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    Testing of new products by our Fans!

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    We needed 5 testers to check out our new mini latch clips.  WHY?  Well, these are different than our regular mini latch clips because we had to make not only design changes in the clip itself but it’s composition also had to be changed to accommodate the embellishment.  Now we just need the final decision makers to tell us if our changes are good to go – hence 5 fans get their own set of clips free to test out for us.

    Where is the first place we go to look for testers?  Yes! Facebook Fans!  We had about 80 entries who finished the sentence;

    “If I could go back in time and give myself one piece of advice before I had kid(s) it would be ___<this>__________”.

    Here are a few of my favourite responses:

    “To enjoy and not take all of my free (me!) time for granted…travel, have lots of date nights with my hubby and do all the things that are a million times harder with kids…oh and move closer to my parents, it’s so much more work with kids!” -KL

    “have kids first and then get the dog.”-SC

    “That it is completely normal to love your kids more than life itself one moment, and then be willing to sell them to highest bidder the next. Vent to your girlfriends – turns out you’re not alone, who knew!?!?” -JB

    “Do something spontaneous one last time because children always mean extra time for planning and you will find it impossible to make last minute decisions again – even for simple things like going out for dinner.”-AG

    Reading all the comments again re-iterate the relationship I am able to enjoy with our Facebook fans/ baby wisp customers as so many pieces of advice resonated with me.  Thanks to everyone who participated!  The new latch clips will be on their way to you on Monday.

    Benefits of buying Canadian baby hair accessories if you live in the U.S.

    Benefits of buying Canadian baby hair accessories if you live in the U.S.

    The surge in American sales this week is fantastic.  It’s great for us and it’s great for the consumer of our baby hair accessories also.   These American mamas are smart cookies.

    1) The Canadian dollar is currently trading lower than the american dollar – around 95 cents which means you are automatically saving 5%.  We still collect full Canadian funds so it’s not like we are losing on the sale.

    2) We do not collect the local taxes so there are savings on the tax you would spend if buying within the U.S.

    3)  Shipping has proven to be just as fast and just as cheap leveraging the USPS and Canada Post cooperation.

    4) Our styles perfectly compliment the same fashions that are found in American stores and our products are not yet available in American retail outlets so it’s a great way to get access to such a unique product that you will get tonnes of use out of

    mini posh baby hair barrette

    Unique baby accessories that compliment north american baby apparel

    The question is, is baby wisp just being found more through google searches or is there Facebook or other social media buzz driving traffic?

    Colossal Blossom hairclip named

    Colossal Blossom hairclip named

    Colossal Blossom was the winning name on our contest!  The facebook fans voted and I can’t agree more with the name. It kind of rhymes and goes with the sheer size of this giant crocheted flower.  It spans 3.5 inches afterall.  I’ve clipped it on the end of a knitted scarf and it looks great.  Why should my daughter have all the fun?   From now until Wednesday, it is 15% off with coupon code Karen15 at the checkout.   Here’s the link if you’d like to take a look goo.gl/8288f

    Karen, was the facebook fan who named it.   Her daughter was one of baby wisp’s very first models so I can’t wait to see how she’s grown in the past two years.   That reminds me, I have to send off her prize pack! :)

    Focusing on growth

    Focusing on growth

    Off the top of my head, I look at the labels of any of the every day brands like Banana Republic, H&M, Old Navy, Club Monaco and let’s face it APPLE- their country of origin is pretty much guaranteed to be overseas.   These companies are doing well…really well.  I’ve been discussing some of my observations of successful businesses in the hopes that I can help other small businesses to see growth.  Moving manufacturing to the experts who control quality and cost seems to be another way to gain some scale in business operations.  I know since moving the majority of my manufacturing to China, I’ve been able to focus my business and product design and growth (the fun stuff) rather than spending time training, and overseeing all manufacturing.

    I support Canadian Business in many ways. I love handmade goods and will pay through the teeth for handcrafted items that are made in Canada as I will pay a premium to support local businesses with talent.  BUT I also support Canadian businesses that do not manufacture in Canada because I know they are still supporting our economy on many fronts (examples; the use of  printers, advertisers, sponsors in the community, providing other spin off employment and community support ) and you can still get a quality product that is made overseas.

    Business Growth Tip #2

    It’s another thing I’d like to add to my list observations of companies that have exponential growth and companies that…well….don’t.  Full respect to those who want to stay grass roots- R-E-S-P-E-C-T people! If you enjoy the manufacturing aspect of your business, then by all means you must continue to do what you love.   I definitely like to maintain control of my operations but I’m trying to grow this business to it’s fullest capacity in a short period.  I can’t manage the training and quality of each of my staff nor pay a quality assurance specialist to ensure this (I tried it then my sales and marketing suffered – I CANNOT physically do it all and run on two hours of sleep anymore) .

    So why this post?

    As I’m new to this blogging thing, I’m still figuring out what I’m trying to say and what I want people to feel after reading my thoughts.   I want to share, grow, and learn from other entrepreneurs who are successful.  I also want to connect with people who share or can respectfully disagree with some of my views.   I don’t know if I’m succeeding – I certainly hope so! Baby Wisp is a Canadian company foremost and we have embraced some global options for business growth.  I think it’s the best decision for us to take us where we want to go and provide the best products we can to our customers. For other business owners they have to do what’s right for them, I am joining lots of WAHM networking groups where sharing our knowledge and contacts is helping all of us.

    Successful Businesses - how do they do it?

    Successful Businesses - how do they do it?

    It’s kind of silly really. Every time I hear/ read a story about a woman who has launched a business that is crazy successful I get fanatically motivated to work even harder at Baby Wisp.   I wonder how they did it.  What makes that business so different from the rest?  Yesterday, I met with some ladies from Mommy Connections (Directors from East Toronto, West Toronto and Mississauga South) and a Stylist from Stella and Dot who had only glowing praise for their company’s founders.

    Consider the founder of Stella and Dot (who incidentally sold her first company for 90 million when she was 25 years old HOLY SCHMOKES!), who provides people like Mirjana an opportunity to be a Jewelry stylist for the company and take care of her 3 year old.  She was intensely flattering of the lifestyle she is able to enjoy having ditched the office job to be a stylist.  What these 5 ladies talked about was FREEDOM! SUCCESS! MONEY! ENJOYMENT! But most importantly-their families and trying to be there for the early years of their children’s lives.

    I find myself looking into more women in business and their stories (of course I read about the Canadian Inspiration Sandra Wilson (creator of Robeez)  ) and when I gab with other business women – we all have these huge dreams of business success.

    Success may be defined in different ways by each business owner as not everyone is motivated by what annual sales are.   Recognition, work-life balance, community involvement, and personal fulfilment are all part of the “success” in successful business in my definition.  I wonder though; what gives us a better shot at getting there?  Let me share one observation-  all these successful creators /business women aren’t shy about having their own profile pictures plastered in print, web, social media, etc., -basically anything media.   This is something I’ve been too shy to do (Yah, stop laughing to those who know me I AM SHY sometimes hahahaa!!) Ok, so here’s my “coming out” party!  Thanks to Carrie Duncan for taking this picture of me a few weeks ago at the Lakeshore Mardi Gras.

    baby wisp creator

    As I notice more things that accomplished business owners  do to grow their business, I may mention it here or try it.  Please feel free to share any of your tips or feedback that you’ve come across in your journey.