Monthly Archives

January 2012

Are gimmicks a worthwhile business idea?

To be entirely honest, I wrote this subject down a few weeks ago and don’t remember what gimmicks I was talking about exactly. So Im going to say, for the moment, gimmicks are branding-related.

To the left, some of you may remember, was a line in the old theme for Metropolis. My gimmick was pulp-comic bodycare.

Was it cute? Definitely

Was it fun? Absolutely, many got a kick out of my attempt at being witty.

Was it financially viable? Eh.

It’s hard to be schtick-y if you can’t do it in the big time. Had I had a financial boost in the beginning to avoid starting from the ground up, things may have been different. But having a gimmick means you need to do two things Continue Reading…

The delicate balance in pricing products

One of the hardest things to do is correctly price your products. Many will feel a twinge of guilt and fear when it comes to correctly pricing their wares. I know a lot of people just wing it (I did!) for a long time. Or they’ll look at their competitors and try to find a median (I did!).

Obviously, these are not effective pricing strategies. So what kind of pricing strategy can work for your business?

Here are some tips on what you need to consider when pricing your products:

1. Raw cost materials

Okay yes, easy enough to figure that one out. But how much is that fabric really costing you per shirt? Would it be cheaper for you in the long run to bite the bullet and buy in bulk? (As long as you’re certain you can use it. Bulk materials don’t do anyone any good if they sit there and collect dust) Bulk/wholesale purchasing is where the most cost-effective purchasing happens. Avoid retail costs at…cost. It may be cheaper now to pay $1.99 for a pound of sugar for your scrubs, but if you use 4oz of it for 1 jar, that bag will only get your ~4 scrubs. Moral of the story is that you’re going to need to buy more, and quickly, if you want to make more than 4 scrubs. Look into what’s more cost effective for your business.

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Looking ahead, looking back

My Top 5 business decisions from 2011:

1. Kickstarter campaign

There’s no way around it, without Kickstarter I would’ve been doing the same old, wishing I could find the funds to take Metropolis to the next level. There was an article on WSJ awhile ago that mentioned one of the reasons small, women-run businesses fail is that we’re afraid to ask for help and afraid to ask for money. I think that’s true, at least in my case. With Kickstarter, I had to come out of my shell and ask beg for help. I swallowed my pride for a higher goal. And now I’m exhibiting at the New York International Gift Fair next week!

2. Changed my lines aesthetic

So many loved the pulp horror theme. I did, too. But I knew a smarter way to play ball would be to remove the niche look, and go more simplistic. More simplistic also meant more “mainstream” and I am very happy with the result. I think that my products look more professional and have given me the confidence to pitch to large companies, like Whole Foods and Henri Bendel.

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Start the Week off right

In the business world, everyone is paid in two coins:  cash and experience.  Take the experience first; the cash will come later.  ~Harold Geneen