Milkface Nursingwear Inc

What's new and on my mind at milkface

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Pimp My Biz Diary - Submission #9

It's been about 45 days since we were announced winners of the "Pimp My Biz" contest. We have yet to speak to anyone about concrete plans on how to apply our winnings. A general meeting occurred but no specifics. Waiting....

Metro News was our first contact. Ian came to the milkspace - the training, drop-in and breastfeeding lounge above the milkface store, for a meeting and discussion on what Metro was going to do for us. I came in with a few prejudices about print media advertising having come from the real estate profession and did not expect much from the meeting or this element of the prize package. Ian blew me away and changed my views and made me anxious to put our plans in place. Again, this part of the prize was on hold until we had secured a new location for milkface's second Ottawa store but I was ready to go.

Ian mentioned that he knew of us already. He uses the street parking near our store often and passes by on occasion. He has even been in the store - not as a customer but as someone interested in what was going on in the cute little store with the pink door. He had been playing with marketing ideas for our store too. He never shared then or introduced himself as a marketing rep but, being the creative guy that he is, he was playing "what if I worked with them" and came up with some ideas. His ideas, now exposed to the light of day and our receptive ears, are exciting and impactful. Expectations are high on my end and practicing patience is difficult when I feel this way.

In he end we plan to lay low for the remainder of the year and revisit in January. We are given homework to determine, and document our typical customer and her attributes. Like many things at milkface this already exists but has never been put to paper. Britt and I take 5 minutes and put it down, add some material on business philosophy, business mandate and past marketing examples in an email package and send it off. He's impressed. We show that we know what we want. Now his brain is put to work to develop the campaign to make it happen.

More to come....

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

PimpMyBiz Contest - Submission #8

The intent of our first meeting was to be more ceremonial than practical. A meet and greet with the contest sponsors was, in theory, a great idea but never came to fruition as the schedules of too many people never seemed to align. In lieu of this meeting, Mark from Newcap Radio - the parent company of LIVE 88.5 - called us in to discuss what we had won, how they would facilitate our receipt and use of the winnings and gave a brief overview of radio marketing. The meeting was fascinating - well to be fair it would have probably been boring to the majority of the world but as a guy who records, so as not to miss a TV show about advertising (ad persuasion), and who has a direct impact and benefit in how the prize is used I was rapt.

Mark knew his stuff and came across as highly confident and competent - a combination that is essential in the sales game. The "short" meeting lasted 90 minutes. I could only imagine how long we would have been their if we had met with the other marketing execs from the other prize sponsors. In the end Britt and I came away with a better understanding of what we had won and how we would be allowed to apply it to our future goals.

Our intention at this point was to hold the radio and print advertising until our expected opening of a second Milkface store in Ottawa (stay tuned on that one) sometime in Q2 2009. We were ready to put into immediate use the vehicle wrap and web media portions of the prize. Mark was on board with these intentions and concurred that our plan was the best use of the prize. Unfortunately nothing happens fast when so many people are involved.

More to come...

Monday, December 15, 2008

Business Is Good but what if...

Andy here. Sharing the Milkface board with but off the Pimp my Biz topic today.

I recently came across a blog entry from well known and highly respected (by me anyway) author, inventor and imagineer Seth Godin that I wanted to share for various reasons. His blog mainly covers marketing issues but can often be applied to human nature and why we are who we are (or who marketers want us to be).

The entry that caught my eye was an article on the human characteristic to share the stories of negative experiences, misdeeds and failures while we often keep those things we cherish - like your favourite mom store, Milkface Nursingwear and, a secret from others. He goes into the reasons for this and also offers some critically acclaimed enterprises that failed financially because they did not have the tools to get the word out - relying heavily on word of mouth marketing from satisfied customers.

We have enjoyed continued success at Milkface Nursingwear but need to be cognizant that our unmatched selection of nursing bras, carriers and nursing fashions, coupled with our compassionate, non-judgemental and down-right fantastic customer service may not always be enough to survive, especially in these financially trying times. For that reason I ask you as a regular milkface blog reader and milkface fan to let just one new mom know about us. We'd really appreciate it and so will she.

Seth's blog entry:

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