Mommy Needs a Business is all about the joys of running your own business. You never drafted a complete business plan, you couldn't be further from your law school degree and you are now referring to your 12 years of law enforcement as your "former life." But you get to screen print tee shirts in your pajamas while pulling your toddler and preschooler out of vats of ink. What more could a mom want?
Check out Kristen's blog, Mommy Needs a Cocktail.
I got a killer piece of advice from Jaime when I was at Blogher. She said that her biggest mistake was getting all caught up in designing her display for the big trade show and she didn’t take the time to reach out to potential customers BEFORE going.
Not that I was stressing about my display yet. Because it isn’t even September yet. Why think about something until you have to leave tomorrow? So bad, I know. It has crossed my mind that I will need something, that it must be compact and lightweight because I am carrying it with me and it must provide me with the ability to showcase my products to get the biggest bang for my buck. I’m thinking about recycling my displays that I use for shows. They fit the bill. Are they fancy-shmancy enough for the trade show? I guess I will have to find out. I have certainly had lots of offers to design custom displays for me for thousands of dollars. It’s a catch-22. Forever trying to calculate the ROI (return on investment). I could spend $4,000 on a display, but what result will a fancy display bring me? Will it bring me $4,000 more in sales? Grant it, it may give me a more “professional” appearance as a commercial force with whom to be reckoned. Then again, I think I have a fantastic product whose quality speaks for itself. Will my customers remember my display or will they got back to Omaha talking about that fantastic 100% soft combed cotton made in the US tee shirt that said “My mom doesn’t want your advice?” It’s a tough one.
But Jaime had a great point. What better way to get on someone’s list of must-sees than to get yourself on that list before the show. According to my friend Wendy, the best way to do that is sending out a postcard to buyers attending the show. With that comes the dilemma of what to showcase. There are lots of funny kids tees available, but finding a funny maternity tee was what first inspired me to start my business. Maybe I can put several pictures on the postcard to represent each area of my sales. Then the question becomes a question of balance and providing the right amount of information before someone feels overloaded and just tosses the card aside. Good thing I have lots of examples of what I like to see in a promotional postcard myself. Now I just have to get it done.
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