Baby Jack Blankets continues to grow in more ways than I have ever imagined. We started our business as a hobby since I needed an outlet upon being let go from my job after having Jack. Now, it has grown into a business that proves to the government that we are making money, provides jobs and we continue to add to our team. Of course with all that hard work, comes more investments!
Since March, we have added a team of skilled seamstresses that work from their homes. They are contracted employees and have alleviated stress off of me to hand sew all of our orders. It is extremely important to me to ensure that our items are still handmade and I feel hiring this local team gives them a source of added income and a creative outlet allowing flexibility where it doesn't feel like work. Todd is our go-to embroidery guy that adds a touch of personalization to our creations which will be available in 2014.
Recently I have added Heather to personally help me as a virtual assistant. She handles all administrative functions and set up for new vendors, compliance, insurance and customer service. We now have a toll free customer service number where the voicemail message gets emailed to us direct! Heather has proven to be a guru with working with all sizes of stores and knows more about the procedures for Diapers.com and our new vendor Toys R Us. We are hoping to sell exclusive prints via their website and also provide exclusive prints to only our small retailers so they do not have to compete. Keep an eye out for our items all over the place!
I have been managing all marketing and PR for Baby Jack Blankets but it is very time consuming and a lot of follow up. I feel (and other family members who will remain nameless) that I am at my computer constantly. Connecting with Tracy from MODTot Media has allowed me to learn more about social media marketing, make the most with my posts and in time, I am hoping to add her to the Baby Jack Blankets team. If you happen to see a post that doesn't sound like me, please welcome Tracy as she has administrative rights to our Facebook account!
Upon networking with Tracy, I was introduced to her partner Amanda. Amanda is working with me to develop a clear strategic sales plan for 2014 and I am hoping to hire her as a sales rep to get into more baby boutiques. Wish us luck and we will keep you updated!
My husband and I currently handle all the packing and shipping of outgoing orders. Purchasing the DYMO labelwriter 450 has made this process easier. It requires no ink or toner and heat stamps each shipping label onto sticky label paper. You can find one + rolls of labels on Amazon. Well worth the cost! For now, the shipping/receiving and packaging department will stay as is until we have sustainable growth. Then we will add more to our team and perhaps a facility to handle all the inventory. Baby steps...
So there's a brief update on what has been happening. We have a lot of great opportunities in 2014 including and fingers crossed, working with Team Ellen in Spring. We definitely want to introduce #CEOJack and #VPBailey and show Ellen some dance moves!
Lots of love from our BJB family to yours,
Kelley - owner