It’s easy for busy business owners to put marketing strategies on the back burner, but Steven Mahal has seen success by putting his high on the agenda over the past year.
“We’ve been using social media a lot more because it’s cost effective. We still leaflet, but we are choosing carefully what we put online, too,” he explains.
Located on the edge of an estate, the store has to strike a balance between catering for local residents and passing trade. As a result, food to go, bakery and coffee are huge growth areas for Steven’s business.
“We’ve also increased our range of £1 household items, including cutlery, air fresheners and toys. Our staff are really good at telling customers about new lines,” he explains.
This strategy is communicated to his staff in monthly meetings, where the team takes time to plan out what they are going to do and what changes they are looking to make.
“By planning, we make sure we stay in our customers’ minds and it means we’re not just reactive, but proactive retailers,” Steven explains.
“Keep your reputation central to any plan. Whether it’s your online presence or the way your staff communicate with customers, you always have to remember you are part of a community tending to people’s needs and it should all feed into that purpose,” he says.
Steven’s store also benefits from a loyalty scheme that is used by more than 2,000 customers who can access deals. The store also has the capability to send out deals by text every month. “Word of mouth is good, but by marketing effectively, it keeps us in touch and keeps our offer fresh, too,” he says.