Page images
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

nearly all hours of the day and night. Because are pushed, special price inducements being of the location of the store, in the center of the made on quantity purchases. On Sundays, business district, many people patronize the however, high-grade box candies are brought fountain for light lunches, and this affords an to the front and featured exclusively. The excellent opportunity for the sale of sand- sales-girls are given 5-per-cent commissions on wiches and hot drinks.

lines retailing at 80 cents or more a pound, and Two men are kept busy making syrups and which show the store a good profit. looking after the supply of ice-cream, sand

CLERKS HAVE SHORT HOURS. Kinsel clerks are not troubled by long-hour days. The store force consists of two crews. One shift serves from 8 A.M to 12 noon and from 6 P.M. until midnight: The hours of the second shift are from 12 noon until 6 P.M. The two crews alternate daily, and each clerk has every other Sunday free from duty. As the store is open all night a third crew of six people has charge from midnight until 8 A.M.

Another feature that is much appreciated by the clerks, and one incidentally that works for the benefit of the store, is the material used in the construction of the floor. The store proper has a handsome tile floor, while the spaces behind the counters are of wood covered

with flexible mats of rubber and iron. These "Kinsel's Corner."

mats are easier on the clerks' feet, and, being wiches, carbonated water, etc., for the foun- slightly raised, give the clerk an advantage tain. One hundred gallons of ice-cream can

when talking to a customer. be stored at a time. An elevator serves to

Newspaper advertising is depended upon carry supplies from the basement to the fountain.

It takes the entire time of three men to handle the constantly growing cigar and tobacco trade. Cigars by the box are a Kinsel specialty, the Saturday sales on box cigars alone running into the thousands.

In the cutlery department are carried pocket knives, razors, and manicure implements of every description. Cameras and supplies, fountain pens, electric irons, flashlights and similar articles are also sold. As an example of the amount of business done in the department Mr. Kinsel recently placed an order for 100 electric vibrators, retailing at from $10.00 to $25.00 apiece, and states that he expects to dispose

Where 28 gallons of chocolate syrup are used every 48 hours. of them within three months' time.

Candies and toilet goods are sold from a entirely for giving the store outside publicity. large case in the center of the store. The case Large space is contracted for in three of the is of the slant-type, measuring 22 inches at the leading Detroit papers, the advertisements bottom and 12 inches at the top. It is 46 running on Thursdays and Fridays of each inches high. Seven girls are in attendance at week. This newspaper advertising features this counter.

the week-end sales of the store and makes its During the week the lower-priced candies appeal almost wholly on price.

[ocr errors]

But few cuts are used, every inch of space of the windows display drugs and medicines, being devoted to an enumeration of the special two are devoted to exhibits from the cutlery offerings. Prices are quoted on every one of department, while cigars and candy occupy the numerous items. Photographs of various two remaining windows. parts of the store are sometimes used in the Window demonstrations have proven very advertising, three of the cuts appearing in this effective, according to Mr. Kinsel. He says article being taken from newspaper ads.

that displays of such things as corn remedies Seven windows, each 9 feet long, draw at- and shoulder-braces have produced most satistention from the many pedestrians who pass factory financial returns. by the store. These windows are depended The Kinsel business is a strictly cash one; upon to sell large quantities of goods. Three there are no book accounts.


By HAROLD WHITEHEAD, President American School of Business, Boston

Competition to-day is more in service than

SHOWING AN INTEREST. in goods. A druggist can offer very little in

It will not be long before the article that was the way of quality or price that all his com

asked for will be in stock again. As soon as petitors cannot offer. Any of his customers

it comes, send a note saying how sorry you can walk a block from his store and get prac

were to be out of it, but that you now have tically the same goods he offers; and should a

it and if the customer will just telephone or competitor give better service than he does the

write you will be only too glad to send the customer will not hesitate a moment to walk

goods down right away. Close by saying that that block.

you value his or her business so much that you If, then, you are on an equal footing with

take the liberty of sending the letter. your competitors as regards price and quality, the only thing in which you can compete is

Do not go into a lengthy explanation of the service.

reason why you were out of the article. The A properly worded letter sent to your cus

more you explain the weaker becomes your

position, and if your customer receives a letter tomer or prospect shows clearly that you are

a interested in him, and it is a cord of interest

full of explanations and loud protestations, she that ties him to your store.

One letter-one

will exclaim with her friend William Shakescord-is not likely to prove sufficiently strong

peare: "He doth protest too much." to enable you to haul him in and keep him as a

You can hardly expect that an order will folpermanent customer; but every letter you send

low the letter, for the customer probably is an added cord or attachment.

bought that article elsewhere. But you have The perfect drug store is never out of any

replaced the cord of interest which was broken merchandise that is asked for, but, thank

because you were unable to satisfy that want. heaven, there is nothing perfect on this earth

You have convinced the customer that you are not even a drug store! So it often happens trying to render her real service—surely an that in the best regulated stores a customer

excellent return for your investment in a twoasks for something that isn't in stock.

cent stamp! To have a customer leave a store under such The form-letter is, in the opinion of the conditions breaks a cord of interest. Now we writer, one of the most potent factors in sucmust replace that broken strand; and a letter cessful business, if used in a well-thought-out will do it where nothing else can.

plan and followed up consistently.

