Business and Operations
Concepts for Success: June 2015
By Diane Chiasson
Make the most of summer Traffic
By Diane Chiasson
As customers emerge into the warm weather, here’s how to ensure they’ll stop by your bakery.
The snow is gone and sun is glinting back in our lives. What could be better on a spring or summer walk than to catch the smell of baked goods in the air?
Many bakery customers are out again, looking for something interesting and appealing in the nooks and crannies of Canada’s towns and cities. There are many ways to entice those customers to your bakery and now is the time to make sure you execute your best marketing strategies to bring them to your door in droves.
Consider the following tips to help market to bakery customers and generate new and repeat business from your clientele:
Market to Customers’ Sight, Taste and Smell
Make sure that whatever part of your bakery that’s visible to your customers has clean windows and displays and is filled to the brim with your full range of baked goods. Offer tastings of your best products to customers and those walking by and for a bakery, above all, arrange your store and activities so customers can smell the aroma of fresh baked goods.
Post Photos on a Regular Basis
Just as you put out fresh goods every day, your website and especially your Facebook page should put out fresh photos nearly as regularly. Use social media posts to remind readers to order a special cake, bread or new cupcake flavour and keep the photos of your best creations flowing to your sites. Make sure you develop a social media plan that will deliver well-timed posts and integrate with your other offerings and promotions.
There are many systems for rewarding loyal clients. But you don’t have to have your own plastic loyalty cards together with magnetic strip to entice them. A free loaf after 10 purchases recorded on a simple stamped card can still have the power to keep your customers coming back for more. Alternatively, giving your repeat clients a rebate in gift certificates
is sure to build loyalty.
How about a dozen doughnuts for the price of 10, or rather than giving a baker’s dozen, how about a dozen for $9.99 and one free! Now these could be old school in local handouts or with your own newsletter (see tip below). For those with more Internet-savvy clientele, Groupon and Facebook have brought this basic concept into the 21st century. And, of course, coupons can always be posted to your website or Facebook page, or sent to your followers on Twitter.
If you have regular birthday, anniversary or other annual event customers, then many of these are repeated year after year. Do you have a system in place to remind you it’s time to call all of your past birthday cake patrons?
Another order of the wedding cake you so diligently crafted for a couple’s special day would make an excellent anniversary gift. And who wouldn’t want to receive a birthday card along with a gift certificate for a favourite cake?
However, few bakeries apply this winning strategy. It could put you light-years ahead of your competitors. Make sure your system remembers and reminds you just before returning customers are perusing this year’s options. If you pick the anniversary date, you may be too late.
Diane Chiasson, FCSI, president of Chiasson Consultants Inc., has been helping restaurant, foodservice, hospitality and retail operators increase sales for over 30 years. She is recognized as one of the best restaurant consultants in North America. Her company provides innovative and revenue-increasing foodservice and retail merchandising programs, interior design, branding, menu engineering, marketing and promotional campaigns, and much more. Contact her at 416-926-1338, toll-free at 1-888-926-6655 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.chiassonconsultants.com.