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SAF Wednesday E-Brief
Sept. 30, 2009
E-Brief Links >   Past Issues    SAF Market    Industry Events Calendar    Contact Us                                Follow SAF on: Share on Linkedin Twitter Share on Facebook

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SAF Phoenix: Desert Blooms with Fresh Ideas about Fighting Prickly Economy
By Amanda Long
When SAF's convention committee members chose Phoenix as its destination for the 2009 convention, they had no idea how a trip to the desert would be just the balm a rattled industry would need. But after a year of mortgage meltdowns, skyrocketing unemployment and dwindling discretionary spending, the peaceful, almost surreal surroundings of a Phoenix hotel seemed like a gift from the meeting and planning gods to the almost 300 attendees who came to the Wild Horse Pass Sheraton last week for SAF Phoenix 2009. Read more

SAF Gives Top Honors at SAF Phoenix 2009
By Kate Penn
While the average consumer may not know whom to thank for the fact that green and flowering plants are so readily available, SAF has made sure the industry will give credit where credit’s due, by honoring that individual with the floral industry’s highest honor. SAF inducted M. James Leider, AAF, into its Floriculture Hall of Fame last Thurs., Sept. 24, at the Awards Dinner held during SAF Phoenix 2009. Read more

Twice as Nice: Bouquets Wins Marketer Award Again
By Kate Penn
When BJ Dyer, AAF, AIFD, PFCI, and Guenther Vogt, AAF, walked up to the stage last Thursday morning to accept Floral Management’s 16th Annual Marketer of the Year award, some among the 270-plus in attendance at SAF Phoenix 2009 understandably had a moment of déjà vu. Also held in Phoenix, that convention was the setting for the first win by their shop, Bouquets. The Denver duo won Floral Management’s 9th annual award, for their wildly successful pursuit of Denver’s coveted event work. Seven years later, they won the award again, for their successful, out-of-the-box effort to save the event category of business. Read more

On-Demand Designs, Timeless Talent Earn Cindy Anderson, AIFD, in the Sylvia Cup
By Amanda Long
Long before the Bravo network turned every creative pursuit and profession into a made-for-TV, dramatic competition (cooking, rearranging your furniture, selling houses), floral designers were sharpening their knives and competing in a high-pressure, time-limited challenge known as The Sylvia Cup. This year, Cindy Anderson, AIFD, impressed the judges and became the star of the show, winning the 42nd Annual Sylvia Cup Design Competition. Just hours after designing on demand with 23 other contestants during the two-hour showdown, Anderson, a designer from Colorado Springs, Colo., found out she won. During the Awards Dinner at SAF Phoenix 2009, Anderson received an engraved silver champagne bucket -- the coveted Sylvia Cup -- along with a $2,500 prize provided by Smithers-Oasis and complimentary registration to SAF Orlando 2010. Read more

Big, White and Pure: A Gerb Grabs Top Prize for Green Valley
By Amanda Long
"This is my version of heaven," a Phoenix resident said to a friend as the two got their first full glimpse of the 266 vases filling the Outstanding Varieties competition room at SAF Phoenix 2009, held last week in their hometown. "Me too, if I had my allergy medicine," her friend replied, between sneezes as she walked among the lilies. While their responses might not mention vase life, stem strength or commercial viability, they do speak volumes about the power of flowers and the sensory sensation created by the Outstanding Varieties competition, held each year to identify the season's hottest and healthiest in cut flowers, roses, plants and foliage. Read more

Speakers Extraordinaire, Community Service Icons Honored
By Shelley Estersohn
Wholesalers and industry and consumer groups seeking speakers to educate audiences at upcoming events have five more certified speakers to consider, and SAF has welcomed three more into its ranks of industry members who excel in service to the floral industry and their community. Read more

Retailers Battle Credit Card Fees
From the Washington Post
Congress is considering three bills that would regulate the so-called interchange fees -- which generally amount to 1 to 2 percent of a total sale and totaled $48 billion in 2008. Merchants across the country and the card industry are waging a fight for public support. The merchants say the fees are excessive and eat into their already small profit margins, forcing them to pass on the cost to consumers. The card issuers say they are providing merchants a much-needed service as more Americans choose to pay for their purchases with plastic. Read more

