Tag Archives: Business

Screen Reclaiming with a Heavy Duty Pressure Washer!

There are a variety of pressure washers on the market today. From household units that last about 150 hours to others like the 1500A from RhinoTech, there is much decision – making required whether investing $100 or $7,000.The thing is, you need this essential piece of screen cleaning equipment if you plan to reclaim/reuse your screen frames. The outdoor hose just won’t cut it, especially if you’re cleaning multiple screens per day. And, unless you have a constant and endless revenue stream, you are going to want a pressure washer that will last for many years. The video product review offers a great overview of what will you get when you invest in a quality machine. Yes, it’s an investment, but one that you won’t regret. The pay-off will be your bottom-line profit. Enjoy.

The video is a full-on, product review by Catspit Productions of the RhinoClean 1500A Heavy Duty Pressure Washer. But…watch at your own risk since you’ll definitely want one of these gems after seeing it in action.  RhinoTech offers FREE SHIPPING (as always in contiguous U.S.)  on orders of $50+! 

Thanks for your support of this Industry News site!

 

 

‘Green Up’ your Screen Printing Shop!

We’ve found HRG² 2400 Haze Remover that is biodegradable and environmentally-sensitive. It’s available in a liquid form and removes imbedded U.V., conventional and plastisol inks that remain on the screen following emulsion removal (haze/ghost images). It effectively lifts the haze and imbedded ink from the mesh, then emulsifies and dissolves the ink resins, binders, pigments, plasticizers, etc. The solution suspends resins so reattachment to the mesh surface is prohibited allowing for water-rinse removal. And it is an incomparable degreaser!

An Accidental, Screen Printed, NYC Discovery!

It’s a Chalkboard T-shirt!

While perusing St. Anthony’s Market on Houston Street between Thompson and Sullivan in the Lower East Side, on the look-out for interesting screen/graphics printing items, we came across the Chalkboard Tee by Class Attire. We were knocked out with this idea!

The little Tee’s were screen printed with a special chalk-ink (a tightly held secret by the originators, Chis and Jinyen) and featured a large star, heart or other design. The designs were big enough for little hands with little chalk to create to their heart’s content. We bought one for our 4 year old niece to test and witnessed first-hand the happiness and creativity that this shirt inspired. Especially important to her was the little chalk pocket where she was able to store one piece of chalk. Nice touch!

For more info: info@thechalkboardtee.com

Love these finds! Thanks for reading.

 

So You Want to Start a Screen or Graphics Printing Business. Here is your Business Plan.

There are many notable, highly successful business people who, without a Business Plan, took a big idea and just plunged forward with their life’s savings and made it. Some went bankrupt a few times before hitting the big time. Many will tell you today to just to “go for it” and don’t waste time on writing a Business Plan. The following will help you decide whether or not to just plunge in or to write a clear plan that you can have in your head and on paper. Good luck with whatever you decide.
Posted on July 17, 2012 by CAPS International

Don’t be afraid to “Create a Business Plan”. By following the sample outline that provides added explanation, we offer you a simplified way in which to write a logical, compelling plan that you will need if applying for funds to help with a start-up or existing business. Whether asking for financial support from family or friends; completing a grant or loan application, you will need a focused, clear business document to portray your well-thought out plan of action and repayment for Year 1 of your venture through Year 5 (potentially).

Here is the link to a the Small Business Administration, business plan template that, from a former Business Plan writers opinion, is a an outline worth using. Other resources include a whole host of books on the subject that often include a sample plan on disc. or those on-line that are uploadable.

BUSINESS PLAN SAMPLE

The Executive Summary is the beginning two pages (or less) of your Plan document even though it is actually written after the entire Plan is completed. It is the all-out final, enthusiastic descriptive summary of  who you are, what you want to do, why you can accomplish this great business venture; goals/objectives. Write it as if  the Shark Tank entrepreneurial crew of the world will be your audience (watch it ABC and you’ll understand). Along with the written plan, Robert Herjavec, a Shark Tank member, recommends  finding time to talk to people who will actually buy your product. Designate abundant time to his suggestion that will only make your Plan more powerful.

Business Description and Vision: short/concise business purpose, a vision statement (that is your perception based on research/talking to people of the company’s growth potential in 1, 3 5 years); goals and objectives; brief history for existing or start-up business – discuss how/why/goals met/will be met to date; name of company officers or board members.

