October '22

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3 4 G R A P H I C S P R O • O C T O B E R 2 0 2 2 G R A P H I C S - P R O. C O M A P P A R E L D E C O R A T I N G SO WHAT? GIVE YOUR AUDIENCE A REASON TO PAY ATTENTION S T I T C H S O L U T I O N S | J E N N I F E R C O X H ave you ever been in a casual conversation with some- one, and in your head, you hear yourself saying, "So what?" as they tell you about themselves? is happens a lot in conversations when we meet new people. And here is the bad news, that is exactly what happens in other peo- ple's brains when you talk about your embroidery business with someone you just met! e person you are chatting with is probably thinking, "So what?" as you tell them about your business. e key to changing that "So what?" into "Oh really, tell me more" is tucked into what you say in your very f irst sentence. Yes, it has been said many, many times before. But the advice is so good and so important that it is worth hearing it again. You must come up with an interesting way to introduce yourself and the services you offer to everyone you meet. You never know if that new person will become one of your best customers. WHAT'S YOUR ONE- LINER? ink of your introduction in terms of snappy one-lin- ers or sound bites. You have to be able to pique someone's interest in just a few words. When you can do that, you have created an opportunity to have a longer conversa- tion and the opportunity to exchange information with that other person. Some of my favorite atten- tion-grabbing introductions include: Think of your introduction in terms of snappy one-liners or sound bites. You must pique someone's interest in just a few words. (Image courtesy Debbie Van Atta, Southern Lady Gun) • "I make you look good!" • "We are saving the world one stitch at a time." • "Life is a lot tougher when I am not in your closet every day." • "I helped you start your day today." – is works well if they are wearing a logoed apparel item when you meet them! • "I help a lot of folks get dressed each morning." ese one-liner quips are unusual enough that they make the other person pause as they run what you just said through their head a second time (that is one of the secrets of a good quip). Ideally, they will then continue the conversation, ask you questions, or look at you with a "do go on" look on their face. Once you have that opening, you can expand on your comment to explain that you manufacture logoed, branded, custom, or personalized clothing and products. Notice that I did not use the word embroidery! Embroidery is a word that conjures up an image of a little old lady doing something in her hands with fabric, needles, and thread. at is not the image we want to have associ- ated with us and our businesses. When you change up your language and use the word manufacturing, they put you in a completely different category in their mind. DON'T FORGET THE FOLLOW-UP Take the time to come up with a quick statement that sums up what you do in a way that encourages the other person to ask you for more information. FYI – you also have to develop your next few sentences. You do not want to waste the oppor- tunity you just created by not having the follow-up conversa- tion well-rehearsed in your mind! Or wasting it by tossing out the word embroidery and having them put you in the "little old lady on the porch making doilies" corner of their brain. In this brief conversation, you need to be able to let them know you can create customized, logoed apparel and prod- ucts. You want to let them know how to get in touch with you and where you are located. You want to get their information and get the chance to give them your information. It is key that you always have your business cards on you. You never know if the person standing in front of you at the bank, in line at the grocery store, or waiting for their car to be done at the shop is the owner of one of the largest employers in your area! ey have to go to the bank, buy groceries, and get oil changes, too, right? Selling embroidered apparel often happens as you run The key to changing that "So what?" into "Oh really, tell me more" is tucked into what you say in your very first sentence. (Image courtesy Cindy Proctor, Busy Bee Embroidery)

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