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Starting a New Business - How to for New Young People ?

Discussion in 'The Taxidermy Industry' started by RichMO, Jan 10, 2014.

  1. RichMO

    RichMO Well-Known Member

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    Over the last several years I have read a lot of information that is put out here. Some with designing a new shop (how to), how to document your customers specimen federal and state, and a gamete of other information. The one thing that I have not seen and thought it would be great (especially since we have so many new people and differently younger that myself) is how to really start a business from scratch and get customers. In some areas across the country there seems to be a large number of taxidermist some concentrated in particular counties of a state. A young person starting out can be at a loss. He does all the right things, takes classes, goes to seminars, and does a good job (I have seen this on this site). Someone new, probably is not going to get a store or business to display his work if another taxidermist is showing theirs. So with that said I thought it would be a great ideal for people with very successful business to tell new members (young and maybe not so old) how to start a business from scratch and how to start developing a client base. This may be a deep subject but if your a new person and new to taxidermy I'm sure there are people on here that can lend out multiple tips and great sound advise.
     
  2. scottdawg

    scottdawg Member

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    Not what you want to hear but it just takes lots of time and hard work. I don`t think any answer will be the same every situation is different
     

  3. antlerman

    antlerman NTA Life Member #0118

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    Word of mouth, and a hot wife/girlfriend working it for you at trade shows, gun and archery shops, processing plants, a few newspaper articles of some really cool projects or cool kills in the area your working on. Seen one guy have a big ole float with all kinds of mounts on it in the county parade and had hot girls handing out brochures along the parade route. Compete at your state convention and announce the results of your participation in the local papers. Once you start to get a few coming to you, provide them with good service, quality work, and word of mouth will do the rest. If you're any good it won't be long and you will be covered up with work. DO NOT TRY TO BUILD UPON CHEAP PRICES. That will come back to haunt you and bite you in the ash hole. If you don't have a hot wife or girlfriend, hire one to work the trade shows with you. Lee wouldn't get any attention if it weren't for Tiffany. Even if she doesn't do anything other than stand there and look pretty, smile, and hand out your business cards.......it will get people to your booth. She will draw in work for you. I know, it's crazy, but it does work. You know how SNAP-ON tools and others have the girlie calenders? I'm a thinking...............hehe. A cool mount being showcased for each month with Miss Month portrayed with it. The local hunters would eat that chit up. LOL Especially if some of their mounts were in the calender.
     
  4. double barrel

    double barrel New Member

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    Ant, that's about the most ridiculous post I've ever read from you. Maybe we can have naked girls or have our work in girly mags too!
     
  5. If you don't think sex sells --------you may be missing a few computer chips.
     
  6. RichMO

    RichMO Well-Known Member

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    While I agree with Antlerman and he has some good pointers (minus the girls), I was hoping for some serious answers. If you look at the ages of those on this site most are young in our industry terms.
     
  7. double barrel

    double barrel New Member

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    My wife caught me looking at a Playboy book the other day. I quickly explained that I wasn't looking at those girls, I was looking at that deerhead in the background.
     
  8. double barrel

    double barrel New Member

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    Rich, I think it is a good idea. People complain about newbys under pricing, doing sorry work. I think there needs to be more dvd's on business. After all, It's the supply company that is putting these taxi wanabees on the street by the thousands, and, they learned by dvd, so why not teach more about bussiness and how not to screw it up.Also, the public needs to be made aware of why taxi costs so much. Talking about nose replacement on a deer, I just got two back to back, deer mt with no nose. They want me to fix it. Is somebody not fleshing the nose enough? Are rats chewing the nose pad off of the deer because too much goodie left in, and d.p. not doing It's job?
     
  9. RichMO

    RichMO Well-Known Member

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    "db" I know that your right on these issues and we have all seen it. Including schools popping up and turning out students that think they know it all or can do it all. There are some students and newbies that do turn out great work and constantly seek to futher their knowledge..... But, "What did you (as a taxidermist) do to build a business and get clients when you first started up as a business"? I know some will sat it takes time but lest hear what you really did in addition.
     
