The Athlete's Foot uses a strategy of providing a service to the entire market. While we will focus on our two primary customer segments (active families and runners), we offer a product that virtually every consumer requires.
We will create an atmosphere that is appealing to the "true athletic footwear customer." The balance of customers will come because they will see this as the "place" where athletes buy their shoes.
The store will be merchandised in an exciting, athletic atmosphere. Televisions will continually play tapes of sporting events and live sports broadcasts. There will be posters highlighting the top athletes and their athletic shoe choices. There will also be a section to pick up information about upcoming races, events, and seminars. Eventually, race sign-ups will occur in the store as well as presentations from shoe manufacturers, product representatives, nutritionists, trainers, coaches, runners and hopefully, professional athletes.
Initially, our competitive edge will be the recognition of The Athlete's Foot as a national chain. There is a sense of comfort buying from a large chain. Our complete assortment and high-tech design will also immediately appeal to customers.
Once established, our superior customer service will set us apart from the competition. The foot scanner, which is proprietary to The Athlete's Foot, is an exciting development in quality athletic footwear service. This computerized scanner will actually prepare a "Fitprint," which determines the pressure points, balance, and wearing characteristics of your foot. The conversion rate to sales from customers using this Fitprint service is 70%.
The other edge we want to develop in the future is to be the "meeting place" for Coral Springs runners. This will be accomplished through our planned running club, sponsored races, sponsored fun runs, run for health awards programs, children and adult running clinics, and footwear seminars. In addition, we will be stocking a full assortment of running supplements, hydration fluids, protein bars, and other items that may be needed on a short notice basis. We have even envisioned a credit system where local runners can plan a rest/drink break in the store when running the local paths. They can stop in for hydration fluids or protein bars without having to carry money.
We have spoken with the Director of the Parks & Recreation Department for the City of Coral Springs. He has indicated that he would consider a program where The Athlete's Foot offers participants a 10% discount on all shoe purchases from the store. The customer would receive 5% and the league would receive 5%. In this manner, the league would support and promote the opportunity by including a flyer/coupon in the sign-up package for each participant.
All potential sales will be attended to in a timely fashion. While there will be a sales incentive bonus program, long-term salesperson relationships will take precedence over sales closures. Our goal is that 50% of our customers return within six months. We will market directly to the customer through mailings, phone calls, league presentations, and Internet/email contact.
Sales associates will be trained to "turn-over" a customer who has a more specialized need, if they cannot fully service the requirement.
Special orders will be encouraged as a method to satisfy a specialized need. We will enforce as liberal a return policy as possible. Because of our affiliation with the 700-store Athlete's Foot chain, we can demand a higher level of service from vendors in regards to returns and special orders.
The following table and chart show the forecasted sales for The Athlete's Foot.