the magazine dedicated to greeting card publishing and entrepreneurship
magazine Issue 20 - 2018
diary dates 2018
The 100 DAY
THE POSTAL MUSEUM h... t i w s w e i v r e t n I INSIDE!!! lx and e Prou n n a x o R , t n u H ie Kat Jamie Summers
LETTER FROM THE EDITOR
INTERVIEW WITH... KATIE HUNT
THE 100 DAY PROJECT
10 A LOOK AT THE GREETING HATING CARD INDUSTRY 12 GREETING CARD & GRAPHIC DESIGN INSPIRATION ON NETFLIX 14 INTERVIEW WITH... ROXANNE PROULX
17 NEW YORK RANGE 18 INTERVIEW WITH... JAMIE SUMMERS 21 BOOK NOOK 22 THE POSTAL MUSEUM 23 SPRING/SUMMER UK TRADE FAIRS 2018
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Katie shares her experience of servicing the needs of the wholesale stationery trade through her Papercamp courses and e-learning. Roxy shares some of her travel postcards as part of last years’ 100 day project – something I’m trying to complete this time around, and Jamie enlightens us on how we can all increase sales by exercising greater social intelligence. There’s an American theme running through this issue which is probably more than accidental…. given that I’ve committed (well verbally at any rate) to travelling Stateside next Spring. I’ve already visualized my walk from Wall Street to Upper Manhattan as there’s no better way to get to know a city. Fear not – it won’t be all lattes and pretzels. There’ll be a few brochures and business cards in my hand luggage too. Enjoy the read x
ell folks, so glad Spring has finally made its appearance. After March (what a month!) a few April showers won’t dampen my mood as I celebrate the beautiful cherry blossom, black thorn flowers, daffodils and bird song on my daily walks. With two East Beasts, Storm Emma and endless days of gloom over, I’m sure you’re as glad as I am that we’ve seen the back of winter and the clocks have gone forward. I’ve been feeding thrushes in my garden with seeds and fat balls, as well as sketching owls as part of the 100 day project. I hope everyone who exhibited at BCTF in Harrogate came home with bulging order books and useful leads. Now that I’m out of hibernation, I’ve put a pot pourri of greeting card and business related articles together for Issue 20 of Gypsy Chic ®. I’m hoping you find them, the interviews and book review useful. It’s fun pulling all the material for the ezine together – a chance for me to network with new contributors and read new material. Special thanks to Katie Hunt, Roxy Proulx and Jamie Summers, for agreeing to feature in this month’s ezine. Please follow them on their Instagram, Facebook or other social media platforms.
of Paper Camp
1. YOUR WORKSHOPS ALLOW DELEGATES TO, IN YOUR WORDS, ASK PRESSING QUESTIONS, ‘ABOUT DIFFICULT DECISIONS’ MORE CONFIDENTLY AND NETWORK GOING FORWARD. GIVE US AN EXAMPLE OF THE SORT OF DILEMMAS A STATIONERY BUSINESS MAY EXPERIENCE IN THE EARLY DAYS.
Building a product-based business involves so many moving pieces. Each day we’re challenged to not only be the creative steward, but also the number cruncher, marketing master, packing & shipping department, customer service and tech team… However, I’d say one of the biggest challenges that newer stationery companies (and all product based businesses) struggle with is their business model -- do they want to sell custom work, wholesale, retail on their own website, retail on etsy, retail at craft shows, license their art to others. We have so many incredible opportunities in this industry and yet, many creatives have a hard time narrowing down where they want to focus their time, energy and effort. At Paper Camp, we focus on helping stationery brands refine or launch a wholesale line. This includes helping to ensure their product line meets industry standards and is priced right, that they have the sales tools they need for wholesale and we provide strategies for reaching wholesale customers. The biggest hurdle I see from young companies that attend Paper Camp is that they don’t have enough product and/or they need to refine their product line before they begin wholesaling to make it more cohesive. lll
We purposely start Paper Camp talking about product development because if a brand doesn’t have a strong, cohesive product line they shouldn’t be wholesaling yet. 2. YOUR BOOTCAMPS COVER SOME VERY USEFUL TOPICS LIKE SALES STRATEGIES, ETC. HOW DO YOU DECIDE WHAT CONTENT TO COVER?
