On 5 November 2019, over 150 executive managers and decision makers from companies and organisations active across the international floriculture supply-chain came to the IFTF Auditorium where the second edition of Floriforum took place.
Organised by Union Fleurs, the International Flower Trade Association on the eve of the opening of IFTF, Floriforum focused this year on the topic of “Customer Dynamics”. As Richard Fox, Union Fleurs President, recalled in his opening statement: “After starting on safe ground, we decided this year to be more adventurous and explore the very last segment of the supply-chain which is crucial for continued success of the floricultural industry.”
What makes customers tick? And why getting a better grasp on customer dynamics is highly relevant to the floriculture supply-chain?
Inspired by several case studies presented by keynote speakers Martin De Munnink, Dennis van der Lubbe and Phill Burton, participants had the chance to get unique insights and exchange views on the current and future challenges for the sector in the area of customers, and how companies and organisations can adapt individually, but also in unison as a sector to tap into the powerful essence of flowers and plants.
“Whatever you do, you need to understand the customer to be successful” said Phill Burton, Chief Operating Officer of Bloom & Wild, the success-story floral start-up which started in the UK 6 years ago to quickly expand in Ireland, France and Germany with their unique “Letterbox flowers” concept. He explained how he took his company from zero to selling 1.9 million bouquets annually by focusing their efforts on customer satisfaction through NPS (Net Promoter Score) metrics, which uses the power of customer engagement to continuously innovate the business with one moto: customer first!
Previously the audience had been introduced by Martin de Munnik, Co-founder and CCO of Neurensics, to the amazing and untapped power of neuroscience when it comes to marketing and understanding customer behaviours. Our brains process no less than 500 million decisions a day, so how can we positively influence buying behaviours for flowers and plants and satisfy everyone’s’ longing for more colourful, happiness and beauty in their lives?
Dennis van der Lubbe, Managing Director of the Flower Council of Holland, gave his response to this question by explaining how the flower council had used Neurensics’ research to analyse the emotional effects of their latest commercial “We need more flowers”, and the changes they made accordingly, which resulted in one of the council’s most successful campaigns ever!
Enough elements for panellists Kate Penn, CEO of Society of American Florists (SAF), Paul Barton, Consultant European Sales & Marketing at the Flower Hub and Dennis van der Lubbe to continue the afternoon in a dialogue with the audience, on how can the supply-chain capture these new opportunities, what needs to be adjusted and where to make it happen for the benefit of all along the supply-chain, including in terms of pricing and value-added.
Thanks to the apt and dynamic moderation by Simone von Trier, and the upstream work of Union Fleurs’ Secretary General Sylvie Mamias and her team in organising the programme for the afternoon, the event finished on a high note, and satisfaction was palpable among the participants during the closing cocktail. A clear confirmation, if needed be, that there is an appetite for such an open forum to discuss in an interactive way with peers and experts the various changes and challenges that influence floriculture businesses no matter what part of the supply chain or country they operate in.
Floriforum 2019 was organised by Union Fleurs, the International Flower Trade Association, and co-sponsored by HPP Exhibitions. Many thanks to the speakers for their outstanding contribution and to all the attendees for taking time out of their hectic schedule during the Dutch flower week to take part in the conversation!
Union Fleurs – International Flower Trade Association is the international umbrella organisation for national associations and companies active in the floricultural trade. The general mission of Union Fleurs is to represent, promote and defend the worldwide interests of traders and wholesalers in cut flowers, cut foliage and pot plants.
Union Fleurs was founded in 1959 in Brussels and has nowadays members in 20 countries worldwide (in Europe, Africa, Middle-East, South and North America, and Asia). Within its membership, Union Fleurs gathers over 3.000 companies worldwide, of which more than 1,500 floricultural traders and wholesalers in the EU. Members account for more than 80% of the total value of the worldwide trade of cut flowers and pot plants.