Definition of the Market: Use trade publications and stats to describe screen printing industry/outlook; define the critical needs of your perceived or existing market or why you believe (facts/#’s) your business will fulfill a niche in the industry; your target market and how you found them along with their general profile (non-profit agencies, senior clientele etc); your current and potential market share and how you figured that out (interviewed 100 people, etc).

Description of Products and Services (why they’re so great/how they fulfill a need): description of your products/services (how much they sell for) and why they are/will be competitive. In this segment, reference images of your work, brochures, a website; physical location of business (walk-in traffic, web site potential) that will be in plan appendix.

Organization and Management: Include an Organization Chart and description of how company is organized. Keep it short/concise so the general flow of operations is understood; convey whether it’s a proprietorship, partnership, corporation, etc.; identify necessary or special licenses and/or permits you have acquired or will need; list of key managers/staff w/brief bio (education, experience, financial background etc.).

Marketing and Sales Strategy: identify/describe who your customers are/will be; what/how you will fulfill their needs; what the demand is for your products & services (and how you figured that out; how you will distribute and promote products/services (social media, web store, outside/inside sales etc.); identify the 4 Ps of your SALES STRATEGY that are pricing, promotion, products and place.

AND THIS IS THE BIGGIE because the individuals and/or institutions who you are requesting a loan from need to know that you have a REALISTIC knowledge of the financial projection/commitment it’s going to take to build and sustain the business.

Financial Management for a New Business: estimate of start-up costs and how you figured them (CAPS International will provide you with a free estimate of screen printing equipment and supplies); a projected balance sheet (1, 3, 5 years forward); a projected income statement (1, 3, 5 years forward); a projected cash flow statement (12 months forward).

For an Existing Business (this is standard):  balance sheets (last 3 years); income statements (last 3 years); cash flow statement (12 months).

If Applying for a Loan (in addition to the above): current personal financial statement on each principal/partner/investor; federal tax return for prior year. These are standard.

 

Powerful Business Tools Learned from a Book on Child Rearing

How to handle the irate customer? Check out How to Talk so Kids will Listen & Listen so Kids will Talk  by Adel Farber and Elaine Mazlish (the teen version is equally excellent). This bible of child rearing is one of the best non-business books that makes perfect sense in the business world. Read it and you will believe.

One of the best take-aways from the book was how to use the following expressions Uh-huh, Oh, Interesting, Really? I See and Mmm, along with sympathetic silence, during a customer rant. It was astonishing at how powerful these simple little words made it possible to diffuse/resolve a situation with the irate, unreasonable, emotionally charged, often loud, unhappy-and-wanting-justice customer in the calmest, most peaceful way possible. Speaking from experience, these practical tactics (and some appropriately interjected humor) help to restore sanity and harmony in a tough customer/workplace situation. Though we might fantasize about strongly articulating, why you gotta be so mean?, logically, we know that a defensive posture will just be a lose-lose situation. In the end, what we really want is to retain a customer who will remember that we tried hard to solve a problem to his/her satisfaction.

Here is an excerpt from a summary of the book …..The more I move through life and the business world, however, I am struck how the same techniques enhance communication between adults in all aspects of life. This book should also be listed in the Business/Management section. It says all the same things the high-priced consultants say — treat people with respect, do not deny their emotions, state the facts (only) and shut up and listen. This book also talks about giving praise and recognition, which makes it another reason to use it in real life, inside the family AND outside in the “real” world.

Some tips with tactics from the book:

Apologize and Listen. Immediately respond to the customer problem with, You do sound unhappy, my apologies. Let me help you. (or)  I’m so sorry, I want to try and turn this around (or)  if all else fails, It sounds like we owe you an apology.

Then…let the customer talk and respond at intervals with, Oh (or) Interesting (or) Uh huh (or) Really? (or) Mmm (or) I See (non-judgmental words) so that the customer knows you are listening.

Treat people with respect: actively listen, acknowledge with short bursts of Oh (or) Interesting (or) Uh huh (or) Really? (or) Mmm (or) I See. If appropriate, throw in a that does sound frustrating. As the customer is able to air the complaint, he/she should start to calm down.

