I’ve mentioned a few times that the last real vacation I took was a family trip to Florida back in January of 2005. A few months back we decided that since sales would likely be lowest in January (although we’re doing pretty good so far), we’d all take a vacation that month. Greg was away this past week. This coming week is my turn. I’m heading up to a Bed & Breakfast in northern Vermont with my girlfriend. Mostly I’m just looking forward to relaxing and not thinking about work as much as possible. Hopefully I’ll come back refreshed and ready to attack my ’09 goal. The holiday season wore us all out so it’s nice that we’ll all be able take a little break.
While I’m gone, my partners are going to be guest posting. I’m only one owner of four and, for the most part, their strengths are my weaknesses. I think it’ll be cool to see their unique perspectives on the topics they’re experts in.
Here’s what they’ll be talking about:
- George is going to write about debt financing a start-up. He does an amazing job managing our finances. I marvel every day at how we’re able to carry hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of inventory without ever having taken any outside investment. We managed to get started by just getting a few business credit cards based upon our personal credit, and then have grown to eventually doing most of our purchasing with our bank line or AMEX Plum Card.
- Mike is going to discuss holiday marketing. The reason we did so well was because he started planning out all of our sales in the early Fall. He spent time studying what other sites were doing, tracking how often they were offering sales, reading white papers on historical trends, and overall really taking a data-driven approach to our marketing plan. He’s going to talk about our tactics, as well as who the overall winners and losers were in terms of traffic and sales this holiday season.
- Greg is going to talk about forums as a viable marketing tool for e-commerce companies. Greg is the master of forum marketing. Detailed Image survived it’s first few years solely on the forum marketing tactics he and George created. Even now, our most loyal customers still come from the forums DI sponsors. For 2008 we returned 10:1 on our forum marketing. For every dollar we put in, we got $10 back in revenue. Not too shabby.
I’ll be checking email once per day for emergencies only. Otherwise, I’ll reply when I get back.
Enjoy the guest posts!