We’ve built our curriculum over the last 7 years through 14 in-person conferences and hundreds of online classes; and the content has expanded based on the needs of our community. When we started in 2011, our focus was purely on educating stationers about exhibiting at trade shows. However, we realized that many of our students needed help creating a strong wholesale foundation prior to exhibiting. We also saw that people needed help with marketing and customer outreach, so we include that in our Paper Camp and Paper Camp E-Course, too. I look to the needs of our community when dreaming up new programs. I ask myself, ‘what are their pain points’ and how can we help them. lll
3. ONE OF THE GREATEST CHALLENGES FOR NEW CARD COMPANIES IS WHETHER OR NOT TO INVEST HARD EARNED CASH IN TRADE SHOW ATTENDANCE - WHAT ARE YOUR VIEWS ON THIS.
4. HAVE YOU HAD ANY UK DELEGATES ON YOUR BOOTCAMP YET?
I have lots of thoughts on this. Investing in trade shows is a time intensive and costly endeavor. Our TSBC alumni spend on average $7-10k to do wholesale trade shows, which is no small change. I encourage product makers to do as much as possible to prepare before jumping into shows: • Ensure you have a strong product line that has a unique point of view in the market • Ensure you have enough product • Ensure that your pricing works for wholesale and industry standards • Ensure you have the right sales tools catalog, terms & conditions, order forms • Start building a list of stores you’d like to be in and start reaching out to them. • Start reaching out to local stores to see if they are interested in purchasing wholesale (not consignment) It’s totally ok (and recommended) to launch to wholesale outside of shows. Once you have some momentum and you’ve ironed out your processes, systems and you know you can fulfill orders efficiently, that’s when you should start thinking about wholesale shows.
Yes, we’ve had people attend Paper Camp from all over the world - UK, Australia, Hong Kong, Singapore, Canada and Sweden to name a few. Our largest contingency of students reside in the United States, as we primarily discuss American based trade shows.
5. FOR THOSE WHO CAN’T TRAVEL, CAN WE TAKE A DISTANCE LEARNING COURSE INSTEAD?
Yes, we offer our Paper Camp E-Course twice a year. The online program is a four week, live course that incorporates a mix of DIY videos, weekly Q&A video calls and a group forum for class discussions. lll
6. SHARE SOME OF YOUR PLANS FOR 2018 AND BEYOND - AND WILL THAT INCLUDE ANY VISITS TO EUROPEAN TRADE SHOWS?
In 2018, we’ll continue to host our podcast Proof to Product as well as our Paper Camp conferences and e-courses. We’re working on some new advanced programs for our alumni. Paper Camp will be held in Los Angeles for the foreseeable future. We have a great venue that feels like we’re sitting together in a living room rather than a stuffy conference room. We have indoor and outdoor space for different activities. And, we’re conveniently located about 10 minutes from LAX airport so it’s fairly easy for people to get there. Maybe we’ll go abroad when my kids are a bit older J lll
Website: http://tradeshowcamp.com Podcast: http://prooftoproduct.com Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Podcast Instagram: http://instagram.com/prooftoproduct Katie´s Instagram: http://instagram.com/tradeshowcamp
a r b t i e n l e g C
Robin red breast
Little fox cub 7
THE 100 DAY PROJECT – ARE YOU IN?
tarting April 3rd, the 100 day project is back for a 5th year. The brain child of Tina Essmaker, this is free global creativity challenge. You have to pick one thing to draw, paint, create every day from 3rd April right through to July 11th. Believe me, it isn’t as easy as it might sound. I joined last year and found drawing leaves every day quite hard work. Setting aside free time to be creative isn’t as easy as you’d imagine but I did manage to do felt tip sketches for a few weeks – long enough to create enough designs for two leaf greeting cards. They have proved quite popular with the independent stores I stock. This time round, I’m going to try either BIRDS or BUILDINGS – so lets see how far I get. Join me, and thousands of other creatives by tagging Instagram with #The100DayProject so we can find each other’s work, as well as a hashtag unique to you. Happy Creating! www.the100dayproject.org
GDPR A NEW ACT TO
Next month â€“ May 2018, the General Data Protection Regulation directive will become fully enforceable throughout the European Union. This affects all businesses that store data on individuals â€“ whether it a photo, biodata, email or other personal records. The objective is to give everyone greater protection, more options on how their data is stored, how they can gain access to their own records, and data erasure (the right to be forgotten). Given that anyone can be fined if data is not stored/deleted correctly it is worth familiarizing oneself with the official website.
