A deep discount on roses has generated a huge boost in traffic for an Indiana florist during a notoriously slow month for sales.
For the past few years, McNamara Florist, which has eight locations throughout central Indiana, has held an “August Rose Sale,” knocking nearly $100 off its normal price for two dozen roses, prompting hundreds of people to take advantage of the special
The special offers two dozen roses in a vase for $50 (plus delivery and tax) or $30 for a cash-and-carry option. In 2016, so far their best year, they had more than 1,000 people order roses. At press time, the shop said it was on track to hit or exceed that mark this year.
Marketing coordinator Erin Davidson leans heavily on Facebook to advertise the promotion because of the medium’s cost effectiveness.
Davidson used a bold banner ad (a multi-colored rose arrangement on a kelly green background) with details of the special for McNamara Florist cover photo. Additionally, she’s posted about the sale every few days, using different photos and verbiage, such as:
Bringing some color to you! These roses are flying out of the shop for our August Rose Sale! Two dozen for ONLY $49.99 until 8/31!
Pick up a carry-out bouquet of two dozen roses for only $29.99 this weekend! Hand-select your favorite color and enjoy!
McNamara’s #ROSESALE starts August 1st! Two dozen roses for only $49.99! (Regularly priced $149.99). #McNamaraSale #McNamaraRoseSale #Savethedate
A time-lapse video of a designer arranging roses has received particular traction, racking up 645 views and multiple shares.
We're kicking off the month with our #AugustRoseSale! Starting TODAY you can buy two dozen hand-arranged roses for ONLY $49.99!Hurry – this offer only lasts until August 31st!#McNamaraSale #RoseSale ?
Posted by McNamara Florist on Thursday, August 2, 2018
To maximize the posts’ effectiveness, Davidson paid to boost them, which only costs a few dollars.
“It’s definitely beneficial,” she said. “The boosting helps entice more sales and I see that there is more engagement.”
She also takes advantage of Facebook Ads Manager to drive people to the McNamara Florist website. She used the service to target a very specific audience: males age 30 and up who live within 10 miles of each McNamara Florist location. The ads appeared in multiple locations, including the Facebook users’ newsfeed and marketplace tab, as well as their Instagram timeline and stories section. Like the boosted posts, Facebook Ads prove to provide a great bang for your buck, Davidson said.
Crystal Vilkaitis, owner of The Social Edge and a featured speaker at SAF Palm Springs 2018, the Society of American Florists’ 134th annual convention in Rancho Mirage, California, September 12-15, agrees with Davidson’s assessment. “Facebook outshines all other sites in terms of traffic,” she said. “And it doesn’t take a lot of money to make a big impact.” (Click here for her tips on growing your business through Facebook ads.)
“Facebook outshines all other sites in terms of traffic,” she said. “And it doesn’t take a lot of money to make a big impact.” (Click here for her tips on growing your business through Facebook ads.)
As for making a profit through a deep discount, Davidson offered the following tips:
Reach out to suppliers. Contact your wholesaler or farm contacts far in advance to see what deals they have on flowers coming up. If they offer a major discount during one particular month, coordinate your special for that same period in order to get the highest volume of flowers for the lowest price.
Use assembly line production. To minimize labor costs, McNamara designers’ streamline their production in anticipation for the annual August rose sale. Some green vases, while others insert roses. The shop aims to arrange 10 two-dozen vase arrangements at a time. In addition, they keep the cooler stocked with carry-out bunches.Scavenge for cheap containers. Vases don’t have to be expensive to beautiful. McNamara President and CEO Toomie Farris, AAF, AIFD, keeps an eye out for discontinuing vase lines to purchase for promotions like the August rose sale.
Mackenzie Nichols is a contributing writer for the Society of American Florists.