Sunbeam espresso machine prize for Valentine’s Day

val_coffee.jpgBuy a Hallmark Valentine’s Day card at a participating newsXpress newsagency between now and February 14 and go in the draw to win a Sunbeam Espresso Machine. There is one Espresso machine on offer per participating newsXpress store – great odds for a great gift this Valentine’s Day. As the posters in-store say, Brew a little love … thanks to Hallmark and newsXpress.

newsXpress is proud to be part of this national campaign by Hallmark.  Each store will conduct its own draw and call winners to let them know of their success with Hallmark and newsXpress.

Local prizes have been a successful marekting tool for our newsagency marketing group and are, in our view, a another reason our year on year (same store) greeting card sales growth is better than other newsagents.

Three times the luck

nx-kellicarlane003.jpgnewsXpress Macarthur are celebrating good fortune today as they sold their third major NSW Lotteries prize in little over a month. Graeme Baker and the team this morning sold the 1st prize of $100,000 in the  $2 Jackpot. This is in addition to the $100,000 first prize this store sold in the $2 Jackpot leading up to Christmas and also first prize of $1,363,636 in the Saturday $30m at their Kellicar Lane store.

So in all in a matter of a few weeks newsXpress at Macarthur and Kellicar Lane have made 24 people very happy as there was 22 work mates in the Saturday lotto win.

Second online member meeting for newsagents

newsXpress is announcing today a second member meeting for 2009 – an online meeting on Thursday February 5 at 3pm. The 3pm start will enable this to be a national meeting, covering all time zones. The meeting will preview the remainder of quater one 2009 activity, present several newsXpress exclusive product deals and facilitate a general business discussion. Access to the meeting is open to newsXpress members only. To participate, you will need a computer with broadband and access to a phone for a toll free call for the audio part of the meeting.

Our online member meetings are in addition to our face to face capital city and regional member meetings and in-store visits made with members on a regular basis. newsXpress places high importance in getting like-minded newsagents together to talk about business and collectively develop strategies for member businesses and the group as a whole.

Making money out of minor seasons

newsxpress-050.jpgnewsXpress Toowong along with several other newsXpress members created a themed promotional area for Monday’s Australia Day celebration. The simple application of visual merchandising components from a newsXpress sourced supplier coupled with appropriate product, giftlines and decorations capitalised on the sales opportunity.

Minor seasons are not as glamourous nor as well supported by suppliers but are typically easy to set up with product already on stock in store.

The team behind newsXpress

nx_team_jan28_09.jpgWe brought the newsXpress team together yesterday to discuss plans for 2009, standards around our brand and look at several soon to be released member offers.  From marketing to merchandise, newsagency business development to board level, the day was an excellent opportunity to continue to evolve the culture of newsXpress and remind ourselves of our commitment to deliver measureable value and rewards to the newsagents and newsagencies which we serve.

We have a skilled and committed team working for newsXpress from the front line through to back office processes.  This team is a tremendous point of difference for newsXpress and what it can achieve with member newsagents.

Shop at newsXpress and win a Nintendo Wii

We are in the home stretch of our Nintendo Wii competition and the entries are rolling in as customers who have purcahsed eligible Back To School product at a newsXpress store go to our website and enter their details.  We are giving away 20 Nintendo Wii.

We selected the Wii as the prize because it’s something for the whole family. From games to educational software, the Wii serves many uses and is a perfect gift for the back To School season!

newsXpress is proud to be the first newsagency marketing group to run in-store competitions where entry is through the website. It’s our way of introducing our new website to consumers and making entry faster and easier.

First newsXpress members meeting for 2009

nx_membermeet.jpgYesterday, Ben Kay, our National Merchandise Manager, hosted the first newsXpress members meeting for 2009. This was an online members meeting and covered a range of topics.  Since the meeting was online, newsXpress members logged in from their shops and homes – wherever was convenient.  We are hosting another meeting in the next two weeks.

These online member meetings are a great way for newsXpress members to connect with each other, hear about new deals, provide feedback, receive training and talk about business with fellow newsXpress members.

Access is free and part of newsXpress member services.

Finding employees with initiative

Since the launch of our new newsXpress wbesite late last year we have been receiving employment applications from people keen to work with specific newsXpress stores. We are able, corporately, vet these applicants for members. If one member is not looking for employees and another nearby is we are able to redirect the application.

This is another way our new website is helping newsXpress members. Finding good employees is a challenge. Applicants coming through our website have shown good initiative – a trait important in retail staff.

Our website continues to evolve, at the back end, to deliver excellent facilities exclusively for our member newsagents.

Valentine’s Day marketing collateral

nxp_vals_blog.jpgIn addition to the excellent marketing collateral provided by Hallmark for newsXpress members as part of the Alliance program, newsXpress has produced artwork for A4 and A3 posters for our members to use with Valentine’s Day gift displays. Given that gift displays may not be mixed with card displays, we saw a need for additional collateral. Having this extra marketing collateral available means newsXpress members can more effectively dress a second and third Valentine’s Day display and thereby drive better sale outcomes.

newsXpress members can access the artwork from our website. We will also send printed material to stores who request this – at no cost.

