The season is almost upon us. We are all hoping for a good summer. What can we do to make the very best of it?
May, June, July, August…
I think that everyone is looking forward to a great summer. Not just those of us in the wet leisure industry, but I think our customers feel that way too.
Last year showed everyone just how much difference a bit of decent weather makes; to the way we all feel and to the way we behave. Outdoor pools were opened and enjoyed. Spas and hot tubs bubbled away through long evenings and under clear skies.
It doesn’t take much to remind people just how much they enjoy the products that our industry has to offer. We just need to make sure that we are ready to make the most of the warmer weather when it arrives.
A good, British summer is a real delight. Just think of some of the things that it brings to mind.
The smell of freshly mown grass.
The sound of children playing in a pool.
Long, warm evenings with the sizzle of burgers on the barbeque.
Pimms in a tall, cold glass.
Laughter over the soft rumble of a bubbling hot tub.
Wet footsteps on the pool’s coping stone, quickly drying in the sun.
We sell products, but what our customers actually buy are experiences and memories, sensations and shared moments.
Get into the feel of the summer.
I think that to make the most of the business opportunities that this coming summer will bring, we really have to get into the feel of the summer and sell that to our customers.
Appealing to people’s senses can be more powerful than appealing to their sensible side. Supermarkets are full of price promotions and offers, but they usually make sure that the smell of the bakery spreads around the store as well.
So how do you appeal to people’s senses when you are selling pools, spas and saunas?
Of course, it’s much easier when those customers are actually standing in front of you, so let’s start with shows and events.
As the summer warms up, the season for county shows, hosted events, fairs and fetes begins.
Make sure that your list of what might be suitable for you to attend in your area is up-to-date, there are new events being hosted all the time and you should look at these with an open mind.
A caravan show or a food festival might not immediately sound like the right place to display a hot tub, but if the right sorts of people are attending – the sort of people who are your customers – then it is. People who enjoy outdoor living. People who enjoy the good things in life.
If you decide to attend a new event, or you are going to one that you regularly take a stand at, then think about how you can dress your stand to capture people’s attention and involve their senses. How can you make it really attractive to them?
A canvas awning or a big sun-shade; pots of bamboo or large ferns; an ice bucket and a couple of glasses on a garden table; all these things can help paint a picture that the people walking past want to see themselves in.
Not just ‘here’s a hot tub’, but ‘here is an oasis that you can relax in’.
Telling a story in the showroom.
When it comes to dressing your showroom, all the same thoughts and suggestions apply.
Pool showrooms, with shelves of chemicals and displays of pump room equipment might well be showing off the products that you want to sell, but are they giving your customers a sense of how good it will feel to own and enjoy their own pool?
Something as simple as a couple of luxurious robes hanging next to a big pile of thick towels can soften the environment and start to put customers into the right mood.
If you are having an open day at your showroom to increase footfall, then what about a theme that will make the promotion stand out more as well as make the open day more involving for the people who come along.
You might want to be brave; put out lots of floating toys and have a ‘family fun’ day. You might want to engage people’s senses by inviting a local restaurant or café to produce a range of summer-time, poolside snacks.
If you want to focus on health and hydrotherapy, then why not get together with a local spa or health professional to offer 5 minute massages to people who come along.
Words and pictures; flyers and adverts.
Whether you are going to promote your business with traditional advertising or by using social media, try and tap into that summer feeling and get people excited about the good times that the good weather is going to bring.
A fair few years ago, our summers would be filled with people making an impulse purchase of an above-ground pool or an entry-level hot tub.
That may not happen so much now for a number of reasons, but that desire people have to splash about, swim and soak under a beautiful, blue, British sky is still there. They may take a bit more persuading, they may take longer to decide but if you tap into that feeling then I think you’ll be on the right track to making a sale.
Improving what you have got.
In the run-up to the season and as you start to prepare for opening your clients pools, you might like to take a look at our Retrofit Brochure.
An existing pool, even if it is just a few years old can often benefit from some of the newer products and latest technology that we have on offer and we have collected a range of products together into one brochure that is aimed at selling them to your clients.
We have products that save energy – such as DEL replacement solar slats – or save time – like the Zodiac 4WD pool cleaners. There are ideas to make a pool look better or just be easier to run and maintain.
Now seems like the perfect time of year to get some extra business by offering these, easy and quick to fit, improvements to your customers and, if you would like to talk to us about having the brochure with your logo printed on it, then please just get in touch.
Let’s raise a glass to summer.
Here’s hoping the coming summer will be everything we would like it to be.
I wish you well and if there is any way we can help you and your business, please just ask.