How Retailers Can Retain Millennial Customers
By 2017, members of the Millennial generation are expected to spend over $200 billion annually. To get a piece of this lucrative pie, retailers must work now to retain Millennial customers using these tips:
Millennials are becoming more and more likely to choose where they do their grocery shopping based on what kind of additional amenities each store offers. In fact, around 60% of this generation rate having a deli as high on the list of priorities for grocery stores because of the convenience and fresh food options it offers. But grocery stores without these spaces don’t have to fear losing Millennials. Instead, tap into other opportunities such as carrying unique products or flavors that Millennials see as an advantage over other stores. Retailers should work with food distributors and discuss this need in order to get the right products on their shelves.
With any generation, loyalty programs are a great way to keep customers coming back, but this holds especially true for the Millennial generation. A recent study showed that 69% of Millennials are enrolled in a loyalty program with their grocery store, and out of this group, 70% are satisfied with the structure and benefits the program provides. Millennials are sensitive to price, so design loyalty rewards that will give them access to discounts or special bundle deals the more they shop.
Many retailers feature deals and discounts on the weekends where the largest number of shoppers is expected, but are you missing the Millennial customer by doing so? Because Millennials make smaller, but more frequent trips throughout the week, chances are, they’ll be in your store during the workweek, not just the weekend. To keep this customer base happy, offer special deals on every day of the week, don’t leave them all for the weekend.
It’s common knowledge that Millennials never go far without their smartphones, and this holds true for grocery shopping trips, too. What are they doing on those phones? Well, out of the 70% of Millennials which access their smartphones during a grocery trip, over 20% are using it to look up recipes. Most likely, they spot a product that piques their interest, but aren’t sure whether they know a way to prepare it, so they search for recipes that they could use before deciding to make a purchase. Become part of this decision-making process by adding easy-to-access recipes to your mobile app or website. Or, create recipe cards that can be placed in-store around the meat and produce sections to assist Millennials. This generation is always on the lookout for added conveniences, so making their search for recipes easier is one way to retain this crowd.
Let them be first.
Whether you’re referring to grocery store products or technological advancements, Millennials always want to be the first to adopt something new. To retain this generation, work with food distributors to become known as the grocery store that carries new brands, flavors and products. Millennials will love trying new items and being the ones that get to share their findings with their network.
Securing this generation’s loyalty now will pay off in a big way down the road, so make the investment to cater to the needs and desires of Millennials.
5 Worst Sales Mistakes to Make When Pitching to a Grocer
The old expression “first impressions are the most lasting” is especially true when it comes to a sales pitch. Many times, food distributors or brand representatives will only have one chance to successfully pitch to a new grocer, so it’s important to make every second count. To do so, avoid making these common mistakes:
Focusing on the taste.
Of course the product you’re pitching has to taste good, otherwise why would a buyer want it in the store? Don’t focus your entire pitch on the taste of the product. Establish the incredible taste in the beginning of the pitch, and then move on to focus more on the numbers, the unique design of the package space that will save retailers shelf space, and your facility’s ability to fulfill orders quickly.
Skipping the research.
Before entering a pitch meeting, visit multiple stores and research your product’s category. When you attend the meeting, you should be prepared with research that supports your pricing structure compared to competitors. Be sure to do a walk through of the retailer’s store before the pitch meeting to figure out where your product would be placed, too. Bring the placement up in the meeting to show that you’re familiar with the store’s layout.
Not showing support.
When signing on with a new brand or product, retailers want assurance that you’ll be supporting the launch on your end. Come into a pitch meeting prepared to show the retailer you have planned to promote the launch with your own public relations and marketing efforts. Describe in detail how you will draw attention to both your product and the retailer in order to bring customers into the store. Adding a new brand or product to the inventory always carries a risk for retailers, so ease their concerns by showing your team will be working hard to make it a success.
Not knowing the customer base.
No two retailers are the same. Even two grocery stores within a mile from each other will have a completely different customer base, and it’s important to understand this during a pitch. Your job is to know the customer base before you ever walk through the door, and be ready to tell the buyer how your product fulfills a need that their current inventory hasn’t met yet. Retailers expect food and beverage distributors to be experts in the field, so prove it during the pitch meeting.
Don’t leave it open-ended.
At the end of your pitch, don’t leave the ball in the buyer’s court. Make sure that you clearly define what the next steps are and when you will be back in touch with them to follow-up on their decision. Don’t expect the buyer to go out of their way (or to remember to do so) to get in touch with you. This is your product and your sale, so it’s entirely your responsibility to keep the lines of communication over after the pitch has finished.
What are the best and worst sales pitch tips you’ve ever received?