The business itself may be its own best advertisement. A customer who comes to buy one item may be encouraged to buy others if they are displayed freshly and attractively (Figure 22-8). In the jargon of the professionals, such displays are known as point-of-purchase advertising. Florists, garden centers, and retail nurseries may use or feature live materials in their displays. Landscapers and lawn care services may use color photographs of completed properties. Other displays may feature bottles, boxes, or bulky bags of chemicals, seeds, and fertilizers (Figure 22-9). The following techniques will help make in-store displays more successful.
1. Keep the display simple. Feature either a single product or service or a limited choice of related products or services. Complexity in the display can create indecision in the customer’s mind.
2. Suggest a use for the product. This may establish a need for the item in the customer’s mind.
figure 22-7. An example of an advertisement directed at retail nurseries and landscape contractors (Courtesy County Nursery Exchange)
figure 22-9. A prominent display of spreaders and wheelbarrows is placed where customers will pass them as they enter and leave this garden center. (Delmar/Cengage Learning. Photo by Jack Ingels.)
3. Keep the display small. Display a few of the items, but avoid a mass display. Create a qualitative image rather than a quantitative one.
4. Keep the display complete. If customers are to lift items out of the display for purchase, replace the items quickly.
5. Coordinate the display with other advertising. The display may feature merchandise advertised in the newspaper or on the radio or television.
6. Keep all plant material in peak condition. Do not let wilted blossoms, yellow leaves, wilted foliage, or broken branches suggest merchandise of inferior quality.
7. Neatness counts. All signs should be neatly lettered, unfaded, and free of spattered water, soil stains, and dust.
8. Light the displays. Show windows offer opportunities for effectively lit displays even after the store closes for the day.
9. Change the displays frequently. Regular customers will cease to see them if they remain unaltered for too long.
Ornamental horticulture businesses may be structured as sole proprietorships, partnerships, or corporations. Each has features that make it appealing, but the corporation offers the greatest legal protection to the owners. Also, a corporation may offer the greatest opportunities for diversification and growth of the business.
No one should begin in business without a careful market survey to determine the probability of success in the location under consid-
eration. The study should analyze the range of the market area, the need for the business, the economy, the competition, and employee availability.
A business requires capital to purchase fixed assets and to keep the business operating (working capital). Capital can be obtained by using personal savings, borrowing from the lending institutions, or by reinvesting profits into the business.
In selecting a site for the business, the buyer should consider factors such as size, natural features, zoning regulations, utilities, access, compatibility of the new business with other businesses nearby, strength of merchants’ associations, lease agreements, and the cost of acquisition. If purchasing an established business, the buyer should consider factors such as the equipment included and its condition, the existing inventory and its market value, the accounts receivable, good will, and use of the existing name.
Once acquired, the business site must be allocated to different uses. Proper sizing and ease of circulation are the keys to a successful layout of the physical plant. A staff organization chart can help employees understand their roles within the company.
When starting out, materials and supplies should be ordered in small quantities that can be turned over quickly and paid for promptly. The less capital that is tied up in inventory, the better.
Advertising seeks to focus public attention on items or services that are for sale. To be productive, advertising must generate sales and profits in quantities greater than would be expected without advertising. There are two types: immediate responses advertising and attitude advertising. A complete advertising program must also include promotion, publicity, and public relations.
This chapter also includes a summary of the laws and regulations that affect horticulturists.
1. Prepare a brief essay on why you would or would not like to own your own business. Discuss the factors that you think will contribute most to your job satisfaction and how ownership or nonownership would affect them.
B. SHORT ANSWER
Answer each of the following questions as briefly as possible.
1. Indicate if the following apply to sole proprietorships (S), partnerships (P), or corporations (C).
a. the most public method of doing business
b. the easiest form of business to begin
c. the most private method of doing business
d. a business owned by two or more persons
e. a legal entity independent of its owners
f. liabilities legally separate from the owners
2. Explain the value of a market survey undertaken before investing money and time in a new business.
3. List three ways to obtain capital for a business.
4. Explain briefly how each of the following
factors influence the choice of a business
a. size of the site
b. natural features
c. zoning regulations
e. access to the site
g. merchants’ associations
h. cost of acquisition
i. lease agreements
5. Identify each law or regulation described
a. provides financial assistance to persons after their retirement; supported
by payments from employees and employers during the working years.
b. ensures safe and healthful working conditions for employees
c. provides compensation to employees for injuries incurred on the job
d. ensures that all commercial customers are treated equally by a seller
e. limits the use of toxic pesticides to those knowledgeable about their safe and proper application
6. Complete the following statements.
a. ______ advertising has a short-term
b. The main purpose of____________ advertising
is to create a positive image of the business in the minds of customers.
c. activities are intended to bring
the business, its owner, or its personnel to the attention of potential customers and to create good will.
d. The purpose of all___________ is to focus
public attention on items or services that are for sale.
e. Advertising must result in____________
Indicate if the following statements are true or false.
1. Parking should be assigned to whatever space is left on the site after all other uses are given their necessary space.
2. Quantity buying may be unwise if storage space is limited.
3. A staff organization plan helps employees understand their roles within the company.
4. Most horticultural businesses are too small to need a staff organization plan.
5. Unsold inventory represents capital that cannot be used for other purposes.
Select an item or service that would be sold by the type of ornamental horticulture business that interests you. Prepare a radio advertisement for it. Specify the time of year the advertisement should be featured.