A very effective way of using form-letters *The third of a series of five articles on ways and means of getting business.

is to first revise your list of present customers,




and prepare a list of people you would like to head, and the general formation of the comhave for customers. Then put the name and munication. address of each individual on a card similar to The first paragraph will decide the degree the following:

of interest you will arouse. The rest must turn

that interest into desire to act upon the suggesNAME

tions contained therein.

Do not try to write a letter as if you were Woodrow Wilson. Write to your customers

in just the kind of language you use when talkBUSINESS OR GROUP.

ing to them. Highfalutin' phraseology sounds DATE LETTER COMMENTS

mightly nice in a book, but if you are not in the habit of using it a letter from you containing that sort of thing will make you and your effort a joke in the eyes


your customers. You can get the thoughts and the ideas from any one; but having got the idea you want to

convey, dress it in your own language. "Trying Divide these customers into groups. By that

to present ideas in other people's language is I mean classify them according to their social just like trying to wear other people's clothes. or business relationship. It is a good plan to

SHORT AND SNAPPY PARAGRAPHS. use a different colored card for each group, or class. White cards can be for well-to-do

Make your paragraphs as short and snappy women; blue cards for farmers; pink cards

as possible. The writer believes in paragraphs for young men; yellow cards for laborers'

of not more than five lines, as a general thing. wives; and so forth.

you want a customer to answer, make it Each month send to each group a letter men

as easy for him to do so as you can. Do not tioning some article in which the group as a

ask him to write you a letter to order some whole will be interested. You can send to the

little thing, and do not leave it to him to hunt well-to-do women some particulars about that

all over his house for an envelope. It is very new imported perfume you have. To the far

little expense, you know, to put an envelope mers you might send a letter about the new inside your letter; and instead of asking the fertilizer, stock food or disinfectant you have

customer to write to you, just put a P. S. on just received. To the young men a combina

your message to this effect: "Don't bother to tion offer of shaving soap, witch-hazel and

write—just say 'yes' on this letter and mail it powder would be appropriate; while the labor

in the enclosed envelope." ers' wives would doubtless be interested to hear

Some good letters fall down because they about what can be done in the way of dyeing.

talk to a group. If you are sending out a These are merely off-hand illustrations.

form-letter to two thousand people, you must

not take the attitude of standing on a tub and DO NOT EXPECT TOO MUCH.

haranguing that two thousand in a bunch. However, do not expect that the day after Write your letter to just one man, so as to get you send out these letters you will find a string that personality and friendliness into it which of customers half a mile long waiting to pur- is so helpful to business. chase the goods exploited. A salesman may Form-letters are written to so many thouhave to make numerous calls to turn a prospect

sands of individuals—not to a bunch of so into a customer, so do not expect one letter to

many thousands. do what a dozen visits of a salesman might In short, in writing letters keep in view not do.

these simple rules: Be brief and concise; do The general appearance of your letter de- not use long words or sentences; do not gush; cides what kind of attention it will receive. tell your story simply; give reasons why your This general appearance is determined by the customers should buy; and do not rant, beg, or quality of the stationery, the way the letter is preach. And above all talk with your cusfolded, the kind of printing on your letter- tomer, not at him.

Next month Mr. Whitehead will discuss "The Satisfied Customer."





People say I have been successful. Perhaps afraid to work, and knew how to use my head. I have. Probably what they mean is that I Unlike some of the others, I was not simply have not failed in business. Well, I am not filling in time while I waited for some rich so very old; in fact, when I sometimes forget relative to die. and wear my cap in the store people take me I worked away for another year, took my for the junior clerk, instead of the proprietor. examinations successfully, and was considerBut having started with something less than ing asking the “boss” for a dollar a week more, nothing I find myself to-day, ten years later, when one day he came up behind me, laid his the sole owner of a good paying drug business hand on my shoulder and said, "Son, how free of all debt, with a good name, with credit would you like to own a store of your own?" at the bank, and the good-will and respect of I looked at him dumbfounded, for I hadn't my customers.

been thinking of any such thing and hadn't a I was born in the country. Before I was cent saved up towards buying a business. He quite sixteen I had completed the high-school went on and explained that a business 'way course and was forced by the near-edge of back in the country, a hundred miles from nopoverty and the lack of any other opening to where, was for sale and could be bought very take a position as errand boy in a drug store. cheap. It was in a good prosperous district, At that time a college course was not consid- but the store had been mismanaged. As he ered necessary or advisable in our Province, explained it, if I were to go there, bury myself and was seldom taken.

alive for a few years and work hard, I might After a time I tired of the sights of the make a small fortune. home town and being fired with an ambition

A FATHER'S GOOD NAME. to see the world, I packed a strawboard suitcase and set out for the city of Hamilton. And right here I discovered my father's best Here I was fortunate enough to get a position bequest to me. Though a man without much at $8.00 a week, in what seemed to me to be a means, my father had a reputation for honesty most awful big wholesale house. My expenses that was enviable, and that reputation the were $6.00 a week, leaving me two dollars for "boss” (who knew him) now told me was spending money. In my former position I worth whatever money was needed to buy the had got $9.00 a week and my expenses had business, at a very low rate of interest and been less than five. Still, I never did like to without other security than the good name my be laughed at, so I didn't go home.

father had given me.

