We took a look at our Core Values of Having Fun, Helpful, Educational and Nostalgic to see where we might be lacking. If you've read Understanding Your Brand then you know the importance of making sure your business shows your core values in everything you do.
Having Fun: We have toys out for demo all throughout the store. I lost count well north of fifty different items out for people to try. We have Story Time, Game Night and special events throughout the year. Yes, we are having fun.
Helpful: Free Giftwrapping, Free Layaway, Delivery & Assembly, Car Seat Installation, Personal Shoppers... Yeah, we have helpful covered, too.
Educational: Free classes on how to buy toys and baby products? Check. Signs throughout the store to educate customers on how to buy different types of toys? Check. Brochures on smart toy shopping? Check. Toys that are educational by nature? Check.
Nostalgic: Hmm... We have been in business since 1949, but just saying that doesn't necessarily evoke feelings of nostalgia. At Christmas when we have the lights and decorations up, we get that warm, fuzzy nostalgic feeling, but what about the rest of the year? We celebrate birthdays by ringing a thirty-two pound brass bell. That is good, but we can do more.
Nostalgia is defined as a sentimental yearning of a past period. I am working on three new projects to add more Nostalgia into the store.
The first is a photo gallery of our old store along with some old toys produced locally (on loan from the local museum). The second is a milepost sign with directional arrows pointing toward real and fictional places that will take you back to fond memories. The third is a take on the Before I Die campaign that Candy Chang started in New Orleans. We will have chalkboards with the Before I die... statement as Candy did, along with chalkboards of My favorite toy was...
Sentimental yearnings of past periods.
Your business has Core Values. You have to play up those values in everything you do. Everything. Not only you will make your brand stand out in the crowd, you will attract a better breed of customers, customers who share your values.
PS Don't know your Core Values? Do this worksheet. Figure out who you are and what you do to show those values. Then pump up the volume on the values not being shown as much. It might not make a difference today, but it will tomorrow. You are in business for tomorrow, aren't you?