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Exotic Flowers in Boston

Tim Tebow - a Spokesman for Valentines Day at Exotic Flowers in Boston ?

Posted by Rick Canale on Sat, Jan 11, 2014

Tebow Tears resized 600

Tim Tebow could sell ice to the eskimos. What better spokesperson than the stud quarterbacK ? Yes of course Tom Brady would be a great choice, but he is a little busy selling Uggs. Think about it. Tim Tebow is sensitive, caring and attractive. Tim appeals to all markets. He even cries. Sensitive guys send flowers. Sensitive guys could really sell flowers. Florists have used NFL hulks before to pitch flowers. Rest in peace Hall of Famer, Merlin Olsen.

tebow and flowers resized 600

From this photo we see that Tebow is comfortable around flowers. If Tim's handlers are listening, Exotic Flowers in Boston is ready to do business on a worldwide scale. Tebow's missionary work in the Phillipines resonates with Exotic Flowers' ability to send flowers worldwide. Exotic Flowers wants to work with you Mr. Tebow. We believe that Tebow's endorsement could be not only a game changer for Exotic Flowers in Boston but for florists worldwide.

tebow the florist

Check out this image as Tebow hands off flowers as well as a football. Tim if you're available, Exotic Flowers in Boston is hiring. Just in time for Valentine's day, we know you can help sell flowers in Boston and around the world. 

Tags: Tim Tebow, Marketing, Valentine's Day

The Society of American Florists Acknowledges Exotic Flowers

Posted by Rick Canale on Sat, Nov 16, 2013

Christmas FlowersEvery Saturday, the Society of American Florists (SAF) offers sales tips to floral industry professionals. This week, Katie Hendrick shares some holiday sales tips from Exotic Flowers in Boston.

Inexpensive Perks Keep Customers Merry

by Katie Hendrick
At Exotic Flowers in Boston, convenience and customer appreciation define the company's holiday marketing philosophy. We reached out to Rick Canale, owner of the 2008 Marketer of the Year-winning shop, for some tactics to get customers in the door and spending money, amidst all their other shopping activity.

Here are just a few of them:

  • Sell Christmas trees and wreaths to generate in-store traffic
  • Provide snacks – popcorn and candy canes – to keep tired shoppers in good spirits
  • Offer complimentary containers of hand sanitizer (to keep cold and flu germs at bay). The Exotic Flowers version has "Red Sox World Series Champions" emblazoned on it.
  • Send letters reminding customers of the previous year's holiday order with a personal letter. ("This gets great feedback," Canale said. "People appreciate reminders and they really love the personalization of the letter.")
  • Hand deliver poinsettias to top 100 clients.
  • Hand sign cards to top 200 clients.

Tags: SAF, Society of American Florists, Marketing, Christmas Wreaths, Christmas Trees, Christmas, Christmas Flowers

GoDaddy Presents - The Florist featuring Jean-Claude Van Damme

Posted by Rick Canale on Sun, Sep 15, 2013

Florists ususally get good press. We share beauty with the world. Even internet giant GoDaddy has jumped on board with the latest commercial featuring a florist who 'gets pumped up' building her on line floral business. The  Muscles from Brussels, Jean-Claude Van Damme even flexes for the florist in her flower shop.

Tags: Florist in the Movies, Celebrity Florist, Hollywood Florist, Marketing

Exotic Flowers in Boston Gets a Nod in the SAF Weekly Sales WakeUp!

Posted by Rick Canale on Sat, Sep 14, 2013

Exotic Flowers in Boston is a long standing member of The Society of American Florists (SAF). Every week, SAF offers sales advice to those in the floral industry via their Sales Wake Up email on Saturdays. This week, Exotic Flowers is honored to be featured by writer Katie Hendrick.



Five Focus Points for Success

Boston retailer Rick Canale says in a recent blog post that e-mail confirmations are a basic and simple but effective way to make a great impression.

by Katie Hendrick
Ever wish you had a report card to measure the impression your shop makes? Consider this blog post the cheat sheet you’ve been craving. It comes courtesy of Rick Canale, owner of Exotic Flowers, the 2008 Floral Management Marketer of the Year winner.  

Here are a few highlights he insists his staff executes:

  • A thorough customer experience: email confirmations for orders and delivery, logoed polo shirts, logoed vans, “please” and “thank you” in every conversation, courtesy phone calls, personal handwritten notes
  • An emphasis on special occasions: employees should teach customers that flowers make all occasions more special — not just Mother’s Day, Valentine’s Day and anniversaries
  • Upscale packaging: tissue, gift boxes and ribbon improves presentation immensely
  • A dynamic storefront: the shop strives to have something exceptional to create buzz, be it new or exclusive variety of flowers in the window or a celebrity arranging flowers (Baywatch star Traci Bingham helped out during Valentine’s Day 2013)
  • A strong social life: the shop regularly updates its blog, Facebook page and Twitter account with three objectives: entertain, educate and engage. Equally important is what happens when employees leave the store. Running errands in a logoed shirt and a logoed van is outstanding advertising.

