May '16

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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2 0 1 6 M A Y P R I N T W E A R || 37 USE TEAM TOOLS—Your digitizing/lettering software has a tool for creating design and text combinations that can be automatically filled from your harvested list of team names. This can prove invaluable when creating a personalized product, though I encourage you to check each name to en- sure proper centering, letter spacing, and placement. These tools can provide you with a much faster setup and facilitate the output of designs for either multi-head or single-head personalization with ease, and likely offers specific output forms that show team name layouts individually so that you can get each name and placement approved. GET APPROVED—As previously mentioned, team naming tools can make this simple. However, it pays to send off pre- designed samples to your pri- mary contact for a final check. Nothing pays more dividends than catching an error, no mat- ter who may be responsible, before the needle hits the bag. ORGANIZE TWICE, SHIP ONCE—When required to break orders into specific groups, organize your infor- mation and product into these groups before production, including copies of the orga- nizing forms with production documents. Use these as a final checklist when producing and packaging the order. Even with non-sized items, it makes sense to complete and pack- age each team or group as a unit. It's easier to fill orders, allows for staggered delivery or pick-up if necessary, and makes it simpler to keep track of the overall order comple- tion. There's nothing more frustrating to customers who must answer to their players than explaining missing gear or making multiple unscheduled trips to your shop. THINK DISTRIBUTION—Remember your end user. Make sure to include copies of checklists and to package per- sonalized items either with personalization clearly visible, or with explicit labeling for individually packaged items wherein personalization can't be easily seen. This is the case where an upsell of value-added packaging makes sense for your customer. Keep the same ease you gave them in the ordering process going after the pickup is over. Every precaution you take with these to make their distribution and use easier increases their loyalty and their perception of the overall value of your product. FOUR STEPS TO PROFITABLE PRODUCTION AND PERFECT FULFILLMENT

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