Mixing Things Up

Written by Jenifer Gifford on .

For those of you who are existing sale organizers, you already know that after a while, you just kind of go through the motions when you have a sale. It's no longer exciting, you know exactly what to expect. So how do you mix things up so that it's exciting again?

During our November sale a new Lead volunteer came on board and said "Jen, I want to do a Flash Mob!" My first thought was "Are you kidding me?" But after I thought about it for a minute, well... it just might be fun! Okay, we'll do a flash mob. From there it went to "What song are we going to use?" Girls Just Wanna Have Fun? And another lead piped up "Jen, with all your Consignamaniac themes, why haven't you considered "She's a Maniac?" Honestly, it never even occurred to me. But she was right, that was the perfect song. Two guys heard us talking and one said "I can re-write the lyrics to Consignamaniac!" And the other said "I know someone who can record it for you!" In 5 minutes my sale went from "Oh, just having another sale" to "OMG! I can not WAIT for the next sale!"

The song is awesome, the flash mob was hysterical. So many of my friends pulled themselves out of their comfort zone to participate (myself included). It went a little something like this...

We even sucked one of the husbands in to "play" guitar for us. What a sport he was!

All in all, it was awesome fun and got everyone excited about the sale again. Now, I'm not suggesting you try and pull a flash mob at your sale, but I will say, pulling yourself out of you box for 5 minutes can totally re-invigorate you towards your business.

I'm glad we did it! Hands down, I think we can claim to be the most fun sale in town. And at the end of the day... that's all that matters. Am I having fun? Why, yes. Yes I am.

Consignment Sale Nicknames

Written by Jenifer Gifford on .

Our latest Facebook UN-Contest has been to create your consignment sale nickname. Let me tell you what a hoot this has been! And these ladies are so funny I thought today would be a good day to share some of these nick names with you...

Always have fun with your sale, think outside the box and you'll always look forward to the next event!

To tickle your funny bone:

Michelle: Ok so my consignment name would be " money in hand, mommy with a plan." bc u literally can not go to these things without a plan of what u are looking for. And of course, to my husbands dislike, I've got the money in my hand ready to spend what's necessary. Hope everyone likes my nickname cuz it is definitely ME!

Renee: "Make it all go away Renee" - in honor of our mantra when I moved. Now, I am doing it again. AND I am driving all the way from Florida with a car full of baby items to sell, sell, sell!!

Danielle: NOW known as Jen’s twin, I’ll admit, we act like kin! Been around from the start, A true Consignamaniac at heart!...I’m a pro at it now, But didn’t always know how…FORMERLY known as…“Purple tag INSIDE the bag”

Stephanie: "Hang. Tag. Pin. Repeat." Hang item on a (WIRE!) hanger, prepare a tag, pin it on, grab another.... Repeat process until eyes begin to cross, then break for cake. ;o)

Susan: "2nd Hand Susie" And proud! I'm a frugal fanatic. With a tight economy and one income, I consign, then use that money to buy what we need in the next sale.

Amy: My consignment nickname would be "Once, Twice, Three Times Lady Amy" because I always, always, always go around the store three times before I checkout. You never know who might have returned an item on a rack that you might like.

Phoebe: My consignment shopping name should be "third time is the charm" last time you had the sale, I came on Wed, Thurs AND Friday! I just can't get enough of the deals!!!

Susan: I have to be "Sweaty Steppin'-up Set-up Sue". I always volunteer for set up, I always break a serious sweat and I always step-up the game with improvements to the process. Love me some consigning!!!

Josie: I would say mine would have to be the "Telltale Taggers Elbow". I know about the sale months ahead of time and register for the sale shortly after midnight when it opens, but yet....I never fail to wait until the last few days beforehand to start tagging and I pay for it later! Speaking of which.... I still have to get started....lol

Erica: Hello all! My name is Erica "The C-Section Consignor". Yes. You heard right. I talked my friend through registering me to consign at the fall sale while lying in a hospital bed. I knew that by the time the sale rolled around I would be up and at 'em again, but I had to make sure that I was signed up.  Now THAT'S dedication,lol! My sweet girl is now 9 months old and she's Amayah, the "Safety Pin Shaker". She loves to hear the safety pins shaking in their box and she loves wearing Mommy's consignment finds even more! My son has a consignment name too! He's the "Marker Magician" because he ALWAYS manages to make my markers disappear.

