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Innovation Bound to Happen

Jenn-Aire Obsidian black interior for refrigerators

Inside The Box – Obsidian

It was bound to happen….eventually. Fads come and go but trends stay a while – sometimes a long while. But appliance styles are not supposed to be forever. First there was white. Then we had Avocado Green and Harvest Gold. White came back in style. Then Stainless Steel. Then Black. Red made it into the laundry set. But that can’t go in the kitchen can it?

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Website, Blog, Email Bloopers and Blunders on the New Frontier

Last night I made my first post in recent years to my dormant WordPress Blog that had been replaced with a fancy big city website that I did not learn to operate. This was the post on my trip to Japan. Unfortunately the link to the report was not working when I published the post and the email feed went out. Although I fixed the link it was too late. Here’s the link again: https://hortadvantage.files.wordpress.com/2014/03/sid-raisch-mar-1-2014-japan.pdf

At one time I was pretty far ahead on using the Internet. I forged into the darkness years ago, not on the bleeding edge, but on the cutting edge. I’ve always been an innovative thinker and sometimes that can get me (and other innovators) into some trouble.

Then I hired a “professional”. Trouble is that in the Internet world it is the new frontier. On the frontier there are cowboys with white hats, black hats, and those that are neither good nor bad at the core and are just innovating in an untested, unproven world. That is the land of the Internet – the new frontier. It’s a place of ghost towns, unbeaten paths, roads to nowhere, and the crossroads of America and the World.

So now I’m back posting on the old blog site. Interesting that WordPress became the number one website platform of businesses small and large so its like back to the future. How often does that happen? I’ll be posting here again, and will update the chosen template look and feel over time and probably on my own. Does that make me an Internet cowboy?

I will also be working with and implementing Talk Fusion, a platform for video email and online meeting collaboration.


Japan Garden Centers – What Can We Learn?

Takamatsu Trading LTD of Japan invited Sid Raisch to present a seminar and workshop to their garden center clients. A complete report including many photos can be accessed by clicking HERE.

My friend, garden designer and Japanese Cowboy, Mr. Hitoshi Taketani

My friend, garden designer and Japanese Cowboy, Mr. Hitoshi Taketani

Flyer Sign for Sid Raisch at Takamatsu School

What does this say about Sid Raisch?

Virtually Prepared for Spring

Bill Calkins

Bill Calkins

Virtually Prepared for Spring

Guest Article from Flourish, by Bill Calkins – Business Manager, Independent Garden Centers for Ball Horticultural Company

Right now, an entirely new gardener is walking into garden centers across North America. They know a little bit about plants, a lot about the stores they visit and have specific projects in mind. The plant knowledge might have come from family or friends, but some of it was no doubt gleaned from the Internet. They certainly spent a couple minutes online poking through local garden center websites and box store specials before hopping in the car. And they do not see gardening as a hobby – it’s functional, adding visual impact and value to their home landscape, balcony, patio, deck, etc, etc.

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. Continue reading

WHY Do Customers Think of You?

What do customers think of you?

While they probably don’t just sit around and actually think much about the companies they do business with, consumers generally form specific opinions about stores over time and exposure to marketing messages, personal experience, and what they hear from others.

Whatever value equation a company brand has established with a consumer, unless it is a discount brand, it is lowered by constantly promoting deals and discounts on what customers already want to buy. These discounts do more than cost money. They also make it easy for the customer to categorize in their mind what type of retailer each store is to them. And once they’ve chosen the category, it is very difficult to change their perceptions. Continue reading

Strategies ‘Fabulous Fall’ Edition – just released

Click HERE to read the latest edition of my seasonal email newsletter, Strategies.

Read the ‘Fabulous Fall’ edition of Strategies seasonal email newsletter – Coming 2010 – Make Hay RAIN or Shine, Bank on It, How We Help.

Direct Link: http://ow.ly/yXtf

Strategies Blog Updates: Really Cool Stuff and More

(Read Time: approximately 3 minutes)


This post is to let you know What’s Coming and to Fill You In on how some features work on Strategies Blog so you can get more out of your experience here today and in the future.

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What’s Wrong with this Message?

Enough about the economy stupid.

Yes, we need to be empathetic to the consumer’s need to save, but the problem is amplified and exacerbated when everyone who is marketing has the same basic message across all communication channels. A basic tenet of marketing – differentiation, is lost.

Shouldn’t your brand be all about helping consumers escape the everyday issues of life? Keep in mind that when your advertising messages remind your own brand constituents of the harsh realities of living today, and that they should save money every time they buy you are NOT making them feel like they need to have what you’ve got. Continue reading

A Hobby That Got Out of Hand

I’m like the majority of you. I’m in the business end of this business and still have a love of the root of the business in my heart. Having been spoiled with free plants and wholesale prices most of my life I’m often faced with retail when I see something in my client’s inventory that I just “have to have”. It’s a very satisfying curse.

So I thought I’d play in the business while leaving the business side alone a little while. There are tons of great plant finds on the Internet. I won’t try to prioritize favorites, but here are a couple that had me spellbound far longer than I intended, and wishing it was time to plant.

Tim Wood’s The Plant Hunter blog

Bailey Nurseries online catalog

So please click on “Comments” below and share your best finds.

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