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This done, then the man who believes in The writer has tried out these schemes, and drugs must attack the show window and ar- they have brought results. He has had a range attractively, with each specimen plainly year's experience in meeting Big Competition. placarded, the items he has selected. He should You need not fear bankruptcy in your busihave his show cards of fair size, say 2 by 4 ness if you do have to sell 10 per cent of your inches, and they should be arranged so that goods at cost, provided you retain a firm hold they will not detract from the exhibit, and so on the good old 90 per cent, for on the latter placed that they may be plainly read from the there is a margin of not less than fifty-fifty! outside. Avoid Latin terms, and proceed somewhat
BY PUSHING A SPECIAL LINE. like this:
By A. MORTIMER, HARROGATE, ENGLAND.* “Nux Vomica—the source of Strychnine.” "Peruvian Bark—the source of Quinine.”
The drug business is largely a personal one“Argols—the source of Cream of Tartar.”
We know that
that is the greatest factor. “Penghawar Djambi—the cotton of the
chain and department stores can buy bigger Ancients.”
and better. We know that very often they “Agar - Agar Vegetable Gelatin from
can save the jobber's profit, and that frequently Japan."
they deal on so large a scale that they are in a And so on.
position to manufacture. Next, the drug man must take the Dispensa
The competition is very real; but the drugtory and “go to it,” to use a slang phrase. He
gist who knows the people and is in intimate must learn the story of each item, its source,
touch with them can fill their wants and dispeculiarity of cultivation, medicinal value, and
pense their prescriptions far better than can a other data, so that he will have an interesting
chain store, where everything is conducted on
the lines of the pattern. story to tell the many people who will be attracted by the exhibit and who will make
What does all the big competition really inquiries.
amount to? Why, generally to price-cutting.
Drugs that are to do good need to be of the THE IMPRESSION IT MAKES.
best. It is quality, not price, that counts—or How many people are there who ever saw ought to. Then the way to meet such comcrude cream of tartar? How many people are petition is to be known as the “best druggist there who are familiar with the source of in town," not the "cheapest druggist in town." quinine or of strychnine? How many people
THE REAL TASK. are there who ever saw Penghawar djambi, the absorbent vegetable wool that was used to
Everybody can tell which is the cheapest. suppress the flow of blood in the early Roman
But it is quite a different proposition to show wars before cotton, or even the Western
that your goods are the best: that is the real
task. Hemisphere, was ever thought of ? Now where do you suppose these people will
It is not enough for the druggist to say that go when they want drugs?
he is open for business. He must tell the
, The 90 per cent commences to look fairly people how his goods are made, why they are safe!
the best, where they came from, how they are
gathered and sorted, and all the other details The crude-drug idea should be followed by shows of chemicals, after which it might be
that a live salesman should have at his tongue's
end. In a word, he must advertise that he has well to try fluidextracts, tinctures, syrups,
technical skill, and that he uses it. elixirs, oils, etc. In the store proper the same idea might be carried out.
A microscope on the counter illustrative of
Have a bottle of real oil of rose on a stand, with a card showing
the method of detecting impurities in ground
drugs is a method to this end. So is a short its value, for instance. But be sure and learn
account of the points in choosing a sponge, or the story of attar of rose, its history, method
the method of making a good toilet soap. It of production, and the alluring Oriental mys
will not be long before a druggist who does tery that surrounds it. Work in a description
these things will get a reputation for knowing of the harem baths in rose water, and don't be
“how” and “why.” afraid to let the listener believe that you know what you are talking about !
*Mr. Mortimer wins the third prize of $5.
But he must, of course, have the best goods, at it, stick to it until you have a local reputafor if he doesn't then the customers he gains tion. Everybody will be saying that Jones's cannot be kept.
Eumolia Cream is the best. Then when comStamp the store with an individuality. Let petition comes along and your competitor says the window trims be out of the ordinary, and that his cream is just as good as yours he at let the counter displays be as fresh as daisies.
once sets your cream up as the standard; and Stamp the individuality of the pharmacy on all the more he tells people this, the better reputathe advertising—on everything!
tion you and your cream get. store get to be synonymous with "the best.”
