It has almost been a year since my family purchased the Blank Quilting Corp. It truly has been an amazing journey thus far. I am pleased to tell you that the turnaround is nearly complete and the business is now running about 95% with just a few loose ends to tie up. So what has changed?
As far as product goes a lot has changed. We are making a concerted effort to get more licensed designers like Jenelle Kent and Christine Adolph to name a couple. Blank is now selling off of paper cad cards rather than fabric headers. This has proven to be a successful process for our other companies (Henry Glass & Studioe) and it is working well for Blank too. We have stopped doing business with some of the old Blank suppliers that sold goods that were below our quality standards.
We have greatly expanded the 108″ fabric selections and also changed, for the better, the quality of the 108″ wide to 60×60 construction. We have tightened up the basic cotton selections to include only the top sellers. We have a brand new website where fabric purchases could now be easily executed. The new Blank flannel lines will be printed on the quilter’s 2 ply flannel, not the single ply flannel that can be found in the chains.
The pricing situation hasn’t changed all that much for the new Blank. The only price change was a substantial drop in the price of the Sumatra Batiks. We felt that we were priced out of the batik market so we lowered the price to be in line with the competition. The prices on the 2 ply flannel and the 108″ wide did go up due to the improvement in quality. We expect that customers will welcome these changes and will have no problem paying a little more.
With respect to promotion, we have also been hard at work to get the news out about the new company and all the great changes we are implementing. The social media presence has been stepped up quite a bit thanks to our marketing team in South Carolina.
Customers and consumers can now find us on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Youtube, our blog and our website. Please register for all these social media sites to partake in the fun. There is now a monthly newsletter that is generated from our website, so make sure to sign up for that too as it is chock full of good info and any specials that we have going on.
This year we were one of the companies that partook in the Row By Row frenzy.
Blank is advertising in every issue of the Fab Shop news in 2015. We have been supporting all shop hops and all the great people supporting charities through fabric. Our reps are going to start supplying shops with our company decal for their window so the world knows where Blank fabrics are being sold. We have been supplying shops with loads of different mini reorder basic cards to make the purchase of basics easier. Last but not least, we just started a new promo on our blog called The Blank Blog Bonanza (BBB).
BBB is a monthly special promo that will be posted on the blog in the beginning of each month and will run through the end of that month. For example, this month we are offering 50 cents off all 108″ wide quilt backs. Not too bad! Check out the blog on July 1 to see what we have in store for July.
As far as the people go, these are some of the changes that we have made on that front. We decided to sell Blank through our exclusive sales team only. Thus, we have cut all ties with the US distributors for Blank. These reps are truly amazing because the majority of them are experienced quilters which is a great added bonus for our customers. They have the knowledge, so please pick their brains for ideas. We have reduced the size of the sales force in general and don’t expect there to be too much juggling of the reps frequently throughout the year as was the case under the previous ownership. The goal is for our reps to build a great relationship with you and to also provide you with the best service possible.
Finally, with respect to people, we hope to continue to gain traction with all the US quilt shops. We understand that some people have hard feelings against the old Blank, but I beg of you to reconsider since the company is under new management. Everyone deserves a second chance. I promise that we won’t disappoint you this time around.
So what do you think? Have you noticed all the great changes we have implemented? Do you have any other suggestions about how we can continue to improve our business? I want to hear what you have to say on the subject, so please contribute your commentary. I look forward to hearing what you have to say!
Until next time,
President of The Blank Quilting Corp.