  10. antlerman

    antlerman NTA Life Member #0118

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    DB, don't know what kind of sheltered life you have lived, but I've been to many many many of our industry's trade shows. ie hunting shows, which are everywhere. SCI in Vegas, Eastern Sports Show in Harrisburg, PA. a couple of times, Illinois Deer and Turkey Classic many times, S.Illinois Huntig and Fishing Days many times, Missouri's Deer and Turkey Classic many times, St. Louis Boat and RV Show, St. Louis Deer Extravaganza, etc, and etc. I have a big booth and we bring it , loud and proud, with a hunting loop playing on a big screen so loud you can hear it thru-out the whole building, monster antlers everywhere, cool mounts, and a hot chick or two. You have to stand out and make an impression. SOMETHING they will remember you by. Otherwise you are just another business card in the trash.. Had a guy call me this past week that meet me at a show some 5 years ago. He bought a replica rack, a cape and a mount job from me this week, 5 years later. (1800.00 deer head) Oh, and to top it off, his regular taxidermist is a good friend of mine and a taxinet member here. Had a guy call me from Chicago 3 nights ago wanting to know if I was going to be in Vegas this year at SCI. Wants to get with me on some work he wants me to do. SO......If you think I'm being ridiculous......you just keep on thinking that. I'm telling how to build clientele from coast to coast. The reason many of you stay small is because you think small. If you think a calender is a bad idea, that's cool. It might be my calender that your clients have in their hunting camp someday. Wouldn't matter if they was looking at the mounts or the chicks, they would have my name in front of them instead of yours.

    Why does Mike Boyce A/A get so much work? Ever been to an SCI convention in Reno or Vegas? I heard it takes him 15 semi trucks to set his displays up at that convention. Everywhere you look, there he is. Why does he have the majority of the richest clients in the world? Because he puts himself in front of them. H E L L O

    You think the girls are a bad idea? The guy from Chicago has naked bronzes throughout his house. He 's an art collector. Not a hunter. I doubt if he's ever even held a gun in his hands. But I've sold him two mounts that came to about 30K. You think the way to build a business is around a 350.00 deer head? Good Luck with that. LOL
     
  11. Mr.T

    Mr.T Active Member

    Starting a business should be left up to the individuals tenacity and desire, find your own customers, it isn't rocket surgery.
     
  12. Kerby Ross

    Kerby Ross KSU - Class of '83; U.S. Army - Infantry (83-92)

    ? ? >

    "Rocket surgery" ?

    What the heck is THAT?

    Is that a mechanic that works on rocket engines?

    LOL

    :)

    Kerby...
     
  13. EA

    EA Well-Known Member

    #1 thing IMO. Have unwavering confidence in your ability to make it go. They're selling us Bottled WATER for crying out loud. You think that guy didn't encounter negativity?
    #2 patience. You're not getting rich today.
    #3 Be prepared to work. You don't do it, it's not getting done
    #4 Don't worry about those charging less. I refer you to #1.

    If 1,2,3,4 don't make sense there is #5 Don't bother. Not everyone is meant to be in business.

    Eminem, Lose Yourself - I've got to formulate a plot or I end up in jail or shot
    Success is my only mother****** option, failure's not
     
  14. antlerman

    antlerman NTA Life Member #0118

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    and Pet Rocks. Cha Pets, and those instant seahorses where you just add water.
     
  15. double barrel

    double barrel New Member

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    Hey Tim, when you get thru tootin your horn and bragging maybe you can answer the friggin question. I know, let's all 40,000 members show up at vegas with 15 semis loaded with our stuff. I think he was talkin about young people just starting out with no buss . exp. Alot probably don't have a truck load of 200 class antlers and mounts. It costs a lot of money to buy African skins, horns and forms, lifesize and all. Some just starting out might not could afford to take off work and make a trip to vegas either. I saw the Boyce video too. It didn't tell the whole story, I'm sure. Next week, I'm gonna morgage my house and rent some dancin girls for a promo. LOL!
     
