How are you?
No really, I want to know.
Do you feel a little bit like you took one too many turns on the roller coaster after eating a whole bunch of popcorn and cotton candy?
Or are you feeling more like you’re gently bobbing along on the merry-go-round?
Let me know in the comments which ride you’re on right now!
I’m checking in with you because we’re about to start a new season, and there is no doubt that there is a lot of uncertainty, which also means a lot of stress.
Add to it that the season we are heading into includes the holidays, and that the fourth quarter can represent as much as 40% of your annual sales, and the pressure is REAL!
I really want you to take a moment and recognize that.
Recognize how pressure and stress manifest in your life so that you become aware when it’s playing a part in your emotions and reactions.
And then let’s reframe it.
Let’s get in the driver’s seat and take charge of this season. But just like you wouldn’t go on a road trip without properly preparing and planning for it, you shouldn’t just head into the new season willy nilly and see what happens!
Of course, you do need to get it right this season, but you can accomplish that without the stress and the pressure. When you have a plan and a strategy.
And that’s how you will get through this next season.
By breaking your plans into small, manageable tasks. And then starting on the first one.
So let’s look at some of the most common fourth-quarter concerns for retailers and how you can break them down into smaller steps to manage your stress and keep moving forward.
Holiday Inventory Planning
Supply chain shortages have been causing all sorts of chaos and stress for indie retailers. You have more control than you think. Here are a few of my top tips for dealing with it, and preparing for a well stocked store this holiday season:
Hiring for the Holidays
Looking to add seasonal help in the fourth quarter? Here’s what to do:
1. Identify which roles and responsibilities you need to hire for. When you’re clear on who you need on your team, you can hire the right person for the job
2. RETAILMavens clients have had great luck using the Facebook™ Jobs feature when hiring. It allows you to set application requirements, tracking your applications in one place and researching candidates before inviting to interview
3. Make sure you hire well by asking the right questions!
4. Support your new hire by having super clear expectations, so they can support you the way you need them to.
5. The holiday season is usually the busiest season, which can get overwhelming. Train your team on these 5 retail skills so they ensure a fabulous shopping experience for your customers
With the uncertainty of the pandemic still in play this holiday season, it is more important than ever that you are putting the processes in place to reach new customers AND reactivating your existing customers:
1. Take steps to consistently grow your email list – Email marketing is still the most effective marketing strategy available to independent retailers, and it will be key to reach your customers this holiday season
2. Get clear on who YOU are and who your IDEAL customer is so that your marketing is as effective as possible!
3. Set yourself up with a consistent marketing process so you’ll see consistent traffic and sales throughout the holiday season – and after it too!
4. Whether your customers are shopping with you in person or online – you need to make sure their shopping journey is consistent, on brand and convenient. This makes you an Omnichannel Marketer and will keep customers shopping with you again and again!
If you fail to plan you plan to fail
Look, one thing I know for sure is that plans can and do change. We learned that last year. BUT we also learned that HAVING a plan in the first place, makes it easier and less stressful to shift and refocus.
I am here for you if you need some support, or if you just need a hand getting off that roller coaster.
And I plan on being there with you every step of the way, so that you DO have a successful season.
Ready to have a coach and a community of inspiring retailers in your corner this holiday season? You don’t have to do this alone – Join us in the RETAILMavens Coaching program and start your journey to becoming a richer retailer. In every sense of the word!