Our popular Sunrise seminar series include topics tailored to our clients needs, which combined with our trusted analysis, counseling and mentoring can help to launch your business to the next level.
Overview of today’s economic climate
Harvard Business school study on how consumers change their buying habits with technology
Differentiation and Defining Your Customer
Marketing and Social Media
Local events are a mainstay of small towns throughout the country
Merchants need to take full advantage of the bountiful influx of potential customers
Before the Event
Day of the Event
After the Event
General overview of best business practices
How to treat your customers
Choose and position your products
Build on community involvement
Create and communicate your niche
Make your business a shopping destination
Out maneuver on social platforms
Create a memorable experience for the customer
Add to your services
Dispelling the myths
Sell your art without selling your soul
Define and engage your collector
Master merchandizing basics
Market and advertise your artwork
Build your brand
Create a social media presence
Embrace and understand the business side of selling your art
Traditional verses new media
Why concentrate your marketing to new visitors on new media
Google my business
Yelp and Trip Advisor
Do the basics all year long
The big three to get customers into your stores
Do something special
Create a buzz
Rethink your business
Years of Experience
Cups of Coffee
Local business owners are invited to attend a presentation by national retail industry consultant Marc Willson about how small town merchants can survive in today’s competitive arena with national chain competition and a lagging economy. Willson was well received by the business owners who were able to attend. There were over 50 attendees.
Willson looked around and made recommendations on lighting, product displays and promoting products. “you’re just not competing with other gift stores”, he said. “You’re competing for everyone’s dollar.” Thompson nodded in agreement. “As a consumer, I know,” she said.
I just got off the phone with the Kilgore Economic Development Director, telling about you! In a town like Kilgore, being Economic Development Director comes with a busy schedule. You got us fired up! Patsy and I talked 4 hours after you left. Ways we can unify the merchants even more, training possibilities and getting you back. It felt so hurried. I still have so many more questions. I have such a big picture in mind for this town, just need a road map. I see so many possibilties for this place. You are completely delightful to work with. I understand why you do so well with this line of work. You won over everyone you met- they smiled when you came in the door. I really appreciate your enthusiasm, kindness and directness.
I have worked with Casey Willson in three different companies now, including Zipcar in Washington, D.C. and D.C. On The FLY. The strategic quidance, financial planning, and hands on training with staff has been invaluable in building a solid foundation for our bussinesses nand/or taking them to the next level. From reinforcing management basics, to human resource quidance, growth planning and more, this program has been key for me professionally.
I wanted to offer a few comments on the Community Walk-Through Inventory. I think it is always helpful to hear perceptions from someone who does not live or work here. This is particularly the case, such as with Marc, where he has the training and experience from other communities to make informed observations. I found the form of value, and I will use this in meeting with the city’s Department of Public Works as we develop a Master Downtown Streetscape Plan.
I consider myself extraordinarily fortunate to have come to the attention of Casey Willson. His expertise, contacts, teaching skills and staunch support in placing my company in an exponentially better position to receive funding!
Marc has Yankee efficiency with southern charm!
Thank you for contributing to a sucessful toolkit. As always, you were well received. I know the VMS communities are pleased to have you back again for the merchant workshops. Your partnership, along with the VASBSC, is invaluable. Keep up the great work!
Marc Willson is a fabulous retail consultant. We have never in the past had such positive responses from a consultant as we had when Marc came to town. He gives an unbiased, real time assessment of the business and offers suggestions on improving sales. His tips are gold and backed up by years of retail experience. I highly recommend his services!!!
The Virginia SBDC has engaged Marc Willson as a retail business consultant since 2009. He has been an incredible resource for our SBDCs and the independent retailers in downtowns and Main Streets ever since. Marc’s real world experience in a wide variety of retail organizations gives him immediate credibility with business owners. His friendly nature puts owners at ease and open to hear his critique and recommendations — 86% reported they implemented his suggestions and they are better retailers. The local SBDCs are quick to call on Marc for presentations, onsite consultations and retail industry trends and best practices.
We are extraordinary people who have walked in your shoes for years. We made lots of mistakes, but we learned from them. Let us give you a candid, completely confidential assessment of your business's strengths and weaknesses from a different perspective. Oh, by the way, we are affordable.
Contact us today for your complimentary consultation of your business and marketing plans or one of our small-town assessments guaranteed to launch your company or town to the next level.