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3 business lessons from food industry veteran Nancy Lumen

Expert restaurateur answers your questions
By Entrepreneur Staff |

Starting a business is one thing, and running a business is an entirely different thing. For the uninitiated, the way a business operates can be like scaling Mount Everest or facing a blank wall.

Being your partner in your entrepreneurial journey, Entrepreneur.com.ph listed down 3 questions that every entrepreneur has in his mind about the operations of a business. And we got Nancy Reyes Lumen, owner of a food consultancy firm and formerly a board director at the family-owned Aristocrat Restaurant, to answer these three questions for you.

How does one sell to different market segments?
“Study consumer trends in your industry. Constantly update yourself with the how, when, why, and what of market shifts and study the effects of economics, politics, and social events on business. Live the market. If you’re catering to the AB social class, take the Benz; if you’re targeting the CD market, take the jeepney. Sometimes it’s all in the packaging.”

How does one design a sales pitch specific to a market segment?
“The language must relate to the client. Some corporate clients like big words. The Chinese are to the point; they want the project proposal outlined simply with the bottom line on costs and benefits highlighted. Smaller companies may look for a more personal touch as these have direct contact with their market.”

How does one give a new customer a personalized service?
“Be there, attend the meetings, and listen. Be sincere in your desire to extend to them the benefits of your business. Make them know it is a two-way street. Go the extra mile with them so they would feel comfortable with you. Share feedback. Always have something to hand over, like a small booklet, a chocolate bar, or flowers.”

This article was originally published in the October 2006 issue of Entrepreneur Philippines.

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