As Popular Choice, Flowers Get Picked on at Mother's Day
By Jenny Scala
During popular flower-buying holidays, flowers and florists tend to draw unfair criticism from competitors. With Mother’s Day approaching, SAF is encouraging retailers and writers to drop the unnecessary jabs at flowers and instead follow Mom’s advice, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all.”
U.S. Floriculture Crop Rebounds, Climbs 3 Percent
By Ira Silvergleit
The 2010 wholesale value of floriculture production increased 3 percent from the revised 2009 valuation, according to the USDA, rebounding from a 7 percent decline in value one year ago.
Total crop value was $4.13 billion for 2010, compared to $4 billion in 2009. Released April 21, the Floriculture Crops Summary covers 15 states and includes growers with $10,000 or more in sales.
California’s production value increased 8 percent to $1.01 billion; Florida’s 1 percent dip puts its value at $810 million. Together, these states account for a combined 44 percent of the 15-state total. Michigan, Texas and North Carolina round out the top-five. Of the 15 states in the summary, these five account for $2.75 billion — or 66 percent of the total value. (For data on additional states, go to the Census of Horticultural Specialties.)
As is the case in many industries, fewer producers are making more. In 2010, grower levels fell 7 percent to 6,126. The number of producers with sales of $100,000 or more fell 7 percent to 2,706. While these operations represent just 44 percent of the production population, they account for 96 percent of the total production, or $4.13 billion in sales.
All but one segment grew in value, with the exception being propagation materials, which fell 1 percent.
Increases in value, per segment:
In Good Taste: Dove, Apparel Retailer Laud Flowers
By Jenny Scala
SAF is the voice of the industry. If you hear or see flowers applauded or dissed, contact Jenny Scala at (800) 336-4743 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Congressman Has a 'Ball' with Member Visit Prompted by CAD
By Brian Gamberini
Miller realized he had to make a concerted effort to get to know freshman Rep. Randy Hultgren (R-14-Ill.), the congressman representing West Chicago. Not only did he make good on that effort, he also secured the connection by inviting Hultgren to the company’s headquarters.
On April 21, Miller, Anna Ball and others met with Hultgren and pressed him on key issues including immigration reform.
“Even though he was hearing about our main issues for the first time, Hultgren was very receptive and we asked him to come back in the summer when the gardens were in full bloom,” said Miller, a veteran lawmaker host.
If you are interested in giving your legislators an insider’s view of the floral industry, check out SAF’s Grassroots Guide at www.safnow.org/grassroots or email email@example.com for more information.
Roll with It: Florists Add Floral Décor to White House Easter Egg Roll
By Jenny Scala
The First Family hosted 30,000 people in their backyard on Monday for the 133rd White House Easter Egg Roll.
Beveridge and Reinking created the floral arrangements adorning the photo op areas, including the Reading, Yoga, Kitchen, Farmers Market stages, and the VIP tents and eating areas.
“People just have to know flowers and florists are involved,” Beveridge said. “It’s part of the celebration.”
This is the seventh year SAF has provided flowers for the Egg Roll, held the Monday after Easter. “It gives SAF visibility before the administration, federal officials and members of Congress,” said Drew Gruenburg, SAF's chief operating officer. “And it’s great to remind consumers and children about the importance and beauty of flowers at festive celebrations.”
See Beveridge’s pictures from the Easter Egg Roll.
PFCI Members Provide Royal Commentary
By Kate Penn
Be sure to keep SAF’s Facebook page open on Friday — we’ve managed to convince a small team of SAF Professional Floral Communicators-International (PFCI) members to wake up before dawn on Friday and provide some floral commentary from this side of the pond of the royal wedding. Check out their comments and chime in with your own, on SAF’s Facebook page.
Want a sneak preview of the wedding flowers? Royal wedding artistic director Shane Connolly dishes about his floral décor plans on People.com.
Faith Hill Pushes Posies, This Time for Mom
By Kate Penn
The Mother’s Day spot reunites Hill and actor Kevin Manwarren, who plays Hill’s clueless sound engineer seeking advice about what to write on the enclosure card for his mother. The ad will air on women’s focused cable channels and network TV through Thursday, May 5
“We are happy to be continuing our partnership with Faith Hill whose inspired vision helped make our Valentine’s Day a success not only in sales, but in connecting with our core consumer,” said Teleflora President Shawn Weidmann.
