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Aug 2, 2015

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PROTIP: Email Solicitations - A Guide to Effective Wholesale Via Email

I have to blog about this, I can't let it slide anymore.

Dear manufacturers:

I love getting your emails with new products being offered to me wholesale for my shop! It's great. I want to be on every manufacturer's email list.

When you send those emails, they need to have certain pieces of info in them in order for a shop owner like myself to make a purchasing decision.
I'm not going to drop $1000 or more if I have no idea what you're selling.

I can let these things slide when indy toy producers start selling wholesale for the first time. New and emerging artists have never done this type of solicitation before, so it's understandable if they miss some of this info.

HOWEVER, I would expect that a company with multiple product lines in shops, and a steady manufacturing process with several releases per year, and quantities in the thousands, would have this process down already. No excuse if you're a "real" manufacturer and you fail at the most important part of your sales process.

Things I must see in your email:

#1: Attach several good, clean JPG images of your product. Full product image, item in packaging, and some alternative side and back views. That's maybe 4 JPGs. Attach them to the email. Don't use a file sharing service, I'm not going to download a plugin just to view your product pics. If you do not want to attach JPGs to your emails, just provide me with a link to a page on your website which displays all of the images of the product(s).

#2: Minimum order quantity. 1 piece? 1 carton? Essential info.

#3: Wholesale price per piece/carton

#4: Tell me where the items ship from. US? Overseas? If it's overseas, how much is shipping to my location? Estimate shipping to East coast and West coast of USA per carton and friggin tell me in the email so we don't have to have the same stupid email conversation every time I get solicited.

#5: TEXT product description. Something I can copy and paste. STAAAAHP typing product descriptions/ backstories in Photoshop onto your product flyers and flattening them. I CANNOT USE TEXT THAT IS INSIDE AN IMAGE. I have to retype to whole fucking thing when I start hyping your product online. You're wasting my time, I'm not your secretary. In short, images should have ONLY products and logos in them. All info about the product should be IN TEXT in the body of the email. Don't attach a Word doc, that's just dumb. Everything you can stick in a Word doc can be typed in an email.

#6: When will the item ARRIVE if I order now? I don't care when you release, when you debut or when you start selling direct to your customers. The only date that matters to a retailer is the date the product arrives at their door.

Thanks. This has been a ProTip from Benny Kline.

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