by Mary Castelli, Marketing
Stahls’ takes personalization seriously. I can remember, like it was yesterday, the two-week training class I went through as a new hire. With so many personalization options, there was a lot to learn. Pre-Cut Letters and Numbers, several varieties of pre-spaced text, Any Word. Any Way.™, endless arrays of materials and colors – there were even full color digital transfers in the mix.
But the thing I remember most is the excitement of creating my own garment. I mused over what it would say, carefully lined up the letters, and then applied it to a shirt. To this day I can still recall the creative rush. It didn’t matter that it was simple pre-cut letters applied to a T-shirt; just being able to make my thoughts into a design was enough. And judging from the sheer demand for personalized goods there’s a pretty good chance there are many others out there who feel the same way.
Groupon and Living Social have perfected the art of offering “experiences,” with users eagerly signing on to try new things. I’ve spun pottery, blown glass, learned to fence, Segwayed – all thanks to these “daily deal” websites. It really is a novel concept and has proven to be a highly successful marketing tool.
While I haven’t seen it done yet, who’s to say you couldn’t hold a “personalization event” at your shop? You set the price and time, then guests register and show up for an exciting afternoon or evening. With a small supply of pre-cut letters and numbers, blank shirts, and your heat press, guests could press their own creation under your watchful eye. Better still, you could casually market your services to an audience which was previously unaware that small-run personalization was even an option.
If you own a vinyl cutter or print/cut system you could even expose them to the further personalization options offered by CAD-CUT® heat transfer material and CAD-COLOR® printable heat transfer material. Most wouldn’t be interested in investing in the equipment, so there’s little threat to your shop. But you’ll have an audience eager to learn of the services you could provide.
Who knows how much potential business you could draw by hosting such an event? Someone in the group may need a source for corporate apparel. Another may be looking for team wear. A future bride may see potential for decorating gifts for her bridesmaids. What’s the worst that could happen? You’d waste a few hours of your time. But if it works – you could tap new potential customers in your area.
If you try it, we’d love to hear about it. Leave us a comment about your experience. Happy Decorating!