Perhaps the line you specialize in doesn't A LINE OF PRODUCTS.
much more than pay for the advertising. That One of the best methods of all to meet heavy is quite satisfactory; stick to it.
It brings competition is to specialize. Specialize on an people into the store. article, or, better, a series of articles—say a set Just one other word: in all that you do to of toilet preparations, such as a cream, a soap,
meet competition don't forget to keep the a shaving stick and cake, bath crystals, a denti- clerks fully informed. Nothing is worse than frice (liquid, paste, and powder), a perfume, to go into a store, as I did the other day, and and so on. Let these have a distinctive as be waited on by a man who "doesn't know." well as an attractive and a related appearance.
I asked for a shirt that had been advertised. Let them all be got up in the same design, so "What shirts do you mean?" the clerk that they look a series.
asked. “I didn't know we had a special this A sale of any one advertises all the rest.
It cannot be said that I departed And let anything you specialize in be the best. without a shirt, for I had one on when I went Suppose it is a skin cream, for instance; work in. But I didn't buy a new one.
By HAROLD WHITEHEAD, President American School of Business, Boston
Of all customer-producing channels, the trade—what qualifications he should look for salesman is the most important, for he is the in his salesmen. point of contact between the store and the
HIRING HELP. customer. A man may spend all kinds of money in attracting customers to his store, but The first thing to do in widening and develunless those customers receive the right kind oping this customer-producing channel is to of treatment after they get there, the money make a list of the qualifications, mental and spent is worse than wasted.
physical, required of your salesmen. Then A poor salesman can entirely undo the good with great care hire men who have those work that clever advertising, attractive win- qualifications. dows, and trade-pulling letters may have I can readily understand your saying, "Huh, accomplished.
that's what I've been trying to do for years, Many druggists seem to overlook the fact and there ain't no such animal !" that they are judged by the quality of sales- I am inclined to agree with you to the extent manship exhibited by their sales people. Many that it is difficult to find that kind of salesman merchants who display excellent judgment in already developed. But you certainly can buying goods show an absolute lack of that find salesmen who have latent abilities that can same essential when it comes to buying service. be developed.
When a druggist buys merchandise, he It is a poor business man who is continually knows what kind is suited to his store. But hiring and firing people. The wise merchant one often wonders if he has ever tried to find is the one who hires salesmen with the right out what kind of service is best suited to his latent qualifications, and by training them changes those embryo salesmen into the real How short-sighted such a man is! article. And in so doing he also develops in A good merchant will always attract good them that intangible but most potent factor in salesmen around him. Keep your men satisbusiness success, an esprit de corps; a feeling fied. If your men are of the right kind, they of loyalty toward “the boss” that is so hard to have ambition. The only way to keep that secure unless the boss is loyal to his employees. kind of a man satisfied is to share your profit
with him. I believe—and I say this in all DEVELOPING THE CLERK.
seriousness and with some few years' experiHaving secured the right kind of material,, ence in retail business as a sales specialist, don't hesitate to spend some money in develop
that the successful stores of the future will ing it. You do not hesitate to spend money
without question operate on a profit-sharing for new equipment when your store begins to
basis; and I believe just as sincerely that the look shabby You do not hesitate to spend druggist who is so blind to his own interests money when a traveling salesman comes along
as to limit the earnings of his clerks is doomed and offers you some novelty in show-cases
to eternal littleness, if not even to extinction. which you think will help you get business. And yet the majority of business men will
THE BONUS SYSTEM CONDEMNED. hesitate about spending a few dollars in im
The writer questions the wisdom of giving proving their salesmen!
bonuses on long-profit goods. It often inYour show-cases and store fixtures are
duces a "pushfulness" on the part of the clerk articles of constantly decreasing value. Every which makes customers suspicious. The sale year at stock-taking time you have to write off
of such goods should be developed by advertheir depreciation. With proper training your
tising, not by bonuses to your sales people, salesmen, on the contrary, should be an asset
which may cause them to discriminate against increasing in value each year. They will not,
the welfare of the customer to the benefit of however, increase each year in value unless you
their own interests. You are putting in their do your share in developing them.
