Sunday, November 29, 2009

Newsletter and market research

As of last Monday you can sign up for a newsletter which we will be using to keep customers up to date with our progress in preparing the shop.

The other day, Alex and I decided to go for a stroll around Nafplio.

Well, it wasn't just a stroll. We had a purpose. For some time now we thought it would be a good idea to walk around the main areas of both the old and new towns. We've been trying to observe pedestrian traffic that there is on an average day to keep it in mind when we start looking for our location. We are aiming to open the café/tea shop by the spring (see below about about the difficulty we are having deciding what to call it). Of course we are well aware that not everything goes the way you expect!

We know that going just once is not going to give us a good idea so we plan to go again a few more times. It is not much of a trial to wander around in this beautiful town in the warmth of the sun!

It was a very enlightening trip. We got talking to a very nice elderly lady who owns a shop in the old town and is about to retire. She has been in town for years and was able to give us lots of useful information about the shops which are there already and shops which might become available. She was even able to give us an idea of the best times of year for trade and the quiet times. She was a veritable well of useful information.

We managed to draw a few conclusions. Well, sort of. We are finding that opinions on things are changing as and when we get more information, almost on a daily basis.

Then there is the matter of good reputation. If your product becomes known and loved, people will come to get it wherever you are. Well not anywhere... but you know what I mean. If you have a good reputation, a really good product, you are going to get more customers who come especially for that than accidental passers-by. It doesn't hurt to be easily accessible though!

Location vs. Reputation. Reputation vs. Location. Which wins? Some sort of compromise, I suppose.

So let's say we came to some temporary conclusions. Is it possible to come to a temporary conclusion?

On another note, we are making our final decisions on what to name the business, the shop and on choosing a logo. We have been procrastinating on that issue, too. Too many good ideas! Our friends and graphic designers at Atelier have astonished us with a large array of ideas and given us lots and lots of possibilities.

There is a lot to digest when planning to start a business! I think I need something sweet to help me decide!


  1. Liz, thanks for the pictorial tour. I enjoyed your post, so well wtitten.
    Your pics are great!!
    Have a nice Sunday!

  2. Morning Liz, I made it here before twitter this morning!!

    I think that reputation is definitely relative to the business and a great location is a bonus. My favorite bakery in our town, with the best reputation, is almost impossible to get to unless you're walking. I have to drive there and I can never ever find parking but I make the extra effort to get there because of the quality of their product. But, I always wish that it was easier to get to because I sometimes dread having to battle my way through traffic to pick up a cake.
    I agree, it's a compromise but if you can have a great location it would be beneficial to gaining a great reputation. I have a lot of friends in the restaurant business and have worked with them. I really believe that in some cases, the location could have been the problem in failed attempts to keep a successful business running. And those that I speak of had raving reviews by food critics but the reviews didn't help because the locations weren't prime.
    Just me babbling again but I guess I have to say location, location, location!

    Have a great Sunday!


  3. is that caramel slice in the photo? i have always loved these kinds of sweets. one thing i ate in nz very often was ginger slice - i dont know if it is common in britain - you have inspired me to make it (i will do so tomorrow!)

  4. I think that both these factors are important. I used to have a bookshop and parking was a major problem and unfortunately I had to work only with people around the neighboorhood. On the other hand, shops in prime locations have really high rents which ia a big dilemma when opening a business. Good luck with your choices and have a lovely week.

  5. Maria, probably, it's what we call Millionaire's shortbread in Britain. Shortbread topped with caramel and then with chocolate. It's both sinful and divine! bzillions of calories in each bite!

    Ivy, Yes you are right. Parking doesn't seem to be too much of a factor here. I hope! Even though we were not planning on opening in the old town, we were astounded at the cost of renting there! Money is going to be very tight at the outset.

  6. millionaire's shortbread - looking forward to making that too!