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Newsletter #728: The “Become a Destination” Issue

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Make yourself the place to go for something other than buying stuff. Here's a couple opportunities to do that:

   1> For recycling
   2> For information
   3> For repairs
   4> Check it out: The Google of music

1. For recycling

Get people into your store by having a place for them to get rid of their old junk. Best Buy does it with kiosks to safely dispose of electronics — everything from TVs to cell phones to ink cartridges. The program results in a lot of people making a special trip to Best Buy to get rid of old stuff. A clothing retailer could do a similar program by having a special donation drop box for old clothes, as could a grocer by having recycling bins for plastic, paper, and other materials.

The Lesson: Not only is recycling good for the world, but it's also good for encouraging folks to visit your store more often.

2. For information

Give people a reason to frequently visit your website or to subscribe to your newsletter by being a frequent source of great information. Paul McGowan, founder of PS Audio, sends out a monthly email newsletter with product reviews, info on new technology, and personal commentary. The publication is a resource for people interested in audio technology, and it gets shared, forwarded, and helps his company become not just a place to buy speakers, but also a trusted resource to make smart purchases.

The Lesson: Earn trust and new fans by becoming a hub for reliable information.

3. For repairs

If you can repair a ripped seam, a broken cell phone, or a woman's favorite high-heeled shoe, you can be a hero. For years, department stores like Macy's and Dillard's have offered tailor and seamstress services to customers, regardless of where the garments were originally purchased. If you're an expert in a particular industry, you could win a lot of fans and, potentially, some additional income by offering emergency repair service for products sold by you and your competitors.

The Lesson: If you can save someone's day, you can earn their referral and future business.

4. Check it out: The Google of music

You've probably heard of Pandora or similar music streaming sites, but if you're looking for something specific and obscure, check out Songza, which is pretty much the Google of online music. Typing in an artist or song title will often bring up a bunch of audio and video versions of the music. You can also use it to play a list of songs by an artist, or to easily share a link to a particular song.

Check it out:

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