A LOOK AT THE
GREETING HATING CARD INDUSTRY 10
ince most of Gypsy Chic’s audience are greeting card publishers of one sort or another, it is worth defining the word “Greeting”. Thesaurus.com lists numerous words and synonyms associated with “greeting”: ovation, salutation, acknowledge, heralding, compliment to cite a few. Other related words include: gratitude, support, appreciation, apology. Many contemporary publishers in groups I’m members of (Facebook, Instagram etc) do not use any of these words but concentrate on sarcasm, humour/crude one-liners – nothing wrong with that. I’ve laughed out loud in many a card shop reading ‘below the belt’ statements, and wish I had the talent to make people chuckle. There’s money in them there jokes. The category I’m focussing on for this short article are “hate cards” – and the more research I do, the less I’m convinced they exist. If they do, they represent 0.00000000000000001% of the card industry and have probably nosedived into oblivion since I started typing this sentence. I ask myself why would anyone bother sending hate cards? Who has frenemies anyway? Could you be done for a hate crime or “wrong think” if you sent these? I can’t imagine a bigger waste of time than conjuring up mean
spirited slogans for people you detest. I get we all know despicable people and there will always be individuals who drive us to distraction with their stupidity (maybe I could come up with a politically-focussed range for some MP’s I’m thinking of). But would you actually send an enemy a card? If time is money, why spend a nanosecond of your life buying a card and posting it to some loser who has sent you over the edge? I’ve seen what I now believe are “mock ups” – Cards that say “Wishing you a horrible Christmas” or “I hope you remain ill for a very long time”, and they are clearly done for the shock factor, to get you to click on some advertising agencies website. That’s effective PR. A company may use the marketing strategy of keeping a highly contentious card in their portfolio to attract criticism – bad PR is still PR right?..... but it’s not a gamble I would take. A few card chains have got it horribly wrong with designs that are deemed in unacceptably bad taste….but genuinely hateful cards don’t usually feature. In the card industry love, forgiveness, gratitude, humour, smut and sarcasm will always sell more stock. And as for hate, karma has a way of dealing with it…… by sending it to the to the scrap heap where it belongs.
CARD& GRAPHIC DESIGN
INSPIRATION ON NETFLIX 12
Graphic Design n The 8 series documentary ABSTRACT is a fantastic look at the minds of highly innovative designers in a range of disciplines. Listening to their vision, and their “Why” is incredibly motivating and reinforces why we are part of this amazing industry. It follows illustrators in New York, Architects, Theatre technicians, sports car designers, brand experts, and interior designers as they impact every aspect of life with their craft. n
n By the time you are reading this, I’m hoping that Storm Emma and The Beast from the East are distant memories, but as I write it, the Met Office has issued red warnings - a risk to life being posed by the terrible weather patterns and storm currently hitting the UK. With central heating being topped up by fan heaters in my office, I’m snug as a bug in a rug. School has been cancelled (the kids are happy) and I’m looking at Greeting card themed films and design programmes to inspire me further on my creative journey as I take to my bed under a double thick duvet. Let me recommend Girlfriend’s Day – Netflix describe it as a deadly conspiracy where Ray Wentworth (Bob Odenkirk) is a down-onhis-luck romance card writer. In an effort to recapture the feelings that once made him the greatest card wordsmith the world has ever known he gets entangled in a web of murder and deceit as writers vie to create the perfect card for a newly crowned holiday: Girlfriend’s Day. If he doesn’t write the best card, he could lose everything, including his life. Who thought card design could be lifethreatening! n
1. YOUR INSTAGRAM FEED BEARS MANY SIMILARITIES WITH MINE IN TERMS OF THE SUBJECT MATTER WE SKETCH AND PAINT. HOW DID YOUR INTEREST IN SKETCHING LANDMARKS AND OTHER ICONS START AND WHAT IS YOUR AIM IN REPRESENTING THE FAMOUS SIGHTS WE ALL RECOGNIZE?