way the temptation to sell customers long-profit Á druggist talking to me on this subject goods which really may not be suited to their some time ago said, “Why should I waste my
needs. good time in training my employees to be
One of the best plans the writer has known better salesmen, and as soon as they become
involves the division of the profits on a varying more efficient they hit me up for a raise, or
Suppose you say to your else they leave me and go somewhere else?"
clerks: Suppose you do train a man and then he
“Here, fellows—there are four of you here leaves you to go somewhere else! Surely we
besides myself; that is, five altogether. Last all have in us enough love for humanity to be
year I made $3500 profit, and I spent $3000 willing to spend a little money to help a fellow
of it to live. I consider myself on a salary being.
basis here at $2500 a year. THE SALESMAN'S INCENTIVE.
“Now, I have $15,000 invested in this busiThe trouble with many druggists is that ness, which at 8 per cent should pay me $900. while they will put in long hours striving to That leaves $100 surplus. What I propose to make a few extra dollars for themselves, they do is this: on all the profit we make I am going expect their sales people to put in the same to give each of you a share. hours, but without the incentive which the
APPORTIONING THE PROFITS. proprietor has. Your sales people work for you for just the
"Every hundred dollars we make I shall same end that you work for yourself, namely, divide in two-one-half for myself and the to make money. The more money they can
other half for you; and your half shall be make, the better they are going to work. divided equally among you according to your There is no incentive for a salesman to work salaries. Not according to your sales, for it if there is no future ahead of him. And yet a would be unfair to expect the prescription clerk druggist in a New Jersey town told the writer to have the same total as the cigar and candy a while ago that no clerk was worth over salesmen, etc. fifteen dollars a week!
"We shall, however, set a minimum amount
of sales expected from each department; and combined results attained by the abilities of the man who falls below that minimum, based yourself and your employees. Therefore, by on what we did last year, will not be eligible developing your salesmen's abilities and by for any division of the profits; in which case giving your salesmen the right incentive to do his proportion will be redivided among those good work, you are assisting yourself in the who have qualified.”
gentle art of making more money.
Does it This idea is very loosely expressed, but my not seem reasonable? • purpose is not to give a definite plan, but By following out a plan along these lines merely to direct your attention along a line you will secure coöperative loyalty among your which seems to be the trend of modern affairs. people. You will transform them from
Efficiency is the ability to effect results. The apathetic clerks into salesmen equipped with results you obtain in your business are the self-starters.
THE MOVIE SLIDE AS
By DAVID STRANG At one time the argument that the better That isn't advertising. class of people was not reached by motion- You've got to say something. You've got picture advertising was to some extent true. to feature your goods. You can't interest At first the movies did not draw much of their people in a movie by the startling statement patronage from the better classes. But con- that you are still in business at the same old ditions are different to-day, and no matter address any more than you would if you stuck where you go you will find almost as high a the same announcement in the newspapers. grade of attendance at the moving-picture Say something! You find plenty of things houses as at the theaters. Possibly you will to feature in your windows, which you usereach as high an average as is possible through or should use—in backing up your other adverthe newspapers.
tising. Feature some of these things in your Especially is this true in country towns, curtain advertising, one or two at a time. Give where the movies form almost the only recre- selling arguments and price. ation a great many weeks in the year, and But the most profitable announcements you where you will find the bankers and doctors can make are of bargain leaders, featuring as and lawyers, with their families, in attendance leaders only such things as are in constant deas often as those in the lower walks of life. mand, or that are in particular demand when
There are some who have tried slide adver- the announcement is made. Work the curtising who claim it hasn't paid them; but the tains to draw people into your store; to get writer personally knows of hundreds of cases just as many in as you possibly can. where it has paid better in proportion to its
DON'T TRY THE IMPOSSIBLE. cost than any other kind of publicity.
