Dear Retail Buyer: Be My Valentine

It’s Valentine’s Day. You have researched and prepped to make this day special for your Valentine. You googled Yelp to get restaurant reviews, searched online for the top 10 V-day gifts in 2013 and browsed store aisles for that perfect gift.  In short, you did your homework.  Take that approach when wooing retail buyers. Trust me, doing your homework gives you credibility and stands you apart from everyone else.

Here are your homework assignments.  Start early, don’t procrastinate. And watch retail buyers give you an A+!!

Research that retailer and determine what is important to them.  If they are publicly traded, read their annual reports and listen to quarterly earnings calls to learn their strategic focus. Knowing this, you can spin your retail pitch to align with their strategies.

Shop their stores.  Notice how they merchandise your product category.  Observe price points, how they organize brands, piece counts.  Form opinions and recommendations on how they can do things better to grow their business; and those recommendations should also include adding your brand.  Adding value and being a credible source of unbiased industry intelligence will earn you ten more minutes with that buyer than if you were calling just to pitch your product alone.