How often do you reach out to the business of one type or another in hopes that you will at least be able to reach one of their representatives in order that you can receive the answer to your inquiry, but instead of actually being able to talk to someone you are forced to leave a voice mail? I think that we could all agree that in today’s society that more than not often tends to be the norm and not the exception to the rule. The message normally goes something like this. Thank you so much for taking the time out of your day to call us. We are very sorry, but we are unable to answer the phone right at this time. Please leave us a message and we will try and get back to you at our earliest possible convenience. Thanks so much for calling.
I have been managing a St. Louis screen printing and embroidery company for a long time now. I am well aware of the fact that there are many components to running a successful business is each separate link needs to be able to stay intact from the very beginning of the order till the time our customer shows up at our door to pick up their finished product. That being said, the most important single component is the ability to communicate with our potential customer. Everything starts off and depends on that. It doesn’t matter how good you are at whatever it is you are at custom T-shirt printing if you never end up getting the job in the first place. A significant percentage of our overall sales is from either repeat digital T-shirt printing customers or from good referrals. It’s been our experience over the many years of doing this that it is much easier to work with someone whom we’ve worked with before that it is somebody that we have no previous history with. This is because they are already extremely confident on our ability to process the order correctly and in a timely manner. We do not have to try and sell them on ourselves for our abilities. The overwhelming majority of our repeat buyers found us and decided to give us a try because we actually took the time out of our day to answer the phone and talk to them. We did not force them to leave a message and then eventually check our voice mail when we got around to it, and then call them back. If that would’ve been our protocol and course of action they could have likely just got on the phone and call one of our St. Louis screen printing and embroidery competitors.
In today’s business environment, it appears that voice mail is the most common means of communication when talking to another person. A person actually answering their telephone seems to be a thing of the past. We believe there is a lot to be gained by conveying professionalism. Give us a call and see if you don’t actually reach a live human being. We definitely want to talk to you! In spite of the fact that everything in our world seems to be digital, we are of the opinion that some things are better off being done old school.
Being in business for your self is certainly not for everyone. It takes a special kind of individual. There is certainly nothing wrong with going to work at nine o’clock in the morning and getting off at five. They collect the same paycheck day in and day out, normally. Even if the company they work for isn’t having a very profitable week. When they get home at the end of the day they don’t give their job at a second thought. Most people stopped their work week on Friday and don’t even want to think about it until Monday morning. I on the other hand, have never been wired that way. I would think to myself, why am I working for someone else when I could be doing that on my own and making all the money? Well, let me be the first one to say that there is a lot more to it than just that.
Being in business for oneself can be very tough. There are certainly no guarantees. No matter how good of a week you had prior, every Monday you are starting over with zero. That being said, there is also no limitation on your earning potential. I used to pray to God to help me figure out what it is that I should be doing for a living and how should I go about it. I have always been a student of people, and I can remember being at a very busy shopping mall in the middle of winter and I was just watching people walk by. I noticed that most everyone had on some type of custom T-shirt or other type of apparel with embroidery applied to it. I remember thinking to myself that I could sell that. I don’t know the first thing about it, but I did believe that it was marketable.
I have always been of the opinion that you can learn a great deal of information, just by studying your competition so I started to research all of the other St. Louis screen printing and embroidery companies in the area. I actually went into a few of their shops in order to watch their employees do their production and I can remember thinking to myself that they made it look so easy. So I went out and bought some very old equipment, and proceeded to get some business cards printed up and started going door to door and introducing myself as a St. Louis T-shirt printing and custom embroidery company. I was well aware of the fact that the employees that were walking around that particular office was already wearing screen printing on their jackets and hats. So I had to go in there with an attitude that invaded a lot of confidence not only in myself, but my ability to get their job done correctly and on time. I learned the importance of asking the right questions, such as how was your stock currently and if you don’t need any at this particular moment in time, when do you think the next time you will eventually be in the market for some more? They would normally tell me to give them my business card and they would be sure to at least give me a call at that time. That seems like such a long time ago, although it really hasn’t been. My industry has changed leaps and bounds since then. We now are a St. Louis digital T-shirt printing company that has access to the very finest and best equipment that is available.
