In my last post, I mentioned some of the ways Terrain at Styer’s, the Philadelphia nursery owned by Urban Outfitters, is expanding their market. One of the key elements in their program is events, including those that reach far beyond the traditional gardening how-to offerings.
Their July calendar includes the following:
• Gardening for Privacy. A how-to lecture featuring plants, vines and trellises. (Free)
• Terrain Sprouts. Kids build a toad house or bug house. ($10 per family)
• Vegetable Growing Monthly. Lecture on organic pest control. (Free)
• Girls Night Out. Eat, drink, shop. ($20)
• How to Host a Garden Party. Advice from a noted event planner. (Free)
• Gatsby Night. A theme cocktail party with live music. ($20)
• Eat Local, Act Local. An introduction to various ways to eat locally year round. (Free)
• Container Gardening Monthly. A how-to lecture. (Free)
• Terrain Books. Monthly book club discusses The Fruit Hunters. (Free, book sold at 10% discount.)
• Chef’s Dinner. Monthly 3-course dinner featuring seasonal and local ingredients. ($45)
These don’t translate exactly for the cataloger or online marketer. But it’s worth noting what Terrain is doing: not only are they educating their market, but they’re engaging them, entertaining them, involving the whole family, reaching far beyond the traditional gardening market, and providing a wide variety of ways to build repeat traffic.
How can you apply these tactics to your business? How about offering webinars? Can you build programs that of interest to your customers’ children? Or educational programs focused more on an end benefit than on selling your product (such as Terrain’s ”Gardening for Privacy” topic)? Look for new ways to educate and engage your customers, and to attract and support new gardeners, and the sales will follow.