I Wish Someone Told Me…


Please find some links and notes from the 2 Regular Guys Podcast. Terry and Aaron will be chatting with our good friend Erich Campbell from Black Duck. The conversation will be a wide-open discussion of all the things we wished someone had told us before getting into our respective businesses.

Sponsored by: Our Success Group

Our regular listeners know this, but 2 Regular Guys is all about garment decorating, a bit of fun, and no rants or lectures or selling. We are not doing this for our employers, but rather for our industry. For the past three years, 2 Regular Guys has been the first and the most listened-to garment decorating industry podcast on this planet! We are humbled by all of you tuning in each week. We work hard to bring you information that will make your business better, and our industry better. Take a look at our incredible weekly guest list and you’ll understand where this industry goes for news, interviews, and the heartbeat of garment decorating. Thanks for listening!!

Other Items:
  • Aaron was born on a Friday the 13th.
  • Terry is heading out this afternoon to teach screen printing class in Chicago with Atlas Screen Supply
  • Erich’s announcement “Regina Cassidy – It Takes a Stitch Embroidery is the winner of the Printwear Shop Tune-up”

I Wish I Knew That Before Starting My Business

Before we get going, let’s all talk about how we got started in the decorating business.

Comment on Twitter from Kristine Shreve at EnMart “Marketing is valuable and necessary. Marketing is probably most often neglected by new business owners.”

  • Scheduling
  • What it would be like hiring employees (How much of the business is managing people/personalities and not just production.)
    • Terry: Dealing with so many personal issues was a surprise to me.
  • About offering terms (credit) to customers
    • Terry: Guy with a months old check in his wallet
  • Where to learn more about this business
  • Most buyers are uneducated buyers
  • How much cash reserve I would need to get the business off the ground
    • I see this every day… customers buying equipment with their last penny
    • Harry at EZ: “Wish I knew I needed money for supplies and shirts in addition to what I spent on equipment.” The biggest problem we see with customers starting their businesses.
  • How accepted a home based business would be
  • How much time it would take running the business rather than creating and building the business
  • How little my suppliers actually know about the nuts and bolts of the craft
  • There was no set in stone method for accomplishing the tasks of this business
  • How much bad advice is out there on every aspect of this business, and how freely people are willing to share it with you! (We could dedicate a whole show to this.)
  • How much education is required to be truly proficient at the art/digitizing/technical side of the business
  • How much *business* I would need to handle even though I’m a *creative* person
  • Subcontracting can be your friend and help you bridge gaps in knowledge and equipment.
  • Harry at EZ: “Know that the business needs time to grow. Don’t expect a flood of customers the minute the doors open. How many new pizza shops have you seen close in 2 or 3 months after opening? What were the owners thinking? That business would be booming as soon as they opened. Businesses need time to get known, attract customers, to win a reputation.

Chat Log:

ErichCampbell: Hi Kristine! 🙂

KristineShreve: Hi Erich!  Cool that you’re going to VA.  Sounds like fun.

ErichCampbell: I’m still nervous, but I’m into it. 🙂 I want to make sure to give the most value I can.

KristineShreve: You’ll be great.   And if you want a consult on social media,  I’d be happy to weigh in.  We know how shy I am about giving my opinion. (lol)

ErichCampbell: I’d especially love your guidance on FB Ads.

KristineShreve: I could certainly help with that.  We’ve had some success using those ads.

KristineShreve: Self-promotion is hard to get right.   People often overdo it,  and soft-pedal it so much that it has no impact. That should be “or” soft pedal.   Typo. I think self-promotion is a bit harder for women too.  We’re taught to be quieter about our accomplishments.   It sometimes feels uncomfortable to be female and say that you’re good at something.

ErichCampbell: I have heard that a great deal.

KristineShreve: The happy yellow EnMart bags (our show merchandise bags) were everywhere.

2 Regular Guys Talking Decoration: It was like a feeding frenzy.

KristineShreve: We actually thought we were going to have a few fights in the booth over the last of a particular kind of stuffed animal.  Crazy.

KristineShreve: Dealing with personal issues that employees have can be so difficult.  I’ve held on to employees that should have been let go because I knew about personal issues in their lives. It was the quality of work, not the issues, that made them candidates for firing,  but I felt bad and couldn’t do it.

KristineShreve: That’s so true Erich!  There are customers of EnMart who will only talk to me because I can work with them in the way they need me to work with them.

ErichCampbell: Absolutely! I believe it.

harry 5: God bless credit cards, All that beginners should take.  Or cash

KristineShreve: What amazes me is the companies that assume they will be given credit when they have no history and haven’t applied for a Net 30 account.

KristineShreve: Such a good point,  people starting up need to budget for all expenses. I like that,  full price or free.   Such a good rule. I’m a big advocate of partnering with experts.   We have experience in certain areas but,  as the company grows,  we continue to look for resources.

ErichCampbell: You guys are stars at that. 🙂

KristineShreve: Thank you Erich.   It was always one of the underlying principles of the company –  sell what you know and understand how to use.

KristineShreve: Understanding the process is so valuable.  I’ve learned so much just from talking to people who run embroidery machines or sublimate or do vinyl or whatever.

Trade Shows

Other News/Events

Terry’s Books

Screen Printing: A Practical Guide to Starting Your Own T-Shirt Business Just $4.95 as an e-book.

Direct to Garment: A Practical Guide to Starting Your Own T-Shirt Business Just $4.95 as an e-book.

Scheduling and Estimating Production Time for Garment Screen Printing Just $2.99 as an e-book

Mastermind Group

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