On the other hand, if the customer is just becoming increasingly angry and/or abusive, try to retain integrity and calm and say something like,  I understand that you’re very unhappy and I want to help you, but at this point I need to put the president of the company on the phone (or) I need to ask for your name and number so that the president of the company can call you back

State the facts back: Ask yes or no questions, only, to get the full details  of the complaint. And to reach a resolution. Once you think you  have it, remain sympathetic. State back the problem and resolution. Gain agreement that the resolution you’ve discussed is understood by the customer. Say something like: So that we’re both comfortable (another good word from the book), we’ve decided that our company will fix the equipment and you will pay to have it shipped to our location (or) Just to confirm, you understand the step-by-step set-up instructions and you are now comfortable in completing the set-up?

Thank the person for calling; document the conversation point by point.

And be awed at the huge impact of Oh (or) Interesting (or) Uh huh (or) Really? (or) Mmm (or) I See!

Hope this was helpful. Thanks for reading and subscribing!

How To Photograph Your Screen Printed Tee Shirts 101

Wanted to share this blog by Jonathan at Catspit Productions. It’s well done and answers the question for many of us who are often frustrated with the process. The Catspit Forum is a great place for Q and A.

Thanks for checking out this video and subscribing.

 

 

More Tips in the Social Media Realm

Thanks to BrandLove for the incredible 9 tips toward Building Your Personal Brand on LinkedIn. I worked the tips on my personal page to highlight my business and business page on LinkedIn. Here are the results:

Tip # 1 regarding Completeness of Profile: I agree that you should complete each section on the profile, but because I really want to highlight my business and not my personal profile, some sections (sadly) are not as complete as I’d like them to be.  Following Tip # 4 (rearranging profile), however, I moved the incomplete sections to the bottom of the page to emphasize a focus on my company and key words. Eventually, all sections will be finished.

Tip # 2: Regarding a Vanity URL. I created one. It was easy by just following the steps, as described. And I agree, it will be so much easier and less time consuming to find me and my business on LinkedIn.

Tip # 3: Regarding the creation of “sexier, more appealing links, again, I followed the directions and named my sites instead of just using the plain old Blog moniker. I used all three website links; though I’m not sure they’re sexier, at least they now have a more explicit description. These changes should definitely “help optimize my profile and drive Google PageRank to our other web properties.”

Tip # 4: Rearranging my Profile was easy. Again, I just followed the steps and moved the areas that I felt weren’t as complete to the bottom of the profile. Now my profile is highlighted with all complete sections at the beginning. And my business information, including the blogs I’ve posted, will also show up more clearly.

Tip # 5: Regarding Search Engine Optimization of Your Profile, I took this to heart and went to town. Each section now focuses on key words used in my business and industry.  I want our business to be easily extracted from all other companies in my industry and by increasing the number of key words we have the potential to be found by increased numbers of people.  I’m excited about the new format.

 Tip # 6: I changed my headline to emphasize key words closest to my business and industry.  In this way, LinkedIn is more likely to pick up my profile/business for those searching for screen or graphics printing or similar words. Optimize, optimize, optimize!

Tip # 7: Regarding Joining other Groups, I followed this tip prior to reading the tip by initially joining groups as soon as I developed a LinkedIn profile. I continue to learn how to navigate the four groups I’ve connected and have to say that I have connected with some exceedingly helpful group members. I intentionally kept the original number small until I learned the basics of belonging to groups. The only downside (that is also an upside, I suppose) is that I was  overloaded initially with requests to follow/like members on  FB and Twitter. It’s calmed down a bit, but seeing all those requests initially upped my anxiety level too much. Now it’s under control.

Tip # 8: I love this tip about adding Applications! Again, I followed the directions and immediately became linked.  Some great links are listed and I encourage you to try this step. I’m going to add more.

Tip # 9:  I’m taking the liberty of just sharing the tip in its entirely because it’s great the way it was written. Here’s how to Build Your Network. Once your profile is in good shape, work on building your network. Here are some things to keep in mind: when asking to connect with someone, use “we’ve done business together” rather than “friend.” Be sure to personalize any requests to connect with how you know the person or where you met or who you have in common.  If you do decide to try to connect with someone who may not know you well, be absolutely sure that you defend your network invite in the personal note section, such as saying you just purchased their book or saw them speak at a major conference. If you invite people to your network and they mark your invitation as someone they do not know, you will be banned (temporarily) from inviting new people to your network unless you know their email address.

