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WOMEN IN BUSINESS Part 2 of 2 Parts


By CarolynCHolland(9,534) CarolynCHolland



To read Part 1 of Women in Business click on WOMEN IN BUSINESS Part 1 of 2 Parts

This business offered interesting experiences.

First, we confirmed that an item’s packaging often costs more than the item itself. Using glass or plastic containers increased the price of a twenty-five cent item to forty cents or more. We couldn’t use baby food jars, a logical resource, due to some law that required new packaging for items.

We began packaging in plastic sandwich bags. However, to look decent, they had to be filled a certain amount. Anyone for a baggie full of ground cloves at today’s prices?

We tried waxed paper bags. It looks nice, but gets ragged looking soon. However, it offers the attraction of being able to label directly on the packaging.

We scouted around and located a nice variety of very small plastic bags that were attractive and held the required amounts. We recommended our customers place their purchase in an airtight container for storage, and found most customers were glad to have the lower prices and use their own containers at home.

There were some challenges to the business. Publicity was one. A disgusting problem was the few lewd calls because our phone number was distributed for business purposes., Marketing was the biggest problem. Not wanting to add the overhead of a store, we distribute from our homes. During the December holiday season we set up in a booth at a mall.

The testing reaction of customers was interesting. People don’t readily accept new business without “the test.” This means that the customer purchased one or two items, more notably the lower priced ones. They wanted to know what the catch was, suspicious of the low prices. But soon the customer returned, often with a friend, and made a much bigger purchase. They learned that we were for real!

Our spice table elicited numerous reactions from people. The most common was “I’m not into herbs and spices.” When possible, I’d very gently ask them if they ever used onion, garlic or parsley. “Well, of course,” they’d respond.

“Well, you’re into it, then,” I’d return.

There was the “health food nut” response. If you sell this stuff you must be a health food pusher. One of those odd people.

Well, I admit to being odd, but not as a health food nut! I admit our family avoids food additives, where possible. We purchase pure herbs and spices. However, the blends do have some additives, usually to prevent caking.

Another response is the “gourmet cook” accusation pointed at us. Anyone who knows our family knows that we would starve if we waited for gourmet cooking. With one no-sugar child, one minimal cheese/dairy product child and one vegetarian spouse, cooking is my last pleasure and delight.

Last, but not final, is the drug response. “Oh, are you allowed to sell ‘grass’ in the mall?”

Duh!

A neighbor who sells for a well-known company told me he wouldn’t want his wife known as the “spice lady” although it would be OK to be known as a lady who makes money for other people. Well I’ve been known as many things, and being called the “spice lady” certainly sounds attractive in comparison to some of the others!

Answer to Part 1’s question: What was the most expensive spice we sold?

SAFFRON, which we priced at $2500.00 a pound at the local grocery stores!

Please visit us

Thank you for visiting  www.ProBlogs.com/CarolynCHolland . Check the INDEX category to find stories that interest you.

I invite you to visit the Beanery Online Literary Magazine to read about a killer kitten (click on THE KILLER KITTEN ) and a tribute to Mother Teresa (click on MOTHER TERESA: IN MEMORIAM ) or click on www.ProBlogs.com/beanerywriters  and check the INDEX category to find posts to your liking.



This Blog Post has been read 3 times.
Posted to ProBlogs.com on Monday, January 01, 2007
View other posts by CarolynCHolland

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