Sunshine: Mine's gotta be "Shoe-Ho Shine". I head straight for the shoes the second I get there and end up leaving with shoes for both of my boys and my best friends' 3 kids...none of which we need!!! But hey, my boys have some of the cutest shoes at the best prices....and like Ashley, I can't help but tell people I only paid a couple of bucks for something!

Jennifer: I am the "Hanger Hustler". My coworkers always know when it is consigning time because I start asking for hangers. I have taken my husband's hangers from the closet and I went to a different consignment sale and snatched up stacks of extra hangers that they had. I have enough hangers to get me thru the next sale.

Ashley: Mine has got to be "The Bragger". It's like an illness - the instant someone compliments the girls' outfits, out of my mouth comes "I GOT THE BEST DEAL ON CONSIGNMENT - IT WAS ONLY $2!!" Whatever happened to just saying "thank you?" I can't help myself. I've gotta share the deals, which then leads to me telling them about all the places to shop, how to sell their clothes...it's a viscous cycle.

Reagan: My consignment sale nickname would be, "Please don't tell my husband i'm at another consignment sale Reagan". I know it's rather long for a nickname, but it best describes my home life during consignment sale time! Please like my nickname, so i'll win and have a great reason to shop early and spend more money and my husband won't be mad!

Jennifer: My name is "Likes to Tape the Label Down Cullimore" because I was meticulous about taping down every label on scads of toys, only to realize I hadn't read the directions and only ONE side should be taped! It saves a great deal of time if you just read Jen's directions!

Sara: I guess mine could be ' Lucky Ducky makes a Bucky' because every time I go to your sales I find exactly what I am looking for, & love making some extra money to spend by consigning!

Have a great week next week! I'll be heading into Girl's Week on Sunday! I can't wait!

The Best Way to Eliminate Your Own Originality

Written by Jenifer Gifford on .

I was perusing one of my favorite websites tonight and I happened upon a quote by Rush Limbaugh. He was talking about why he doesn't spend his time listening to or going on other radio shows. Whether you like him or not is irrelevant, it's what he said that is important. And this is what he said "But I have never listened to anybody else on the radio. There's a specific reason.  I don't want to end up copying anybody, accidentally or on purpose.  The best way to eliminate your own originality is start getting ideas from other people."

And there you have it. The best way to eliminate your own originality is to start getting ideas from other people. It all goes back to what I have told you before. Just because you can, doesn't mean you should. Your website content should be your own. Even if someone gives you permission, don't use it. Your sale ideas should be your own. There is only so much you can do outside of the range of hosting a sale, but websites, special ideas and slogans, should be your unique identity. Don't use someone else's.

A few months ago a new sale organizer asked me if they could copy some content off my website. I tried to explain to them what they needed to do to come up with original content for their site. Here is a plan, here is how you do it. She never called me or emailed me again. She wanted an easy out. Easy content. The problem with this is that inevitably, you forget something when you cut and paste. One sale organizer friend called me because she was receiving calls about her upcoming sale... an hour away! A new sale organizer liked her content and didn't proof her website to notice that in fact, the other sale organizer had her phone number plastered all over her website. Imagine getting calls about "your sale" an hour away and you weren't even aware you were having a sale!

The only time you should use web content from someone else is if you are in a franchise system or licensing agreement. Those types of business models will want you to have a certain amount of "uniformity." However, as a small independent consignment sale owner, you should never copy content, slogans or special ideas. Period. This is especially important because everything you publish is automatically copyrighted to you. When you publish something online (meaning when you write it) or when you send out postcards, etc, all of that is automatically copyrighted to you.

If you are going to copy information from another sale organizer, it is important to have all of your paperwork documented. You must have permission, in writing. It is also required that you site your source ie: that you indicate who you took the information from. Example: If you have permission to use a pricing guideline from XYZ Consignment Sale, you should indicate that on your site. "This information was provided  with permission by XYZ Consignment Sale XYZSale.com".

Copyright law is a lot to contend with and completely unnecessary. Focus on your business and you will not have to deal with these issues. Worry about what you are doing and not about what others are doing if you want to succeed.

Copyright Jenifer Gifford 2012. All Rights Reserved.