Survive & Thrive Recession Part 1


I walk past his shop around 8:30am heading back from a morning coffee and walk. His routine has never changed. He arrives at around 8:00 am, opens his shop door and then at a slow pace removes all of his display goods from just inside his shop to the street outside.

He always smiles, always says hello look busy in his traditional hardware and haberdashery shop.

The other day I needed a fuse so I walked down the hill into our village to go grab a fuse. As I walked into his shop he was outside so rushed in to ask if he could help me. ‘Just a fuse please’ I replied.

He asked me what type, what was it for exactly and any other relevant questions. He gave me what I needed, asked for the cash – ONE POUND – and then gave me my £1 fuse in a bag.

  • So I asked him, ‘how’s business?’
  • ‘Slow’ he replied, ‘very slow’.
  • I asked him again, ‘do you do plenty of advertising or marketing?’
  • ‘NO’ he replied firmly, ‘that kind of stuff doesn’t work around here’
  • ‘I believe that if you give good service and give the customers what they want people will use my shop. That’s what my grandfather and my father did and it’ll work for me.

So I smiled, thanked him and said my goodbye.

The guy has good service. He also has a great friendly approach yet I did wonder at his logic and possible lack of number crunching.

I’ve been in his shop a few times now and frankly over two years no one else has been in there when I have been in. I doubt if I have paid for anything that is priced at more than £5.00 and looking around maybe his highest priced product is around £15.00

So if he gets 20 customers a day paying an average of just £10.00 that is just £200 a day. I’d be shocked if he does that amount… say 150 at the most. Five days a week, that’s just £750 per week.

Now when I had a high street shop in 2003 my weekly break-even was just under £4,000. This guy also has a shop with one staff member and he has to buy in all of his stock.

He told me, as he was stood on the street looking up and down for customers that he thinks it’ll get busy. He told me as he checks his iPhone it’s because of the summer holidays. He told me that marketing and advertising doesn’t work.

Unless he changes the way he thinks, he will close. Here’s what I was thinking. This single thought could explode his business in 7 days flat. He creates a service based on leveraging what he already has.

He already has good home-build knowledge or DIY knowledge that’s obvious. He also has stock that has been lying around maybe forever. He also has a lot of time on his hands and one staff member in his shop sat using social media endlessly.

Here’s what he does.

This village has around 3000 houses. NEW SERVICE: His new service is based around a home inspection lets call it for now, Winter Ready Service.

The service addresses all the usual winter fears like, heating, insulation, fuses, candles, firewood and more.

The flyer gives them a free lead generation inspection. The inspection is based around a 12-point tick list. The shopkeeper asks the householder if he has done the following on the list?

The householder replies no and also knows he has fears based around the questions. The shopkeeper offers a very simple, pack and drop off service where he packs everything missing from the list.

The packs are created using 3 packages.

He also delivers everything on one day only as it isn’t really urgent. This saves him time because his time is money.

Each pack has the same contents but more of each or less. The more they go for the bigger the discount. All packs are based on genuine winter needs, no selling for the sake of a sale here.

He advertises his services using a well created, hard to refuse flyer with a good call to action. The one great thing he has going for him is he is well known locally and has been in business for generations.

Now lets look at the math again here.

In one week he gets 45 new orders from the 3000 and that’s just to start with. He should send the flyer out weekly for at least a couple of months.

45 order at an average of £85.00 means his taking have just gone from £750 a week and has now added a further £3,825 a week to his turnover which means his turnover has reached a huge £4,575 in just 7 days!

See how easy that was and can be for any business? Lets look at what we did again. Leveraged his existing skills, data, stock and services. Created a new service pack. Created a 12-point checklist for the householder. Created a simple flyer. Created a free advisory service as a lead generation offer. Took action in the delivery of the flyer. Then they simply took the orders and counted the cash.

Simple but genius! How about you? Are you open all hours, working every hour God sends, leaving early, getting home late, trying everything, and doing nothing for less than ever?

This economy is killing businesses there no doubts about that yet at the same time there are many, many creative ways to get stable, create income, and leverage what you already have. In my experience 95% of businesses leave cash under the floorboards that is ready to pick. Is that your business?

Have you lost faith in marketing, does it no longer work, have you almost given up on new business and simply struggling to maintain what little you have?

I can help you, all you have to do ask for a FREE 20 minute consultation over Skype or phone.

Click here to save your business using leverage right now.

Read Survive and Thrive Recession Part TWO