BUSINESS | BIZ BITS | February 2017

hawaii cut flowers wholesale value increases

The wholesale value of cut flowers from Hawaii totaled $6.32 million in 2015, up 17 percent from 2014, according to preliminary figures from the USDA released last fall. Anthuriums account for the highest cut-flower volume, with more than 2.9 million stems sold in 2015, totaling more than $2.6 million.

Overall, Hawaii’s floriculture and nursery products were estimated at $67.4 million in 2015, down slightly from $67.9 million in 2014. Contributing to the downturn were double-digit percentage drops in the value of landscape plant material and bedding and garden plants.

Source: United States Department of Agriculture “Hawaii Floriculture and Nursery Products Annual Summary” Sept. 12, 2016; www.nass.usda.gov

one in five couples travel for their weddings

Twenty-one percent of marrying couples opted for destination weddings in 2015, and intimate celebrations reigned supreme, with weddings averaging 28 guests. Tropical locales – including Mexico, the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Costa Rica, Aruba and St. Lucia – remain top choices though Canada, Iceland and Italy are gaining in favor.

Source: Destination Weddings Travel Group Trend Report 2016; www.destinationweddings.com

be part of 2017 “promposals”

Prom season is right around the corner, and today’s teens are finding more elaborate ways   to ask one another via promposals. Their willingness to spend on social-media-worthy moments offers an opportunity for florists beyond just the prom-night flowers. Consider promoting small bouquets, balloons and other gifts with phrasing such as “Popping the prom question? Let us help!”

floral prints popular for prom

“Modern embroidery and mega prints just brought flower power back,” declares David’s Bridal in the retailer’s latest prom trends report. Other trends include two-piece dresses, dazzling clutches, wine shades, illusion, cutout dress details and high necklines.

Source: David’s Bridal; www.davidsbridal.com

host a flower therapy night

You may have noticed a trend over the past few years in businesses that cater to helping people unwind through creative expression. For their most recent Christmas party, Florists’ Review staff unleashed their inner van Gogh at a local paint therapy venue. Why not host a similar event with flowers?

Stick to simple design concepts so you can provide guidance without the need for step-by-step instruction. This will allow participants to chat and enjoy each other’s company without feeling like they are in a classroom setting. Partner with a local restaurant and use its party room, or, if you have the space in your shop, have it there. If you allow guests to bring in wine and other adult beverages, make sure you know the liquor laws in your areas, and go through the proper procedures.

holiday upselling with a twist of phrasing

As customers place their orders for Valentine’s Day, you might ask them if they would like to add a balloon, candy, plush animal or other gift. Although there is nothing wrong with asking, consider this approach: “I’d be doing you a disservice if I didn’t at least make you aware that we have a variety of items to help make your Valentine’s Day gift even more special.”

The phrase “I’d be doing you a disservice if I didn’t at least …” positions the conversation less as pushing or pestering and more as an effort to assist the customer in purchasing a more meaningful Valentine’s Day sentiment.

Source: Jeff Mowatt’s 30-Second Customer Service Tip Oct. 20, 2016; www.jeffmowatt.com

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