➤ Sin and guilt — bad words, right? Not if you’re a marketer. Psychologists know that people associate guilt with pleasure. According to a research cited in Psychology Today, it turns out that if people just imagine feeling guilty about eating a specific food (in one study, a piece of chocolate cake), they believe it will taste better and make them happier! That would seem to support use of encouragements such as: “Go on, indulge yourself” or “Collecting vintage aviator frames is my own little guilty pleasure.”
This article originally appeared in the April 2015 edition of INVISION.
Don't Be Afraid
➤ For all of you out there who are wondering whether or not you should take that big risk, we give you this quote from author Gaelen Foley: “Leap, and the net will appear.”
Advertise Your Open Slots
➤ Have open slots in your appointment book? Share the availability on Facebook. Nothing to be shy about, and it could inspire impulse appointments. Sample message from the gang at Park Slope Eye in Brooklyn, NY: “We are back in the office today with a few appointments left! Click the ‘book now’ link to set one up now!”
Challenge Your Customers
➤ Don’t let your customers fall into a rut with their eyewear choices. Instead, challenge them to try something different. Mike McConnell of Sight Optical in Grand Rapids, MI (one of INVISION’s 2014 America’s Finest Optical Retailers) always does this. If a client comes in and says she always wears rimless frames, McConnell will make the rimless frames the last pair he brings out. Says McConnell: “We like to show people how great they look in frames they never would have tried. They usually fall in love with the ‘new look.’”
Chunk It In
➤ Harried? Feeling like you’re always reacting to events and never controlling them? You sound like every other business owner we know. Here’s a tip to save you a few minutes a day and get back some feeling of control. It’s called “chunking,” which refers to completing similar types of work at the same time. For example, you’ve got a number of calls to return or accounts to chase down: Set aside a block of time dedicated to getting them all done in one focused hit. Accomplishing a number of similar tasks at one time is more effective than bouncing from one task to another.
Have a Chummy Voice
➤ Want an example of how a friendly, down-to-earth store communicates with its customers? Check out this email bulletin from popular online clothing retailer Moosejaw.com: “One of the Moosejaw programmers accidentally deleted a bunch of people that signed up ... We’ve since challenged the programmer to a series of duels including a staring contest, Red Rover and that game when you slap each other’s hands. But, that won’t bring back the names so we’re emailing everyone to sign back up. And if you’ve never signed up, now is the perfect time to do so....” You don’t get much friendlier than that. Another endearing touch is the way every customer receives a card with his merchandise that’s written by the person who packed the box. The note will say something like: “Hey, I’m the one who put all this stuff in a box for you. Isn’t it a great day?”
Join a "Shop Local" Movement
➤ Do you have a group in your community that is spreading a “buy local” message? Become a member. And we mean an active member. More and more people are looking to buy from independent businesses in their hometown, and the first place serious believers in this concept will go to find such businesses is their local “shop local” website. The greater profile you have in that group, the more business you will attract. (Of course, that also means getting serious about shopping locally yourself. See Andrea Learned’s “If I Owned ...” column in this month's issue.)
A Frame Every Friday
➤ One weekly social-media tradition you can easily build on Facebook and Twitter is #framefriday. Each Friday, highlight a different standout frame from your inventory on your social media feed. Even better, have a staff member model those specs. (Alternatively, showcase your customers’ new frames.) .