When you stop to think about the significant advances that technology has lent itself not only to St. Louis screen printing companies, but almost every other industry, it is just almost beyond comprehension. Who would’ve considered the fact that information can travel around the world at the speed of light going back approximately just 25 years ago? What was then impossible and unthinkable in our wildest imaginations has become now, not only a reality, but everyday way of communicating. It’s such an amazing time to be in business for oneself. There is an old saying that knowledge is power. The point I’m trying to make here is that even though these advantages are currently available, they will only profit you if you are aware of them. It is also crucial that you know how to use them to their maximum potential in order to take advantage of them.
I can remember back when I was a young man growing up and I was doing things like promoting my company by cold calling. I would knock on people’s door and ask if the owner was available. Sometimes he was and sometimes he wasn’t. Often, the secretary or receptionist would try to act like a guard dog and I would have to go into my presentation in order to convey my objectives. This was actually a waste of time and effort because she was not the decision-maker and had no authority to make a decision regardless of what I said or how attractive the deal was. In the event that I was fortunate enough to even catch the manager or owner and at that particular moment, that still was no guarantee that she or he was going to give me the chance to get in front of him and convey my sales pitch. Assuming I was able to get a few minutes of his time, I would start out by simply introducing myself and asking him that the next time they are in the market for some custom T-shirt printing, I would very much like a chance to at least give them a quote to be considered. If I can’t give them a better offer than what they are currently receiving then there is really no reason for them to change. However, since we have never provided any services for them in the past, I would do my best to try and not only give them a quote for what they were looking for, but also try and bring something extra to the table in order to create an incentive as well as a very strong reason for them to give us a chance and get our foot in the door. I would mention that we were extremely proficient at what we did and we would be willing to pay extra attention to their initial custom embroidery order so that they would be happy to refer us to their friends and remember us the next time they were looking for a St. Louis screen printing or digital T-shirt printing company.
I don’t care what type of industry you are in. While trying to launch a start up campaign especially in the St. Louis T-shirt printing business, there are always a few common denominators. Every new company who is starting from nothing will share certain things that are in common, but at the same time they are all unique unto themselves. One of the things that all new entrepreneurs need to do is to get out of the thinking or mindset that they need to put in extra long days and even nights. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not insinuating that hard work is not important, but I am stating that when it comes to making a name for yourself and setting yourself apart from all the other St. Louis screen printing and custom embroidery companies out there, it is much more important to work wisely. You are no longer getting compensated for simply punching a time clock and showing up until it’s time to go home. I’m not saying that I’m against that, as it certainly has its place if that’s all you want out of life. But if you’re chasing the American dream of owning your own business, then you need to approach it completely differently.
I remember when I had a 9 to 5 job and as soon as that clock hit 5:00 p.m., I was out of there and did not give it a second thought until it was time to show up again the very next day. I can also remember having my weekends to myself. Again, there’s a lot to be said for this and am not knocking anyone for approaching life this way. That being said, I am an entrepreneur, which means all the rules have changed when it comes to making ends meet and earning a living. Just like everything else, there’s an upside as well as a downside and you have to weigh it out accordingly. Every Monday I start from zero. No matter how good of a week I had prior. This means that there are times when you can really start to feel the pressure by the time Wednesday rolls around and nothing has kicked in yet. The deeper into the week you get, the more pressure you feel until something finally kicks in. The very first jobs are always the hardest ones to get. After that, the momentum starts going the right direction and the other ones seem to follow quickly. It’s kind of similar to trying to get a train started. After the train gets going and picks up speed, it’s equally difficult to stop it. In other words, the better you do, the easier it gets from that point on. One of the things I like best about being in business for myself is that there is no limit to how well I can do. Unlike someone who earns the same guaranteed paycheck every week. Mine can be quite a bit different from one work week to the next. Another thing I like about it is that there is no commute in the morning. I can simply enjoy my morning drinking a cup of coffee and head to my office and fire up my laptop and I’m instantly doing business
It’s great to live in a digital society where information can shoot across the world at the speed of light. Distance doesn’t matter anymore as I can run this St. Louis digital T-shirt printing company from anywhere in the world as long as I have a cell phone signal and Internet.
