Promoting Retail Economic Development in Your Town – Mayor’s Round Table Secret Shopper Program

What is your city or town doing to promote itself? Not enough I suspect. Oh sure, your town or city like most has spent a good deal of money on color brochures promoting itself, done a nice job on the city website to attract tourists and give information, but what about the home team advantage? What about the essence of what your city is about – the great customer service, hospitality, and caring? That’s what brings people into the businesses, and coming back for more.

It also tends to spread the word of mouth fastest in the marketplace, on Facebook, and between friends and family. Okay so, I’ve not told you a whole lot you don’t already know. But I’d like to suggest a great program your community, town, or city can institute today, right now, one which will work, one which is one, and one which will increase sales at local businesses, increase jobs, and bring forth increased sales revenues to the city coffers.

In fact, there was a very cool article in our local paper hear way out in Palm Desert, CA. Our small local paper is called the Desert Sun, a Gannet News Corporation newspaper. The piece was in the “Across the Valley Section” and article was titled; “City Recognizes Exceptional Service” by Sherry Barkas and published on May 16, 2011. The program has been going on for 12-years here, and the current awards, as the article stated were given out by the Local Chamber of Commerce to 10 people.

“Two people helped a dog in crisis at the groomers. One man returned a diamond ring he found while cleaning a car. Another assisted a customer in need of paint supplies, who was severely flustered.”

Okay so, now you are beginning to see how the program works, and it doesn’t take much to start. Here is what you need to do:

1. Make an outline of this program.

2. Get a small committee meeting together with members of the;
a. Chamber of Commerce
b. Local Area Service Clubs
c. Economic Development Association
d. Mayor’s Round Table
e. Business Editor of Local Paper

3. Have a call-in number of email address for people to nominate business employees for great customer service.

4. A small group of volunteers who will secret shop at the businesses of nominees to see if the employee is really giving that 110% customer service which warrants an award and mention in the news paper.

Indeed, I hope you will please consider all this and think on it. If you have any comments, questions, or concerns, or perhaps a similar case study, please feel free to shoot me an email.

Municipal Christmas Decorations Will Light Up Your Town

The holiday season is a very exciting one and many cities are entering into the spirit of the season by setting up municipal Christmas decorations. Many people do not consider the Christmas season to have started until their home town or city has set up an official area in town to host their decorations.

Although municipal Christmas decorations will look extremely pretty and will foster the spirit of the season in your city, there is an economic argument for implementing a successful decorations campaign. The more impressive the Christmas decorations, the more likely people will come into the city to see them. Successful promotion highlighting the majesty of the lights and word of mouth can lead to people coming from afar to see the decorations and this can bring in additional funds to the city.

Whether it is through parking revenue, families buying gifts, food or merchandise at licensed vendors or shopping at malls within your city, successful municipal decorations can generate a lot of income for a city. By combining a dazzling display that fits the holiday spirit and provides much needed income for the city and its retailers, a well considered Municipal Christmas decorations can bring a benefit which lasts throughout the year.

This is why it makes sense to work with a designer with regards to setting up the municipal decorations in order to make the display work on all levels. Depending on the layout and space in the chosen location, certain styles of lights, skylights, pole mounts, lamp decor and the all important tree need to be considered where to place them in order to gain the best exposure.

Many cities like to add a pertinent local touch to the municipal Christmas decorations and if your city has a specific color scheme, it can be a nice touch to incorporate this into the decorations. Green and red are always going to feature heavily in decorations at Christmas but if your city is known for a color scheme.

Value Your Life – Go to the Best of All Auto Repair Shops in Town

There are many auto repair shops who claim that they are the best among the rest. But don’t be deceived by them. Five months ago we brought our car to this repair shop since we saw their advertisement on TV and we were kind of want to try their service. So we travelled about 3 km away from our house to their shop. Our car is due for its maintenance and so we know that it might take a few days for them to finish their job. We were glad that we were given a low price, much lower than we normally pay. So we thought it was really a great deal.

After a week we were told that we can pick up our car while my husband and I were travelling via cab we passed by some other auto repair shops along the way. There was this one repair shop that is quite popular among the rest since you can see the number of cars and people swarming in their garage. Finally after 45 minutes, we arrived.

As a customer we are always excited to see the end result of the product paid for. So we definitely have same rich emotion at that time. When they gave us the car keys, we double checked everything and were satisfied with their job. But what do we really know? We are not mechanics. We are customers who own cars and needed appropriate assistance. So we drove back home and thought that they are truly the best shop among all the auto repairs shops in the city, because we got the service we wanted on a budget.

After two weeks, problems arise. The air condition is getting warmer, the tires are somehow not aligned and other stuff that was supposed to be taken cared off last time – well, it wasn’t! This is what we get for saving a small amount of money and believing into some TV ads that is not even reliable.

We need our car to be fixed as soon as possible but we don’t intend to get back to that shop anymore. So what we did was we went to the shop nearby, one of the auto repair shops that I saw along the way when we picked up our car was actually the same shop that my friends highly recommend to me. We told the customer service the whole story and they told us to always check the reliability of the shop before we get into any deals. All cars are carrying lives. It must always be in tip top shape. He told us that many shops would claim that they are the best of all auto repair shops in the city but as we now know, it is just a marketing stint.

After a few days we got our car back. Of course we needed to shed out money once again but this time it was really worth it. So we learned our lesson and now we are more careful when it comes to choosing what’s best for our car and our lives.