 Thanks for following. I hope this industry-related news will help you be even more successful.

Do Good, Receive Mass Exposure.

“Giving back” is the right thing to do. It feeds our sense of social justice and “helps to repair the world”.  Even in down economic times, when we’ve only been able to give in-kind and not monetarily, it is easy to remain involved and active to help others in our communities who are most in-need (such as the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation).

With the past few years being so tough, economically, we know lots of small business owners who’ve questioned whether they should continue on this path of giving. How can a business afford to continue to give even in-kind assistance when, for example, they struggle with the escalating price of raw materials, the need to meet employee salaries, on-going marketing/advertising needs when budgets are virtually non-existent; when the need to spend money on trade-show exhibits or attendance is important?

The answer is, without hesitation, is that it’s our inherent make-up as human beings to help those in-need and it’s just the right thing to do. And another answer is that, in the process, this continued involvement will definitely, most assuredly, open up avenues for networking, exposure and sales opportunities for your business. Really, it’s a win-win situation with long-term benefit.

There are many upsides to partnering/supporting one (or more) of the zillions of worthy non-profits. Instead of donating money, VOLUNTEER to design/print T-shirts or hats or signs for a fundraising event. This will give you extraordinary visibility,  the non-profit will be immensely grateful and you will generate a mass marketing campaign for your company when the signs, t-shirts, hats, hoodies, jackets that you printed also include the name of your company. For example, “T-shirts designed/printed and donated by The Best Printing Company in the World”.

Think about the JDRF annual Walk for the Cure. Literally, thousands of walkers will view the t-shirt design you printed on the back of the shirt with your logo and name designating your company as the contributor. This, alone, will magnify one-on-one discussions about what your company does and why you became involved. The networking and card trading will ensue from there – all on a Saturday morning. And don’t forget to follow-up.

Additionally, when you contribute shirts, hats, signs, etc, 1) your company’s  name will appear in all written pieces by the organization; 2) your company’s name will appear in e-newsletters thanking you as a contributor or sponsor depending on the level of commitment; 3) make sure that you send photo’s of the team and t-shirt/hat/sign images with a brief description of the event and your contribution to the editors of the business and community  sections of all major local  and regional papers. Smaller, neighborhood papers and other speciality publications welcome these types of news stories; 4) be prompt in sending the same information to trade publications and other on-line industry news sites (like this one) so that your company will gain optimal exposure; 5) make sure to post pictures with date/time/place/name of event and what you contributed on Facebook, Twitter, blogs, this INDUSTRY NEWS site and other social media your company uses.

In the end, your company will reap the benefits of this additional exposure both socially and economically from the new customers who will choose to send their business your way as a result of your company’s community service. Company employees will receive an opportunity to champion a great organization and cause as a result of their involvement. And it will be just plain fun. How can you lose? Best of luck.

THANKS FOR READING and SUBSCRIBING and OFFERING  INDUSTRY NEWS-WORTHY INFORMATION.

NEW PARTNERSHIP SHAKES UP SCREEN PRINTING WORLD

RhinoTech and Graphics One, LLC, Announce a New Screen Transfer Technology  and Technology Partnership

RhinoTech, an industry leading manufacturer of screen and graphics printing equipment, screen frame adhesives, such as RhinoBond, environmentally-sensitive screen frame cleaning chemicals and supplies is excited to announce its newest partnership with Graphics One, LLC (GO), a developer and worldwide distributor of innovative, world class digital imaging products. The new alliance will offer even more advanced direct screen transfer technology specifically designed for the color separation and screen printing markets.

This exclusive system offers a simple system workflow specially designed for home based, start-up and commercial screen and graphics printers who need rapid screen imaging capability with a fast turnaround time. The GO UNO DTS is also capable of imaging transfers for apparel and for rigid substrates.

The new system reintroduces a stencil-making revolution with RhinoScreen Dry Stencil Film that eliminates the need for emulsion, capillary film, a film positive, exposure and drying time.

Together with a GO UNO DTS system that is a high performance/high speed tabloid LED Direct-Transfer-Screen printer, a heat press and computer, stencil-making becomes fast and simple. The highly efficient system expedites color separation by by-passing most of the traditional methods of screen printing workflow.

