There are many reasons why Toys R Us failed. Some were of their own doing, others due to forces well beyond their control. I always viewed Toys R Us as a “Life Moment” type of business. When our son was between the ages of 4 and 10, we hit Toys R Us - HARD!! We’re talking multiple visits per month, if not for us then we were buying gifts for birthday parties or Secret Santa. We spent A LOT of money at Toys R Us during those years.
Toys R Us was a great fit for us, at that moment in our life. Once that moment passed, we simply were not going to shop there, regardless of how amazing the offers or incentives were to shop there. Toys R Us no longer matched a moment in our life. When our son has children, or when we become grandparents, the life moment would return, but there are many dry years in between.
There are other examples of “Life Moment” businesses, many dealing with hobbies or leisure activities. I used to spend money at a local photography store, others might have been into biking or kayaking, and you have your health club and gym memberships. While there are “lifers” in all these industries, many customers in each will come and go as their needs and interests change.
Think about your business – To what level is it a “life moment” business? Once a customer always a customer, or are there other factors affecting your customer count? Ensuring your marketing helps provide a proper balance of existing and new customers is smart. When planning your marketing, be sure to maximize your current customer base while you have them, but never ignore the necessity to continually grow your base.
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