Sometimes it’s the little things that make all the difference in the world when it comes to finding a way to separate yourself from the numerous amount of competitors. I believe that when starting a St. Louis screen printing company, it’s important that you have a plan of action, but that is only the beginning. There is a lot more that goes into it than just a good plan. There is an old saying that says knowledge is power and over my many years of being self-employed, this has proven itself over and over to be true. Hard work is very admirable. However at the same time, it can be overrated. Let’s be realistic, when it comes time to pay your rent. the landlord does not care one bit how hard you tried. All he wants is his money and he demands it to be on time. You can be running as fast as you possibly can traveling west, but if you’re going east, you are going the wrong direction. That is exactly what I mean when I say that hard work in and of itself is very much overrated. It’s much more advantageous to work smart. There is another old proverb that reads, keep your friends close and your enemies closer.
After well over two decades of running a St. Louis embroidery company, I’ve learned a great deal by studying my competition. For example, when I go to a major search engine and do a search that I think is relevant, I try to think like someone trying to find a St. Louis digital T-shirt printing company and ask myself, what would they look for? I type that into the search bar and look for who shows up on the first landing page. I click on their website in order to see what’s there. There is a good reason that they are showing up in that position. You don’t have to try and reinvent the wheel when it comes to marketing yourself. All you have to do is study what they are doing and implement the same successful strategies.
We consider ourselves to be the very best at delivering custom screen printing and embroidery, but there is a lot more to running a successful business than just putting out a good quality product. There is a lot to be said for excellent customer service. This all starts with the ability to actually speak with our potential buyer in order that we can come up with an arrangement that is going to be complementary to both them as well as ourselves. The more we know about any potential obstacles that you might be dealing with, such as a limited budget or requiring a very quick turnaround time, gives us a much better chance to overcome any of these challenges for your next custom digital T-shirt printing order.
It’s been my experience that e-mails certainly have their place for keeping a record of what was eventually agreed on, but there is no substitute for conversing audibly either face to face or on the telephone.
A lot has happened in the St. Louis digital T-shirt printing industry over the last 10 years. Ink jet application methods have evolved and have become much more efficient. Although the equipment is still extremely expensive, there is a large amount of use machinery available as long as you don’t mind using last years model. This type of equipment is evolving almost as fast as cell phones. I would not recommend going out to a dealer and purchasing the latest and greatest model on the showroom floor. Just like an automobile, it will devalue the second you drive it off the lot. It would make a lot more sense to just let someone else take that depreciation hit.
I’ve always been of the opinion that there is no status in overpaying no matter what your shopping for. A lot of the time you can purchase an extended warranty even if you didn’t purchase it from the manufacturers dealer. The companies who produce these state-of-the-art machines seem to have figured out. I can’t tell you how many people I know who bought one of these in order to break into the St. Louis digital T-shirt printing market and within two years it broke. What usually wears out is the spray applicators. When applying an image on a dark garment, you have to print a white under base. If the printing mechanism that sprays this white ink is not used on a daily basis, then the ink will have a tendency to dry out and harden. If that happens, the machine will not work and you have to call a service technician which is normally located out-of-state. You’re going to pay him approximately $50 per hour and that starts the moment they leave their warehouse. By the time they get to the airport and catch the plane you might already be owing that technician for over 10 hours. This is why I strongly would recommend that you make sure that an expert checks out your equipment before buying it used. I strongly recommend getting the extended two year warranty. It will normally cost approximately $2000, but in the event that the equipment malfunctions you’ll be glad you have it and it will be worth every penny.
This type of machinery is normally a great addition to almost any St. Louis screen printing company. It does away with all the typical color separations and having to generate films like the old traditional method required. It really comes in handy if you have a small run of 24 or less units and there are a lot of colors involved. It is so efficient in comparison to the old way of doing things. The very nature of custom screen printing requires that you have the exact same set up to process one item as you would 300 pieces, as well as the same exact clean up requirements.
Please remember us the next time you are looking for custom embroidery as well as screen printing and digital T-shirt requirements.