25th Anniversary Seeley Conference Dates Announced
The Seeley Conference will be celebrating its 25th anniversary June 26-29, 2010 on the campus of Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y. Read more


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How to Make Your Customers Feel Important
From Sideroad
We can read lots of books and articles about Customer Service strategies and how to build processes that will serve customers more successfully. All of these things are valuable, but if we put all of our focus on processes, systems, strategies and procedures we may lose track of something very important. Customers are people first. Read more

Windows Reflect Florist's Fanciful Flair, Family Tradition
By Amanda Long
Passersby peaking in the windows of Rosemary-Duff Florist may not be able to see what's going on inside the shop, but they can definitely see what's going on inside the heads of its three owners. And the view is one of "elaborate, fanciful works (and) a second-generation tradition that blends artful advertising, seasonal celebrations and an effort to beautify downtown Escondido," according to a recent article in the San Diego Union Tribune. Read more


How Cloud Computing Can Help Small Businesses
From Business Week
Cloud computing can help small businesses ease capacity issues. You don't need to invest in your own servers or employ staff to take care of them. Instead, you pay only for the capacity you need at a given time. And as demand rises, capacity increases without interruptions. Read more


Fall for SAF Members' Autumn Wedding Advice
With October giving June a run for its matrimonial money as the most popular month for weddings, bridal editors are scrambling to find floral and trend experts to help them rake in readers. Lucky for them, the advice of wedding guru Sharon McGukin, PFCI, AIFD, AAF, fits every season. Read more


Show You’re Local!
With buy-local becoming a buzzword around the country, it’s more important than ever to make sure that your business location is prominent on your Web site. Try and place it within the first screen somebody sees when they land on your site (preferably with a photo of the building), and also on the page where you put your contact information. It’s also a good idea to put your address, phone, fax and e-mail info somewhere on every page of your site – the bottom footer is typical.

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On the Horizon
Proflora 2009
Sept. 30-Oct. 2, Bogota, Colombia

26th Annual Pest and Production Management Conference
Presented by SAF and Greenhouse Grower Magazine
February 25-27, 2010
Hyatt Regency Orlando Airport
Orlando, Fla.

SAF Congressional Action Days
March 8-9, 2010
Fairmont Hotel, Washington, D.C.

25th Annual Seeley Conference
June 26 – 29, 2010
Cornell University
Ithaca, N.Y.

SAF Orlando 2010
126th Annual Convention
Sept. 22-25
Orlando, Fla.


Reader Feedback
A reader had a recommendation after reading our Sept. 16 story about how one florist lobbied her local paper to stop using "In Lieu of Flowers:"
    As past president and current secretary/ treasure of Kansas State Florist Association I thought this was a great letter and all of us should hit our newspapers with this. We must stand and unite as an industry, look at the automobile industry!! Florists this is the time to stick together, join your state Floral Association, attend the meetings to advance your education and to unite as one group. Many together can do what one cannot.
    — Nancy Wright, Kansas State Floral Association, Ellis Flower Shop
Read the story and other comments.

E-Brief Top Five
Missed an issue? Catch up on stories readers clicked most last week.

  1. Florist Presses Paper to Cut 'In Lieu of Flowers'
  2. Why Your Advertising Isn’t Working
  3. Buzz Builds as SAF's125th Gets Underway
  4. Get Well Prepared for Swine Flu, Gov't Tells Small Biz
  5. Florists Gone Punk

Product Spotlight: Earn WorldPoints with SAF’s Business MasterCard
Swipe your card, hype your product, wipe out your expenses and fill up on reward points with the SAF Business MasterCard. Earn points on all your business expenses — inventory, payroll, daily costs — and redeem them whenever you choose. There is no annual limit on the points, which can be redeemed for rewards such as airline travel, hotel stays and gift certificates. For more information click here or call SAF Member Services at (800) 336-4743. Or call Bank of America at (800) 570-1601 and mention priority code UAATCU to apply for the SAF Business Card with WorldPoints Rewards.

New Online


NEW Dendrobium Grading in Centimeters
Roses are sold by centimeter length, but not orchids. Now, Amy's Orchids is changing that. Dendrobium and Mokara Orchids from Amy's Orchids are packaged in clear plastic sleeves with the grade mark (in centimeters) clearly visible. More

Celebrating 125 Years

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