A Buyer’s Perspective on Buying.
First rule of buying; Never buy for yourself!
Always buy for your customers, whomever you think that they may be.
Why talk (write) about this tonight?
It is pretty much a well-known fact in the office and amongst friends, that I am a “coffee snob”. I don’t consider myself to be a “coffee snob”, but rather, just a person who enjoys his coffee and has no issues paying a premium for it.
A few people who were curious about what I do asked me a question this weekend. Question went like this; “If you are such a “coffee snob”, then why do you continue to carry instant coffees and other coffees “like” that in London Drugs?”
Easy – NEVER buy for yourself!
When you are selecting products (or de-selecting product for that matter) for people to buy in our stores, or any stores, you must buy for those that you are either trying to attract, or those you are trying to keep; and each set of people will have different challenges. Notice – it’s not about me; and for those that know me, that is definitely a “WOW”!
Attracting new people is challenging as you are trying to change a shopping pattern that has been established over potentially many years. Keeping your existing patrons may be challenging as you may be hanging on to the “wrong” consumer (different discussion for a different time) which. could mean taking shelf space that could be used to attract those new consumers. Always a challenge and always a balancing act
We carry in LD, many types of coffee. Many, I do not like and many that I do. I am not a user of flavoured coffees, I am not a user of instant coffees and I am not a user of pre-ground coffees. My preference is whole beans.
That’s it, pretty clear and pretty simple.
Where I have to be cautious as a buyer is that I do not allow these personal preferences to cloud my buying decisions. I have to list and buy what I believe is best for London Drugs and quite honestly, what is best for our customers of today and sometimes of tomorrow.
That is why we still carry; Maxwell House and Nescafe Flavoured Coffees, we still carry Nescafe and Taster’s Choice Instant coffees, we still carry Melitta and Folgers pre-ground coffees and we carry a huge selection of coffee pods.
None would be choices that I would consider as a consumer, but that means nothing.
There are many consumers who would want me hurt if I got rid of these brands from London Drugs! These are brands and product choices that many (and I mean “many”) people that shop London Drugs expect and want. They could care less if I liked them or not.
For the “fun” side, and to name just a few of the brands that I do like to consume; I do carry Ethical Bean Coffee, Kicking Horse Coffee and Salt Spring Coffee – all in whole bean and all of these are roasted by British Columbia based companies. Always good to support the locals when and if you can!!
Hopefully that helps answer the question that was put to me by a few friends with respect to my “Coffee Snob” persona!
If you are in the neighborhood, come in a check out a London Drugs coffee set and see if you can find some brand that tickles your taste buds!! I am sure that you will find something – I hope!!
Enjoy the Coffees!
Ciao for now @kootenayborn – aka “Coffee Snob”.