Saturday, August 18, 2007

Coming Up for Air...

I'm not even sure what to write here. I've barely had time to think, but I know some of my family, friends, and loosely connected acquaintances may want to check this blog because they probably think I'm dead. Well, the reason I haven't called/talked/seen anyone is because I've been working 24-7 for 2 weeks straight. (The week before that I was on vacation.) AAAAHHH....vacation...

Just a second. I need to daydream for a little bit and remember what that was like. Here's a picture. :)

OK. I'm back. So, here's the story, morning glory:

On Tuesday, Aug. 7th, I flew into Salt Lake City, UT for the Outdoor Retailer Summer Trade Show. The show was supposed to start on the Thursday the 9th, but I got there early to set up. Needless to say, I could have got there at the last minute because trade show logistics lost my booth display until 6pm on Wed. night. So, there I was, sweating in my empty booth all by myself in the very farthest darkest corner of the Salt Palace for 2 days. If you haven't been to Salt Lake City in August, let me tell you that air conditioning is a necessity. The Salt Palace does not use air conditioning during set-up. Nice.

My booth space was also hidden behind a 3-story skyscraper that Saucony (running shoes) was trying to pass off as a trade show booth. I was feeling lonely, discouraged, and like a little fish in a very big pond. A nobody.

The show started. I started talking about our humble little product to anyone who happened by and before long, orders were being written. ORDERS, I said. ORDERS! The first day I couldn't leave to go to the bathroom, get a drink, eat, or answer my phone. I had no help and no breaks. I couldn't believe we were this busy. There were times when I was talking to 7 or 8 people at once. Finally, Dad got there and I at least got to go to the bathroom. That made me happy.

The show continued that way for the next four days. We sold about 100 pairs to people at the show who weren't buyers, but just wanted a pair for themselves. So, that was cool to see people from a consumer's perspective getting excited about Zinetic Pocket Slippers. Dad did a great job of fitting people and talking to buyers and press, as well. He seemed to be having a good time and getting pretty comfortable with the sales pitch as the week went on. Me, I have no shame when it comes to sales. I was selling all day long and late into the night.

After show hours ended at 6pm every night, I would head to the parties to network. And I must say that I did that quite nicely. But, even better than getting people to stop by the booth the next day or collecting important business cards, was that I made tons of new friends! Here's a shout out to: Eleanore, Brent, TJ, George, Lindsey, Galahad, John, Kyle, Bruce, Britt, Moe, Melo, Micah, Nick, super-awesome massage therapy student guy whose name I can't remember... and the list goes on... I can't wait to see you all again in 6 months.

So, to make a long story short. I've been working on order fulfillment, following up on leads, sales forecasting, product development, production schedules, new packaging, collecting outstanding payments (Oh, that part sucks by the way).

I do regret to tell you that I was so busy I didn't even get a picture of the booth. But, I am attaching our awesome press hit! The Trade Show magazine published an article on Zinetic Pocket Slippers! Read to your heart's content and smile for us.

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