Archives 9/7-9/13 2005-2006

From the archives…

September 7 through September 13, 2005
Why are you here?
Costing components and mark-ups
Invisible zipper tutorial pt.1
The Consignment Trap
Invisible zipper tutorial pt.2
Annual Tech Conference
Dry cleaning discussion
Fabric sale open to the public
Name this tutorial

September 7 through September 13, 2006
Naming a product line
Bizarre pattern maker
Zip code stats
Birth of a citizen
Do not ship samples to anyone who wants them!
Do sales reps do anything?
It all starts here
Spring/Summer 2007 runway fashions
Analyzing business plans pt.6
Finding a rep in the classifieds

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One comment

  1. Bethany says:

    I am new here so I love being able to read all the past entries. I just wanted to comment on the two posts regarding sales reps and sending out samples:

    I was a sales rep for a year in women’s contemporary in Los Angeles. We had two very large lines and three smaller lines. They were all amazing lines. The owner of the showroom had the most exclusive stores and the department stores. The owner’s right hand women had the next level of stores and all of the Dallas territory and she was the showroom manager. Then there were two other sales reps, one who had all the California stores and the other had all the Northwest, Nevada, New Mexico, etc. (Our showroom was only a west coast/Dallas territory). Every one of the sales reps were also road reps, taking the lines to different shows and if the stores were local, about once a week the LA rep would take the samples around to stores who couldnt be bothered to come to market. I was the assistant- took phone calls, booked appointments, etc. We all busted our asses.

    Now, with that said, I know there are crappy sales reps out there. But I also know, there are more designers who cant sell for sh@t. Frankly, there is an art to sales, and you either have it or you dont. Oh sure, you can learn, but when I was at Bubble, 99% of the designers there had no idea how to approach a potential buyer, how to show a line, and how to spot either a kiss ass account or a crappy one. So I feel sales reps are neccessary in building one’s line. Frankly, I think DE’s should put as much or more time into finding a good sales rep then into finding a contractor.

    One thing has been bothering me and that is the thing about having a sales rep buy your samples. I have never heard about this until I read K’s book. Now, I am not saying this doesnt happen, but I dont know any sales rep who purchases the samples, and I have been asking around. So at least in Los Angeles, it just isnt done. I also know that once the samples were in our hands as sales reps, we were responsible for them and if any went missing, we had to pay for them.

    The last thing I wanted to comment on was sending out samples to retailers. I have never been asked, but then again, I havent been doing my line for very long. Every now and then we (the showroom) would get a request for samples for a ‘trunk show’ and yes, we sent them out- but I believe it was only for a very select few boutiques we could trust.

    As a DE I ALWAYS send sample to magazines. I also know I may never see them again, but to prevent this I always pack a sample list, and a return UPS tag so it is easy for them to slap the tag on the box and return it. Magazines are my best friend and I personally feel they should be taken care of. It would also never occur to me to have them pay to ship. Frankly, they are doing me a favor, not the other way around. I guess if they offer to pay, I would take them up on it, but until that happens I am happy to ship.

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