20 Mai Customer interview – Dance Line – Yulia Georgiev
Ballet shoes, pointe shoes, gauntlets, tutus – every ballet lover will find what he is looking for at Dance Line. Whether man or woman, young or old, Julia Georgiew – former ballet dancer at the Schwerin State Theatre and owner of the extensive online shop leaves nothing to be desired. In addition to clothing and shoes for experienced dancers and hobby ballet dancers, you will also find books, bags, CDs and everything else that makes a dancer’s heart beat faster. And the best thing is that really every article in the range is lovingly selected and offered for sale by Mrs. Georgiew herself. And should you have any questions, the owner will answer them personally – that’s what we call dedication and service.
During our conversation we were definitely able to learn a lot about dance and passion, discipline and customer service. The best thing is to make yourself comfortable, put on some pleasant music and let our interview with Mrs. Georgiew take you into the world of dance.
Dear Ms. Georgiew, we are very pleased to have this interview with you today. Would you like to start by telling us when you founded your online shop for dancewear and dance shoes and what circumstances prompted you to set up your own business?
Actually I founded Dance Line in 1997 and in 1998 my first shop went online. The internet was still terribly slow and there was no shop software. Nevertheless I was very interested in it. At that time I was an active ballet dancer at the Mecklenburg State Theatre in Schwerin. Dance Line was my part-time job, which I slowly built up to later make it my main job. A dancing life is short and I never wanted to fall into a „hole“ after my active time and have to start something new.
That sounds like an exciting career. And very challenging at the same time. What experiences did you have in the starting phase of Dance Line? Did you have to learn something specific to be successful with your shop?
I was thrilled and threw myself into it with idealism. Everything with „Learning by Doing“ and therefore I had to pay a lot of money. There was no one to tell me how to do it. All I had was a high school diploma and a brain.
This combination was successful in your case. But why do you think dancing is the ideal hobby?
I think good ballet classes are the best thing parents can offer their children, whether they are boys or girls. It trains body awareness, orientation in space, musicality, body, coordination and discipline. Unfortunately, the profession of ballet teacher is not protected and there are a lot of ballet schools that should not exist.
Ballet is also a wonderful hobby for adults, but it only makes sense if the technique is properly developed. Unfortunately that is not always the case.
Dancing is fun, music supports the movement and makes you hardly feel the effort.
That sounds very good. You yourself worked for a good 10 years at the Schwerin State Theatre as a ballet dancer. What specific characteristics and values are important to you in order to distinguish yourself from the competition?
As a student I often came out of the ballet shop with too small ballet shoes or pointe shoes that didn’t fit. That was because the saleswomen usually had no idea what they were selling. Through my active time as a dancer, I was able to gain a lot of experience, so that I knew what to look out for. I especially look for items that make sense and try to help my customers, who often haven’t had that much experience with ballet, to find their way around the extensive range of products. Whoever calls Dance Line does not have some „good saleswoman“ on the phone, but me personally and can therefore be sure that I know what I am talking about. This also includes that I advise customers away from something and that I lose potential sales. It happens from time to time, for example, that I have long conversations with mothers to dissuade them from buying pointe shoes for their 7-year-old daughters.
Have there been any particularly great moments during your success story that have left a lasting impression on you?
One great moment was when I moved into my own new warehouse in 2018, which allowed me to implement the perfect process from order to shipment. That was the crowning glory of a three-year optimization process.
Your own experience seems to play an important role in ensuring professional advice. How important is it for you to stand out, considering that there are now countless dance shoes for dancers on offer? And what role does customer feedback play for you?
I attach great importance to standing out through very good advice and exceptional service. It is important to me to pass on my own experience and to provide individual, but not intrusive, advice. My customers always find an open ear when they have problems, but a polite tone is a prerequisite. Customer feedback is extremely important to me, I always accept criticism in order to learn and improve Dance Line. Therefore I read every evaluation myself and react if somebody should be dissatisfied. No customer has ever been dissatisfied with me.
That sounds very customer-friendly, we think. About AUSGEZEICHNET.ORG you have been collecting reviews for more than 7 years, which are consistently positive. What experiences have you made since using our rating seal?
I find customer reviews very important, because this is how my performance is assessed and presented transparently to others. So I always have to make sure that my customers are satisfied. This is only possible with 100% commitment. Sometimes it is frustrating when someone has a problem and doesn’t communicate it. Unfortunately, I am not clairvoyant yet.
We agree with you there. Has the customer feedback already helped you to improve the selection of your products or to optimize your online shop?
The feedback mainly helps to see if my customers are satisfied with the service, i.e. if the processes are working. And of course also whether the goods meet the expectations. But here, I usually check the goods myself and what I think falls through doesn’t even make it into my range.
Great commitment. In your opinion, what are the current trends in dance and music?
I really don’t care about trends at all. I also don’t orientate my assortment according to trends or current fashion. Ballet is timeless and I choose the goods for my shop largely according to my taste. Even as a teenager, all trends passed me by. And I can’t sell anything that I don’t stand behind 100%.
Thank you very much for this exciting and inspiring interview and all the best for you!