Tags: Baywatch, Floral Indusrty, SAF, Floral Management, Marketing, Traci Bingham

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

What Marilyn Monroe's Visit to a Flower Shop Can Teach Florists

Posted by Rick Canale on Thu, Mar 07, 2013


marilyn monroe roses resized 600 In the 1948 movie, Ladies of the Chorus, Marilyn Monroe plays dancer Peggy Martin. During the film, Peggy has an admirer who sends flowers and does not sign the card. (note to clients, always sign the card,). This secret admirer leads Marilyn to the flower shop, Mimi the Florist, who delivered the lovely flowers. Marilyn's visit to this florist shows florists a great deal about merchandising and marketing their own flower shops, sixty five years later. 

As florists what do we learn from this film clip ?

  • the card envelope. always have your name and address on your stationary. This is the best way to keep your shop's name in your customer's hands. If Marilyn's card did not have the shop name, she likely would not have visited the shop. Budding romances are a great way to build lifetime clients. If the couple gets married, which florist will Peggy and Randy likely call first ?
  • Window displays and visual impact; the florist is located in a hotel lobby like many florists of that era were. The florist chooses not to hop on the hotel's coattails and instead makes their own visual masterpiece in the lobby. The evidence of a glassed-in store shows that the florist seeks their own identity. This independence is one thing all florists should share. Unique showcases and originality set the flower business apart from the cookie cutter world of banks and Dunkin' Donuts.
  • Packaging; over and over again we see the lost art of packaging. Great packaging, ribbons, and bows increase the value of an item. In the move, notice how the orchid is not only packaged beautifully but how it is also kept under glass to further enhance its value. 
  • Flowers on the showroom floor: Appeal to people's senses. People want to touch, smell and feel the product. That is why they came to your store. Ignite their senses.
  • Spunk; some say the clerk in the movieis surly. I say the clerk is spot on. She is establishing a relationship with the client. A genuine conversation is so rare in the retail world and something a florist can offer at no charge. Relationships build business.
  • Ten cent carnations. Always have an option for everyone. You never know when a ten cent carnation can become a ten thousand dollar wedding.
  • I would love to hear any other florists observations too. 
  • marilyn monroe flower shop resized 600

Tags: Marilyn Monroe, Customer Relationships, Movies, Florist in the Movies, Flowers in the Movies, Floral Training, Marketing

Exotic Flowers in Boston - Top Books for Summer

Posted by Rick Canale on Thu, Jun 21, 2012

Candy Roses of Cape CareThe Candy Roses of Cape Care is the third installment in The Beantown Tales: Green Series where a group of six cousins rally together to save a magical beach's candy sprouting roses from extinction. Growing every sweet treat imaginable from lollipops to gummy bears, the team must work fast to clean up their sandy shores before pollution threatens to halt the production of an enchanted potion produced by the sea. Keeping in theme with the prequels, The Land of Chocolate Cosmos (winner of the 2011 Green Difference Book by the Massachusetts Green Schools Org and 2011 Honorable Mention by the New England Book Festival) and The Popcorn Hydrangea of Poppingtom, Suzie Canale, the author educates while empowering readers to make key changes within their communities. This book tantalizes tummies with yummy imagery nestled in fantastical worlds. Suzie is also an Exotic Flowers' blogger and our poet in residence.

calico joe resized 600A surprising and moving novel of fathers and sons, forgiveness and redemption, set in the world of Major League Baseball… A quick read, kind of like a good short story; vintage Grisham. Cannot wait for the movie.

Winning the Customer On vacation but feel like you should be building your business ? Marketing guru, Lou Imbriano sets forth an ideal blue print for growing your business. Many of Lou's ideas are cost effective and easy to implement right away. 

The Art of FieldingNo mystery why this novel remains a best seller. Now in paperback, you have no excuse but to pick up a copy. This is one of the best books I have read in years. If you enjoy baseball and have always wanted to find a great novel, you cannot miss with this book.

micah resized 600Micah Solomon's latest book really hits the mark. He lays a great foundation of customer service applications in the first seven chapters. With real world companies used as models, Micah provides a foundation that businesses of all sizes can implement.
Great takeaways include the importance of a company culture and showing how it really defines your business. Micah's book addresses an important need of creating on line loyalty. This question is asked by brick and mortar stores every day. Micah really understands the importance of quick response, anticipating a client's needs and the need for standards.
From his principles of on line self service to his theme of 'let customers hear from you before they have to ask for anything themselves.' This book will remain on my shelf as a reference/ customer service text book for years to come.
I highly recommend this book to anyone who has a web presence of any type, no matter how big or small.

