view current print edition







Personalization is a trend you can trust

Every year, in every segment of every industry, some poor soul is asked to take on the dreaded task of developing a trend report. It used to be a reasonable and a low risk assignment and back in the day, the chance of inaccurately prognosticating was rather slim. It took so long for trends to play out; there was ample time for forecasters to amend their crystal ball to more closely match the ever-evolving desires of our consumers. But the days of being an expert in trend forecasts may have passed us by.

Thanks or no thanks to technology, access to information and opportunities is not only lighting fast, but also worldwide. Having the world at your fingertips is no longer an initiative — it is a reality. If businesses can’t deliver what the customer wants when they want it, they lose opportunity to those who can.

KELVIN-FRYEKelvin FryeThis is particularly true for containers. The world is full of unsuspecting containers that might find themselves as a home to a plant or a bouquet of flowers. If consumers want it, they will find it.

Floral and plant consumers, especially Millennials, are looking for containers that reflect their personality, express their individuality, and fit their lifestyle. Personalization rules and if you can deliver it, your business will grow.

Personalization comes in many forms — it can be expressed in color, in material, or just in how a message is delivered. The movement to be unique seems to have replaced fads and trends.

Take a look at trend forecasts produced over the past few years — has any single element been true to the degree of moving the needle overwhelming north? I doubt it.

This dynamic provides a great challenge to our businesses. We can’t be one-size-fits-all, but conventional wisdom also suggests that we can’t be everything to everybody. Lucky for us, our particular business is expressive and emotional, so look for products — usually in the form of add-ons — that have the ability to deliver messages creatively and with a personal touch.

Also, understand the demographic of your shoppers and understand the demographic of the consumers you want to attract. Base most of your product selection on what they want and when they want it.

Be sure to spread your wings; your shoppers are going to search with you or without you so use your technology to help connect them to the world. Network and connect your business to reliable partners who can deliver on the specific and unique wants of your customer base. Your return on these partnerships may be smaller than you are used to, but little return on something is better than a full margin return on nothing!

Finally, don’t limit yourselves to just flowers. The “bringing green indoor” movement is for real, and the demand for succulents and air plants will not go away anytime soon.

It is time to get personal — delivering on what your customer wants is a trend you can trust.

Kelvin Frye is the director of sales and marketing at Syndicate Sales in Kokomo, IN. He can be contacted at