A lot has happened in the St. Louis digital T-shirt printing industry over the last 10 years. Inkjet application methods have evolved and have become much more efficient. Although, the equipment is still extremely expensive, there is a large amount of used machinery available as long as you don’t mind using last years model. This type of equipment is evolving almost as fast as cell phones. I would not recommend going out to a dealer and purchasing the latest and greatest model on the showroom floor. Just like an automobile it will devalue the second you drive it off the lot. It would make a lot more sense to just let someone else take that depreciation hit. I’ve always been of the opinion that there is no status in overpaying no matter what your’re shopping for. A lot of the times you can purchase an extended warranty even if you didn’t purchase it from the manufacturers dealer. The companies who produce these state-of-the-art machines seem to have figured out. I can’t tell you how many people I know who bought one of these in order to break into the St. Louis digital T-shirt printing market and within two years it broke. What usually works out is the spray applicators. When applying an image on a dark garment you have to print a white under base. If the printing mechanism that sprays this white ink is not used on a daily basis, then the ink will have a tendency to dry out and harden and if that happens the machine will not work and you have to call a service technician which is normally located out-of-state. You’re going to pay him approximately $50 per hour and that starts the moment they leave our warehouse. By the time they get to the airport and catch the plane you might already be owing, that technician for over 10 hours. This is why I strongly would recommend that you make sure that an expert checks out your equipment before buying it used. I strongly recommend getting the extended two year warranty. It will normally cost approximately $2000, but in the event that the equipment malfunctions, you’ll be glad you have it and it will be worth every penny.
This type of machinery is normally a great addition to almost any St. Louis screen printing company. It does away with all the typical color separations and having to generate films like the old traditional method required. It really comes in handy if you have a small run of 24 or less units and there are a lot of colors involved. It is so efficient in comparison to the old way of doing things. The very nature of custom screen printing requires that you have the exact same set up the process one item as you would 300 pieces as well as the same exact clean up requirements.
Please remember us the next time you are looking for custom embroidery as well as screen printing and digital T-shirt requirements.
One of the keys to starting a St. Louis screen printing company is that you have to have balance. I’ve always been a huge believer that marketing and sales are the two most important components to establishing any type of new business. You can be the very finest St. Louis T-shirt printing company out there, but nothing will happen before the sale. That telephone has to ring and then you have to convince the perspective customer that you are going to be their very best choice in giving them the best overall value for every single dollar spent. If you are not capable of doing that then you’re never going to get the chance to prove to them that your work is outstanding. In other words, it’s just another opportunity lost.
When you break down the anatomy of a sale, it has two major components. The first component is that you need to find someone that is requiring whatever it is you do at that particular moment in time. For example, let’s say that there is a local car dealer who’s running an unbelievable promotion. They can be the very best value in town, but if you don’t happen to need an automobile at that particular moment and it is irrelevant. The second part is referred to as closing the deal. You have to instill perceived value in the perspective buyers mind in order to convince them that you are going to be the right man for the job. There are all sorts of advantages to embrace by tapping into social media and modern-day search engines. This gives you the advantage of helping your prospective buyer to locate you instead of you having to locate them at that particular moment when they are in need of your services. It is so important that they happen to see you and that of your competitors. Our particular experience was one that the job started coming in so fast that we couldn’t even get them done quick enough. I would describe that as a good problem to have but a problem nonetheless. Again, you have to have balance.
A digital T-shirt printing job that comes in will only benefit you if you can get it done in time. In other words, if you commit to the job you have to make sure that you are capable of completing it on time. This can be extra challenging when so many people wait until the last minute to think about their custom T-shirts.
Being able to cater to the time sensitivity that so often accompanies these orders can be quite challenging to say the least. You hate to leave anything on the table because if you do not take it on then someone else probably will. That being said, if you can’t handle the stress and you can’t fulfill the requirements needed in order to get these things done on the requested delivery date then you would have been better off just passing on the order entirely.
Give us a call the next time you’re requiring custom embroidery as well as complicated digital T-shirt printing. It will be our mission to put together a scenario that benefits everyone involved.
