New year. New decade. And a new strategic plan for the Society of American Florists brings targeted support to help members overcome some of the most significant challenges facing floral professionals today — labor, rising costs, intense competition. SAF’s new direction helps members grow and thrive by prioritizing training, education and driving local sales.
One change longtime readers of this newsletter will notice right away? A new look — and a new name — for SAF’s Wednesday EBrief. The long-running, trusted newsletter has a reputation for delivering the latest on industry news and trends. In January, SAF debuted an updated version of the publication, SAF Now, that will continue to provide original reporting and cutting-edge trend and future-planning info in a more streamlined package that makes it easier and faster for busy floral professionals to stay updated and in-the-know.
SAF is also unveiling five additional new members-only benefits in 2020:
- New Valentine’s Day Resources. With Valentine’s Day falling on the Friday start of President’s Day weekend, savvy retailers want to entice consumers to start their holiday early with flowers. To help members drive the message through local marketing, SAF is revamping its online Valentine’s Day Resource Center with more social media content ideas and new graphics as well as advice and strategies from successful retailers.
- Deceptive Trade Practices Policy. Misleading advertising, failure to explain fees and ambiguous language can often result in unhappy flower buyers, ultimately having a negative impact on sales and affecting the reputation of the industry as a whole. The SAF Retailers Council created a Deceptive Trade Practices Policy, which was adopted by the SAF board of directors in November, to provide industry best practices and give retailers a voice in stopping deceptive advertising. That policy, in part, reads: “SAF expects its members to adhere to fair business practices and encourages entrepreneurship within the floral industry and the U.S. floral marketplace. SAF supports ethical business practices and promotes efforts to discourage and stop deceptive trade practices within our industry.”
- Webinar Series. Tune in to a new monthly webinar series presented by the SAF board of directors. SAF President Chris Drummond, AAF, PFCI, of Penny’s by Plaza Flowers in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, kicks off the series on Jan. 8, when he shares strategies for Valentine’s Day planning.
- Career Development Platform. SAF provides free training to members and their staff on customer service, social media and more through 30-minute WebBlasts. SAF is enhancing its online education program with a new training platform that tracks progress and awards certificates and badges. Look for the new portal this summer.
- More Live Educational Events. Great things happen when the floral industry gets together, and that’s why SAF is expanding its lineup of in-person, live events. Future Forum is a new invitation-only, big-picture, trends program for the industry’s top executives. Next-Gen members — those age 40 and under — can learn and connect during a new educational weekend getaway. And Profit Blast gets revamped through a new series of half-day regional events that combines education with a Supplier Showcase.
Get details on all the new offerings and more at safnow.org.
Jenny Scala is the director of marketing and communications for the Society of American Florists.