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View Full Version : Selling Out: A Perspective From The Shop



J-Dawg
03-08-12, 12:46 pm
Man, what a weekend this past weekend was. I finally had time to put my thoughts down after getting knocked back hard by some crazy food poisoning that kicked in during Saturday night of the show. Then I came back to NJ (barely alive, haha) and had to handle a bunch of top priority obligations back at corporate. My thoughts for this piece are focused on what I oversaw at The Cage which was The Shop.

This year, like last year, we decided to go with a two-side shop. We thought this was the best way to ensure we'd have coverage on both sides of the aisles for those who might be interested in our branded gear and supplements. One concern going into the show was that we wouldn't have enough help to ensure that this layout would work. From previous years, we all knew how packed it gets at the expo, and then we coupled that with that fact that our internal staff would be very thin due to all of the events and obligations taking place that entire weekend. So about a month before the show, we asked a number of fellas who have previously been great interns at The Cage if they would have an interest in becoming Super Interns--an intern that would be help out all three days at The Cage and esp. in The Shop portion. We contacted 5 fellas who said they would be more than willing to help us out--Scals, Nixor, Phil800101, Razor, ChaseBrowning (+ intern captain ghost) and the beloved Mr. Dead.

These fellas along with the help of corporate staff, athletes and some of the daily interns really stepped up and were a huge part of the reason why we were able to be so effective and sell out of everything from The Shop. That's right, we sold out of every single item that we brought. In the history of The Cage, this has never happened before. Having these guys helping assist customers made The Shop an enjoyable experience for all who came out to buy our gear/product. That plus the fact that the demand for our gear and product seemed to be higher than ever, we starting selling out of some product on Friday and then very early on Saturday, the black LE shirts went, and shortly thereafter, all mediums and larges flew out. By Saturday night, we were down to a few 2XL and 3XL t-shirts and a few cans of Cuts/Stak and some of the smaller Animal Rage containers. Lesson learned from this year--Bring double the shirts from last year (esp Med/Large/XL) and bring more product as well! We know that for next year after selling out of everything that we really need to step up what we bring b/c the demand for everything was through the roof.

The customers that came by The Cage really kick ass. They know our brand well and the majority know what they want right away which make the transactions very smooth. But even if they don't know, everyone working in The Shop was knowledgeable about the products and brand that we all step in to help advise when needed.

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed working with each and every person in The Shop. The guys are really hard workers and made the time go by fast. I love catching up and hearing how everyone is doing in between orders and the slight downtime that there is. And from seeing everyone after the show at Metro, I'm amazed by how everyone is continually making improvements in their lifts and physiques.

In closing, I ask anyone who would like to lend suggestions on how we could make The Shop portion of The Cage experience better, please post 'em up in here. Let us hear what you'd like us to improve upon and we'll take it into consideration for next year. For instance--Did you like a one-sided shop from previous years? Did the two-sided shop work this year? Is there something that you would like to see us bring in addition to our shirts, product, hats and beanies?

Thanks again to everyone who help out in The Shop this past weekend. Looking forward, lets make '13 bigger and badder than even this year!

Mr. Dead
03-08-12, 12:54 pm
Nice...!!! I truly enjoyed working the Shop...!!! It was good to have face to face interaction with the people that make this Company so great...!!! I felt truly honored to have that opportunity...!!!

J-Dawg
03-08-12, 1:01 pm
Nice...!!! I truly enjoyed working the Shop...!!! It was good to have face to face interaction with the people that make this Company so great...!!! I felt truly honored to have that opportunity...!!!

It was great to have you on board MD. You were a HUGE help in The Shop. You were there the whole weekend and barely took a break. Tremendous work ethic!

smoothballer
03-08-12, 1:04 pm
I had a blast working the Shop as part of my floating intern role.

Suggestions:
- Obviously bring more of everything
- Keep the 2 sided shop. It worked out great in my opinion. Spread the wealth to 2 rows.
- Bring the gym bags. I had a bunch of people asking for them
- And this one is more of a want...a heavy weight Animal hoodie. It is Ohio in March you know and I saw Big Al wearing a Dickies version :-)

Universal Rep
03-08-12, 1:22 pm
I ask anyone who would like to lend suggestions on how we could make The Shop portion of The Cage experience better, please post 'em up in here. Let us hear what you'd like us to improve upon and we'll take it into consideration for next year. For instance--Did you like a one-sided shop from previous years? Did the two-sided shop work this year? Is there something that you would like to see us bring in addition to our shirts, product, hats and beanies?