Another reason that some have not found SAY SOMETHING.
this method profitable is that they have used The main trouble with many retail adver- the curtains to push slow sellers on which they tisers is that they don't say anything in a great were trying to build a demand. Sometimes many of their announcements. Even some of the articles have proved to be things that the those who get out very clever newspaper ad- use of all known advertising mediums, all at vertising, full of snappy selling arguments and once, couldn't create a demand for, simply bestrong quality and price inducements, seem to cause they were things that people couldn't be have forgotten their cues entirely in their cur- made to want or use to any great extent. In tain work, where they are content to say noth- other cases it has been found that, while the ing except to give their name and address, with articles featured were all right, the advertisa brief, cold announcement of a few of the ing was stopped after a few weeks because “it lines of goods carried. Most curtain adver- didn't pay.” The reason it didn't pay, howtisements read like the merchant's letter-head. ever, was that it wasn't continued long enough.
One can't expect to create an immediate You can have slides especially made to your demand on a new article except in those rare order by a number of concerns, but it is cases when it is something of extraordinary cheaper, quicker, and usually just as satisfacmerit or fills a pressing need that cannot be tory in every way to make them yourself. To suitably filled in any other way.
do this, obtain a mat or margin from the movSome men who quit like this ought to take a ing-picture theater and outline this mat on a lesson from their own past. Did you win your sheet of paper. If you wish to illustrate the wife by announcing your name and address? slide, paste a small picture within the outline Did you win her without long and consistent
have drawn on the paper. Any appropriand the most earnest kind of advertising? ate picture cut from a newspaper, magazine or
catalogue will do, if it is small enough. You NO ADVANTAGE IN SCATTERED SHOWINGS.
can use a small comic figure in this way, the The Street Railways Advertising Company,
picture of a girl's head, or a picture of the which controls a majority of the street-car
article you are advertising. It is much better space in this country, will not accept a contract
to use a print taken from a drawing than one for a less period than six months, while the
taken from a photograph; in other words, a regular contract is for one year. This is be
line cut, instead of a half-tone. cause experience has shown that a few weeks
Surrounding, or at one side of the picture, or months are not a sufficient time in which to
write or print the text matter. You may do make an impression. There is no advantage this with a typewriter, if you prefer. in making a few scattered showings, because
Now place a cover-glass the same size as there is no cumulative effect; and cumulative
your outline over your copy, seeing to it that effect is essential to the success of any adver- the outline matches the edges of the glass. tising.
Fasten the glass down with thumb-tacks at its When you advertise leaders in the news
edges. Then simply trace on the glass the papers, it is to get people into your store to sketch and lettering showing through from buy goods other than the leaders.
the paper, much in the same manner as a child movies the same way, and then you will have does with a piece of transparent paper. Use no particular complaint to make.
any hard-pointed pen, and bear down very When an advertisement is thrown upon the lightly; a little practice is needed to avoid getscreen in a darkened theater people can't helpting too heavy a line. Use a thick ink, preferreading it. There is nothing else for them to
ably stamping ink, though show-card ink will see. They have nothing else to do.
answer the purpose. There is positively no waste circulation. If
THE USE OF COLORS. your advertising is only 25 per cent perfect you will get better results than you can with an
You may use any color or variety of colors advertisement in a newspaper that goes to the
you desire. It will be less confusing to the same number of people, because many of the
reader, however, because more easily taken in people who take the paper will not see or read
at a glance, if you do not use too great a it at all. A good many of the papers go out
variety of colors on one slide. Two colors of town, too.
are usually sufficient, black and red or black One of the crowning arguments in favor of
and green being the best combinations. the theater is that it costs very much less per
When finished, let the work stand for three actual circulation than newspaper advertising.
or four hours, until perfectly dry. Then put The many attractive ways in which slides
the mat over the glass, and on the mat place may be prepared is another strong inducement.
the cover-glass. Passe-partout the edges as
you would a picture, using a half-inch passeHOW SLIDES ARE MADE.
partout tape. With a little experience one will The theater slide must be limited to a single be able to make a very good slide in from ten thought, however, and this must be put in the to twenty minutes, exclusive of the time refewest possible number of sentences and quired to dry the ink. words. It should not contain more than is Pictures may be colored by using a fine said on the average street-car card. In making camel's-hair brush, and filling in with an ordiup copy remember to keep the bill-board ap- nary, thin, quick-drying wood stain. peal in mind, and hit the reader "between the The motion-picture theaters will usually eyes.'
furnish mats and glass plates free of cost.