I don’t have a specific aim in representing famous landmarks, I just painted them because it was an interest of mine and I wanted to see how many I can do. I went to school in tourism and travel so that’s where I first learnt about the landmarks around the world and after all these years I still had interest in these famous landmarks. lll
2. WHEN DID YOU START SKETCHING ARCHITECTURAL BUILDINGS ETC AND WHAT WILL YOU DO WITH YOUR EVER EXPANDING COLLECTION?
I started sketching out architectural buildings and landmarks last April 2017 when I was doing #the100dayproject I had decided my theme would be #100daysoftravelpostcards and I would be using postcards made of watercolor paper with ink and watercolor. I didn’t finish the project but I’m happy with how far I got. Originally I wanted to make prints and sell my post cards if there was an interest but I’ve never gotten around to it so I still have all of them. lll
3. YOU’VE PARTICIPATED IN A NUMBER OF ARTISTIC CHALLENGES INCLUDING #INKTOBER AND OTHERS. HOW HAVE YOU BENEFITTED FROM THESE? (E.G INCREASED FOLLOWERS, GREATER EXPOSURE)
and the next one is #the100dayproject which i’ve been doing for the last 2 years. I’m trying to plan out what my subject will be this year and if I will try to work digitally or traditionally. I have seen increased followers when I do challenges, I think it has to do with the fact that i’m posting every day and also it’s a hashtag people are looking through to find other people who are doing the same challenges as you. 4. WHAT IDEAS DO YOU HAVE FOR FUTURE SKETCHES WHEN YOU’VE EXHAUSTED WORLD SCENES?
There’s still lots of world scenes to do but I love nature as well so I’d love to draw flowers and plants. I’ve also drew a few family pets recently so I most likely will draw some more animals as well.
I love doing challenges because it’s fun but I always have a hard time finishing them. Life gets in the way sometimes but I’m definitely going to do more challenges lll
5. DO YOU TRAVEL A LOT (IF YOU HAVEN’T ALREADY COVERED THIS IN YOUR ANSWERS? lll I
love travelling but unfortunately it doesn’t happen as often as I would want. My first big trip was in June 2016 when my boyfriend and I went to London and Scotland for 2 weeks and now we are planning our second big trip to Germany coming up in October 2018. I’m also going to Hawaii this coming May for a family vacation but i’m most excited for Germany because I love everything about Europe. 6. WHAT PRODUCTS WOULD YOU LIKE TO SEE SOME OF YOUR ARTWORK ON, AND ANY OTHER IDEAS YOU HAVE FOR YOUR ILLUSTRATIONS?
I’d love to have my artwork on fabric, bags, notebooks and journals. I would also like to have greeting cards and prints in the future. lll
aving committed to taking a trip to New York next Spring, I’ve featured the Big Apple on a number of new
designs. There is so much to represent there architecturally, and I like putting the city’s icons together randomly. Once I familiarise myself with the city on the ground, I’ll get so many new ideas on how to illustrate that amazing metropolis. For now, check out my designs so far.
NEW YORK CARD RANGE £1 PER CARD CODE
NEW1 New York
NEW5 NEW2 New York
NEW3 New York NEW4 New York NEW5 New York NEW6 Icons of New York
Jamie Summers of The Skills Farm
1. TELL US A LITTLE BIT ABOUT HOW YOU HAVE GOT TO WHERE YOU ARE TODAY AS A BEST-SELLING AUTHOR, MENTOR AND SALES CONSULTANT, AND HOW, WITHOUT THE ENCOURAGEMENT FROM OTHERS (AS YOU MENTION AT THE END OF YOUR BOOK) YOU’RE CAREER PATH MAY HAVE BEEN VERY DIFFERENT.
