Exotic Flowers - We Deliver Flowers in Boston

Around the World on Valentine’s Day

Posted by Suzie Canale on Mon, Feb 06, 2017

Americans celebrate Valentine’s Day by sending flowers, chocolates and Hallmark cards filled with romantic gestures of intention.  Annually celebrated on February 14th, we see our stores and flower shops filled to the brim with red and pink decorations, cupid shooting arrows and other symbols relating to love between two people.  Since we’re used to this traditional presentation typical to most states in the USA, we sometimes don’t realize that other people across the globe carry out these festivities in a whole other manner.   Not everyone observes Valentine’s Day by dining in dimly lit restaurants, gifting their lovers with sensual bouquets of blossoms or satisfying their sweetheart’s “sweet tooth” with a box of sugary treats.  No, it’s a big world out there, encompassing hundreds of thousands of different customary practices -particularly when it comes to the holiday designated to “amore”.  Curious by this, I decided to research a few outside cultures and see how we match up!  Is perfume, lingerie and long stem roses all that’s needed for the rest of the world or is there a differentiation between the United States and other countries?  You’ll be surprised to read what I found out…   

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Photo credit via Jeff Leatham

Denmark

This is a country that loves to celebrate February 14th and has always had an overall strong appreciation for flowers.  While blooms are definitely apart of their romantic rituals, they opt instead to give their honeys pressed white snowdrops instead of fresh arrangements.  Cards are also exchanged but are referred to as “gaekkebrev” (a joking letter) that holds a funny poem instead of our typical use for sentimental varieties.  


Wales

Wales is a really interesting place to discover during Valentine’s Day as well because they have no use for roses or other generalized gifts during their holiday.  Celebrated on January 25th in retribution for their patron saint of love, the Welsh choose to give their mate a spoon made with beautiful designs that represent a feeling or trait.  Many become very valuable with age and are past down as family heirlooms throughout the generations, sometimes re-gifted as a token of luck during marriage celebrations.  


Philippines

This is a place that really understands romance at it’s highest!  While we focus on “stuff” to give our valentines, they utilize this special day with ceremony-MASS CEREMONY!  Thousands of couples gather together in areas such as community-based organizations, parks and even malls to recite their wedding vows.  Instead of walking down the aisle as a single couple, Philippine lovers prefer to say their “I do’s” in front of a multitude of others, truly sending out a message of love to all.  

Tags: Flowers Worldwide, FTD, Worldwide Flowers, Holidays, Valentines Day

The FTD Logo

Posted by Suzie Canale on Fri, Apr 08, 2016

If you’ve ever received flowers, it’s a pretty safe bet that you’ve noticed a particular icon printed on the sender’s card telling you that the arrangement came from an  FTD florist.  Since a thousands of all floral bouquets move through this communicative network, the picture of the little man with the winged feet is recognizable by many.  Comparable to other industry giants who typically use a bloom as their logo, FTD chose to relate their business environment to an entirely different type of symbol.  

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Why is the emblem so unique from other competitors?  The answer is very clever…


Florist’s Transworld Delivery (FTD) decided to reach their client base by promoting their impressive service skill set not their product, which they felt was perfectly exemplified by their selected logo.  In fact, the man with the winged feet is known as the god, “Hermes” who was the messenger to Zeus.  His stories are often associated with speed and essential communication, a craft that left him one of the most infamous characters in Greek mythology.  He is also referred to as the Roman god, “Mercury” who traveled extensively, delivering important mail from one sender to another.  His ability to be swift with his chores became a resonant trait of the mythical idol and to this day is connected with the idea of dependability and trustworthiness.  He is also interestingly enough, tied to the occupation of “business”.

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It makes sense, right?


You can see that FTD made a wise, strategic move by adopting “Hermes” as their spokesperson since all of his qualities are those that the company wishes to market as possessing themselves.  Dependable, quick and reliable are all assets we anticipate in our vendor’s services and we are reminded of this every time we receive an FTD product.   So the nex
t time you receive a beautiful arrangement of flowers, check the card to see if the time-tested man with the winged feet was in fact your special deliverer!  

