John’s Blog

/
John’s Blog
Every year, John travels all over the world to speak at conferences and to work with his clients to help them stay ahead of their competitors.  As economies and lifestyles change, new trends emerge and successful businesses adapt.  John blogs about the trends he sees.  You can keep in touch with global events, adapt your business to optimise the trends and stay abreast of your competition through subscribing to John’s Blog.  Scroll down to read his blog.

How does a Town become a Ghost Town ?

That was the question I was asked when I presented recently on ABC Nightline, the national radio programme in Australia. I was invited onto the programme because of my E Book and workshop entitled “Ghost Town ,Clone Town, Home Town”. As a business consultant I define a “Ghost Town” as a community where at least 20% of the retail premises in the High Street have closed down, this gives the

Read More »

What is your Story ?

If you look at the research coming out, it indicates that consumers are going to be spending less and looking for a discount. Put this together with the “fear” of crowds and social distancing practices and the result is fewer customers spending less money, not a formulae for success. What is retailer supposed to do? This is not the time to start a discounting strategy, if you do the chances

Read More »

Retailing Post COVID 19

Retailing has never changed so rapidly as it has in 2020.Prior to 2020 I was presenting “Ghost Town, Clone Town, Home Town” workshops for small communities around the world. The emphasis of the workshops was that there were three types of communities and that success meant you had to be a “Home Town” to engage with the consumer. Post Covid 19 that is more important than ever. Consumers have now

Read More »

Marketing is child’s play

The key to retailing today is to provide an experience, for the whole family. If the children are happy, then their parents are happy. If you can get all age groups to want to linger longer then your average sale is bound to go up. Read the full article here

Read More »

The Amazon effect

2017, I believe, will be looked on as the tipping year as far as the Amazon Effect is concerned. I came across businesses that were simply ignoring the power of online shopping and told me that it would not affect them. I have been told customers will not buy “x” online. I find this approach to retailing amazing. Put you head in the sand and the threat will go away.

Read More »

Customer experience and customer service

The Customer Experience Impact Report is now 7 years old, but still has some interesting research. 40% of consumers switch stores because of a store having a greater customer service reputation 55% of those that switch, say greater customer service, not product or price, are the primary reason they changed retailers 66% say they spend more time in store if they believe the customer service is outstanding Plus…you need advocates!

Read More »

Convergence versus Divergence

I am a great believer in the convergence and divergence theory and the food industry is really showing this in action. At one level with have 3D Food printers now moving into the restaurant scene. Food Ink are doing a world tour where guests can dine on food that has come out of a 3D printer. You get the perfect dish based on a food puree produced by the ink. This

Read More »

What’s for lunch?

The “Waitrose Food and Drink Report” was released in early November. This indicated that 50% of consumers decided at lunchtime on what they would have for an evening meal and 1 in 10 made the decision just before the meal. Many consumers were claiming that this helped them reduce food waste at home. This trend has two major influences: There is a huge opportunity to promote meals rather than produce,

Read More »

Eataly World

One of the challenges is keeping up with trends…a recent trends worth following are Fico Eataly World, Bologna, Italy. Many of you will know I am a great fan of this retailer, Eataly, they provide an excellent experience. Now they have created the Disney of Food theme parks in Bologna. This could be one of the destinations in Italy. It opened in November 2017. If you are going to Italy, check

Read More »

Tasty One Top

Launched in November 2017, this could be a game changer. BuzzFeed and GE have developed a smart cooking appliance that retails for $149 US. The cooker is Bluetooth enabled and the consumer downloads the Tasty mobile app and gets video downloads of recipes that sync with the cooker and auto adjust the temperature as the cooker prepares the meal.