Great write up and great question, JD... In The Shop, is there a line or mass chaos?

Mr. Dead
03-08-12, 1:24 pm
It was great to have you on board MD. You were a HUGE help in The Shop. You were there the whole weekend and barely took a break. Tremendous work ethic!

Thank you...!!! When I say I have a passion for the Company, those aren't just empty words... I felt truly honored to have that opportunity... To me, working the Cage is like a badge of honor...

J-Dawg
03-08-12, 1:39 pm
I had a blast working the Shop as part of my floating intern role.

Suggestions:
- Obviously bring more of everything
- Keep the 2 sided shop. It worked out great in my opinion. Spread the wealth to 2 rows.
- Bring the gym bags. I had a bunch of people asking for them
- And this one is more of a want...a heavy weight Animal hoodie. It is Ohio in March you know and I saw Big Al wearing a Dickies version :-)

Great suggestions D. You were a huge help in The Shop on Sat (busiest day!)

J-Dawg
03-08-12, 1:45 pm
Great write up and great question, JD... In The Shop, is there a line or mass chaos?

It's a combination of mass chaos at times but for the most part, with the two-sided shop, a line was formed on each side for most of the days there.

Previous years, when it was a one-sided shop, I'd say it was a bit more chaotic.

J-Dawg
03-08-12, 1:46 pm
Thank you...!!! When I say I have a passion for the Company, those aren't just empty words... I felt truly honored to have that opportunity... To me, working the Cage is like a badge of honor...

Everyone there could see your passion MD and it was very much appreciated!

Razor
03-09-12, 12:28 pm
Great write up J! That weekend was insane and one of the best i've ever experienced. The sheer amount of product being sold and discussions with loyal customers was ridiculous. Thanks so much for the opportunity!!

Nix0r
03-09-12, 12:33 pm
Awesome stuff, J!

One thing I would say, is that *maybe* some Universal product should be brought. It could just sort of not be outwardly advertised, like how the other Animal products were. I remember a large handful of people asking if there was any Torrent or protein on hand.

BamBam
03-09-12, 1:03 pm
Some suggestions... from an "outside" perspective (I only say these things as a business major so I'm trying to help a little lol)

1.) Bring the whole line of stuff- wraps, straps, bags (also had people ask ME for them... and I wasnt working), beanies, hats (diff styles), and like SB said, the zip hoodie or a heavier one.
2.) The way it is set up is awesome! KEEP the two sides and helps keep a massive line from forming and people seem to be able to come up, buy what they want, and walk away happy. No long lines, no time to NOT want to buy something.
3.) Along with NixOr... BRING UNIVERSAL to the CAGE! Doesn't have to be a ton of stuff- but Universal is the parent company and people love the stuff. So use that to spread our message and to spread the greatness that is that product. Maybe like 2 shirts, a tank, the zip hoodie (again, it's cold), and like 4 or 5 different supps). You could even utilize the end of the ANIMAL booth itself, furthest from the Cage area to put the Universal stuff. Or just split each side of the Shop with U/A. Let the people decide.
4.) More pop-tarts...
5.) Bring back the microwave... dunno if this was a hazard of some sort but I heard a TON of guys mentioning their food was cold (not that it really matters) or they couldnt finish cooking something or whatever cuz the microwave was gone (been there 2 years past).


I know alot of what I mentioned is about the selling and $$ side of things, and that is NOT what this company is about and I know thats not what the Cage is about either. But, it IS a business and the more you put your best feet (Universal/ANIMAL) forward, the more it can, and will grow. I know people would be happy to see a lot of Universal stuff their, outsde of The Box. We are blessed and very lucky to have u guys take care of us and put up a section like that for us to enjoy a shake or two during a long day, or to just shoot the ****. I think we should spread the love, just a little.

Universal Rep
03-09-12, 1:09 pm
Awesome stuff, J!

One thing I would say, is that *maybe* some Universal product should be brought. It could just sort of not be outwardly advertised, like how the other Animal products were. I remember a large handful of people asking if there was any Torrent or protein on hand.

