A blog series on Shopper Marketing.

By Cyndi Pyburn

Perhaps you have heard of Vancouver’s Olga Kotelko.  She holds over 26 world records (17 netted in the 90-94 age group) and has earned hundreds of medals, all since she first took up track and field at age 77.  Impressive?  Freaking amazing!  For me, inspirational!

According to her account in “What Makes Olga Run” by Bruce Grierson, she lives by 9 principles ….little rules to live a longer, happier life.  I thought these principles had retail and shopper marketing application.

  1.  Keep moving – retailers cannot stay stagnate.  They must change with the time, refresh their brands and stay relevant in the minds of their customers.  Retailers must keep moving forward.
  2. Create routines – and sometimes break them.  A well run store or chain is a disciplined, well-oiled machine with effective processes in place.  They only get broken when the customer is right.
  3. Be opportunistic – spend retail energy wisely.  Conserve energy (think capital expenditure), but when you need to go for it, indeed do.  Spend wisely, do your homework, stay ahead of the curve.
  4. Be socially responsible – doing ‘good’ doesn’t just feel good — it is healthy for the image of the retail organization and for employee morale.  It helps to develop your culture.
  5. Believe in yourself – believe in the business and embrace problem-solving to further grow.
  6. Lighten up – managing a retail organization is fast-paced and stressful (think Q4).
  7. Cultivate a sense of progress – always allow for small ‘wins’.  Cheer the team.
  8. Don’t do it if you don’t love it — pressure to expand the business?   Don’t do it if you have no ‘heart’ for it and there is no C-Suite buy-in and support.
  9. Begin now – it isn’t easy to embrace change, but change is necessary for retail prosperity.

Thanks Olga!  Good luck at your next meet, we’re rooting for you.