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People don’t want to BUY what you have until they WANT what you have

What Customers Want

What Customers Want

Have you ever read an advertisement and then picked up the phone or got in your car and went about buying the thing with the thought, “I don’t need this and I don’t know anyone who does but the price is so low it has to be a good idea”.

To get anywhere near the full value out of what you sell it is a good idea to sell it to people who already want it, and there isn’t room for all of us in the garden center business today to survive doing that.We have a communication problem!

Marketing is not creating a market for what you have; it is having what people want.

When the majority of garden centers in our industry can only talk about our plants, products, low prices, and discounts it only addresses the merchandise our present customer already plans to buy. Remember, that is the discount mass merchant’s primary (though not exclusive) territory. Unless you can inform and inspire your present customers to WANT more they aren’t going to buy more. Unless your competitions customers WANT more, they aren’t going to buy from you either. The key to keeping customers and getting new ones is to entice them to WANT what you have.

What people want. Begin with avoiding what they don’t want.

Customers want to be listened to, heard, understood. When we constantly advertise our plants and prices it demonstrates only that we do not understand them, or why they would want to buy from us. If advertising looks like its from the used car lot, drug store chain, rent to own store, or most garden centers it likely makes your customer feel the way  you do when you receive that trash. It is more likely resented than appreciated. It makes them HATE US! Click HERE to read why ads must not be hated.

Some say that advertising must inform, entertain, or inspire. The truth is that it must do all three. Advertising that just informs and is not particularly entertaining or inspiring enough to be watched or responded to are a waste of time and money. Still, advertising to not be hated is not a very good reason to advertise…telling a good story of why and how a customer would use the product is, and then we might get into why your customer would buy anything from you they don’t already plan to buy from you.

Put your marketing materials out there on the table and take a look at where you are. Are they all about items, prices, and discounts? Are they about WHY your customer would want to buy something you sell?

What is the most informative, entertaining, or inspiring advertising you’ve done lately?


2 Responses

  1. In “Jump start your marketing brain” it is stated that the greatest sales growth comes from companies that find a need a customer does not even know they have and fill that need with a product.

    Getting customers to come more often is also not the best thing to do for sales growth.

  2. Ed, getting customers to come more often may not be the BEST thing to do for sales growth I agree, IF there are more customers available. Significant sales growth CAN occur by gaining more customers, but may not. We must keep in mind that there is more than one way to get growth, and for many companies getting more out of current customers must not be discounted if they are currently not getting the sales they should from their customers, and if there are not substantially more customers available to them due to the demographics of their market.

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