McCurry Associates Marketing Idea Exchange Archives
Volume 75 - March 18, 2004
Welcome to Issue 75 of McCurry Marketing Idea
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Please Enjoy, Consider and Profit from these ideas.
All the Best,
Happy St Patrick’s’ Day to all our readers! May the luck of the Irish visit your cash registers frequently.
Idea #1 & 2 – Follow
Up To Posting by Carl Mink, Millburn Camera,
> Melinda Wilburn,
American Fast Photo,
I have a product in my store that comes from Photomemory Makers. They
sell necklaces and bracelets that hold photos in them. When I first purchased
these items I had no competition in my area. A large chain store, Belk's
Department Store, started to carry the same item about a week before Valentine's
Day. I can offer to print the photos for the necklaces and bracelets in my store
since I have a lab, for a small fee when the items are purchased from me. After
the department store started to carry these items, I felt like I would not sell
What I did was call the manger at the
department store and ask her if I could place a nice sign in a 5x7 frame by her
display of Photomemory Maker jewelry saying that my store could print the photos
for this item. The manger had no problem with that because it was not any
conflict of where someone should buy the items. This has worked very well for me
because now the people will come in my store to have the photos made for their
jewelry and while they are there I can show them what services we offer.
This has been good for me. I hope it will help
someone else. This goes to show that cross business promotions can help each
> Bob Banasik, Digibug, www.digibug.com
I actually went on the road with samples (using my daughter's beautiful
picture of course) and left 20 or so prints at each jewelry store. I don't take
credit for this as I "stole" it from Jim Schwartzback. Anyway, the
jewelry stores were actually quite happy to see me and almost all of them
immediately placed the prints (which strangely also had our logo and store info,
just as they do when we sell them for $15 per 4x6) right in the display case
along side their collection of lockets. They were very happy to know about us
and pass along the "information" to their customers.
There was no coupon or special offer of any
kind (not a bad idea though) but the amount of people coming in and asking for
the locket photo with all the different sizes on it grew to a steady stream...at
least weekly. Who knew jewelers sold so many lockets?
Idea #3 – New “Power
Points” For Winning Customers
Dale Farkas, Dale
I'd like to suggest four "Power
Points" that really impress customers:
1) The Power of a Personal Tour - For companies who have actual
laboratories larger than a single mini-lab giving a personal tour of the
facilities, particularly if it is an impromptu invitation, can be very
successful in turning a customer into a fan.
You don't have to divulge all the tricks to the magic; just give a taste
and let them see real prints, slides and other photo products coming out in
production. While on the tour describe the various products and ask questions to
see if the customer is aware of all you're doing in your company.
2) The Power of a Question - Customer Service "order-takers"
wait until customers ask them about a given product. Order-takers don't make any
effort to generate additional sales by delving into customer needs.
Consultive sales people ask customers questions to determine the
customers' actual photographic needs and match them to the lab's offerings.
Assuming that customers "know" what is being offered is a big mistake.
Customers are busy people and most of them don't know everything their lab is
doing and offering. It's only by asking questions like, "Mr. Smith, you've
always brought your film in to us. But, do you also own a digital camera?"
You'd be amazed to find that Mr. Smith probably does have a digital camera but
may not know that your lab could turn out prints from it.
3) The Power of a Compliment - Everyone likes to be complimented...and
something in nearly every processing or enlarging order deserves a compliment.
(I.e. What an unusual composition! Your really saw that old church in a
different way than the average photographer. Or...Wow, it must be tough to take
a bad picture of your Granddaughter. But, this one is really outstanding.)
Maybe it’s something to do with our culture, but I find that Americans
hesitate, for some reason, to give compliments freely. A compliment doesn't cost
a single cent, yet gives out a "warm furry" that brings people back to
a store and people where they feel good. Try to get that message across to your
customer service people.
4) The Power of a Tactfully Transmitted Solution - Lab customer service people need to help customers solve problems, even if the customer isn't aware he has one. For example, one of the biggest quality killers in photography are underexposed negatives. Even the best films will turn out drab, lifeless prints if they are underexposed by a stop. Train your people to see photographic problems and be able to check out negatives (or digital images). If the customer service representative spots a problem he needs to tactfully help the customer. Start with a compliment (i.e. great composition!) and then say something like, "You know, Bill, even though these shots look great I think you might be able to get even more color saturation on future shooting if you were to bias your camera by +1 stop in exposure." Then, show them the difference in print results on frames where their negatives had more exposure compared to underexposed frames. Follow-up with a question to see if the customer knows how to bias the exposure on his camera (or if the camera is adjustable). If this is done in a positive, complimentary way customers will appreciate the extra effort. Getting better prints will be a win-win for both them and you, too.