Tags: Floral Indusrty, Flowers Worldwide, FTD, Worldwide Flowers, Mythology

Exotic Flowers in Boston Garners FTD Quality Star Award

Posted by Rick Canale on Wed, Apr 08, 2015

PRESS RELEASE


Exotic-flowers_01


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT: Rick Canale

617-247-2000

rick@exoticflowers.com


Roslindale, MA, (April, 2015) – Exotic Flowers was recently presented with the FTD Quality Star Award for its achievements in 2014. This important designation is only bestowed upon FTD Florists that consistently fulfilled and delivered high quality arrangements in a timely manner for the entire year. Recognized by FTD for quality and excellence, Exotic Flowers is dedicated to consistently providing exceptional customer service by delivering quality products for their customer’s most memorable occasions.  

worldwide flowers

Exotic Flowers is receiving the elite FTD Quality Star Award as a result of its continued commitment to quality improvement, customer service and proper care and handling of flowers.  Exotic Flowers is an example for fellow florists in the industry.

"To achieve this award once again is an awesome testament to the attention to detail that our staff provides on every transaction." - Rick Canale

Exotic Flowers remains a family owned and operated business in Boston for more than eighty years. Exotic Flowers imports flowers from around the world to offer its clients the unusual and outstanding.

Since 1910, FTD has stood for innovation, leadership and quality in the floral industry. FTD’s achievement is proudly embodied by the most recognized floral symbol in the world - the iconic black and gold FTD Mercury Man logo. The story of FTD would not be possible without its network of thousands of dedicated artisan florists that have created a great tradition of same-day delivery flowers and gifts over the past 100 years.

Tags: FTD Florist in Boston, Flowers Worldwide, FTD, Worldwide Flowers

Will FTD's Merger with ProFlowers Help The Local Florist

Posted by Rick Canale on Mon, Aug 25, 2014

Exotic Flowers Roslindale

The floral industry's big four will soon become the big three. In October, 2014 FTD will merge with ProFlowers. What will this mean for the floral industry and what will it mean for florists ?

As a florist in Boston, my biggest  hope would be more national advertising to create awareness for the entire floral industry. While the floral industry relies upon occasion based giving, it would be great if FTD ramped up their advertising to make certain that flowers should be at the top of any gift giving list.

Boston Florist

ProFlowers was always limited in its ability to tout same day delivery. Same delivery is one of Exotic Flowers in Boston's greatest assets. FTD's network of thousands of local florists should strengthen ProFlowers value.  It is interesting to note that FTD launched a hand tied European bouquet collection previous to this announcement. ProFlowers was built on assembly required bouquets. At Exotic Flowers, 'batteries' are included and we do not feel that your floral gift should have to be assembled.

The gorilla in the room just got stronger. The question remains, how will FTD convince its members like Exotic Flowers in Boston that this merger will benefit a local Boston florist ?

Tags: FTD Florist in Boston, Floral Indusrty, ProFlowers, FTD

What Happened to the Candy Stores in Boston ?

Posted by Rick Canale on Fri, Oct 18, 2013

candy stores resized 600 I was born in Boston in 1970 and grew up in Roslindale. As a child, we were fortunate enough to be able to walk or ride our bikes to our friends' houses, play baseball by ourselves at Healy Field and street hockey at Fallon Field. Our bikes were like our own cars and gave us a freedom that almost no Boston child can experience today. With a pocketful of change, we could go to the local store and fill our pockets with bubble gum, baseball cards, candy cigarettes, and jaw breakers. Stores like the Town Spa, Florence Street Variety and many other corner stores kept a close eye on all of us as we gazed at all the goodies under the glass.

Imagine seeing a kid with a candy cigarette today. Not only not cool, but you would think it was a joint. Candy stores today are few and far between and the ones we find today are like Candy Kitchen in Delaware. candy kitchen rehoboth resized 600

While the average corner store candy sale was less than a dollar, a candy store today must average twenty dollars per transaction to stay in business. As we appoach Sweetest Day on October 19th, 2013 we are reminded how candy stores have innovated and struggled to remain relevant.