Well! Saturday I went home to confer with A PROMOTION AND AN OPPORTUNITY.

the home authorities. They seemed to think I guess I must have been pretty green; any- that I was rather young to go into business, how the other clerks thought I was, and they and seemed dubious of my making a success certainly did rub it into me. But in some ways of it. I was not as green as I seemed. In


former Sunday I went to the little country church. position I had been well instructed in every Up to that time I had never paid much attenbranch of the business, from bookkeeping to tion to sermons, and probably I haven't paid dispensing and manufacturing. The "boss" any too much attention since; but that minister soon found this out, and at the end of a year I had a big lump of horse sense hid away somewas promoted from the sundry department to a where, and he certainly knew how to talk to better position in the drug department.

young people in a manner that made them sit This promotion was a great surprise to me, up and take notice. as I was an under-graduate and about the I still remember his text. I have heard a youngest of the staff. It was given me, I was good many sermons before and since, but that told, because I stuck strictly to business, wasn't was the only one I ever remembered the text of, I have never forgotten it. It was "And he head of the bay, surrounded by prosperous slew a lion in a pit and the snow was on the looking farms of green and golden fields, and ground.”

encircled by a low mountain whose trees were He went on to show how any young man resplendent with the red and gold of early with gumption, who wouldn't let himself get autumn—and the whole thing reflected in the scared, but would put a double clench on both still, blue waters of the bay! It was a sight fists, dig in, and do his "darnedest" would win

never to be forgotten. Though I have seen it out every time, even if the odds were against many, many times since, I have never again him and the footing poor.

seen it just as it was that beautiful September A DETERMINATION TO WIN.

morning. That sermon was just what I needed. It

The town I found had a population of about acted on me like a hypodermic of morphine

nine hundred, the people were well dressed would on a dope fiend. Before he was half

and looked prosperous; and what few of them through I had made up my mind that if that

I met that day seemed very pleasant. The chief business was to be had and was worth having

industry was raising and shipping potatoes. I would have it.

I spent the remainder of the day in inspectA week later found me on my way to the

ing the town and surrounding country and was town of Choburg, where the business in ques

well pleased with what I saw. tion was located. This town, which I hardly

In conversation with the hotel proprietor I knew before existed, I discovered was sixty

learned that the druggist whose store I hoped miles by coach from the nearest railway sta

to buy was given to drink. He had neglected tion, or ninety-five miles by water. A traveler

the drug business and had turned the store into who had been there told me by all means to

a regular barroom. He had done a thriving take the water route. I embarked on a small

business until the people of the town had risen coasting steamer early in the afternoon, and

in revolt and put a stop to it. Since then he all the rest of the afternoon and all that night

had been employed in drinking up everything we moved forward, stopping occasionally to

alcoholic in the store. Before I got around land supplies at some backwoods village. to see him the next morning he had finished The morning broke clear and sharp with an

the Ess. Limonis, had started on the Tinct. early September frost. After breakfast I went Capsici, and was in anything but a pleasant on deck and found we were just backing up to

humor. the wharf of a small settlement. An old man,

A TANGLED SKEIN. clad in the original homespun; an old woman The store I found in a good building on a who had never heard of corsets; two girls and good corner-well fitted, but poorly stocked. a young man—these were there to greet us. I stated my business to the proprietor. Yes, One of the girls, I concluded, was the belle of he wanted to sell, he said, but he wanted to get the place. Dressed in a bright pink dress that all there was to be got out of it for himself. came to her heels behind and above her boot- He wasn't going to pay any wholesale accounts. tops in front, with black hose and white boots, They had always cheated him, anyway, and wearing white cotton gloves, with about four

had already got enough out of him. inches of brown arm between the ends of them Now I had been instructed by the "boss" and her elbow-sleeves, and with a blue hat

that his account was to be taken from the purtrimmed with red and green, she could not fail

chase price; and as the "boss' ” company was to attract attention. As I stood and looked at

putting up the money, it was up to me to see the group, I remarked to myself, "Good

that this was done. Heavens, is this what I have come to live

Accidentally, I think, the druggist let someamongst?"

thing slip about a bill of sale. This was news LOOKING THE TOWN OVER.

to me. Excusing myself, I hurried to the A little later, however, I discovered that I recorder's office. Here I found that the drugwas mistaken. Just before noon we steamed gist had borrowed money from a neighbor, up a bay full of islands of all shapes and sizes given a bill of sale of the stock to cover the and suddenly emerged before one of the pret- loan, but had persuaded the neighbor not to tiest bits of scenery I have ever seen. Before have it recorded, as it might hurt the druggist's us lay the village of Choburg, situated at the credit. He had immediately gone to work and

« PreviousContinue »