The importance of standards

An article in the Sydney Morning Herald on Saturday about the Vinnies Op Shops run by the St Vincent de Paul Society, is a timely reminder for retailers, and newsagents in particular, about the importance of standards around a national brand. Without commenting on the politics of the changes being applied to Vinnies locations, it is important for a national brand to be more than a logo on a wall or hung as a shingle over a shop.

At newsXpress we are committed to strength behind the brand. The extent on this strength will be evident in the first round of members meetings we will run this year. We will demonstrate the importance not only to our members but newsagents more broadly the importance of a strong brand which is respected with consistency in every location in which the brand trades.

The newsXpress brand, what it stands for and how it is managed is another newsXpress point of difference.

newsXpress tagged in national TV and radio campaign

newsXpress is proud to be the only newsagency marketing group tagged ABW in a national TV and radio campaign featuring the new Schoolzone range. newsXpress is tagged along with national retailers, very proud company.

Each station & time-slot being used in the campaign is either the number 1 or number 2 rated for the appropriate demographic – grocery buyers with children aged 5-12 years.

This TV and Radio coverage coincides with the national TV campaign being run by newsXpress to promote its Back To School offers.

Electronic media exposure such as we are seeing for our brand at present is crucial to creating a difference in the minds of consumers for our retail brand over other retail newsagent brand.  We are grateful yo the folks behind Schoolzone for their support of newsXpress.

The newsXpress mission for newsagents

Our mission is to make newsXpress newsagencies the most successful and sought after newsagencies in Australia.

More than words on a screen or a page, this is our mission statement.   It defines our purpose and our goals.  It frames every decision we make on behalf of our members.

We know that if we make our members successful, we will be successful.

Branding and back to school

ctn_bts_09a.jpgThe team and newsXpress Castle Towers has created a terrific outpost for Back To School at Castle Towers Shopping Centre.  They have a full range of product from exercise books to pencil boxes, to highlighters to sketch pads.  The outpost rivals that of any national retailer.  The newsXpress Castle Towers team have every reason to be proud.

Visually, what you cannot miss as you approach the Back To School outpost is the newsXpress branded red bags.  In addition to branding the outpost, these bags contain prepackaged Back To School items by grade – making shopping even easier.

How to choose a newsagency marketing group

newsXpress is pleased to publish How to choose the right marketing group for your newsagency.  Newsagents will find this useful in evaluating newsagency marketing groups and newsagency franchise groups.  It offers straightforward advice which will stand up to rigorous assessment.

We are expecting critics.  These are likely to be those we caution against in the report – the newsagency marketing and franchise groups which seek to lock newsagents into five year agreements, which want first right of refusal if you try and sell your business or stop you from joining another group for a year after you leave.

The key advice we provide to newsagents considering joining a newsagency marketing or franchise group is to understand what you want, take your time to thoroughly evaluate the options and check the claims.  Good marketing groups have nothing to fear from such an approach.  newsXpress would be glad to help you compare its offer with any other you are considering for your newsagency.

Growing the newsagency franchise

s7300075.JPGThe newsXpress newsagency marketing / franchise group is growing.  Jarrad Zanich, our new newsXpress Western Australia based Business Development Manager, has been visiting with newsXpress members as part of his induction into our newsagency marketing group.  In the photo, Jarrad is with Margaret Augustine.  Business Development Managers like Jarrad are a unique point of difference newsXpress offers newsagents – someone who visits the business regularly to work with you on the business, fresh eyes and a kit of knowledge and ideas which are working elsewhere.  Bringing a new Business Development Manager into newsXpress takes months to learn what is unique to newsXpress.  Jarrad will be visiting stores around the country over the next two months, getting to what we do in between geting to know our Western Australian members too.

Dressing the store for the sale

marbigvalueprop.JPGIn addition to our TV campaign and national letterbox drops supporting Back To School at newsXpress, we have provided our members with a range of in-store marketing collateral – preprinted as well as material they can print themselves – to support the Back To School themes of brand and value.  On some items, like the Marbig Lever Arch Binders, we include an additional pitch – summer colours.  While this may be obvious because of the colour of the product, we have found that adding to the communication in this way can further differentiate your offer from that of a competitor.

Crossword offer exclusive to newsXpress

puzzlernxp.JPGExclusive to newsXpress.  The sticker in the top left corner of the crossword pack from Puzzler is an important message in newsXpress members and to consumers shopping in newsXpress stores.  This is one of several exclusive to newsXpress offers from Puzzler planned for this year.

The crossword category is important in newsagencies because of its efficiency.  Crossword customers are more likely to buy multiple titles from the category.  Crossword customers are also loyal – once they have found a store wwith the range and service they like, they are more likely to return.  This ties in with our newsXpress exclusive traffic generating loyalty program.

Campaigns like this one we are running with Puzzler reinforces the value of crosswords in-store and the key supplier relationships we deliver exclusively for newsXpress members.  The sticker is a proud badgs for us.

Back to School success at newsXpress

newsXpress members are reporting excellent results with Back to School even though the season proper does not kick off until next week.  Some of our members have gone out early with the support of the group and have found plenty of shoppers getting and early start on Back to School shopping.  That we had our collateral out to our members early was crucial in enabling those members who did want to start early to do so.