Category: Pitchmen Enthusiast

Here I am to revive Pitchmen Enthusiast and chat about Toys-R-Us.

Three or four years ago I ended my venture of writing here at Pitchmen Enthusiast. After doing that, it pretty much ended my many years of interest in the direct response industry. It’s funny the direction that life took me–to working in the marine industry instead–but getting my own brand out there as BoatShowGirl. While I love doing that, my Pitchmen Enthusiast blog gave me a passion for business and a reason to keep up with the industry news and it helped me in the long run. It was my weekly homework to help with life and my ideas for the future. I could find something to be excited about or a piece of news that would make me want to write.

That’s kind of what happened to me recently.

I saw articles on LinkedIn about Toys-R-Us going bankrupt, and the comments that followed… and guess what? It made me say, “Wow. I wish PE were alive so that I can talk about this piece of news.” And so, here I am, I am reviving it so that I can talk about business once again.

First of all–I solely believe that Toys-R-Us is the equivalent of Sears or JCPenney in that aspect–so are we really surprised this has happened?

The last time I was in a Toys-R-Us was a while ago and their prices were either double or triple the prices of say from Wal-Mart, Target or some other named store. In this day and age, parents are looking for the cheapest price of toys so they will shop online or ads before they buy to see where they can save some money. Secondly, mostly kids want electronics now and the normal every day toys of yesterday are being forgotten, or they play with the physical toys for only so long to outgrow them and want something new. Our world is moving so fast with new, new, new that hardly anything stands the chance of being constant.

I’ve seen some mention of this in comments or other websites: locally owned toy stores are getting the Toys-R-Us customers because they lure them in by way of being personable, or set up a play station. I’m sure that’s probably true. Local businesses are back in the game.

So honestly, this is really all I have to say about that, because again, this is one of those things that should’ve been predicted a few years back.

I am looking so forward to coming back and writing about business topics! Cheers to reviving Pitchmen Enthusiast!

Side note: I have brought back some old entries that you may have read and remember, or never have read, in the event that you want to catch up to see what Pitchmen Enthusiast is all about.

The History of Pitchmen Enthusiast

I feel that I need to give a little history on this blog in the event that you go back and reread some of my older blog entries that I have posted.

In 2009, the show Pitchmen came on and after a few episodes, it literally changed my life. I had the wonderful opportunity to meet the real crew of the show, got to meet so many different business owners and entrepreneurs through this experience… and I even got to have my little moments of being the go-to gal for Pitchmen updates.

Because of the show, I fell so deeply in love with the direct response industry. I had always been interested in business, but this just helped out the course of that. Ever since 2009, I have studied as much as I can on the industry and have tried to get my foot further in the door.

In 2011, I started a business blog called Pitchmen Enthusiast. I had so many inventors and entrepreneurs coming to me to share that they were at ERA or had pitched their product to Sullivan Productions / As Seen On TV or just to chat with me about Pitchmen. I had some marvelous experiences having hosted that blog. However, now it no longer exists, as this website (my business) took over any and all business that I had going on.

In 2012-2013 I had my first experience of helping build a company from ground up. Being a part of something that has turned out to be overall successful has been amazing.

All I really want out of this entire experience of owning my own business is to be a part of helping other businesses become successful. As long as I am doing something I love to do, which is the design and marketing, I will be fine.

I’m so looking forward to getting back into the habit of writing about business, reading up on every day business moves in the industry and meeting new clients.

A line or two of how to get on track of properly branding yourself, your company, and name.

While working on items/logos/graphics for the company I’m working for, I decided it was time to write something about branding.

Branding is a way of marketing and if you can’t market your brand correctly, then you’re pretty much going down fast.

A couple of weeks ago while coming up with plans on developing ideas further, I wrote down that we needed a tag line. One that will catch someone’s eye or make them sing a jingle in their heads that make them remember us. By accident, I came up with the tag line the other day while mapping out the sticker that I’m going to make for our boxes. It might be cheesy, but it’s completely smart and will make people remember us.

As I read a LOT of magazines, articles and watch a LOT of shows that talk about marketing, direct response, writing, business and law…all of which helps what I’m doing, I am taking note of the most important ideas and basing my “to do this” upon that.

To me, the logo must be nice enough to always keep and never change. People build trust, when something as small as the logo changes, then boom…your company has an issue.

