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Aug 22

You Didn’t Get My Email Address

Posted by: Steve Marr

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I was buying several plants at my local nursery and as I completed the transaction I said to the owner “You didn’t get my email address.” “Bill’s” response was, “Why would I need it?”  I explained that he could send me an email reminding me in the spring what plants I should get for my yard or what items to pick up for fall cleanup or let me know what’s on sale. Bill agreed that it was a good idea, finished up with me and moved to the next customer. Bill will likely never act on developing an email list.

I don’t want to interject myself into Bill’s business without being asked. However, if he were to ask me I would tell him to collect email addresses and send out a periodic newsletter. He could write the letter in the winter when business was slow and Bill didn’t have a lot to do. Then he would have newsletters written in advance.

Perhaps Bill was concerned about how to develop content. Bill could summarize good articles from the internet in a brief paragraph and provide a link to the article for more information. Better yet, he could contact the author and see if he could have permission to reprint the entire article as part of the newsletter.

In each newsletter Bill could highlight plans for the coming season and remind his customers that he is a great source for plants, seeds and bulbs.  The newsletter could easily focus on the best products to plant in a specific time of year. A newsletter is also a great place to let people know when he is running a sale to get rid of too much inventory or trying to sell end-of-the stock, such as tulip bulbs he wouldn’t want to keep until the next year.  At times I buy something on sale at a great price that I may not otherwise purchase.

Building an email list is good business. I think about Radio Shack going out of business. At one time Radio Shack was the premier company in the electronic space; now they’re gone. One reason for their demise is that they never got their customers’ email addresses until they were struggling. Radio Shack should have been emailing the newest and latest innovations and encouraging customers to come into the store with special coupons or order online. They didn’t; now they’re gone.

Peter wrote, “I think it is right to refresh your memory as long as I live in the tent of this body.” (2 Peter 1:13, NIV). While Peter was referring to spiritual matters, we can use the same principle and refresh our customer’s memory about seasonal products and special sales.

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