Gregory Markus, president of RhinoTech states: “The benefits to our partnership translate into increased printing solutions for screen and graphics printers, embroiderers and crafters. Not only will this affordable system help boost bottom line goals for customers, but it will also correlate to our industry’s need to incorporate safer, environmentally sensitive products into the work place as RhinoScreen Dry Stencil Film is recyclable (papers contain no silicone or organic pollutants). And because of minimal space needs required for inventory and equipment, a start-up, home based or established business can easily take on the system.”

Christian Sam, GO Marketing, stated, “We are very excited with this new and revolutionary solution being introduced to the color separation and screen print market. With the partnership of GO UNO DTS printer and the RhinoScreen stencil film, screen printers whether startup or commercial now have a fast and simple workflow to produce a ready to be printed negative screens. This revolutionary system solution bypasses several production steps used in the traditional screen print workflow and greatly reduces production cost by eliminating several screen print components such as emulsions, chemicals, film positives and a darkroom. This remarkable solution is perfect for clients and customers who require a very fast turnaround times.”

The system comes with a 50 pack of RhinoTech’s RhinoScreen Dry Stencil Film,  and a starter set of toners with GO UNO printer priced at $2,195.

THANKS FOR WATCHING, READING AND SUBSCRIBING!

Contact information: info@rhinotechinc.com; 888.717.4466 ext. 1 or 2

www.rhinotechinc.com offers screen and graphics printers on a worldwide basis the ability to preview/order products directly.

RhinoScreen Dry Stencil Film, HOW-TO videos: www.youtube.com/rhinotechcompany

Facebook.com/rhinotech; twitter.com/rhinomitemn; rhinoblast.blogspot.com

If Every Business Hired Just One More Person…..

This is a tad of a gift. It’s grant application (that was successfully awarded by a small, private foundation) for you to have to use and adapt to reflect your ideas/community needs and help eliminate employment issues for  your company and people with disabilities or others who are unemployed. The basis of the grant is to build a screen printing training/internship program and small, non-profit business venture in conjunction with a non-profit organization. Together, the partnering organizations will: 1) meet market needs for qualified, trained employees for the screen and graphics printing industry; 2) offer state-of-the-art, hands on training leading to bona fide jobs for people with all types of disabilities including those injured while serving in the military or due to an accident, a disease or condition sustained at birth; 3) help give back by helping people in your community who want to work to gain skills and attributes to enable them to find great jobs in our industry; 4) increase consumerism and self-sufficiency.

So…here is a way for screen printers and non-profit organizations to mutually benefit their organizations and resolve hiring/training and employment issues along the way. Really, it can be a win-win situation for everyone, including socially. And it does work.

You probably know this, but be sure to do some market research, ensuring that the screen printing competition in your geographic area, if you decide to go forward with a partnership, will not be a roadblock to your success. Make sure that you have everyone and everything in place: instructors, space, equipment, students, business plan, OSHA….then write/submit the grant to fit your business’s specific needs; the requirements of the funding agency. If you have to, hire a professional grant writer. It’s worth the time and every cent!

So…here is the grant. All names have been changed and are fictitious (except the state of Arizona) for the purposes of this grant model.

Thanks for reading, sharing, commenting, questioning. And Good Luck if you choose to use this sample grant and idea in some form.

SAMPLE PROPOSAL FORMAT FOR CIVIC, COMMUNITY, PRIVATE FUNDING ORGANIZATION.

Name of Granting Organization, Title of Project, Date of Submission, Name of Partners

Brief history of organization: Age of agency, year started, how/why started, how it has evolved, kinds of programs, accreditation,

Purpose of organization: mission of agency and goals.

Area and population served by the organization: how many trainees, breakdown of disability type, areas of community served by organization.

Brief description of the project for which funds are being requested including:

   Statement of Purpose: Our project, Magic Time Printing, will construct a screen and graphics printing work training and internship program for people with disabilities while building a new, small business venture as a way to direct money back into the program. Trainees will gain: 1) the skills and attributes to compete for jobs in screen and graphics printing businesses (or others who have screen, graphics, heat press printing services within their company), 2) an 8 week internship with a related business that will transform into long-term paid employment, 3) the ability to have paid employment through Magic Time Printing.