Customer service is the biggest branding, ever. Treat your customers well. Let them have several ways of contacting you, and work deals with them. The more you help them get what they want, the more they’ll be coming back to you in the future. They might also suggest people to you.

Give out free items with your logo on it. Even though people may toss it aside after they’ve used it a while, it may help in the future.

While thinking of this, I keep thinking of branding myself. It’s difficult because I’m trying to focus on the work (our) business is doing but trying NOT to lose focus on my brand… even though I am doing that, sadly.

PITCHMEN ENTHUSIAST was supposed to be a brand a part of “Karen Maeby” representation, KAREN MAEBY [dot] COM was supposed to represent me as a whole and MAEBYS TREASURES is also a part of “Karen Maeby” representation but ONLY for selling items and eBay-focused business. Yes, I have a lot going on.

What I wanted to do with my brands?

I wanted this blog (PE) to be so business-focused and I wanted to be known for it. That hasn’t happened yet because I haven’t had the chance to write an entry every day and find lots of people’s business blogs to comment on. I wanted it to actually be focused on the direct response industry but then have topics of everything.

“Karen Maeby” brand was focused solely around writing and photography and anything artsy. I wanted people to KNOW me by my writing instantly and photos with my name on it has to speak poetry without the words. I put “Maeby” on my work because… (here we go with the tag line) ‘It’s never yes or no, it’s always Maeby’ or ‘Maeby, yes or no.’ No other one person has the name of Karen Maeby. People WILL remember that name because it’s unique. My work is also unique (only because I fight to do things difficult and the hard way but it always turns out the best). Not to mention, the whole pirate theme with me (21st century meets vintage/gypsy pirate /old soul). People will remember me if I am unique enough to the eye, mind and soul.

Maeby’s Treasures (which actually used to be ‘likemybooty’) – I changed because I wanted “Maeby” in the title. While my main site is pirate-themed, ‘treasures’ is also under that category, so it only makes sense. I want the unique part of my name on something that I’m selling so I can develop those customers and my brand.

Now that I’ve said all of that, I’ve found two fonts to represent me (one business, one fun). I’m making logos (or headers) and trying to stick with it. I’m trying to make schedule to keep writing, I will have business cards some time to promote. I already have a book out, all of my photography is out on sites with my name on it (and more to come), I am trying to develop more design with my name (like, sketches, clothing, etc) and other things. I already have a good base on eBay.

While helping build our brand for work, I’m trying to make following examples for my own stuff. It’s coming out good. I’ve redesigned the banner on this website, on KarenMaeby.com and I do have a new template/banner on my eBay one.

One step at a time….

The Beginning of ‘Pitchmen’s Enthusiast’

 

Ever since Pitchmen came on, I had always wanted to do a blog solely dedicated to products, direct response and Pitchmen-isque kind of things (instead of just a few random entries on my personal blog). I just didn’t know what kind of name to describe the blog/website, but about two weeks ago? It came to me what I am to the industry and what the name should be.

Pitchmen Enthusiast.

Yes, being called Pitchmen’s “#1 fan” by many has influenced this by a lot. However, the Pitchmen show days are over and one day I may end up having to toss my crown aside for I’m a fan of a future non-existing show. BUT, not today! Today I am not going to toss my crown aside. Why? Both Pitchmen and Enthusiast have definitions to describe more than one.

Pitchmen could mean – anyone who pitches – or even the pitching world as a whole.

Enthusiast means being highly interested in a subject or interest.

I am highly interested in the direct response industry as a WHOLE, and while that, I want to give back to the industry by also using the name of my favorite show because it has had impact on my life (for the better).

This whole idea came to me a few weeks ago when Discovery decided to let everyone know they were shutting down their Pitchmen’s ‘like’ page on Facebook. Other than Shark Tank and following everyone individually around, there won’t be anything like Pitchmen for a very, very long time — if anything at all in the future. SOMEONE needs to be the middle (wo)man to deliver news to those who are interested! And also, I realized that I am happier when I follow closely of the news pouring out of this industry! I have my thoughts/opinions and I have a big want to blog about the products, companies and the like!

So, here’s to the beginning successes of this blog!!

Don’t be afraid to say hi on my blog entries and please follow this blog by RSS or Facebook! Also, PLEASE recommend links, articles, companies or products for me to add on here — especially if you have one.