What Are You Doing For The Holidays? This Is A Business Question.

by Paul Schlossberg
Posted On: 12/10/2018

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  Paul Schlossberg
It's that time of year again. It seems that we're all even busier than usual. Family and friends keep our calendars filled with fun and happy events. That's wonderful. But you still have lots to do at work.

The question in the headline is something for you to think about right now. At the locations you serve there is an opportunity to show that YOU CARE to your clients and the people who are your shoppers. For example, you can:

1. Put up signs and holiday decorations. Remember to be inclusive.

2. Post relevant messages on websites and social media. Again remember to be inclusive.   

3. Offer and sell special holiday food, snacks and beverages on the menu.  

4. Bring holiday cakes or platters of food or snacks to be placed in the breakroom. If you do this, please be careful about food safety. Be sensitive to dietary requirements and healthier eating patterns.

5. Deliver a food gift to your key client contact and possibly some of the key executives.  

The list above presents some ideas to consider for your agenda during the current holiday season. But, in my opinion, doing these things is not enough. You need to do more – a lot more!

During the past year, my blogs and articles have examined important issues as seen by our younger shoppers – Millennials and Generation Z. Three critical subjects relate directly to the holiday season: (A) customization; (B) personalization; and (C) doing business with companies who are "doing good things."

We can all probably agree that being charitable is "doing good things." So, you're no doubt wondering, "How do we create and execute holiday promotions using CUSTOMIZATION and PERSONALIZATION? Maybe it is easier to do than it seems. How would you accomplish that?

1. Ask (or do a survey of) your team about local causes or charities. Suggest a few alternatives. It would be great to have your organization emotionally connected to this initiative. You could make donations to specific charities in the name of your company and individual team members.  

2. You can select one or two local causes or charities for support all year long. It would give you an opportunity to reinforce your charitable initiative throughout the year.

3. Find out if clients, especially at your best locations, are actively supporting specific charities or causes. You can make a donation in the name of the client company. How much should you donate? You might have noticed that many companies (not just in our business) will donate "all of their sales for a day." Or you could offer $1 per employee at the site (maybe even more if you wish).

Once you decide which charities or causes to support, you should announce donations to the management and employees at each client and to your team. Have regular updates on your website and on social media if the donation amount is being accumulated during the year.  
Being charitable is a good thing. If your team, your clients and the shoppers you serve know that your company is "doing good things," it might be another positive step on the path to selling more stuff.      

» Paul Schlossberg is president of D/FW Consulting, working with clients to merchandise and market products in impulse-intense selling environments, such as vending, onsite foodservice and convenience stores. Based in the Austin, TX, area, he can be reached at Paul@DFWConsulting.net or (972) 877-2972 or www.DFWConsulting.net.