Tags: Suzie Hearl Canale, Marketing, Childrens Book, Customer Service, Lou Imbriano

Best Marketing Idea Ever comes from a Boston Florist

Posted by Rick Canale on Tue, Mar 13, 2012

watertown florist resized 600 Meet Dave Greenberg, the owner of Watertown Main Street Florist in Watertown, Mass. Like many Boston florists, Dave is hard working floral designer who shares his craft and beauty with others. Dave is searching for a life partner, he is even offering $1000 reward to do so and has created his own website, along with reward posters, t-shirts and business cards to promote his cause.

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Dave looks like a great catch and I truly hope he finds his soulmate. But this story caught my eye because it so much more than a guy looking for love. This is marketing at its best. Completely outside the box and viral. David's story is national news and he has been featured in print, online, the radio and television throughout the country.

Originial, fresh, innovative and exciting; as a flower buyer I am inclined to think his work will be similar. Exotic Flowers delivers our own flowers in Watertown, so I have not witnessed Dave's work. I can say one thing - I am envious of his marketing prowess. 

Congratulations this is one of the best florist marketing ideas I have seen.


Tags: Watertown Florist, Florist in Watertown, Boston Florist, Marketing

Exotic Flowers in Boston New Year's Resolutions for 2012

Posted by Rick Canale on Wed, Jan 04, 2012

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  • New Exterior Signage for the Exotic Flowers flagship store, design studio and garden center on American Legion Highway in Roslindale / Boston. These black and gold signs will include our telephone #, name, and highlight our partnership with FTD; reminding our clients that we send flowers worldwide.
  • 'Boots on the Street' - the staff at Exotic Flowers will be actively involved in the Boston community. Our sales staff will be seen throughout the Boston area asking for the sale and servicing our flower and plant buying fans.
  •  new year flowers in boston resized 600
  • Our vision statement remains focused on 'Reaction Guaranteed' - we will also resonate our marketing message of 'Starting your own traditons.' We feel that creating memories is such an important part of everyone's lives. What better way than starting a tradition than incoporating the scents and sights of fresh flowers ?
  • A new eBook on how to plan your wedding. This eBook will take Boston area brides on a step by step process in planning their wedding.
  • A new children's book that focuses on the floral industry. We are hoping this book will return Exotic Flowers in Boston to the Floral Management Marketer of the Year.
funky flowers in boston

    Tags: Floral Management, New Years Resolutions, Marketing

    Exotic Flowers in Boston Nets Top Story from Floral Management

    Posted by Rick Canale on Mon, Jan 02, 2012

    The following notification has been taken from the Society of American Florists (SAF) Member Wake Up email on 12/31/11


    Sales Wake Up resized 600

    Best of Floral Management’s Hands OnIf you think Sales Wake-Up is the only place where SAF members can get innovative ideas for increasing sales, then you likely are not reading the monthly Hands On column in SAF’s Floral Management magazine. It’s a treasure trove of best practices, management tips and, yes, sales ideas. As we bid 2011 farewell and get ready to ring in another year of Sales Wake-Ups, we want to pay tribute to you, our loyal readers, by gifting you with our top five sales-boosting stories from Hands On: 

    No-Fail NeW Year’s
    > Resolved to start 2012 on the right foot? Take a step forward
    with these practical changes, culled from a review of New Year’s
    resolutions for florists and small retailers.
    Invest a higher percentage of your marketing budget in
    packaging. One year ago, florist Rick Canale resolved to shift
    Yellow Pages ad dollars into monogramed bags and cellophane,
    as well as interior and exterior signage for Boston-based Exotic
    Flowers. The exterior signage, in development now to replace
    two illuminated “relics,” “will pay for itself the first year,” he said.
    “The new signs are grabbers.”
    Canale also updated the staff uniforms: “The polished look
    has made a huge difference in the psyche and approach of staff
    when we all dress in the same color” (maroon), he said. Even
    seasonal personnel will sport matching, logoed jackets for
    Valentine’s Day deliveries.

    Exotic Flowers in Boston remains an active marketer in the floral industry. We are proud to share our ideas. Honored that our ideas are shared with our colleagues. And Exotic Flowers in Boston is confident that our business ideas not only benefit our growth as a Boston Florist but benfit the entire floral industry.

    Stay tuned for more exciting marketing ideas from Boston's Premier Florist as we start planning a new entry for the Floral Management Marketer of the Year.

    Tags: SAF, Floral Management, Marketing

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