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9th Jan, 2019

Focus on Outreach During PR Crisis

By |2019-09-10T20:10:06-04:00January 9th, 2019|

Nothing stings more than public criticism, and the longer it’s sustained, the more damaging it can be to an organization’s reputation. Especially when, despite everyone’s best intentions, something goes wrong, or people are upset about something. In today’s wired world, the opportunities for people to share their impressions online have grown exponentially, sometimes amplifying negative word of mouth. It can easily become a chronic [...]

10th Oct, 2018

Marketing Planning that Cuts Through the Clutter

By |2019-09-10T20:10:50-04:00October 10th, 2018|

Retailers face lots of challenges, profit margins are small, inventory needs to turn, and the competition is fierce. Getting customers into the store and keeping them satisfied should be everyone’s focus to boost sales and enhance profitability. Retailers faced with flat or declining sales need to take a closer look at their marketing and customer service experience. Since food co-ops are owned by the [...]

10th Oct, 2018

Marketing Systems Revamp Lifts Sales

By |2019-09-10T20:10:57-04:00October 10th, 2018|

Ashland Food Co-op Ashland, OR Ashland Food Co-op in Ashland, OR is a successful food co-op in an artsy university town that also draws a lot of year-round tourists. The co-op is especially known for its outreach and popularity in the community. Recently, they faced a dilemma about this very thing. What should the co-op do when their dynamic and long-term marketing director retired? [...]

18th Sep, 2018

Training for soft skills

By |2019-09-09T15:46:09-04:00September 18th, 2018|

Yes, you can teach empathy, rapport and authenticity to your staff. Even those who join your staff with a high degree of these “soft skills” can still improve them through training. Brittany Baird is my colleague at CDS Consulting Co-op whose area of expertise lies in linking financial success to the everyday decisions we make on the sales floor of a natural foods business. [...]

22nd Jul, 2018

Using Marketing to Build Success: Making Cooperative Ownership and Governance Real

By |2019-09-09T15:37:22-04:00July 22nd, 2018|

By Rebecca Torpie, Thane Joyal 196 May-June 2018  What does it mean to be an owner of a consumer cooperative? At the most fundamental level, cooperative ownership means that we are in business together. And for the owners of a cooperative that is under substantial market pressure (and what business isn’t?), everything the business does needs to match the needs and aspirations of the community that [...]

12th Jul, 2018

Introducing Your Co-op to New Communities

By |2019-09-10T20:11:17-04:00July 12th, 2018|

Business introductions are a networking staple—and they run the gamut from the ho-hum ‘We are here to sell you something’ to the dynamic, ‘We love to support communities and make a difference in people’s lives.’ As co-ops continue to seek out ways to innovate, offer more goods and services, and reach out to new communities, it is worth the investment of time and resources [...]

29th May, 2018

How Cooperative is Your Customer Service?

By |2019-09-09T15:18:57-04:00May 29th, 2018|

Too often, customer service and membership trainings become a quick checked box on the first day on the job, and over time, staff become disconnected from the true meaning of service and the significance of their co-op in the community. As competition in our marketplace continues to tighten, it’s imperative that we strive to create a culture of continuous improvement and enthusiasm for the [...]

6th Mar, 2018

Cultivating a Culture of Appreciation

By |2019-09-07T02:02:56-04:00March 6th, 2018|

According to Gallup News State of the Workforce report in 2017, overall only 30% of employees feel engaged at their jobs. This dismal statistic is a strong invitation for employers in all business sectors to consider the type of work culture that might contribute to a sense of disaffection and actively work to change it. Employees who do feel a sense of connection are [...]