“Kevin Harrington, research and development director at Sodexo Pass – the company behind SayShopping vouchers and SayMotivation Pass – looks to the future of vouchers and gift cards.” – Sales Promotion.
You don’t always need to spend thousands on research to find out what is going on in some markets. Simply keeping your eyes open and aimed in the right direction can deliver great results.
On a recent visit to Marks & Spencer I was in a queue to pay and the previous weeks sales figures were on show for all to see:
Menswear suit sales total £63,000 in the week to 26 May 2008. Of this the top ten suits accounted for £23,000. The best seller was a Collezione black suit that grossed £3,600 or nearly 6% of the suits business.
I know what some of you are thinking, “That’s not market research. That’s M&S market research.”
Incoming search terms:
picture with a customer with a bulging carrier bag
Yes, it is true, George Wimpey house sales could be a lot quicker if they sent details to potential customers.
I’ve been trying to get some simple details from George Wimpey since January and it is now 9 March. I’ve sent more than 4 emails as well.
More details on this story will be here soon.
And here, posted on 6 April 2008, is an update. After posting the three paragraphs above, the business development director for George Wimpey emailed me. In fact he emailed within an hour of posting. I guess he uses Google Alerts to monitor internet mentions of his business. He seemed a nice guy and very genuine. It still took another couple of weeks before any details arrived.
It is interesting how a sincere reply/apology does go a long way to recovering a situation.
Anyway, for those that have asked me, I’m not about to buy one of these houses. They look fine but they are not for me. One reason is garden size. But there are other reasons as well.
Perhaps it’s just me, but I find the idea of banks running January sales a bit offensive. I’m not too sure why. I think it’s the naive idea I have that banks offer competitive terms at all times.
HSBC and NatWest are both advertising a ‘sale’ for their services this month. Are we expected to suddenly decide to borrow some money? And if we miss the sale opportunities are the prices reverting to normal?
These nagging thoughts made me look at the HSBC sale offer. Low and behold another one of my pet hates – deal with us and we’ll give money to charity.
The HSBC website and adverts proudly exclaim, “Every time you take us up on one of our Sale or other special offers, we will donate £2 to WWF to support the HSBC Rainforest Preservation Project in Brazil. Each donation will protect a whole acre of rainforest. So, as well as saving money, you’ll be helping to save one of the world’s most important and endangered rainforests.”
You read it right, get a mortgage or loan or pension and HSBC will donate an entire £2. I wonder what that represents as a percentage of the fees they earn on each of the products.
I’ve never liked this type of use of a charity to promote a business, product or service.
I read a chart of the “best clients” from an agency perspective. At the bottom there was the “Brands in Need of a Direct Makeover” section.
British Gas: Aggressive sales tack, combined with perceived lack of database marketing finesse, hits utilities giant.
It may not just be their database marketing that needs finessing. A door to door salesperson knocked on our door for a second time the other day. This was despite a sticker saying we do not buy at the door. He wanted British Gas to also supply the Harrington household electricity.
The pushy salesman said that he wasn’t in fact selling anything and therefore it was alright for him to knock on the door and waste my time. I presume that this means that electricity supplied by British Gas is in fact free.
The net result: I think less of the British Gas brand and would actively consider moving our gas account from them…if I could be bothered.