Two diff brands... Doubt you'd see this in any big way... Kinda like goin' to an auto show and visitin' the Chevy booth only to find Cadillacs in there too. For that, we need a dedicated Universal booth...

Enforcer
03-09-12, 1:30 pm
Just goes to show that loyal fans will actually buy the products and not want freebies just handed out to them. This company bases itself on pride and customer satisfaction and the results of selling out the weekend just goes to show that

Phil800101
03-11-12, 3:12 pm
Amazing weekend J, always great to see/work/hang out with you bro! Sorry that you were sick on Sunday and had to miss things, but I'm glad it wasn't anything more serious.

I have two suggestions.

The first would be to bring more of the pamphlets/literature. Not necessarily to leave on the tables, but maybe to keep on the shelves and hand out to people who are interested. Specifically the pamphlets on what packs are available and stacking. I had a lot of conversations with people about different packs, what they do, how to take them, etc. Some people were curious about the whole line, including the stuff we didn't have or were sold out of. And there were others who only knew about Pak. In any of those cases, it would have been awesome to be able to reach back and hand over some additional information, or to be able to toss it in their bag with their stuff.

"By the way, here's some more info on the whole Animal line."

"Here's your Pak. I threw a few Rage samples in the bag for ya, and some info on the rest of the Animal line."

Besides that, given the sensory overload of the expo, who knows what people will remember? However, when they get home they'll have something concrete to refer to, not to mention that said pamphlets reference the ultimate resource...animalpak.com.

My other suggestion also has to do with something to hand out. I think it would be awesome if there were some cards made up that said something like "Want more Animal gear? Check out 'The Shop' at www.animalpak.com." These would be more for when we're really selling out of stuff, and some people are turning away disappointed. Or for those people asking for stuff that we didn't have at the show.

"You have any black shirts left?" "Sorry my man, we're all sold out (grabs card, hands to dude), but there are a bunch of black shirts available online."

"You guys have any sweatshirts?" "Not here (grabs card, hands to dude), but they are available online."

Obviously we wouldn't want people to (mistakenly) think that the LE gear is going to be available online, and if people did think that they might wait to buy stuff or not buy it at the show. Cards like these would have to be kept in the back until the right time. Once the shelves are getting depleted and stuff is running out, it would be something cool to have sitting out on the tables, or to be handed out when people ask for stuff that isn't/wasn't available at The Cage.

Other than that, I wouldn't change anything. I think with The Shop stock the simpler the better. Keeping it to just t-shirts, hats, beanies, and supplements makes it easier for both those of us working in the shop and for the customers as well.

The House
03-11-12, 10:23 pm
Two diff brands... Doubt you'd see this in any big way... Kinda like goin' to an auto show and visitin' the Chevy booth only to find Cadillacs in there too. For that, we need a dedicated Universal booth...

agree keep the cage animal. you cant mix

twoheadedboy
03-12-12, 1:34 am
It was really awesome to see the way the Cage operated, and to be a part of it, even if it was mostly just turning away customers on the last day. I would like to see a Universal (and Sport Pharma!) presence at the Arnold - whether in the Cage or otherwise. Universal has a lot of products that there just aren't Animal equivalents for - that's great, but from a sales perspective, a way to grow the brand would be to be able to put together a stack on the spot for a customer. "Hey I want to try Pak, what else should I get for an Animal/Stack?" Real Gains if you're bulking, Whey Pro if you're not, AWO stack, etc. etc. Maybe that could even be a separate booth away from/next to the normal sales table, schedule a 5 min appointment with an Animal/Universal pro to put together a stack for you - and be able to buy it there. That's a lot of product, so maybe have the buying function just be an ordering online thing, but have a kiosk to do this through animalpak.com or a preferred e-tailer. I think interns could do this but it might get extra publicity if a staffer did it.

I also like the fact that the Cage events and the sales booth were not really linked, unlike some of the other prominent companies there. Not like we needed to tie anything to sell our wares, obviously...

But yeah, I echo everyone's sentiments above, bigger and more!

scals
03-13-12, 11:28 pm
Yo J! Awesome getting to work along side ya. Had a blast. Always good to see ya and talk shop and SportPharma!