Sweetest Day is celebrated on the third Saturday of October. In 1921, a group of Cleveland candy makers brought the event to the public. The idea is to celebrate someone sweet with something sweet. Sweetest Day was started to gain some commercial recognition for the confectioner's craft and flourishes in cities like Cleveland and Detroit. Although not that popular in Boston or New York, many college students will bring their traditions to the northeast to celebrate loved ones with candy, cards and even flowers. Why not start your own tradition and this Sweetest Day ?

At Exotic Flowers in Boston, we admire those trailblazing confectioners of Cleveland. As smart businessmen, they grouped together to keep their business relevant. Florists throughout the world can learn from these men. Teleflora makes an attempt with National Make Someone Smile Week and FTD tries with Good Neighbor Day. In 2013, the floral industry needs some trailblazing flower shops to adopt an idea to keep our business relevant.

 

Tags: Chocolates, Sweetest Day, Teleflora, FTD, Holidays

Five Ways Florists Can Sell More Flowers

Posted by Rick Canale on Thu, Aug 22, 2013

red roses delivery in boston resized 600 As florists in Boston, we are facing a fast changing economy. If the gift business is a pie, a florist's slice gets skinnier every day. We are getting bombarded by the supermarkets, the internet and the box stores. The consumer gets savvier and more demanding every day. What can every florist do to recapture market share ? Here are five tips from Exotic Flowers in Boston that have brought us increases in sales since the economy changed in 2007.

  1. Customer Experience - Email order confirmations, delivery confirmations, how your staff dresses; are your vans lettered ? How is your staff treating the client. As professional florists, we must look and act like professionals. How many times a day are you saying 'please' and 'thank you,' - not enough. Are you reaching out to clients with courtesy phone calls and personal hand written notes ?
  2. Special Occasions -  Florists are in an occasion based gift giving business. Our average male clients gets flowers three times per year;Mother's Day, Valentine's Day and his anniversary.  If we can get that person to buy just one more time for Christmas, Thanksgiving, or a birthday then we can increase sales by double digits.
  3. Packaging -   How are your flower arrangements and bouquets presented? Hopefully you are treating every purchase as a gift. packaging resized 600 Tissue, gift boxes, and ribbon are all small extras that can set your florist a world apart from FTD and Costco. Take a look at J Crew, they even provide gift bags for gift cards. Are you making the gift wrapping a show ? Think of the man who shines shoes, that snap of the towel is purely show and does nothing to shine a shoe.  
  4. Storefront -  do you have a dynamic storefront ? Do clients feel welcome ? Are you a member of the community ? Do you offer new varieties of flowers to create interest ? Are you enticing a return visit with your service and product ? Forget the coupons. Clients that are loyal on price are not loyal for long. Create buzz and offer the unexpected. On Valentine's Day 2013, we had former Baywatch star Traci Bingham at the store helping clients. Customers are still talking about it six months later. 
  5. Social Media - take some time and engage your clients on line. Blog to entertain and educate. Share digital images regulary. Join the conversation online. Most importantly, leave the store. Go to the bank. Be seen transacting business in your community and do not be shy about driving your lettered company vehicle. It is some of the best advertising you can do.

Tags: Floral Indusrty, Boston Florist, FTD, Floral Management, Marketing

Can You Get Exotic Flowers in Georgetown, Kentucky ?

Posted by Rick Canale on Mon, Jul 15, 2013

I regularly boast of Exotic Flowers in Boston's ability to send flowers worldwide. Our tag line for many years was from 'Boston to Belgium, Miami to Milan,'. Unfortunately not all florists are created equal and sometimes we run into a few bumps in the road with flower availability in more remote town throughout the country.

EXOTIC FLOWERS IN KENTUCKY resized 600Recently a Boston client called and asked to send Imagination Blooms with  orchids to Georgetown, Kentucky. I explained to the sender that while the florists in Georgetown do a lovely job of lush flower vases they could not offer the orchids in the photo for same day delivery. Alas, the sender was let down and chose to take her business elsewhere. We get our clients the freshest flowers from the best florist in every community. Some times they do not always have the exact item the client is looking for. For example, orchids are abundant in New York and Boston, but not so much in Georgetown.

One great thing about trusting worldwide service with a local florist versus FTD is that we offer a personal service that a corporate giant cannot replicate. When you call Exotic Flowers in Boston, real people answer the phone and will follow your entite your order and even provide delivery confirmation.