We got started about 20 years ago. It has been said that necessity is the mother of all invention. Well that certainly applied to my situation. I used to be in the paving business and it gave the illusion that you are making a lot of money quick. However, reality was that you only worked for approximately 7 to 8 months out of the year. Winter sets in around November throughout the Midwest and it really doesn’t normally get warm enough to lay asphalt until March or April. The problem is that the bills don’t stop coming regardless of the season. The paving industry is a hard way to make a living as it is extremely physically demanding. You also have to contend with scheduling which is a huge deal because if it decides to rain, you have to stop what you’re doing. Sometimes it just looks like it’s going to rain and it never does, but you have to stop anyway just because of the potential threat.
I prayed for years and asked God to help me to find a better way of earning a living. Then one day He finally answered me. It was winter time and I just went up to the local mall because I was bored out of my mind. I happened to notice that everyone walking by had some type of apparel on with either a company logo or sports team on the front of it. I didn’t have any idea what it involved, but all I knew was the fact that I could sell it. There was something that the seasons actually would be helping me with, instead of shutting me down. By this I mean that every time the season would change, my potential customer would be going from ordering long sleeve apparel and back over to short-sleeved garments which meant that we would be able to sell to the same customer over and over again.
From these humble beginnings, we have grown to be the leader when it comes to what a great St. Louis T-shirt printing company should be. We also are able to set the gold standard when it comes to awesome custom embroidery applications. We’re a St. Louis digital T-shirt printing company that has the best equipment that the industry currently has to offer. We cater to a large variety of clientele ranging from sports teams to businesses to fund raising events and promotions. We can also be of assistance when it comes to helping you with high quality art and designs. Good clean artwork is critical because the finished product is never going to be any better than the artwork that it came from. If it happens to be compromised in any way, shape, or form, it is going to manifest itself during the production process. So give us a call and talk to one of our professional staff. We have the answers when it comes to getting you the very most value for every dollar you spend when it comes to meeting all of your silk screening requirements.
There is a lot more to creating superior custom embroidery designs than just owning a good machine. The first thing that needs to happen is your image or custom logo needs to be sent to a guy called a digitizer. This is an individual who creates the software that tells the machine how to sew your logo. Without a good software program the embroidery machine is actually clueless on what to do. There is also a big difference between one guy’s work in another. Someone with a lot of experience can actually take what would appear to be a flat image and create the illusion that it is almost three dimensional by using different types of stitches and placing them in different directions where it appears to jump off the background that it is applied to. This can also be done by scanning the logo and then converting it to a vector file through a software program such as illustrator. However, the very best work that I’ve ever seen was done by hand. Although scanning the image is quicker, in my opinion it just does not lend itself to the same quality for turning out a superior finished product.
Although many images share a couple of common traits, each piece of artwork is going to be unique unto itself and needs to be addressed accordingly. There are many different variables depending on what you are applying it to. For example, if you happen to be applying your embroidery to finished caps, then the logo would have to be created to be sewn on a radius unlike a T-shirt or jackets. One of the problems is that the design can look perfect on a computer screen but when you actually go to apply it to your apparel, it doesn’t perform well. You often have to contend with numerous thread breaks which can significantly slow down your production output. Different fabrics tend to push and pull during this process and someone with a lot of experience wants to know up front what type of material it is that it’s going to be applied to in order to compensate accordingly.
Many of the designs that we cater to would be considered complicated pieces of artwork and not everyone is capable of doing a good job when it comes to replicating this type of application.
There is also a huge difference between a simple left chest logo and trying to apply the custom embroidery to fill up an entire jacket back. The higher the stitch count, the more complicated the job becomes. Having a handle on the size of the image is a very important part of the process. Unlike screen printing, this requires very careful planning and attention to detail. The next important piece of the puzzle that plays a big role in this process is the type of material that’s being customized. Some people tend to do their design work in house which can often give you a little bit more control especially on time sensitive orders. But with today’s technology giving us the ability to shoot information across the planet at the speed of light, we have found that it really doesn’t speed up the process at all. All we have to do is send an e-mail to whoever that is doing the work and he can always make any adjustments necessary within a few minutes.
Please keep us in mind the next time you happen to be shopping for a superior St. Louis screen printing or a digital T-shirt printing company.