For me sales was a dirty word. Even as a teenager I would experience ‘being sold to’ as I went around boutique shops in London with my Mum and I used to think how false it all felt. I am a ‘relationship’ kind of person so people mean everything to me, to feel like I am being processed always felt so unnatural to me. It wasn’t until that moment when I applied for a job a a receptionist in an estate agency and ended up working in sales that I realised that selling had nothing to do with process, it was all about people. I was really encouraged by the person who hired me, Christa, to tap into this talent and help others do the same. Had that moment not come along I shudder to think where I would have ended up. lll
2. I REALLY ENJOYED YOUR FLY ON THE WALL APPROACH IN YOUR BOOK – IT’S A REALLY CLEVER WAY OF GETTING TO KNOW YOU, HOW YOU HELP TURN A BUSINESS AROUND THROUGH ITS SALES TEAM, AND THE TAILORED TRAINING YOU OFFER. THE READER GETS TO KNOW YOUR METHODOLOGY REALLY WELL. GIVEN THAT YOU HAVE REVEALED SO MUCH OF YOUR TRAINING METHOD, ISN’T THERE A CHANCE THAT PEOPLE WILL NOT NEED TO BOOK YOU ON A ONE-TO-ONE BASIS AFTER THEY HAVE READ THE BOOK, BUT IMPLEMENT WHAT YOU HAVE REVEALED THEMSELVES?
That is a great observation and it is probably the most common question I get once someone has read my book. You are right, I do give a lot away but not everything. I am really only sharing lll
knowledge. When you get in the training room with me and we practice these techniques and you get feedback and try again and again, then it becomes skill practice. It’s one thing knowing something and another being able to actually do it. 3. WHAT STRUCK ME AS BEING ONE OF THE BIGGEST ADVANTAGES OF YOUR TRAINING METHOD IS THAT NO ONE STAFF’S POSITION AT FUSION TECH HAD TO BE TERMINATED. HAVING BEEN IN THE FIRING LINE MYSELF IN SOME COMPANIES, I JUST WISHED MY LINE MANAGERS HAD READ YOUR BOOK AND REALISED THAT IT WAS THEIR OWN OUT OF DATE APPROACH TO TRAINING OR THEIR MANAGEMENT STYLE THAT WAS THE PROBLEM RATHER THAN BEING AN ISSUE WITH ANY ONE INDIVIDUAL IN SALES. WHAT METHOD ARE YOU USING TO GET YOUR BOOK IN FRONT OF THE PEOPLE THAT MATTER, AND SAVE THIS UNNECESSARY WASTE OF PERSONNEL.
You are absolutely right. Quite often senior managers will look at reducing waste rather than increasing performance. I have been in that position before where my job has been under threat and that is something I can really empathise with. My book acts as a big business card too, lll
so CEO’s and managers often invite me in to help them turn around their sales teams. We also have a clever programme called The Legendary Leadership Programme which is headed up by my husband and business partner Scott Summers. So we educate the top tier of the business to help them focus on increasing performance rather than cutting down on losses. 4. AS I READ THROUGH YOUR BOOK CONCEPTS LIKE RELATIONSHIP BUILDING, RAPPORT, AND TRUST WERE EVIDENT THROUGHOUT. YOU’VE TAKEN THE “CHILL” OUT OF SALES AND MADE IT A WARM, FORGIVING EXPERIENCE. IS THIS THE PART OF SALES TRANSFORMATION YOU LIKE THE MOST WHEN WORKING WITH TEAMS, OR ARE THERE OTHER ASPECTS YOU ENJOY MORE?
For me to part with my money I have to ‘feel’ something and I believe we are all quite similar. We forget this element when we are selling and its hugely important. So the big ‘a-ha’ moment I love seeing in the training room is when the seasoned salesperson realises that this isn’t about just selling but its more about being a real person and demonstrating that you can be ‘liked’ and by doing this you become more influential. They say things like “so this is like selling but without the selling part”. I love that. lll
5. HOW THE SALES TEAM SCORED THEMSELVES IN TERMS OF TRUSTWORTHINESS, FOR EXAMPLE, AND HOW OTHERS SCORED THEM WAS REVEALING. SUMMARIZE HOW YOU GET TEAMS TO BETTER ALIGN THESE ASPECTS OF THEMSELVES.
