Tuesday, June 23, 2009

By Request, Direct to US consumer Guerrilla Marketing

The Underwear Maven is expanding scope. I’ve had one US email and several email inquiries from international patrons interested in various marketing costs and approaches to the US market. While I’m not the expert, I have both "played and paid" for various marketing services for Direct To Consumer so I’m going to do a short series on my Blog.

My first expanded blog will be on “ How to get professional photos of my product on professional models and how much will it cost.” Check it out later this week!


The Underwear Maven

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Virtual Plant Tours

Low Budget Virtual Plant Tours save on Google’s Picassa Server

Consider a virtual tour of your manufacturing partner’s factory. Not the slick stock photos used in advertising material but a snap shot collection to capture the moment and the expressions of the workers. This link goes to promotional virtual tours but some of the examples might spark an interest for you. http://www.hilltop.bradley.edu/~rf/plantour.htm

1. You’ll need a digital camera but it doesn’t need massive pixel capability. But probably better than the typical cell phone camera.
2. Ask for around 50 or more showing equipment being used, lab, people, walls, and maybe even the inside of the “first aid kit”.
3. Now for the fun part, have the “camera dude” prepare a Google Picassa slide show with text narrative. http://www.picasa.google.com/
4. Then have the Slide Show uploaded to Picassa’s Server (FREE) and send you the link. http://www.picasa.google.com/features.html
5. Something similar could be created for YouTube but I haven’t researched it.
6. I stumbled on this when I tried to find a way to share my parents wedding slides. The digital photos were huge and I didn’t want to bother with reducing each one. Enter the Free Server option.

All for now, Sincerely, Lea

PS. While that we're on new and free digital technology, did you read Thomas Friedman’s recent editorial on the Virtual Mosque? It’s an interesting perspective that I hadn’t considered. He contends that Social networks like FaceBook, Flickr, Twitter, blogging and text-messaging have given Moderates a place and way to come together. Here’s the article. It’s driven primarily by the recent elections in Iran. I hope no one reading my blog will be offended. If so, I apologize.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Color Standard Options: Pantone and Scotdic

Color Standard Options: Pantone and Scotdic

Preface: If you’re a small company and sticking with basic colors just ask your manufacturer to show you several samples of the color you need and then just pick one. Ask for a yard and convert this to your color standard.

Here’s how it usually happens. The bright creative right brained designer discovers that one of the shiny pennies in his pocket makes the PERFECT color for his latest design. Mind you, not just any penny and certainly not a new penny but only this particular one. Since you can’t divide the penny and send it to your factory, QC department, Merchandiser, etc you need an alternative.

1. Pantone http://www.pantone.com/pages/products/replacement_pages.aspx and
2. Scotdic http://www.scotdic.com/html/color_systems/CottonSystem.html These are two color systems that sell chips or swatches of color standards.
3. If you clicked on the links for Pantone and Scotdic you should have picked up that these color systems can be overwhelming.
4. I found Pantone more widely available and used internationally
5. Personally, I preferred Scotdic for fabric color standards. Wal-Mart used to specify Scotdic standards but I don’t know if they still do.

6. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE Send a physical color chip or item (the actual penny sample is OK) to your factory. Never rely on Pantone numbers alone. It’s too confusing. Paper folks use one series of Pantone numbers, plastic folks use another series and cotton fabric folks use yet another one and on and on.

It’s been my experience that only lazy and weak managers refuse to provide physical standards because this gives them an out if they don’t like the color dips the factory sends them.

All for now and please let me know if you have any specific requests.

The Underwear Maven