December 2014

In This Issue

Perspective:
Burning Bridges

By Richard Wright

On September 24, Tom Swan of Black Swan Fireside Hearth & Home in Connecticut received a form letter addressed to “Dear New England Wood Pellet Retailer” that said, “We regret to inform you that we will not be able to fulfill your Q4 2014 request (15 truckloads).”

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The Second Step

By Richard Wright

With a base of 50 dealers throughout North America, Belgian wood-burning manufacturer Stûv is adding distributors, as well as a line of gas products and pellet stoves.

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Meet the Millennials

By Lisa Readie Mayer

As Baby Boomers fade slowly from our view, they are being replaced by those in the Millennial generation – ages 19-37. It’s time to get to know your present and future customers.

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Redrawing the Map

By The Boston Consulting Group

Years of steady change have quietly but dramatically changed the map of global manufacturing competitiveness.

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Pizza, Please!

By Lisa Readie Mayer

If you’re not selling pizza ovens, you’re missing one of the hottest (and tastiest) categories in the outdoor market.

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Service is Key

By Bill Sendelback

Porter’s Mountain View Supply has continued to grow through the downturn, relying on stoves, spas, satellites and grills.

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Game of Inches

By Steve Bennett

How do you move a customer from the front door to the invoice? It takes an intelligent plan and a great deal of practice.

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2014 October Business Climate

In early November, Hearth & Home faxed a survey to 2,400 specialty retailers of hearth, barbecue and patio products, asking them to compare October 2014 sales to October 2013. The accompanying charts and selected comments are from the 187 useable returns.

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Parting Shot: A Slice of Heaven

There’s something about this image that’s compelling. At first sight, it seems to invite you in; small sections of wall on either side frame the image and, at the same time, hide what else is to be seen.

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