Building an effective retailer target list




Beyond the potential customers that could be reaching out to you, it’s important for you to always stay on the lookout for any other targets. The art of identifying the right customer is one that every wholesaler should master.

To start, you will want to browse around your neighbourhood, your city, the web, why not the whole world if you can, for shops that catch your eye and target those that you would love to see you brand in. However, liking a store, whether it be a brick & mortar store or an online shop, isn’t all there is to it.


Ask yourself:

→ Who are they?

→ Where are they?

→ Which brands do they carry?

→ Would my brand sit well alongside their resident brands?

→ Does my brand identify fit the essence or the philosophy of the company that owns this store?

→ Do they carry any competing brands?

→ Does the store do well with their existing brand assortment, particularly those comparable to yours?

→ Could there be another store nearby that would be a better fit for your brand?


Some stores will not want to carry your brand if another store nearby already does, so, select your preferred target wisely. There are many questions surrounding the selection of the ideal target customer, but if you’ve checked all of these boxes, then feel free to reach out and sell!


Once you start building your target customer list, it’s important to keep a contact log or customer list. This way, you will be able to easily and efficiently organize your customer contacts and track your interactions with each of them.


Your customer list should include:

→ each target store’s name

→ contact person’s name and position within their company (i.e. buyer, representative, manager, etc.)

→ the store’s address

→ phone number

→ a short list of relevant brands they carry

→ comments regarding emails and phone conversations you have had with them.


This tracker will become your best friend. Keep in mind that though some targets will eventually become actual customers, some may decline to carry your brand, so making sure that you keep all of this precious information on record will also help you establish your game plan for the next season.




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