Monday, May 11, 2009

The optimum zone

As you travel the cereal isle in the grocery store I'd like you to notice something. Notice that the height of the shelving is different here, than from any other isle. The product is displayed at eye level for a different type of customer than you, the adult, the one with the money, the one in charge, the one pushing the cart. It's displayed at eye level for the cart rider. The little munchkin probably influence's your shopping in this isle more than than the nutritional value or the price-value of the item. Notice where the high bran low sugar item is located on the shelf. Amazing it's at your eye level. The placement of the product on the shelves is no accident. That eye level, for the buyer, space along those isles is the "optimum zone." It's the space that product distributors fight for in the isles of stores everywhere.
The optimum zone varies dependent on the customer. The over all look of your booth or store front is the invitation to the party. The optimum zone is the party! It's where customers from a relationship with your product.. We are after customers forming long term relationships with our product. Any good relationship begins with eye contact. Let's make some.
Jewelry stores do this on purpose, too. Notice the height of their jewelry displays, more like counter top, than table top for the most part, right? Some jewelry stores seek a more intimate relationship with their customers and invite the customer to be seated while forming a relationship with the jewelry. Others have a special area referred to as "the diamond room" where they encourage higher-end relationships with jewelry.
How can the vendor at a hand crafted venue use this information? Let's realise something our customers are "standing." Let's get the jewelry in the zone. I realise that doing this has to meet a couple of other criteria to work for you under your ten by ten foot tent, booth, store. Card tables and tables you could have borrowed from the church are just too low to be considered in the zone. Let's define the standing zone to be space within arms reach that if you extended your hand out to greet someone ,would be the bottom and the height of the bottom shelf of your kitchen shelves being the top. Small area isn't it?
Card tables and dining tables can work if we invite the customer to be seated. That just isn't practical for most booths. I consider the counter top to be part of the display. How about making some leg extenders to get those tables up to zone? or putting them on a platform. or creating a platform on top of the table? How zonal is that? Getting zonal doesn't have to come from the bottom up it can come from the top down, too. Enjoy " get zonal " Brad

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