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Considering the Diversity of our Customers

by Colleen P Moyne (Colmo) (follow)
I'm a freelance writer living in the beautiful river town of Mannum in SA, dreaming of the day I can retire from the 9-5 to write full time.
Business (102)      Small business (66)      Marketing (60)      Business Basics (34)      Promotion (23)      Public Relations (6)     

Welcome Sign in Several Languages
Image courtesy of wikimedia commons

When we begin a business, we already have a good idea of the kinds of customers we want to attract. We research the demographics, the competition and the pricing; we design a brand, a logo and a sales pitch.

We do all the right things to target the customers that we think will want or need our product but here’s a good exercise for you. Take a good look at your promotional materials:

Coffee Shop Sign
Image courtesy of kanate / freedigitalphotos.net

- Imagine that you can’t read well or can’t read English. Do your graphics reflect your message? Is the language simple, do the pictures relate to what you offer?

- Could a non-reader work out what you are trying to say?
Sometimes the fewer the words, the clearer the message.

- Is your material culturally-friendly? Are you offending any other cultures? This can be innocent and unintentional but serious.

Multi-Ethnic Faces
Image courtesy of stockimages / freedigitalphotos.net

- Do your images reflect inclusiveness of people from all walks of life?
Do you include diverse faces and settings?

- Are your premises intimidating to other cultures or to those from a low socio-economic background? There is an art in making your premises modern and attractive without looking too exclusive.

Welcome Sign in Several Languages
Image courtesy of artur84 / freedigitalphotos.net

- Are your facilities easily accessible by those with disabilities? Can they enter easily and move around freely? Do you have disabled toilet access? Is your shelving or counter too high for someone in a wheelchair?

- Is you signage easy to interpret? Do you have clear entry and exit signs? Toilet signs with arrows, no smoking signs, etc?

Staff Only Sign on Door
Image courtesy of artur84 / freedigitalphotos.net

We have a duty to our clients and customers to make them feel welcome and included. We all know that one bad experience can be broadcast very quickly. More and more we are becoming a multi-cultural nation and our business needs to reflect that.

#Small Business
#Business Basics
#Public Relations
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