Hello From Greece!

Hello From Greece!



Hello to you from Greece!

I am live from the Greek island of Crete. It’s rough here – sunshine all the time, beaches everywhere, swimming twice a day, food that is off the charts, no fast food restaurants anywhere.

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I am always fascinated when I see a business in a different area or a business enterprise that’s busier than others. I instinctively do an investigation in my mind to see why. The results and reasons are always the same. The business methodology or tactics are different from area to area, but the overall measure of success is the same and applies to any business in the world.

Things that I have observed during this family trip to Greece:

  • Some taverns are busier than others
  • Some beaches are busier than others
  • One individual, who is one of many taxi drivers for the island, is having his best year ever.

Here are the reasons:

Most of the taverns have generally the same Greek food. The variables are the cooks, the speed of service, the interest level of the staff, pricing is generally the same so that is not a big variable. One place serviced us fast, another I had to get the server several times and he forgot one of our orders.

All the food is great. Most taverns bring watermelon and melons at the end of the meal, for free. At one tavern, after the main meal, the restaurant served a variety of Greek pastries and ice-cream for free. We were all impressed and the desserts were delicious. We left with a feeling that we would refer this tavern to others.  Hmm, something is different here. We call that “exchange in abundance” or a “better story at the end than was expected.” This principle applies to any business: your business will be the one that is remembered and will be at the top of your customer’s mind for referrals.

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Beach Front restaurants each have a small retail store and a piece of the beach that the owner pays the city for. He provides beach chairs and umbrella shades for your purchase of drinks and food. Again, some were busier than others.  We settled with one person who took good care of us – and he genuinely cared – but he could have been busier. Why?

Market research comes into play. Again, the variables are ambiance, the service, the food, the cook. The ocean is the same. One solution would be to Survey! Find out from time to time what is needed by the locals and wanted by the tourists.  Don’t guess what you think they want or need, since you could be off the mark.  I suggested this to the owner I was speaking with. He had some big, bold ideas; he tried sweet potato fries and they didn’t sell; he wants to bring a significant change to the menu – he is guessing what people want and that can end up costing hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars without know if these are the things that people need and want. This is what most businesses tend to do and most fail. You must survey first.

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Nectario is one of the island’s taxi drivers and is having his busiest year ever. In a global pandemic where travel is being suppressed, why is he having his best year ever?

Answer: His Public Relations (PR) is impeccable! He validates everyone, is well liked, he knows everyone all across Crete Island and beyond and then he delivers fast. But PR is first before marketing and he has this down pat.

He promotes to everyone and anyone he meets. He is the go-to-guy.  He out-promoted most everyone else and positioned himself at the go-to-guy on this big island.

Starbucks is known for their PR as an analogy. They are almost all PR and little marketing. Do you see them promoting constantly all over billboards and radio, $1.99 for a coffee and muffin? No. They focus on PR with their employees and with many activities all over the world.  “Starbucks celebrates World Water Day”.  Great PR!

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1)   PR: most miss this step.
2)   Survey your target market, find out what they really will buy.
3)   Marketing: promote yourself!
4)   Deliver, always come through – be the go-to-guy.

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Louie Pateropoulos
(416) 461-1143
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