Impressions - September/October 2010 - (Page 61)

HANDS ON >> TECH TIPS HANDS ON >> HANDS ON Business TECH TIPS HANDS ON Tips for a Good Showroom If your company has a showroom, ask yourself the following questions: • Does your showroom tell your whole story? • Does your showroom inspire confidence in your professionalism? • Does your showroom present your company as neat, clean, efficient, friendly and accommodating? • Does your showroom motivate customers and prospects to buy items they weren’t looking for but decided to order as a direct result of seeing them in your showroom? • Is your showroom up to date? Not all apparel decorating companies have showrooms, of course, but most of those that do may consider a makeover once the insanity of high season has abated. For all the businesses that operate in the real (as opposed to the virtual) world, the mission isn’t to tell you what a showroom is, but to tell you what it should be. First and foremost, your decorated apparel showroom — which will display mostly undecorated apparel — should appear to first-time visitors as an immediate confirmation of your company’s marketing position, identity and everything else good that you want people to know about your company. Indeed, first impressions are lasting ones. Secondly, your showroom should inspire the visitor to have confidence in your professionalism. How so? Let’s say you’re planning on doing some remodeling at home and a new kitchen is your first priority. You can research a custom kitchen or your dream kitchen at different places, in catalogs and at online showrooms. You can visit a nearby plumbing supply house and look at various components and fixtures, but you may not see total kitchen environments — leaving such matters for more full-service vendors. You can visit a kitchen-remodeling workshop and see samples of more components. But if you want to see and “feel” different styles of kitchens in terms of size, style, décor, convenience, and get Your decorated apparel showroom should appear to first-time visitors as an immediate confirmation of your company’s marketing position, identity and everything else good that you want people to know about your company. Image courtesy of Appalachian Imprints, Morganton, N.C. a handle on what’s available to you at varying budgets, it may be best to go to a kitchen showroom — such as those found at a kitchen retailer, Lowe’s or Home Depot. You can see a broad collection, speak with a salesperson, get literature and planning aids, then go home, mull it over and perhaps start to play with a pencil, graph paper and a tape measure. Then, you can go back to the store when you’re closer to making a purchase. Your showroom should say the same thing that a well-organized, neat, clean and attractive kitchen showroom says to a prospective buyer: “You’re in the right place, you’ll find helpful, knowledgeable people here and you’ll get everything you need! You’ll also get competitive prices and ample selection — and when you’re finished with the project, you’ll love the results!” our industry leave much to be desired, especially when it comes to neatness and cleanliness. The way that showrooms atrophy and become dirty is a result of being taken for granted by owners and staff that become accustomed to how their showrooms look. Because of this, it seems no one takes the initiative to freshen or clean them. If reading this comment causes you to think about the current condition of your showroom, you obviously need to pay some attention to this vital element of your company’s persona. It ain’t rocket science to get it up to snuff, is it? You also could invite some of your good friends, employees and customers to give their honest observations, suggestions and ideas. The sooner you can do this, the better. There’s ample room and reason to display certain categories of garments and accessories in greater depth and selection — though limited to what’s realistically going to sell your products or what’s needed to better position your offerings and your standard pricing (even if some of the items probably won’t sell!) — Mark L. Venit, MBA KEEP IT NEAT AND CLEAN As for “neat” and “clean,” you may wonder why it even needs to be mentioned here. While many companies take great pride and devote great effort to keeping their showrooms attractive and up to date, the majority of showrooms in September/October 2010 << Impressions 61

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Impressions - September/October 2010

Impressions - September/October 2010
First Impressions
Product Gallery
2010 Top-Volume Decorators
Back to Basics
Inside Outerwear
Technique: Use Proper Techniques to Easily Embroider Fleece
Technique: Water-Based Ink and the Environment
For Screen Printers Only
Online Directory
Tech Tips
Using Layer Styles for Digital Printing
On Design
Business to Business
Ad Index

Impressions - September/October 2010