Hardware Retailing

MAR 2018

Hardware Retailing magazine is the pre-eminent how-to management magazine for small business owners and managers in the home improvement retailing industry.

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HARDWARE RETAILING | March 2018 84 store for events like Seed Swap Saturday, where community members can trade seeds to mix up their gardens each spring. Along with serving customers, McGuckin also connects with community organizations in Boulder. "We pick an organization to sponsor each month, and for one week during that month, we ask customers to round up their purchases to the next dollar, and that money goes to the organization," Wilke says. Groups like Meals on Wheels and the Humane Society of Boulder Valley are two charities the business has recently supported. The company lists all upcoming events on its Facebook page—whether it's customer-focused or a fundraiser—so customers can plan ahead to participate. In addition to philanthropy, social media keeps McGuckin customers informed about sales and available products. Last summer, the company was able to capitalize on an in-demand item. The August 2017 solar eclipse reached 93 percent totality in the Boulder region. Prior to the event, employees noticed many Facebook followers were on the hunt for special eclipse glasses to view it safely. The business ordered about 34,000 pairs of glasses, advertised them directly on social media, and soon sold out, with lines of people out the door, Wilke says. Social media also does the heavy lifting to spread the word about McGuckin events. Wilke says the company's Facebook page is an integral element to advertising the annual Holiday Shop and biannual tent sale. Social media helps McGuckin Hardware deliver what Wilke calls "shoppertainment," or giving customers a memorable experience within the store. "Every year in September, we set up a 5,000-square-foot holiday aisle," Wilke says. "The Holiday Shop has everything from international ornaments to nutcrackers from the Black Forest in Germany. We bring in a violinist, harpist and cellist who park right in the middle of the store to play Christmas carols and rock 'n' roll covers for shoppers." The tent sale has been held twice a year for nearly 40 years, once in the spring and once in the fall. At the event, McGuckin sells special items that buyers collect throughout the year, but it's also become a prominent community event. Continued on Page 88 Social media helps McGuckin Hardware deliver what Wilke calls "shoppertainment." The McGuckin Hardware Holiday Shop attracts customers of all ages. The company hires musicians to play holiday music in the aisles, and it advertises the event on social media so customers can make time to check out the displays and enjoy holiday cheer.

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