“go BIG or go home”

The above title is the quote from my friend Michael, who I spoke with yesterday re: how to market effectively.  I met Michael a number of years ago in a networking group in Seattle.  He’s known me through my Sales Queen days of Office Furniture and Commercial Carpet.  His advice to me was take off my artist hat and put on my sales hat and get out there and talk to people.  He’s now in the gift industry as well so I value his opinion/advice.  He knows, from experience, what works and what doesn’t.  His recommendation to do the Trade Shows and stick to the West Coast Shows makes sense.  Also his thoughts on reps, which is basically they aren’t going to be interested in you till you are big enough to be a viable player in the market.  When retailers want you, then reps will want you.  Sounds kinda like a Catch 22 to me.  The reality is, I’m going to be hitting the pavement schlepping my cards as I try to discover additional products to add to my line (I’m thinking magnets and journals to begin with) and increase the number of cards too.  That means I need to continue to find the time to do watercolors in addition to wearing the hats of sales, operations and artist.  I’m determined and I know it is the determination factor that will get me to where I want to be.  That and persistence were components to my success in Sales prior, I’m thinking the sales skills are transferable.  I just have different markets to go after.  Rather than the Corporate world, I’m now in the Retail world.

Speaking of which, I did get myself out there this past week by boldly walking into a few stores here in the Bay area and asking questions, leaving my catalog and keeping my fingers crossed.  More later when I have a success story to share!

In the meantime, I’m glad to be back and feeling healthy.  My cold from Denver went into my chest and became a terrible cough.  I spent most of the 4th of July weekend sleeping and coughing.  Took most of the week to return to normal.

It’s because I’m feeling better that I decided to go BIG (I’m going to do the LA Show) rather than say home!  So wish me luck this week as I gather all my stuff together.  I’m going to drive down rather than fly.  That allows for me to haul my table and a card rack in addition to have my car down there rather than renting one.  The other bonus is I have a place to stay with my cousin Joan.  So I figure, what do I have to lose?!?  Wish me luck and think thoughts of many orders!!!!

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