Using the trust formula is a simple way of finding out where your gaps are. The most common gap in salespeople is the ‘business intimacy’. This is about how lll
much of the real you do you show to your potential client. If this is low, which is usually is, then you need to work on being more vulnerable, you need to be able to find common ground with clients and demonstrate that you aren’t afraid to share common topics or themes with one another. This is usually drawn out in the training room and something we work on as the session progresses. 6. THE MOST REDEEMING ASPECT OF THE BOOK FOR ME WAS YOUR IDEA THAT EVEN IF YOU HAVEN’T CLOSED A SALE, YOU’VE HOPEFULLY BUILT A RELATIONSHIP THAT WILL LEAD TO SALES IN THE FUTURE. HOW DO YOU PREVENT THE RELATIONSHIP FROM GOING COMPLETELY COLD.
For me there are two reasons why a relationship would go cold. Firstly it would be that you have been too process focussed and not been close enough to your client to get a feel for how things are going. The more rapport you build with someone the more they are able to trust you so are more likely to be open and honest. If that rapport isn’t there or if it’s weak then you are less likely to find out what it is your client is thinking. The other reason would be that your potential client has their own stuff going on. Sometimes life just gets in the way and you can never really tell what someone else’s life is like so sometimes it just goes south and the trick with that is when they come back to you you have to be able to pick up exactly were you left off - no judgement. Just true professionalism. lll
Website: www.theskillsfarm.co.uk Email: email@example.com Tel: +44 (0) 208 6995 411 Mobile: +44 (0) 785 0267 160
THE BOOK NOOK SOCIALLY INTELLIGENT SELLING THE GROUND BREAKING WAY TO CLOSE LESS AND WIN MORE BY JAMIE SUMMERS l In
this fly on the wall style business book Jamie Summers takes you on a journey of discovery, showing you how to hone your social intelligence for more sales. The book is full of strategic relationship building techniques that takes the chill out of selling and breathes warmth into the process. As Jamie points out, building confidence between you and the buyer is key through research, transparency, and credibility. As a salesperson your attributes must include curiosity, trustworthiness, empathy around the customersâ€™ needs and wants, and humility. He encourages you to ditch the superficiality that often comes with sales and focus on achieving a meeting of minds. This can be done by handing queries and objections correctly, taking the fear out of feedback, and having a thorough knowledge of your products and their benefits. Grab your copy now for only ÂŁ3.99 (Kindle). www.amazon.co.uk/Socially-Intelligent-SellingGround-Breaking-Close/dp/1781332886/ref=sr_ 1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1523379736&sr=8-1&keywo rds=socially+intelligent+selling
l a t s o P The m u e s u M
pened in the summer of 2017, the Postal Museum gives ticket holders insight into the history of the British postal system, letter writing, and a chance to experience a ride on an underground postal train. With a history that stems back to 1516, it has much to share. The General Post Office, as it came to be known in the 18th Century was headquartered in London. Serviced by postal clerks who wore red coats, they sorted the country’s correspondence in a large factory like depot. In an era without instant messaging, TV and radio, letters were a lifeline. These letters brought news of the start of world conflicts, - heart-warming exchanges between lovers, and family members - all dispersed around the country in mail wagons. Sending letters became available to everyone in 1840 when Penny Post was introduced. Now, for the first time, it was within any
literate person’s ability to communicate this way, both financially, and because of the infrastructure that was built to support postal services. The volume of letters sent literally exploded after this date, made possible by the dispatch and return of mail coaches at various times of the day. With the development of the railways, the trend of letter writing only continued. In a society divided by class, the envelopes of the poor intermingled with those of the rich – all stuffed together in mailbags awaiting delivery. The Museum has both permanent and short-term exhibitions depending on the programme at the time. Whilst reviews on Trip Advisor are mixed, judgement may have to be reserved until you’ve visited yourself. To visit the museum, head to 15-20 Phoenix Pl, London WC1X 0DA or check out their website for tickets. https://www.postalmuseum.org/
FORTHCOMING SPRING/SUMMER UK TRADE FAIRS 2018 LONDON STATIONERY SHOW
HOME & GIFT
24-25 April, Business Design Centre, Islington www.stationeryshowlondon.co.uk 13-15 May, Olympia, London www.pulse-london.com
5-6 June, Business Design Centre, Islington www.progressivegreetingslive.com 15-18 July 2018, Harrogate www.homeandgift.co.uk
A window on the world of a greeting card publisher
Gypsy Chic magazine
A window on the world of greeting card publishing, design, and entrepreneurship