July 2020 - 6

EDITOR'S LETTER
A Collaborative
Approach
This industry is nothing if
not collaborative. At various
events, I've seen IGC owners
and operators talking to peers
to share ideas and successes,
and even pass along supplier
names for products that are
in short supply in different
regions. You all know each
other, like each other and want
each other to succeed.
The current COVID situation has only strengthened that
bond. Whether it's in Facebook groups or privately, IGCs
are reaching out to each other to share tips and ideas.
To that end, I reached out to a few IGCs as well to find
out how they are dealing with the current situation (I'm
reluctant to call it " the new normal " since there's just
so much not normal about how things are going - and
I expect great changes before this is all over) and what
others store can learn from them.
Several of you responded with some innovative ideas -
staff shirts printed to read " If you can read this, you're
too close " on the front as a reminder to all to be aware
of distancing rules; rebuilt websites for online sales; and
even the young plant producer that decided to join the
retail game with their own retail outlet. Don't worry, local
IGCs - they're not planning to compete with full-scale
independent garden centers; they dubbed it a " retail garden
outlet " because it's simply meant as an outlet for their
products. Find these ideas and more beginning on page 28.
The current situation is also forcing IGCs to develop
new digital strategies to communicate with their
customers. On page 36, Proven Winners' Jessica DeGraaf
and Meghan Owens share tips on how IGCs can enhance
their digital presence.
Speaking of marketing, columnist Stan Pohmer has
some ideas in this issue about how retailers should tailor
their value proposition message. " Ideally, if you're truly
honest with your assessment, you should have identified
at least one, and possibly two or three, that you exceed
expectations on, and on most of the others you meet
expectations, " he writes. Turn to page 42 to read more.
Also in This Issue
While a trip down the coast just wasn't in the cards
this year for the 2020 California Spring Trials, green
goods editor Jasmina Dolce provided the next-best
thing - a pretty photo tour of some of her favorite new
introductions. Find it beginning on page 14.
@LGRmag
Teresa McPherson, MANAGING EDITOR
616.520.2163 | tmcpherson@greatamericanpublish.com
6 | LAWN & GARDEN RETAILER | JULY 2020
@lgrmag
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Jasmina Dolce, 616.520.2162
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Greg Ryan, 616.520.2145
gryan@greatamericanpublish.com
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Bob Bellew, 616.520.2164
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EDITORIAL ADVISORY BOARD
Bob Wasson
Crystal Cady
Kate Terrell
John Karsseboom
Pamela Baker
Lisa LeFevre
Stan Pohmer
Christina Salwitz
Wasson Nursery
Sunflower Acres Farm & Garden
Wallace's Garden Center
The Garden Corner
Baker's Acres Greenhouse
Distinctive Gardens
Pohmer Consulting Group
The Personal Garden Coach
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July 2020

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