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Joplin Business Success - KOAM TV 7

Joplin Business Success

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     "Everything Must Go" is a phrase many of us see or hear as retailers across the country face bankruptcy and store closures.
     But for some in Joplin..it's a different story.
Jones: "Having a loyal customer base has probably been our salvation, in this area."
Ron Jones and his wife own the Radio Shack on Maiden Lane in Joplin.
And in their case -- it's helpful to own their store, even if it's under a national franchise. That way -- if the franchise downsizes or goes bankrupt -- they still have the choice to stay open. Just under a different name.
But success goes beyond the name.
Jones says his employees are a pivitol part of the business.
Jones: "They pretty much have become part of our family, they've been around so long, we rely on them, we trust them, they trust us.  We're all just trying to make a living together.
What Ron says he thinks is the biggest contributor to his store's success is that personal attention, that websites just can't give you.
Jones: "So, having somebody face-to-face who can listen to your problem, help you solve that problem, and have the product to help solve that problem, is very important."
And his customers agree.
Reeder: "It's very handy because if I'm replacing something i can bring it in and show it to them and they can find the replacement piece or parts, you just get that personal, face-to-face experience."
But Ron's Radio Shack isn't the only 'national' store surviving locally, department stores and specialty stores are thriving at Northpark Mall amid another round of store closings.
In fact, some, like Bath and Body Works, have expanded, and there's new stores, like H&M, on the way.
Joan Ghani says she attributes that to Joplin's "trade area" -- which is the region our community serves in a retail sense.
Ghani: "The larger the trade area, and the more you have to offer, as we get in new stores, there's not a reason to have to drive to Tulsa, or Springfield, so, people will stay here and shop."
And with Joplin being a regional retail hub, it creates a unique incentive...
Ghani: "If a store closes in Joplin, then, someone would have to drive 60 miles to get to their next store, maybe even farther than that, so they tend to want to stay."
     H&M plans to open this fall.
     Mall officials say a number of stores are spending money to expand and renovate.

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Chris Warner
Reporter

A Joplin native, Chris first started in broadcasting at age 16 at KSNF-TV in 2004..

Chris joined the KOAM team in 2017 as an Associate Producer. In April, he moved into a full-time reporter position. He spent time from 2008 to 2016 in various retail roles around the region before returning to his passion at KOAM. Chris is excited to continue telling the stories of the four states. Chris and his wife Amber live in Joplin and have three amazing children.

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