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- Author or Editor: Dennis J. Wolnick x
“I chose A over B because it had better overall quality and uniformity. The color of A is particularly nice and the whole group is in very good condition. Both A and B are better than C, which lacks uniformity and appears old.”
We determined the influence of demographic characteristics and floral knowledge (measured as product experience) on the type of floral product purchased. A sample of 401 Pennsylvania residents was divided into fresh flower and flowering plant consumer segments. Results of discriminant analyses showed the two segments were moderately distinct. Purchasers of fresh flowers were younger and more likely employed outside the home than those who purchased flowering plants, but the latter had more blooming plants in their homes than did consumers of fresh flowers. Consumers of flowering plants and of fresh flowers did not differ in their level of floral knowledge or demographic characteristics. Minor differences were found between the two segments that were not substantial enough to justify distinct marketing strategies.
Market segmentation is an, efficient method of defining consumer groups to develop new markets. The purpose of this research was to determine the viability of market segmentation strategies based on volume and location of purchase. A sample of 401 Pennsylvania floral consumers was divided into groups based on the number and the primary location of floral purchases. Two discriminant analyses were conducted to determine differences between market segments. Heavy floral consumers exhibited a higher level of floral knowledge, purchased more floral products for themselves and from nonflorist retailers, and had higher incomes than light or medium floral users. Florist customers purchased fresh flowers more frequently, bought more floral gifts, and spent a higher amount per purchase than supermarket customers. Segmentation based on volume of purchase and primary retail location are both viable alternatives for market development strategies for floral consumers.
Probably 20% of the 1.9 million retail businesses in the United States are involved in some way with the sale of ornamental plants and garden supplies. According to the Small Business Administration, one-third of all businesses will be discontinued within 1 year of opening, 50% will be gone within 2 years, and two-thirds within 5 years. The largest single cause for this large number of closings even among established businesses is management inexperience and inaptitude (5). To successfully enter the retail nursery industry, horticulture students should have training and experience in general business management and specifically businesses engaged in selling nursery products and services. Unfortunately the typical student must try to grasp complex and somewhat abstract management concepts with little on-the-job experience.
The Internet offers many new and unique opportunities to disseminate information. The development of the World Wide Web (WWW) and information browsers like Netscap, Mosaic, and simple-to-use server software like MacHTTP provides means to allow low-cost access to information, including pictures and graphics previously unavailable to most people. The Pennsylvania State Univ. variety trial garden annually tests >1000 plants. Information is gathered on garden and pack performance, and photos of superior plants and varieties are taken. To provide wider access to this information, we have begun development of a Cyberspace trial garden on the internet. This server contains a wide variety of garden trial information developed from trials conducted in State College and Dauphin, Pa.. This server and a similar effort at Univ. of Minnesota are being constructed cooperatively. Hot links are provided between the server in Pennsylvania and the one in Minnesota, providing users with seamless access to information from both servers.