Marketing Mondays | Special Requests

From Seth’s Blog:

The bike shop is busy in June. If you bring your bike in for a tune up, it will cost $39 and take a week.

A week!

What if someone says, “I have a bike trip coming up in three days, can you do it by then?”

At most bike shops, the answer is a shrug, followed by, “I’m sorry, we’re swamped.”

The problem with telling people to go away is that they go away. And the problem with treating all customers the same is that customers aren’t the same. They’re different and they demand to be treated (and are often willing to pay) differently.

So, why not smile and say, “Oh, wow, that’s a rush. We can do it, but it’s expensive. It’ll cost you $90. I know that’s a lot, but there you go.”

Outcome: Maybe they’ll still leave. But maybe they’ll happily pay you for the privilege of doing business with you. Why should this be your choice, not theirs?

If you do tax accounting for mid-size businesses, why not offer a special last-minute service? A service in which you process shoeboxes filled with unsorted papers? A service that costs less but happens during your slow season?

There are two really good reasons to turn down special requests:

1. because you’re marketing yourself as extremely busy and perfectly willing to turn down good work.

2. because you want to market yourself as someone who is a rigid artist, a stick in the mud or a crotchety perfectionist. This works great for pizza places.

What opportunities are you missing out on by not honoring special requests?


June Small Business of the Month Award Winner

Pediatric Therapy SBA

Pediatric Therapy Services, Inc. 

Twenty years ago, Denise Kilburn and Kathy Shufflebarger recognized a need for pediatric therapies in our community. Through hard work and dedication their partnership has grown into their current outpatient therapy clinic for children.

Located at 1215 E. Orange Street, Pediatric Therapy Services, Inc. (PTS) offers physical, speech and occupational therapies. Their building was custom designed to enhance and stimulate the children’s experience at PTS.

Denise, Kathy and a staff of 20 therapists are dedicated to building a team consisting of patient, family and therapist. The therapies learned in the clinic have to be reinforced in the home to achieve successful outcomes. Each child is evaluated and given a customized therapy for their needs. They discover what a child loves, needs and craves then deliver a therapy treatment program that supports those desires. Successful outcomes can range from a child mastering a single new task to completely overcoming their disability.

PTS is constantly striving to provide their patients and staff with the latest innovation in therapy. They provide employees with advance training annually and offer internships to graduate students that need clinical instruction for the completion of their education program. Denise and Kathy believe they must lead by example to demonstrate the high expectations they require.

PTS collects memorable quotes from their patients for both feedback and amusement. Recently, therapist Miss Diana asked patient Elizabeth, “What am I going to do with you? She responded, “Love Me”. At PTS children with challenges learn to accomplish new skills through therapy and Love.

The Lakeland Area Chamber of Commerce would like to congratulate Pediatric Therapy Services, Inc. as the Small Business of the Month for June.



Schmooze with Chamber Members on July 9

It’s time again for the Chamber’s lunch-time Schmooze a’Palooza event!

It’s power networking the Chamber way! Meet and greet with 50 fellow Chamber members over a fabulous lunch. Each attendee has the opportunity to share his or her 30-second commercial with the group!


July 9 | 11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.

Mt Fuji Steakhouse & Sushi Buffet

2607 South Florida Avenue | Southgate Shopping Plaza

$25 | Chamber members only

Seating is limited, and pre-registration is required. Click here to reserve your space.

Questions? Call Amy at 863/688-8551 Ext. 229!


Hot! Hot! Hot! – Chamber to Launch the Summer Sizzle

The Chamber wants to light a fire under your summer sales with the Summer Sizzle discount program!


The Summer Sizzle program offers a great opportunity for members to advertise summer discounts directly to other Chamber  employers and their employees, without any fee.  All you need to do is come up with a value-added discount and then create a web quality image (.jpg, .png or .gif not to exceed 575px wide by 235px) that features the discount or benefit.  Be sure to include the timeframe that the discount will be honored by your business.  (Note that full size versions of advertisements will not be used in the E-newsletter distribution, but will be linked to for printing purposes.)

Then, e-mail the coupon artwork to the Chamber by July 15th and we will post all the member discount offers on the Chamber’s Web site.  Members can then print copies to take advantage of the advertised offer.

The Summer Sizzle program was the brainchild of our Board of Directors Vice Chair for Communications, Sam Nimah, who wanted to provide  his employees with discount coupons from Chamber member businesses, which in turn would support the Chamber’s “Buy Lakeland” campaign.  With this idea, the Chamber’s Communications strategy group brainstormed ideas and came up with the Summer Sizzle discount program.

Help us promote the “Buy Lakeland” campaign AND take advantage of this great opportunity to promote your business.  Questions?  Email our  Communications Vice President, Aaron Bates, or call him at the Chamber:  863/688-8551, ext. 237.


“Buy Lakeland” patron cards are in!

Help us spread this important message by prominently displaying the “Buy Lakeland” logo in your business, and by spending your dollars locally before getting on-line or I-4 to shop.  For a quick reference on quality products and services offered by Chamber members, visit our Web site at: www.lakelandchamber.com and click on the “Preferred Business Directory” on the home page.

Remember, by doing business in Lakeland, you’re:

· Protecting the jobs of family, friends and fellow Chamber members.

· Directing dollars to local schools, roads and parks.

· Helping sustain the long-standing economic growth and quality of life in our community.

Special thanks to our partners at Bright House Networks for producing several “Buy Lakeland” commercials promoting the benefits of doing business locally. Watch for the commercials airing on Bright House cable channels over the next few months.

If you need a “Buy Lakeland” window cling to display, just e-mail mstevenson@lakelandchamber.com and we’ll get one to you! The Chamber has also produced “Buy Lakeland” business cards for members to leave when patronizing local businesses. Stop by the Chamber if you’d like a supply of these cards to give out.

By supporting our local businesses in Lakeland, we all win!