I was providing some consulting to a growing toy company last week and loved working with a passionate owner, keen to try new things and streamline their processes.
The main takeaways were:
- Start with a set distribution model but be open to defending your area position but adopting new channels. The owner was fixed on retail but had the opportunity to blanket her local area through a wholesale channel. By negotiating with suppliers, she secured lower material costs, opening doors for key wholesale relationships.
- You don’t always need a website. The owner had spent so much time building relationships and revenue that she hadn’t stopped to consider creating a website. In her case, a simple online form (linked to her brand domain name via a redirect) meant a quick solution until a website was needed.
- Be open to random opportunities. The owner had been contacted weekly from others wanting to start their own toy business. They were looking for key information as to how she build relationships, negotiated with suppliers and built what she built. We discussed the possibility of having her pass on her knowledge via either franchising, sub-contracting, teaching, coaching or consulting. This opened the way for her to generalise her knowledge enough to make it applicable across multiple industries, building her revenue and reputation.
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