Welcome to TrendTracker! This latest blog series, posted twice a month, covers insights into trends on floral design, décor, demographics, marketing, technology and consumer purchasing. For this first blog, we’ll share a small business’ perspective on the importance of monitoring trends, with focus on these themes.
Floral Design and Décor.
Let’s consider what you are selling. We are in the flower industry, so having insights into colors, varieties and décor styles are critical in staying relevant to consumers. If they don’t like what you are selling, then they simply won’t buy it.
Fortunately, at Floriology, we are blessed to have access to two experienced design and décor trend experts. Director of Education Jackie Lacey, AAF, AIFD, CFD, PFCI and Lesley Bolden, lead designer at Napco Imports. They live and breathe these trends, as they are responsible for product lines and design classes. They attend all the important product markets, travel overseas to meet with manufacturers, pay close attention to trends in magazines and follow online influencers.
Many of these trends are covered in Napco Imports’ trends reports, but we’ll also include input from other sources.
Who’s your audience? Although floral design and décor trends appeal to a wide audience, it’s important to understand how the different demographics respond to what you are selling. Fortunately, we have an active collaboration with respected floral organizations. such as the American Floral Endowment (AFE) and the Society of American Florists. These entities constantly fund and support this type of research. We combine their floral specific insight with larger demographic information from sources such as Pew Research, data from the university community and the US government.
Once we’ve identified trends and aligned how the demographics respond, we’ll update you on trending marketing strategies other industries and segments are using and finding success with. As you can imagine in a growing, vibrant online marketplace, many of these strategies focus on new and developing digital marketing practices.
For the past two years, Floriology has invested resources into the practice of helping florists build local business through our digital marketing services. As part of this practice, the Floriology Digital Marketing Team constantly monitors changes in Google’s search algorithms, their impact on rank, leverage on social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest and how consumers use new devices and online services.
Since 2007, Apple’s iPhone has changed the world and how consumers interact with it, one another and with vendors. Mobile usage is still evolving. Rising technologies such as voice interfaces (I.e. Siri or Alexa) and augmented reality (AR) are enhancing and shaping the customer experience and more importantly, their expectations of local businesses. Technology trends are a large and important part of this blog series, which we’ll source from respected thought leaders such as Gartner, MIT Technology Review, Google and others.
Many of these trends will stick. The resulting ecommerce ripples will culminate into data of how consumers purchase from you. It is changing and will continue to evolve. Are customers still buying on your website, or are they walking into your store? Where are they purchasing from- mobile devices?
This is all critical intelligence as this data will dictate where you need to push your resources –both human and monetary now and into the future. We’ll again lean on our friends at AFE and their research on consumer purchasing behavior specifically when it comes to flowers.
The bottom line when it comes to being aware and leveraging trends is truly the bottom line. This knowledge will make you money and allows you to adjust your product line, capital investments, marketing practices and staff training.
You’re not only investing in your product. You are investing in your overall business.