museums&MORE Fall 2014
Editor’s Letter: Hungry for Profits

I came across a story on the Huffington Post about how fast food joints make people want to eat at their restaurants. Considering nearly 30 percent of Americans report eating at fast food establishments on a weekly basis, they’re obviously doing something right, especially seeing as how most Americans are also aware of the dangers of our nation’s obesity epidemic. While I’m not suggesting you start selling burgers, I am suggesting you implement a few of their strategies.

Take advantage of people’s desire for convenience. People are busy and looking for instant gratification — whether it be in the form of food, fun or a gift to take home. Much like drive-thrus, make your store a place people can walk in, see what they want or didn’t know that they needed and easily make a purchase.

Use vocabulary to entice them. I don’t suggest you use words like juicy” and “finger lickin’ good” on your displays, but I do suggest that you use key words that spark interest like “fun and festive” or “environmentally friendly” — things that add extra value.

Target children. Children were exposed to an average of 13 food ads every day in 2013 through TV, radio, the Internet and social media. And don’t forget the restaurants including toys and giveaways in meals to establish an emotional connection to the brand. The takeaway is to make sure you have products targeted to kids and that your store is child-friendly, adding in interactive displays and making it a place that kids ask to come back to again. Throwing an extra sticker or two in the bag couldn’t hurt either.

It’s all about creating a brand and an experience — something they can instantly enjoy and remember, not to mention desire to return to again. The good thing for you is you’re promoting something much healthier than burgers and fries; you’re promoting your own healthy sales.

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