Retail Florist Growth Strategies

Our patriarch, Len Levy, has had many years’ experience in the floral business, and here are his tips for retail florists to grow:
Carry potted plants that are different from those marketed in supermarkets.  If you aren’t sure what plants are available in your local supermarket, go and check.
Sweet Sixteen parties and the Spanish version of the sweet sixteen, Quinceanera, (prounounced phonetically kin-see-ann-era) are sales opportunities.  These are events that are happening in your community, with or without you.  Ask the mothers that come into your store how you can market to those girls and the families
Each town has a local paper, many towns have a website on the patch.  In NJ the patch site for Paramus is patch.com/new-jersey/Paramus.  For a New York State town here is an example - patch.com/new-york/ Bronxville.  The local paper and the patch provide marketing opportunities that are affordable.  Each time you host the local garden club at your shop to make arrangements as a fun night out for the ladies, take a photo and email it to the paper and the patch for added publicity.
Anywhere you go hand out your business card.  One florist we told this to, handed her card to a gas station attendant, and then three days later that attendant bought something.  Business cards are cheap.  
Get in touch with local dance recitals.  Flowers are a natural there, and the dance company probably is already buying flowers from a source.  Horn in there and give them a presentation.
Get in touch with local clubs, high school prom, Garden clubs, or even wristlet corsages for the annual rotary club dance.
A sample gourmet fruit basket should be on display in your store, so customers realize that you can fill that need.  Wholesalers like us, sell fake fruit, that looks very real.  We also can supply you with gourmet food in bulk, or baskets already made.  (I know, that was a plug for us, but I couldn’t resist!)
Decorate people’s homes for Christmas, make outdoor contain gardens for people’s patios.
Many Jewish sects in this market buy flowers on Fridays before sundown.
Garden clubs, senior citizens groups are always looking for a speaker.  Your speech can be a 1/2 hour infomercial for your shop.  Hand out business cards.
Many towns have a continuing education slate of classes for adults in the evenings at the local high school.  Your designer from your shop should be teaching some of these classes, and handing out your store’s business cards.
Does your store have a $499.00 cash and carry wedding package for millennials that are short of money for a big wedding?
Work a deal with the bridal gown store to share (new) customers for a set fee.
Bloomnation is a new wire service, they have a 10% take, and they allow you to set the prices of the designs.  Call them and talk to them. 877-702-5666
Partner with the art teacher at the local grade school, and do some activities with the students there to make some designs, and make sure your business card is attached to each arrangement that goes home.  This will build current day sales with parents and future sales with kids that someday become floral consumers.