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Editor's Note: Competitive Edge

Dance Retailer News

Thanks to a still-recovering economy, and online retailers and studios that sell directly to students, there has never been more pressure to be competitive. Though storeowners are drawn to the business because they love dance (and dancers!), the ones who thrive combine that passion with the business savvy required to effectively assess and cater to the changing needs of local dancers. This issue is devoted to helping you sharpen the skills you’ll need to stay competitive in a demanding marketplace.

The ability to provide customers with a great pointe shoe fitting experience is essential. “Classic Pointe Shoe Fitting Mistakes” highlights key fitting errors that master fitters see retailers making over and over again. Turn to page 24 for these experts’ tips on how to fix these issues.

As social media continues to be crucial to connecting with customers, it’s vital to recognize the types of posts that elicit the best responses from shoppers. In “Successful Social-Media Posts” (page 34), we talk to four retailers about the posts that have gained the most attention and gotten the best results.

Finally, in this month’s Retailer Spotlight (page 26) we’re profiling Lorna Handy, a storeowner who gets results. She opened DanceMax Dancewear two years ago after spending nearly 30 years working for other Atlanta-area dance stores. When she finally had the financial resources to open her own store, she saw just under $1 million in sales in the first year. She utilizes a large, convenient location with a vast inventory to draw in customers from three states. We hope her approach to serving the regional dance community will give you new ideas about how to approach your own market.

Wishing you a fall filled with growth,
—Colleen Bohen