Tags: FTD Florist in Boston, 1800flowers, Exotic Flowers, FTD

Major Floral Industry Trends and How Exotic Flowers in Boston Responds

Posted by Rick Canale on Mon, Feb 25, 2013

In the February 2013 issue of Floral Finance magazine, Teleflora chairman and floral industry icon, Tom Butler discusses four major trends that he sees affecting the retail floral industry.

1. Technology-Aided Sales

mobile website exotic flowers resized 600Butler discusses how the internet, mobile phones and a florist's point-of-sale (POS) system are used as tools to generate sales. Butler notes that consumers are placing more and more purchases online. He notes that a florist's website generates an important part of the sales mix. At Exotic Flowers, www.exoticflowers.com is not only a visual masterpiece, but is updated daily with new items as well scintillating blog content. The Exotic Flowers website now represents more than ten percent of our gross sales and an additional one third of all phone orders use the site as a dynamic catalog. 

Butler also mentions the prevalence of smart phones in society. The Exotic Flowers website is mobile friendly and used by many of our clients on the go. We also work closely with Foursquare, Yelp and Facebook offering check in specials.

Butler's third point on technology focuses on the florist's POS system. Exotic Flowers has been using the RTI system since 1991. Teleflora's RTI system is used by the busiest florists in the country. For more than twenty years, Exotic Flowers has been on the cutting edge of floral technology. We were among the first florists to email order and delivery confirmations to clients. The RTI system is also PCI compliant, knowing that your credit card numbers meet the highest security.

2. Later Holiday Volume

As noticed by all florists, consumers are waiting longer and longer to make their holiday floral purchases. These last minute orders add a ton of stress to the local florist. Exotic Flowers in Boston has been seeing this trend for years and has been pro-active in reviewing previous year sales so that we are ready and able to fulfill as many last minute requests from our best flower buying clients as possible.

3. Increased Demand for Customer Service

This is a no brainer at Exotic Flowers in Boston. We have made a concerted effort in the oast five years to really focus on customer service. Customer service in the floral industry is a continuing education. Our staff participates weekly in the #custserv chat on Twitter. We have improved our signage, uniforms and packaging. Our store and vehicles remain clean and our technology us updated regulary.

We also continue to educate ourselves on customer service through role planning and by reading customer service books like Lou Imbriano's Winning the Customer and Micah Solomon's high-tech, high-touch customer service. customer service book

4. Lack of Awareness that Retail Florists Send Orders Across the Nation and Around the World. 

Butler says, that "consumers have not been reminded enough of this service,". Exotic Flowers in Boston has been sending flowers worldwide for decades. Our endpoints are strong and we work on our list every day so that our clients know they are in good hands whether they send from Boston to Belgium or Miami to Milan. We have even added new signs in 2012 with the FTD logo to remind clients that we send flowers worldwide and offer same day delivery.

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Staying on top of these four major floral industry trends has kept Exotic Flowers as Boston's Premier Florist.

 

Tags: FTD Florist in Boston, Florist Massachusetts, Top Teleflora Member, Teleflora, FTD, Floral Studies, Holidays

The Floral Industry Steps Up with Breast Cancer Awareness

Posted by Rick Canale on Fri, Oct 19, 2012

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From the NFL's pink wristbands, cleats, and gloves to Major League Baseball's pink bats, the Energizer Pink Bunny, mega brands in America have stood in support of Breast Cancer Awareness. This awareness makes a huge effort in helping save lives, this branding reminds everyone how important to be screened regularly.

Floral industry leaders like Teleflora, FTD and 1-800-Flowers have also shown their support as well for creating awareness. Each industry titan has created a product to help increase awareness.

Teleflora has created the Pink Hope and Courage Bouquet. teleflora breast cancer resized 600Exotic Flowers in Boston is a Teleflora member and is proud to stand with our partner in supporting Breast Cancer Awareness.

FTD offers both a calla lily plant and an azalea plant to help increase Breat Cancer awareness. ftd breast cancer resized 600Exotic Flowers in Boston is a longstanding member of FTD and is honored that FTD has chosen two items to show their support of breast cancer awareness.

