C-Store Life

 

September 2012

 

Title: Nathalie Girard, Tabagie St-Eustache testimonial

Sub-title: A great way to save money.

 

Nathalie Girard, who manages tobacco sales at Tabagie St-Eustache, knows the category well. She was been working at the retail level for 18 years, including 11 years in her current position at a small shopping center C-Store in a middle class Quebec neighbourhood. In short she has a good finger on her customers’ pulses.

 

“Right now Rothmans, Benson & Hedges fine cut tobacco products are particularly popular among our customers,” she says. “They have a great variety of both locally made and import brands. There is something for everyone.”

 

Despite the St-Eustache region’s working class status, customers are particularly price conscious these days, says Girard. “Budgets are tight in families all around. So customers sense every change, no matter how small. Just a $0.25 increase in a pack of cigarettes is enough to attract their attention. As a result, cut tobacco remains popular among a good portion of our customers,” says Girard. “They simply want to save money to spend on essentials. As a result, a lot of them now roll their own cigarettes or have migrated to discount rolled brands such as Quebec Classique.”

 

Ironically though, Girard admits, brand loyalty remains extremely strong, particularly among older folk. “I find that even younger clients tend to get into a habit of buying the same product, time after time, however they are somewhat open to trying a new offering if they find out about,” says Girard. “However older clients are often very set in their ways. If you want to get them to try something new you really have to give them a good reason to do so.

 

Peter@peterdiekmeyer.com

 

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