The project will improve commerce for (name of non-profit) by redirecting earned income after expenses and wages of employees of the business with disabilities back into the screen printing program. This non-profit venture will provide an engaging, fair and worthy training venue for trainees in which to learn marketable work and personal skills that will be transferable to the screen and graphics printing industry. It will also enable our organization to offer affordable, creative, screen printing products for Southwest Arizona customers thereby boosting the ability of Not-for Profit to support this program on a long term basis. The project will be a joint venture of our agency and a (for profit name here) to heighten training, internship and employment opportunities for  people with all types of disabilities. For Profit company is (duplicate Keys to Success here – see below)

   The Market for Magic Time Printing: Research into the screen printing field via the Screen Graphics Industry Association has shown that screen printing remains a viable market for non-profit organizations. According to the Association, there are ___ non-profit organization in the state of Arizona that operate screen printing businesses such as Industries for the Blind, charter schools, community colleges, vocational/technical institutes.

We will look to a broad target market as potential customers focusing on schools, community-based organizations, including local county and city governments in ____________, ______ counties, civic organizations, track, rowing, rock climbing and sports clubs, organizations such as the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Cancer Support Community, American Red Cross and other high profile businesses and vendors of each of the partner organizations. We will utilize all social internet-based sites that have been identified as alternative, high value marketing resources; the United Way, all local free publications, e-news organizations. Within our target market, we will have the potential to print T-shirts, hats, graduation items, scarves, ribbons/prizes, trophies, shorts, sleeves, hoodies, can coolers and other custom specialty items.

Financial Considerations: Investigation has revealed that the initial start-up for the venture will require minimal investment of $______ that is the cost of the equipment (manual and heat press technology), but will offer long-term benefit for investors, customers and employees. Strategizing will help us construct a broad arena that will enable us to grow. Any revenue after expenses (that includes employee wages) will be redirected into the  hands-on venture.

Expected results and outcomes of the project: Output Measure: 80% of trainees will increase knowledge of employability skills through an Employability Skills Training Class. Outcome Measurement: Trainees will maintain or improve employability skills. Output Measure: 80% of Trainees will increase knowledge via individual workshops designed to focus on various health and human development issues.  Outcome Measurement: Trainees will improve knowledge and practice of good nutrition, proper work attire. Output Measure: 80% of Trainees will learn/increase positive communication skills with supervisors and co-workers. Outcome Measurement: Trainees will improve workplace interaction skills with supervisors and co-workers. Output Measure: 90% of trainees will obtain internship/employment through employment services of agency and partner. for-profit business.  Outcome Measurement: Trainees/employees will gain internship opportunity and eventual long-term, paid employment. Output Measure: 90% of individuals who return surveys express satisfaction with services.  Outcome Measurement: Trainees/employees will be satisfied with services.

Keys to Success: ADD: 1) agency credentials here; 2) description of for-profit business; 3) for-profit business credentials including community service background, credentials of  owner/manager, trainers who will help provide guidance/instruction to program and its trainees; 3) description of internship (how many months, who evaluates, how many internships, etc).

Training and Personnel: The Vice-President of Program Services will oversee the project and the Lead Instructor will oversee the day-to-day operations. Initial training will be received through a Screen Printing 101 offered by a professional instructor or employee with for-profit business.  Mr./Ms. of for –profit business has over 30 years of screen printing experience, is a successful entrepreneur and business owner…..will lend his expertise to  ensure project success for organization and for-profit business (name here).

Capital List:  the start-up equipment list is attached.

Amount requested: $____                Total project cost: $                   

A system of Outcome Based Measurement will be utilized to track  program results. The system will offer an objective, efficient approach clearly related to the intended outcomes of the project that produces quantitative and qualitative data.  This type of Evaluation ensures that participant input has played an integral role in the overall project activities, that culturally sensitive programming has been provided and that students and other stakeholders are satisfied with the project services. It helps to identify any problems/deficiencies so that a plan of action will be able to be instituted immediately to improve services.

Project Budget:

Follow directions of funding organization application.

Other sources of funding for the project: The NAME OF FUNDING AGENCY grant award will be utilized to leverage other funding from local, state and national granting organizations. This is necessary to eventually fund an experienced screen printer/manager and wages of employees with disabilities who will work on a full or part-time basis with Magic Time Printing.

Time period for the project: program year

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