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Stephen

Member Since 28 Jan 2013
Offline Last Active Today, 09:13 AM
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Posts I've Made

In Topic: Wholesale Marketing Materials

18 January 2017 - 09:25 PM

 

The downside was no returned mail from moves or death

 

All you need to do is add "Return Service Requested" added below the return address

http://pe.usps.com/t...qsg300/Q507.htm

 

 

ya know this is really not a bulk mailing and wouldn't save much to presort a few hundred names.

 

How often do you plan on mailing to each shop per year?

Break even is twice a year

 

Ya know Ron I don't think these mailings be worth presorting and may not even hit the minimums. If they do it will likely be just barely. With the permit fees and annual renewal fees it usually doesn't make sense for tiny mailings like this is going to be. But you are right I should keep it in mind if the mailings get larger so I will go get the latest prices and minimums so I can grab one if and when it makes sense. I had just kind of dismissed it out of hand, thanks for reminding me about ways to cut cost, always appreciated :)

 

How often? Twice a year push for sure but prob more. Mea said that Feb and June are the two important months for pitches so I will definitely always put a piece out to my entire prospect list those two months. Developing retail B2B is heavy on branding as well and I am looking at this as a long term process of constant marketing to my identified prospects. I want to own the data and clean and update it myself. I also plan to wear a little shoe leather out and visit a lot of shops over time. I got into this business because I enjoy making and selling my work so that part of the process is something i look forward to. My hearing means no phone calls but I do fine in person.

 

I think you have to do presort first class to get returns, bulk is just carrier route and there are no returns as far as I know.  

 

Deisel good idea, was thinking no as I don't want to get sideways with a prospect on spam but ur right some shops might be fine with it. I am going to try and work through websites so I will look for any shops that have an email posted for pitches and will use it if they do.

 

Mark, thanks for mentioning postcards, might be a good thing to do in between Feb and Jun as a prompt here and there or as an announcement if I add a line to wholesale? 

 

You guys are great, keep the suggestions coming! 


In Topic: Wholesale Marketing Materials

18 January 2017 - 10:46 AM

ya know this is really not a bulk mailing and wouldn't save much to presort a few hundred names. 

 

I do agree that one should try and avoid time sinks but I do think that this is a very important part of building my customer base and over time the personal attention to marketing will pay off with some good ongoing shops to work with to find a larger audience for my work. If nothing else it will start the process of getting my name out in my new community.


In Topic: Wholesale Marketing Materials

18 January 2017 - 09:23 AM

Exactly, that's how I am going to get my list right. I want to do it myself. I can work through prob 30-40 a day then send out literature to the ones that I deem a good fit. I want to do it myself because this not just a bulk mailing but the start of an ongoing marketing effort and I can see firsthand any online information and I will also go visit many of the shops over time which is one reason I would like to stay local, at least for now.

 

I just moved to this market so I will be getting to know who my potential shops are and making that first pitch. When I am done I should have database with some notes by each shop and first contact made for the shops I want to try. Until Mea mentioned in another thread that the buyers are in full tilt Feb I didn't realize there was a time constraint and just planned to get my pack together and get a few out daily but now I know I need to work through this more quickly than that and get the whole thing out by the end of month. Most should be out by then.

 

Once I've got the first contact out l will add and subtract to this group and constantly try to come up with creative ways to gain both their attention, trust and sooner or later orders. I know all of this seems basic and I am embarrassed that I am just getting it done. Fact is if I don't get this operating like a business I won't have one so any start in marketing is a huge step forward for my little studio.


In Topic: Wholesale Marketing Materials

17 January 2017 - 06:57 PM


No reason to stagger the mailing. Unless you have a reason I don't see?

 

 

Hi Mea,

 

I have a raw list of 650 gift shops and galleries in my metro which is going to be used to start my on-going marketing effort. I have all my materials almost ready to go out, waiting for a glaze load later in the week for some final product shots of some new work.

 

Starting in a day or two I will be taking this list and working it to weed out as many bad listings as possible and add others I can find. I assume my first complete pass may reduce the list by as much as a third or even half and the surviving listings will hopefully all be in business and be reasonable candidates for my work. It will cost me about 80 cents for each of my mailings but the effort is not to save the few hundred bucks (although that a nice by product) as much as it is to get my core market list cleaned up as much as possible from the beginning and only spend time and money on good prospects a few hours each day. I'm a one man shop and don't want to shut things down essentially while I get this effort in gear. 

 

Soooo I figured I would put aside a few hours each day to clean up and mail 30-50 pieces. This also will level out the responses to come over a few week period instead of a few days. If I am lucky enough to get a 2-3% response rate then 6 or 7 shops might have immediate interest. If it is remarkably successful and 5-6% show some interest then it could be a dozen shops to work with at once.

 

I have no idea whether to expect the response to mostly be request for me to come out or simply orders I need to fill and ship but having it somewhat spread out would be a good thing.

 

Do you think this Is this sound reasoning? 


In Topic: Is Cone 4-10 Clay Fired To Cone 4 Underfired?

16 January 2017 - 01:34 PM

Thanks everyone.  I think I'm going to get to work on that box of cone 6 porcelain.   Do I hear groaning?  Remember, I'm still a newbie.  It's formulated for cone 6 so it's ok even tho it's porcelain right?

 

Nerd, how about a brief synopsis of your rant in layperson's terms?  I mean clayperson's terms.  Haha.  ( do I hear more groaning?)   Or just nod if you agree with what's been said.  

Hi Irene,

 

We've been using a 4-6 mid range porcelain for about six years fired to 5 with 20 minute hold and have not had any problems. Spot on is great but I think 4-6 is narrow enough for what you are doing IMHO. We have sold thousands and use ours daily in our own kitchen.

 

Didn't read whole thread but just build a few vases and fire a couple un-glazed and leave out on a napkin and see if you are getting any moisture after a day or two. If your clay is maturing properly it really should remain completely dry indefinitely if in room temp inside where outside moisture is not building up and running down the pot's outside.