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By John R. Hendrie

For our long term planning, let’s just slap some ideas on the wall and go with the juice which oozes the furthest.  Your marketing folks must be beside themselves, as they chart effective campaigns to navigate the unbelievable changes we confront, not only as a nation but also as a business.  Let’s just examine some stats from a Washington Post article on Saturday, November 14, 2015.

“Witness the revolutions in technology, the Internet, big data and energy, though just as important are the tremendous changes taking place in immigration, racial and ethnic diversity, the family, religious observance and gender roles. These are reaching their apexes in the booming metropolitan centers and among millennials.

As the revolutions interact, they are accelerating the emergence of a new America. Consider that nearly 40 percent of New York City’s residents are foreign-born, with Chinese the second-largest group behind Dominicans. The foreign-born make up nearly 40 percent of Los Angeles’s residents and 58 percent of Miami’s. A majority of U.S. households are headed by unmarried people, and, in cities, 40 percent of households include only a single person. Church attendance is in decline, and non-religious seculars now outnumber mainline Protestants. Three-quarters of working-age women are in the force, and two-thirds of women are the breadwinners or co-breadwinners of their households. The proportion of racial minorities is approaching 40 percent, but blowing up all projections are the 15 percent of new marriages that are interracial. People are moving from the suburbs to the cities. And in the past five years, two-thirds of millennial college graduates have settled in the 50 largest cities, transforming them.”

Boy, is there a lot of activity!  Just chuck into the mix the recent carnage and horror in Paris, the unsettled morass in the Middle East and a rancorous presidential race right here.  About time to throw your hands up!  But, you know you cannot.  You need to succeed, but it is not business as usual.

Suggesting some patience and great agility on your part, the first step would be to focus on your current customers.  You know the old chestnut about retaining a current customer versus trying to search for and claim a new customer.  Too often we expend much of our energy and capital to bring in the new rather that lauding the existing advocates and fans.  I’d want to know what that customer thinks of my operation.  All you have to do is ask and listen to the response.  A good survey would convey that critical information. You may be surprised. 

This is also a time to utilize a quality assurance approach, more directly with a Mystery Shop application.  You learn quickly what is working and what is not and most importantly if your message is being carried out consistently and across the board by your ambassadors.

Our marketplace is being bombarded with slings and arrows.  We all are looking for solutions.  Welcome to the party.  There is no silver bullet or time for your head to be in the sand.  You must be informed not only about the world in which we live but also what our customer or guest is thinking and doing.  Perhaps, you can anticipate, but the marketplace in which you operate is twirling and swirling too quickly.    The above article talks about the “…emergence of a new America”.  Whether you are a hotel, a restaurant, an entertainment venue, recreation or retail shops, you are already seeing the change.  Step proudly into that marketplace with energy and resolve.  The business is there, but your access has become very challenging and conflicting.  Only the strong survive!

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About John Hendrie

John Hendrie believes that Remarkable Hospitality is the portal to the Memorable Experience. Seek solutions at:

Contact: John Hendrie


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