Taking Over Or Starting A Trophy BusinessMukesh Kulothia
Although the world is turning digital all around us there are some things that cannot really be replaced by a digital counterpart and the trophy retail business is an example of one such business. Trophies for sporting, academic and business excellence are a traditional constant in western society and they continue to be used just as they were in the past. People thinking of entering the trophy business need to build up or acquire a reliable client base consisting of academic organizations, sporting clubs and businesses, for which they provide and inscribe their annual or occasional awards.
The promotion of the business through advertising will help to build up the existing client base and attract new customers from the general public for items like christening mugs, 21st goblets and wedding and anniversary plaques. In the past trophy businesses offered simple plaques, medals and figurine trophies, but advancing technologies have allowed the introduction of innovative ideas for awards to include crystal, marble, glass, wood and composites, providing a wider range of options for customers and including environmentally friendly materials. There are some sidelines that you can include like display cases and a design service. You can have display cases built to customer’s specs, for single awards or for collections of awards. Desk awards, fashioned as business card holders or stationary caddies are examples of additional sidelines that can be marketed to the business world and also sold online. Always keep a good range of items on display in your shop for customers that need a trophy or award today.
Sporting clubs are one of the major purchasers of cups, trophies and plaques for awards so it is a good idea to contact all the local sporting clubs in your area when you take over your business, announcing that the business is now in new hands. Annual meetings with existing clients are recommended to keep up with changing trends, giving the opportunity for the business to show off new lines and advertise specials.
Every trophy business needs to have reliable suppliers, so you should conduct extensive research to find several wholesalers to supply the products you wish to market to your clientele. A wide range of choices is always attractive to prospective buyers whatever market you are catering for, so ensure that you locate wholesalers with quality merchandise and a reliable delivery service.
A trophy business usually includes an engraving and etching machine which is fully computerized and can handle a range of font styles and sizes and does not require special design skills. Available fonts and styles can be printed out on paper for display in the shop and in your brochures. A display of available trophies is also important both in catalog form and on the shelf examples. Trophies and plaques should be available in budget designs as well as higher quality designs so as to serve the needs of a range of budgets. Gold and silver plated products should always be available providing that high end quality choice.
Every Trophy shop should have an accompanying website to compliment the shop front and to attract business from other parts of the country. The website should be maintained and kept up to date so it helps the business to move with the times and ideally should include a blog for SEO purposes. If there is an already existing website for the business you are looking at, this should be given a fresh look so that customers can see that the business has changed hands. Letterbox drops of brochures can also be a good way to let the community know that you have taken over the business and additional advertising in local newspapers is another way to promote your business.
Include some product line that will make your trophy business stand out and give the business individuality. This might need some imagination and an element of risk, but let’s face it all business requires an element of risk to succeed. Choosing a collectible item that interests you will personalize your shop and also produce another business line to promote. Because a trophy shop sells awards for excellence, its own reputation for excellence should also be realized.