1800flowers really comes through and offer four items to help increase awareness. Two edible items, one floral and one spa kit. 1800flowers roses boston resized 600 Although Exotic Flowers in Boston is not a members of 1800flowers Bloomnet group. Please know that we are in support of their program and can also send a replica of their pink rose arrangement anywhere in the Boston area to support Breast Cancer Awareness.

Tags: 1800flowers, Breast Cancer Awareness, Teleflora, FTD, Football

Boston's Exotic Flowers Featured in Floriology Magazine

Posted by Rick Canale on Fri, May 18, 2012

At Exotic Flowers in Boston, we actively contribute to floral associations. We are members of FTD, Teleflora and the Society of American Florists, (SAF). We exchance ideas with our colleagues and are always looking to learn so that we may remain Boston's Premier Florist.

Recently, Exotic Flowers and myself were featured in Bloomnet Magazine floriology. Below is the article in its entirety written by Fred Russell in April 2012 edition.

Exotic Flowers floriology

From Facebook to Twitter and everything in between Rick Canale is LinkedIn to everything social.

 

Rick of Exotic Flowers inBostonis a third generation florist and an industry leader in using social media to help promote his business. Growing up in theBostonarea Rick would help out his parents Sonny and Marie doing a little bit of everything. After attendingBostonCollegeas Liberal Arts major in the early 90’s, Rick went to work full time at the family business that started over 50 years ago.

 

“Most of our marketing is reinforcing our current clientele”, says Rick. “We combine an aggressive direct mail marketing plan and mix in social media to remain relevant and top of mind”, he adds. Rick sees his new customers result mostly from referral business and a lot from local search engines like Google, Yelp and Foursquare. Because Rick looks at his current customers as an avenue for getting new ones he consistently targets them on different platforms to stay relevant and keep people talking about them.

 

When it comes to social media Rick was an early adapter and could foresee the movement coming quickly. “You have to collect ‘likes’ on your Facebook page like baseball cards”, says Rick. Between his Facebook friends and Twitter followers Rick has well over 1,000 contacts. This is a lot of potential consumers at your fingertips that can be easily reached at a moments notice. Rick is also very active on his blog (http://blog.exoticflowers.com/) which attracts 6,000 unique visitors a month and tries to reach out to his customers via a social avenue three to five times a week. “I write about everything; from social issues, what’s going on inBoston, baseball or top five movies of the week”, says Rick. “You don’t always want to make it about you and be to self serving, you just want to be out there so people see your name”. Rick likens it to a Presidential Campaign, “it’s all about shaking hands and kissing babies!”

 

Rick also monitors closely what people are saying about his shop. He uses Hubspot (www.hubspot) to monitor activity. He gets a notification that his shop name is being mentioned somewhere. “I jump right in and answer questions, talk about the shop and they’re floored to get that quick reaction”. He also monitors what his contemporaries are blogging and follows them on Twitter. “You can always learn from what other people are doing and see if I’m missing anything. I also find a lot of inspiration by looking at what my peers are doing”.

 

One of the things Rick has asked himself is how do you keep your website and social customer’s loyal? “When we get a first time order on a website order we send the customer a hand written note thanking them for our business”. Rick also sends a personal business card, not just one with the store name to give it a more personal touch. Rick also stays away from discounting and feels it’s unnecessary because they always have great products and are always competitively priced and once you discount your customers will expect it. “There’s no way I’m going to compete with someone selling $9.99 rose and that’s not what we’re about.

Rick plans on continuing to use social media in his marketing plan and thinks Twitter is still in its beginning is about to boom. Rick suggests the Twitter community is just another form of blogging and a great way to catch a customer’s attention with a quick, catchy message. As far as another recent social phenomena—Pinterest, Rick compares it to a coffee table book. “Everybody loves coffee table books, but how often do you read them?” With the recent fascination Rick will observe it’s progress and develop a presence down the road.

 

Be sure to follow Rick on Twitter @RickCanale!

 

Owner: Rick Canale

 

Shop: Exotic Flowers

 

Location:Boston,Mass.

 

Employees: 10 full time

 

Established: 1957

 

 

Tags: SAF, Teleflora, FTD, Rick Canale, Florist Blogger

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