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FocalPoint Business Coaching Challenge of the Week: How Can I Drive Results for a Retail Client?
September 1, 2010 — Anonymous
“If everyone is moving forward together, then success takes care of itself.”
In the global economy or world market that works faster than ever, 24/7.
This morning’s Coaching Challenge of the Week is being led by Brian Tracy Certified FocalPoint Business Coach, Mike Alpert who serves the South Orange County Area in California.
The challenge is:
“How to drive meaningful results for a retail business.”
Mike is a software and technology specialist who has been in revolutionary web marketing releases, created organizations and teams that have outperformed expectations and is a Six Sigma Certified Greenbelt.
Here is Mike’s response:
In order to drive meaningful results for a retail business I focus on four key areas:
2. Knowing Their Customers
3. Leveraging technology
4. Creating Raving Fans
In retail, I always start with measurement. There are a ton of things that can be measured in any retail business including units sold, inventory turns, and average sale. The objective is to help the client focus in on the "key" numbers that are critical in measuring the success of the business. In Jim Collin's famous book "Good to Great" he talks about how the great companies from his study all found a single "economic denominator" or profit per "X" that drove their business.
As a coach, if I can help a retail business get real clarity on their "economic denominator" then they will be able to align all of the marketing, promotion and customer service efforts to move that key metric. So how do you help a client find this number?
It begins with listening to the numbers that they track closely today. Have them show you what they use to measure their business and ask them to show you their historical trends for those numbers. The current "trajectory" of those numbers is important to understanding where the business currently is.
From there you need to really challenge the fundamental assumptions that they have about their numbers.
One of my clients has a high end retail business where his average transaction is quite high. He also has a fairly stable sales conversion percentage. The key metric that we have focused on is the number of "visits" that he has to his store. This number includes phone call inquiries as well as physical visits to the store. As a result of focusing on this number the action items he is taking are all focused around marketing his company, creating awareness and discrete special offers.
2. Knowing Their Customers
Having a clear understanding of the target customer is critical in retail. Especially in a competitive market segment a retail business has to understand who their customers are and why they will come to their location. Some retail businesses are limited by simple geography. Dentistry is a good example of this. Most people select a dentist either close to their house or close to their place or work. It is nearly impossible to be a "destination" dentist. So how do you get clarity of who the target customer is?
Again you begin with having the retail business profile their best customers. Ideally, you then have them determine the contribution of those customers to both revenue and profit. Then have the business owner tell you stories about a few of their best customers to understand how they came to be a customer and what has made them one of the "best" customers.
It’s important to identify if the "best" customers are truly the best economic customers or if they are just the ones that the owner "likes" the best. What are the demographics of the best customers? What other attributes of the best customers can be profiled in order to find other candidates to become best customers. The reason to drive the owner to describe and get clarity on their best customers is to focus their marketing efforts on that target.
Okay – I''m going to leave you all in suspense here and make you come back next Wednesday to read the rest of Mike’s response – it’s too good to stick into one huge post and I think you are going to get way more out of this very informative piece if you have some time to digest the information.
Bookmark this page so you can follow the Business Coaching Blogs and catch up with Mike next week.