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NATSO Blog: Marketing & Retail

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How to Promote a Truckstop Grand Opening or Reopening

Posted in: Truckstop Business, Darren's Great Ideas for Independent Operators, Marketing & Retail

Whether you’re opening a new business or holding a grand reopening, you’ll want to engage the public and the media. Use these seven tips to make the most of your event.

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Top 10 Daily Metrics to Check for Truckstop Operators

Posted in: Truckstop Business, Darren's Great Ideas for Independent Operators, Marketing & Retail, Operations

Whatever ratios, comparisons, and metrics you are going to look at, it is imperative you look at these regularly without fail. If they are daily metrics, then you view them and discuss the findings with members of the management/staff daily. The same applies to weekly and or monthly metrics you review. Items such as labor cost and certainly credit card fees really stand out as the higher numbers when looking at costs and retail and fuel sales really stand out as high numbers when looking at revenue.

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Stop Watch Archives: How to Attract Baby Boomers to Your Truckstop

Posted in: Truckstop Business, Marketing & Retail

The aging of America’s baby boomers means the country’s 65 and older demographic is growing faster than any other group. As the nation grows grayer, nearly every segment of a truckstop and travel plaza’s business will be affected, and many businesses are adjusting their offerings to best meet the wants and needs of their workforce and their customers.

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Ten Ways to Get Customers to Come Inside From the Fuel Islands

Posted in: Great Ideas, Truckstop Business, Darren's Great Ideas for Independent Operators, Marketing & Retail

To increase the likelihood that fueling customers will make the 100-foot trek into the main building from the gasoline islands, you need to be hitting on all cylinders when it comes to the fundamentals. Plus, try these additional 10 helpful hints to help increase the chances your gasoline customers will come in and buy.

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Stop Watch Archives: Optimize Your Odds

Posted in: Truckstop Business, Marketing & Retail, Technology

Even half a cent per gallon can add up to thousands of dollars for fleets, which is why more and more carriers are relying on fuel optimization software to direct them to locations where they can get the most bang for their buck.

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How to Calculate the Breakeven Point on a Truckstop Promotion

Posted in: Great Ideas, Truckstop Business, Darren's Great Ideas for Independent Operators, Marketing & Retail

In honor of Thanksgiving and all of those Black Friday sales, today we are going to talk about promotions.

Do you ever wonder if a promotion you run is profitable? Ever wonder if a promotional opportunity being offered by a vendor is going to drive sales and/or profitability? Do you wonder if you can you sell enough at the reduced price to make up for lost retail sales of profit margin dollars?

I receive a lot of questions from NATSO members on this issue. This fall I was asked during a travel plaza visit by a perplexed operator, "How do I know if I am doing the right thing when discounting an item for a promotion"?

To help shed some light on this quandary, I thought it would be helpful if I put together a worksheet on how to calculate the breakeven point. We've create a downloadable worksheet with formulas to calculate the breakeven point on a promotion.

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What is an Electronic Logging Device?

Posted in: Truckstop Business, Marketing & Retail, Technology

Although electronic logging devices (ELDs) will not be mandated until late 2015/early 2016, now is the time for travel plazas and truckstops to learn about this technology sure to have a big impact on our industry.

Here are the high points that every travel plaza and truckstop operator and their front-of-house staff should know.

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What To Do If Your Truckstop Is Robbed

Posted in: Great Ideas, Truckstop Business, Darren's Great Ideas for Independent Operators, Marketing & Retail

As referenced in my last blog post on Eight Tips to Prevent Robbery at Your Truckstop, even if you are executing every preventive measure that is available to you and your staff, it is still possible to be robbed.

Consequently, it is important for every truckstop to have a robbery policy and procedure program in place should a robbery ever happen as not being prepared could have dire results.

The following general recommendations should be used in conjunction with your own company’s robbery action plan. At a minimum, use these recommendations to create the appropriate site-specific plan for your operation.

Important note: Be sure to ask your local law enforcement for their recommendations before following these recommendations.

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Lunchtime Links: Energy Drinks Aren't Just for Males, Frozen Yogurt is for Everyone

Posted in: Industry Trends & News, Truckstop Business, Marketing & Retail

We know e-cigarette sales are set to hit records and dairy sales are booming, but these three foodservice trends recently reported on Convenience Store News could surprise truckstop operators.

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Eight Tips to Prevent Robbery at Your Truckstop

Posted in: Great Ideas, Truckstop Business, Darren's Great Ideas for Independent Operators, Marketing & Retail

As the busiest time of the year in our industry approaches, it is imperative that we keep in mind safety. While we’ve written about retail and shrink preparation, today we are talking about robbery prevention and preparation.

While in general robberies within our industry are few and far between, they do happen. No one can guarantee that a robber will not come into your store. Even in the best operations robberies and thefts will and do take place.

Keeping the potential of a robbery in mind constantly, especially during the busy season, will help improve the safety of your operation, your customers and your employees.

Data collected over many years within the c-store industry points to some key items you can do to help reduce the possibility of a robbery. Many of these items will also drive your sales and profitability.

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