Awards & Engraving

March '18

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26 • A&E MARCH 2018 regional mortuaries and crematories. He offers a service to handle engraving for his clients. I engrave for him, as well as directly for his clients. We keep a small inventory of his urns on hand (at his expense) so I can handle rush orders efficiently. Note: Rush orders lead to a larger number of errors. Making errors on urns can be costly. Internal proofing and proofing with your clients is important. I often check names and dates that don't look correct with my client or I can often find the information online at their websites. I offer photo engraving and have pro- vided my urn maker, and the crematories and mortuaries, a catalog of appropriate graphics and font choices. I also receive plenty of requests for custom graphics and specific fonts. If you get into this niche, be prepared for a substantial volume of rush orders, some for lasered photos. I have made myself available on weekends and holidays for emergencies—the urn niche can be challenging but profitable. Memorial products are not only a market focused on families; businesses, non-profits, and government agencies also memorialize special people. People memo- rialized include employees, founders, long- time volunteers, board members, and even special customers and clients. I have worked with organizations that have created gardens, pathways, hallways, dedicated conference rooms, and even turned major equipment into memorials. Products include cast metal plaques, garden plaques on posts, metal plates, photo plaques, and even shadow boxes. City and county governments build veteran and fallen hero memorials typi- cally requiring sandcarved, lasered, and cast metal products. Fallen hero memorials include police officers and firefighters as well as soldiers who have made the ultimate sacrifice. These large outdoor memorials are a niche that takes a great deal of knowledge and experience to build a business around. There are businesses who specialize in this memorial niche, but you must examine your own market to determine if it's worth looking into for your business. MEMORIAL FUNDRAISERS Non-profits may be interested in cre- ating memorial fundraisers. A good example of a memorial fundraiser project is a book store that sells used books to support the city library. They have made bookshelves available to memorialize in the name of a loved one that has passed. Each bookshelf has a plate on it. A plaque at the front of the store may also list names that have been memorialized. For example, we used a large perpetual plaque for a similar project so it could be easily added to. Offering sugges- tions and ideas for fundraisers helps dif- ferentiate your shop from your competitors. PHOTOS Photos always offer their own set of challenges. We all want to provide our clients with at least satisfactory, if not A cast plaque for a high school honoring a graduate who made the ultimate sacrifice in the USMC. A plaque with a lasered photo of a volunteer supporting the creation of a fund to raise money for books.

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