Read More »

Adaptogens…watch out for this craze

We have seen the increasing interest in herbs, edible weeds and herbal teas. I believe the next wave of interest will be around Adaptogens, plants that are believed to reduce stress. The key plants to look out for are: Rhodiola rosea. ..a perennial from the Arctic Widania somnifera… a member of Solanaceae that also goes under the name of Rennet, Poison Gooseberry Winter Cherry, Indian Ginseng and Ashwagandha Ziziphus jujube…

Read More »

Russian Roulette

The largest garden centre in Europe, possibly the world! Garden centres open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week! These were key surprises for me looking at the industry around Moscow. I had been invited to Russia to present a key note address and workshop to the floriculture and horticulture industry on my views on garden retailing over the next five years and how Russian garden centres can maximise

Read More »

Selling to the super rich

If you have a large market of multi millionaires, your marketing strategies change and this is obvious around Moscow. The Orangery, part of the Crocus Group, has the largest selection of indoor plants in one location I have seen anywhere. It is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. When I asked why they were open at 2.00am and how can they justify it, I was told that

Read More »

Kissing Day and Ladies Day

The florist industry around the world is being pressurized by supermarkets and online retailers selling flowers. I am speaking at the Interflora conference in October and am aware of the concerns of the industry. We need to create experiences where the consumer can buy into the idea of visiting a florist. In Czech, they have Kissing Day on May 1 when men are expected to buy flowers for their partner

Read More »

Sell nostalgia

Farmers markets and farm shops around the world are concerned about the supermarkets taking their business from them. I do not believe this should be the case as there are many opportunities to create a difference in the market place. In the UK there is a decline in an awareness and understanding of local delicacies and this could be a point of difference. Local meals such as Bath Chaps (Pigs

Read More »

Waste not

One of the big issues in Europe is food a waste and the amount of food being thrown away by supermarkets. France has introduced a no waste policy and fresh food that would be discarded is now donated to charities. In the UK Hugh Fearnley-Wittingstall of River Cottage fame has launched Food Share to help reduce the 10 million tonnes of fresh food waste generated in the UK, that would

Read More »

Have you got your selfies organised?

One of the best ways of getting your name out into the community is to have a selfie location. The key is to make sure your name is clearly visible behind the selfie location. Alas, most businesses forget to do this. Having said that it has been great to see business develop selfie locations on my travels. I will leave you with these selfie ideas from this trip.  

Read More »

Florists need to reinvent themselves

There have been a number of articles about the demise of the florist in recent weeks. Florists seem to be hit by the changes that are taking place in retailing and those that have stuck to the old model have seen a decline in sales. Those that reinvent themselves are finding a new market. An example of this is a florist close to my home town, Fleurs of Bunbury, they

Read More »

NEW WORKSHOP: Retailing – navigating the future

A one day workshop aimed at established retail owners and senior management, by John Stanley. Established retailers have seen the market mature; what they did in the past will not work in the future and new ways of developing the business need to be considered. This workshop provides an “ideas tool kit” to allow mature retail businesses to grow in the future. Program for the day • The three key

Read More »

Love local…make it a strategy, not an idea

9 out of 10 Australians prefer to buy locally made products (Ref: Eloise Keating Smart Company 06/1/2016) According to all the surveys coming out, locally made, is increasing in popularity. Local is very much being used more in conversation, but what is “local”? According to the dictionary, local means “existing in or belonging to the area where you live, or to the area that you are talking about.” The definition

Read More »

The garden retail category…full of confusion

Keeping up with what is happening in the garden retail category is confusing at present. One report was published just before the Chelsea Flower Show based on work done by the RHS which showed that in the UK Millennials and Gen X were not gardening due to the lack of guidance from their parents. As a result they are likely to develop low maintenance gardens, read paving. Only 1% had

Read More »

Music…time to tone it down

As a consultant to retailers for over 40 years I have to admit one of my sins. I was pro adding music into the retail environment. As human beings we hate silence and if we do experience silence we start making some sort of noise…silence is deafening. As consumers we hate going into silent empty stores and hence retailers have relied on “Musak” to create the ambience required to encourage

Read More »

Marketing 2016…On Your Bike

Marketing continues to get more complicated as new social media marketing tools continue to be developed and the consumer becomes more acquainted and confident with social media. The challenge for many business owners is to keep up with a more demanding consumer, the answer may be to go back to basics and get “on your bike” to quote the old English saying. Whilst marketing your business is becoming more sophisticated,

Read More »

What are the secrets of a successful International business speaker

It is your first time in a new country, the culture is different, the currency is different, they do not speak your language and you have to give a business talk to a professional audience. Many speakers been in this situation and often panic sets in. How are you going to impress this audience or client with so many potential stumbling blocks ahead of you? Speaking to audiences in foreign

Read More »