Manager's To-Do: October 2015

If you don’t have plans for a Halloween event, see what your neighborhood merchant association is doing.

WEEK 1 / OCT. 5-9

MARKETING To be most effective, social media should be planned. Schedule key events like Facebook contests, holiday promotions ( “Stocking Stuffer Ideas”) and year-end priorities (“10 ways to use your flex dollars”). Mix it up and remember to always include visuals.

STAFF Finalize work schedules for the next 12 weeks. (Include the first half of January.) Check your staff’s obligations and work around any clashes. Identify the peak hours and ensure key staff members will be at work.

SALES TRAINING Get ready for holiday objections. Prepare responses to customers who say they are “hurting financially” or “I saw a pair just like those on Warby Parker for $99.”

MARKETING It’s hunting season. If you sell hunting-specific eyewear, make sure you’re advertising that fact in the sports section of your local newspaper (or its website).

Week 2 / OCT. 12-16

MARKETING In a strip mall? Have good street traffic? Buy a portable sign you can put out front to advertise your store and specials.

SOCIAL MEDIA Don’t be afraid to pass great eyewear social media and blog posts onto your clients. The more they are exposed to cool new brands, the more they will want to buy those brands from you.

MERCHANDISING Have you made space for “impulse purchases” at your cash register? Move some low-priced, appealing “splurchandise” next to your checkout area and rack up additional income. MUSIC Have some fun building a music list that evokes the joy of gift-giving.

Week 3/ OCT. 19-23

STAFF If you don’t have plans for a Halloween event, look to see what your neighborhood merchant association is doing.

MARKETING Draft a welcome note for all customers who sign up for your email bulletins. The letter should outline the benefits of being a customer and how you will make their eyewear and eyecare dreams come true. To encourage sign-ups at this key time of year, consider a gift card worth $30 for new registrants.

MARKETING Don’t have gift certificates? Why the heck not? They’re one of your best chances to get your chunk of of the holiday pie. Promote them online and in bulletins amongst your top gift selections. And have a tent card or stand promoting these right next to your cash register for the next three months. (Maybe with a little “burst” on the ad that reads “Great for birthdays, too!”

Week 4 / OCT. 26-30

CUSTOMER SERVICE Winter holidays mean time off of school ... college students home on break ... and time ticking away to use up those flex dollars on eye exams, eyewear and contacts. Make calls in November to fill your December appointment book with families eager to take advantage of their year-end dollars.

STORE Get new entrance mats (to save your carpets by keeping out salt, dirt etc).

CUSTOMER SERVICE Does your business have a coat check? Look into setting one up now. It will definitely make customers more comfortable this winter.

NETWORKING Accept all invitations to business parties, open houses and mixers. Check your stock of business cards. What compelling offers do these little billboards make?

Selina McGee of Precision Vision

This article originally appeared in the October 2015 edition of INVISION.