Thursday, January 10, 2013

New Designs- Spring 2013

I am so excited about the two new designs that I have coming out in the spring.  They are a bit smaller and have fewer/larger pieces.  The square shape makes them easier to slip into a purse or backback for travel.

I posted the artwork in an earlier post, but today I realized I hadn't blogged about the samples that arrived.

I had to get product pictures ready the day after they arrived so I could send new sales sheets to my reps and then send them samples for their showrooms.  It was definitely a time crunch but thanks to my cute little neighbor miss S.  the modeling went quickly and smoothly.




 The January shows will start this week and next, so I am very interested to see how the FLIPZLES FARM & PET MANSION will be received.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Things I learned from Victorian Country Christmas

Set Up - Wednesday, November 28 

Show - November 29 - December 1  
Puzzles sold - 152

The show was open from 10am to 9 pm -- so there is no way I could have survived it without the help of a few good friends who helped me set up and run the booth -- not to mention an awesome MIL who came and watched the kids for me so I could be away from home.

All in all the show was a great experience -- I met a lot of people and gave away a huge stack of business cards.  I was even asked to sign the back of a puzzle by one of the dad's who purchased 4 that was a first.  I was also flattered by how many people told me I should be on Shark Tank :)

Some important things I learned:
-Most people who say they will be back -- won't
-The mother's of kids who come and play for the longest time with the puzzles and love them are highly doubtful to purchase a puzzle (grandmas on the other hand just might)
-Dad's got more excited about the puzzles than moms and they actually came back quite frequently
-People rarely understand the product without stopping and hearing an explanation
-People assume the puzzles are for kids 5 and under (so not true -- but I am not sure how to fix that misconception)
-My mood had a direct affect on how well my sales went
-Dressing up in Victorian isn't actually that bad

All in all it was a great learning experience and now that I recognize that Dad's love Flipzles I need to figure out how to better market to them. Any ideas would definitely be appreciated :)

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Celebrity Gifting

I know I know -- the words "Celebrity Gifting" sound like so much fluff --  When I first heard about it, I wasn't sure what it even was or how it worked.  It seemed like it might end up being a huge waste of time -- I mean are any of the celebrities even going to open or see what is "gifted" to them?  Are the gifts just going to end up in some agents office with a pile of other stuff, forgotten and unopened?  And besides that -- Isn't it all just a bunch of name dropping and what not? ...  Maybe --- Yet, the celebrities on this gifting list are PARENTS -- and the truth is -- when it comes to my product I value what all parents think.  As I mentioned in the previous post -- You never know who will be your champion.  Just one parent who loves my product and shares it makes a difference.  How much louder of a voice does a parent who is tv personality have?  Maybe one of them will actually have their kids test the puzzles out -- and they will love them -- so they will share the news about this new fun product and more people will know that Flipzles exist and will want to try them for themselves.  {deep breath}  Maybe not -- but either way I had a blast doing it fluff and all.

So -- I heard about Baby Swags in a Mom Entrepreneur Forum that I joined.  I was curious about what it was and how it worked so I looked into it.

I saw that Phyllis (the owner) gifts products from entrepreneurs and small businesses like myself to celebrities.  For the Holiday gifting there was a list of 11 celebrities with kiddos and then the company doing the gifting also got to choose the 12th celebrity.

Since I am just starting I thought this might be worth a shot.  It might help me with the challenge of getting my product out in front of more eyes... and if not I can chalk it up as a fun learning experience.
I submitted Flipzles and was accepted -- so the next step was getting my gifts ready.

This was a long process, because I wanted to know more about the celebrities that I was sending the puzzles to.  Some of them I knew a little about, others not so much.  I focused on learning about them as parents and about what type of charity work they were involved in.  It was fun to see that side of them rather than just the red carpet side.  I hand-wrote unique notes to each person and picked out the puzzles that I thought their children would most enjoy.  Finally I added a bit of information about my company and how Flipzles came to be and shipped them to Phyllis.

The celebrities  selected to receive the Holiday Celebrity Gift Bag included: Tori Spelling, Jessica Alba, Nicole Richie, Alyson Hannigan, Halle Berry, Jennifer Garner, Camila Alves, Mario Lopez, Bethenny Frankel, Katie Holmes, and Josh Sabarra.  

For the celebrity of my choice I wanted to choose an athlete because of my love for sports.  I chose Kerri Walsh.  I think it is amazing that she won an Olympic Gold Medal pregnant with her 3rd child!  She is someone who I think is admirable as a mother, athlete and advocate of people striving to achieve their dreams. 

The gifting went out just before Christmas.  

On the 28th I received a Thank You email from Josh Sabarra (he is Consulting Producer for The Ricki Lake Show) -- so of course he is my new favorite celebrity :)   If you are a twitter-er you should follow him.

What else will come of this?  Who knows?  Maybe nothing --- but if you know me, you know I am a dreamer so .... we will wait and see.