. You learn something new every day!
With all the news about global warming and climate change, it is time to start considering ways to reduce our carbon footprint in personal and work life. Statistics show that 70% percent of Americans believe that global warming is very real. Off course, 92% percent of all statistics are made up on the spot, so take it for what it’s worth. When it comes to your ability to contribute to the betterment of the world in relation to your business, it’s vital to sit up and take notice
Benchmark Displays began way back in 1983 as Taymar Plastics. Successfully designing, making and marketing virtually millions of plastic brochure holders, promotional literature racks and product displays was the mainstay of our business for more than twenty five years. Then, the national conversation turned to bulging earth-fills and environmental sustainability. First a few and then many of our customers in the pharmaceutical, financial, food, retail product manufacturing, automotive and national retailer industries told us that new, internal company policies required that environmentally friendly and recyclable materials be used for their point-of-purchase brochure holders and custom product displays. Acrylic and Plexiglas displays were no longer welcome in certain settings.
Paperboard packaging was the obvious and simple solution. Chipboard or cardboard can be made from recycled newspapers and corrugated shipping containers or made from virgin wood chips but in either case, it’s biodegradable and eco-friendly. Benchmark Displays, our new brand and identity, quickly added the capacity to furnish all types of brochure holders and product displays produced in our family-owned factory. These displays can be screen or digitally printed with company logos and product advertising if the requirement is small in quantity or litho printed if the quantities are larger.
So, if you are looking for ways to display your products and promotional literature while still being conscientious of the environment, then cost-effective paperboard displays are a great bet!
We only have one world to live in, (unless you know something that we don’t) so it might be time we all try a little harder to take care of it. While recycling has long been touted as a way to help the environment, we are finding out ways to reduce our carbon footprint in everything that we do. Cars are becoming more economical in regards to fuel consumption, for example, you can now get a car that is the size of a large shoebox, which reduces the amount of fuel you will need (for obvious reasons) and more people are choosing mass transit or carpool as a method of transportation. There are more and more packaging options being made out of recycled products, and because brands typically update their packaging every couple of years, cost is no longer a large company’s biggest concern.
The good news? It is possible to do your part when it comes to your business, Benchmark Displays is more than happy to do its part in reducing our own little carbon footprint!