Check out the spot here.
Retail Group Senses a Positive Trend
United Press International
U.S. retail sales rose slightly in the week ending April 16, as consumers have indicated increased optimism about the job market, a trade group said. The International Council of Shopping Centers, based in Washington, said "Consumers are still inclined to spend, largely as perceptions of the job market improves." Read more.
Strategies for Better Money Management
Here’s a dirty little not-so-secret of small businesses: You can be profitable but not have cash. On the other hand, you can actually NOT be profitable and still have good credit, excellent relations with vendors, and be able to meet your financial obligations. In a small business, it’s not just about making money; it’s about managing your money. A few simple steps now to get your money management systems in order can make it a lot easier to pay your monthly bills later. Read more.
Florists Trumpet Their Expertise and Get Pre-Mother's Day Coverage
By Katie Hendrick
Two retailers trumpeted florists’ ability to help consumers select personalized gifts in a recent Fox News article, “Finding the Right Flowers for Mom.”
Maryann Finegan, owner of Foliage Garden in New York City, and Tom Doyle, owner of Springdale Florist and Greenhouses in Darien, Conn., shared strategies for getting orders just right.
“It’s about how [flowers] fit into her life,” Finegan told readers. “Does she have a favorite color? Do you want to remind her of the flowers she carried at her wedding? It’s a very personal thing.”
Doyle advised readers to think beyond the bouquet or centerpiece. "Someone who is a gardener may prefer a nice planter to put on a step," he said, adding his recommendations of azaleas, hydrangeas and orchids as flowers that work well both indoors and out.
"This is a great example of providing useful ideas and advice for consumers at a time when they are seeking suggestions," said Jennifer Sparks, SAF’s vice president of communications. "And the best part is, it positions the florist as the expert and personal consultant."
Starbright Gives Fox & Friends a Floral Makeover
By Katie Hendrick
Early last week, a producer at Fox News e-mailed dozens of New York City florists at 6 a.m., asking if any would like to decorate the set of Fox & Friends, the network’s morning news show, for the Easter weekend. At 6:15, Nic Faitos, owner of Starbright Floral Design, saw the message and immediately nabbed the opportunity.
Starbright provided 15 arrangements, including one five-foot-tall vase of open cherry blossom branches, two vases of white callas, one vase of French tulips, two rectangular containers with about 50 tulips in each and assorted five-inch cubes with peonies and hydrangeas. The designs appeared on Fox & Friends’ Friday, Saturday and Sunday shows.
In return for the gratis blossoms, Fox mentioned Starbright Floral on air and included a link to the florist’s website on its own.
“On top of the million-plus viewership, we promoted the fact that we were on the show to our own clients through social media and other outlets,” Faitos said. “The show gave us credibility to our own audience, as well as any additional clients that we gained through the exposure we received.”
No. 1 Meeting Killer . . . and What You can Do About It
The single factor that makes the biggest difference between a great meeting and a poor one? PowerPoint. The best meetings don't go near it. PowerPoint presentations inevitably end up as monologues. They focus on answers, and everyone faces the screen. But meetings should be conversations. They should focus on questions, not answers, and people should face each other. Read more.
Help Gen Y Buy Right for Mom
On the Horizon
SAF Growth Solutions: A Mini-Conference for Florists
June 22-23, 2011
SAF Palm Springs 2011 - 127th Annual Convention
Sept. 14-17, 2011
Westin Mission Hills Rancho Mirage, Calif.
Emotional Impact of Flowers Counter Card
Remind customers that scientific research shows flowers’ positive impact on mood with SAF’s colorful Emotional Impact of Flowers counter card. Reinforce the message with the “Instant Delight” or “Guaranteed Smiles” poster. Want to keep the theme going? Send out an “Instant Delight” postcard, which says on the back: "Research from Rutgers University shows that the presence of flowers has an immediate impact on happiness and increases enjoyment and life satisfaction. Call us today, and we'll help you send happiness in a heartbeat."
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