  16. antlerman

    antlerman NTA Life Member #0118

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    Hey, hears a marvel idea. If you can't afford the cost to be the boss, and own a business......work for the other guy. That's one of the problems with this business. Anyone can hang a shingle if even over the kitchen table and PRETEND they are a business without a MARKETING PLAN. I was trying to give you some marketing ideas, but OBVIOUSLY, you don't need the help Mr. I charge 350.00 for a deer head because I don't want to overcharge. I have yet in this thread seen where you have added anything other than your cheap comments. Not really worth much here are you? You surely are of no help or importance that I can see

    You want I answer the question..............OK fine. Get a business degree, then work for someone who actually owns a business and hone your skills. If someday you want to make the leap ok, after you develop the skills and talents and experience to have a chance. Otherwise vote Obama and get ya some free stuff cause you ain't got what it takes to own a business.


    Same advice I gave my own sons. One got a business degree, the other got a Phd in his area of interest. They combined their attributes and today own a very successful business together, after years of working in their respected area's of expertise for the other man.

    Being a taxidermist on any level does not a business man it make you. Some of the best talent in the world can't run a business successfully. But a businessman can hire talent and run a successful taxidermy business. ie Mike Boyce
     
  17. EA

    EA Well-Known Member

    I can give you an example of how NOT to do it.Not Taxidermy, but story is relevant.

    Last Oct. we went to our first tradeshow. We happened to be set up directly across from a competitor. We had a couple nice colorful banner's. Nice, Poster size sign's detailing our services. We all dressed in polo's with company logo. We had a mix of handout's like pen's, magnet's, sticky notes, brochures, cards, even some candy, made up in a grab-bag for show patrons who walked by. We also held a couple drawings for "Dinner for two" to Olive Garden or Red Lobster for people who actually stopped and spoke with us.

    One the other hand our competitor across the isle showed up 1/2 late on the first day. Only had 1 drab banner they taped to their table. Didn't have any handouts, only cards. No company logo's or presence. The owner ( A young lady) sat there with her nose in her phone the whole time and made NO attempt to interact with passerby's. People would walk by and glance at her in her phone and continue over to us. There was really no way to tell if she was a vendor or if she just sat down there to rest. Her husband was pretty much MIA for 3 days. They were so meek and in their shells that a neighboring vendor was using her table/booth to demonstrate products and they just sat there and let it happen. To top it off they left early on the third day too. Total waste of money for that company, IMO.

    I engaged every person who came by even if only to say hello. Some would turn to respond, see our signs and come over to talk. We gave away almost 300 grab-bags, and several hundred others only took a pen or a card or a brochure. Our experience was VERY successful. We ended up with 3 new clients out of that show. If you asked The other company what they thought of that show, I bet they would say it was a waste of time and money. Yet we both encountered the same pool of people..

    It all comes down to the work you're willing to invest.
     
  18. antlerman

    antlerman NTA Life Member #0118

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    That is exactly right Mike. I know from experience that I can not man a booth alone. I have gone as far as hiring personalities to work in my booths. The hours are long and the potential for new customers is great. Not a time to be lazy, or disinterested. You have to outsell your competitors. A friendly face, a smile from a pretty girl, anything is better than what you described. I could show DB pictures of my booths where people are flocked around because we bring it to them. We grab and hold their attention. If your not going prepared to do that, save your money and stay home because you will surely be outgamed.
     
  19. FishArt

    FishArt Well-Known Member

    But Mike, what if she was smokin hot???! LOL!
     
  20. EA

    EA Well-Known Member

    Wouldn't have mattered how hot she was Marty.. Her body language screamed "Don't bother me" ! You remember that look. ;D.. Actually she was attractive.

    There were girls there and It's a proven tactic to use them. Nascar, Bud light, Coors, NFL, all can't be wrong. We just went another way. I posted the pics before, but this is the model who contacted us for work. I'm sure people would remember her, not sure if they would remember US. LOL

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