Sort & Deliver Products to Clients
All right, so that's how you order your stuff. Now delivering it, is big. How do you get it to them? You've got all these orders, now we have to figure out how to get them in the hands of parents. Extreme jobs, we let the teams know when the orders are ready. How we actually started doing this is, once everything is done, for baseball, baseball sends out an email, your photos are done, you go pick them up. They send it to the managers and the coaches. We do not send it to every parent. We do not deliver these. We don't mail out individual orders. Everything is done as a team, okay? The managers, or the coaches, come in and pick up everything as a team. We will have some parents that try to sneak in, and say I just want my kid's order. We don't allow it. They can take the whole thing or nothing, because I don't wanna get in a position where I have 14 orders laying around for one team. Someone takes it and delivers it at the game. That's how it's done. As they come in to pick them up, we...
do have people sign them out. It's amazing to me how many people will come in, and pick up, and they're like oh I'm here to pick up this, this team, and then someone else shows up the next day, says oh, I'm here for this, and we can't find it, and then we go look, and it's because oh, Joan picked it up yesterday. Oh great, I'll get it from her tomorrow. We get the name and the phone number, and we write down the team name exactly the way that it is on all of the forms, okay? Sometimes with our, with our volume jobs, the big, big, big extreme ones, another thing that we will do is I will actually deliver them on game day to the field. Which is kind of a unique service that we do, that a lot of people think sounds like it's a giant, giant waste of time. It could not be more, it couldn't be better spent. I go out to the soccer fields, there's eight fields, so there's 16 teams playing, and they're done at 6:30. I show up at 6:15, with my little wagon, and my little dog, and my baseball cap, and we walk around, and we say, hey guys, hey coach, here's your pictures. All of your orders should be complete. We always have the same spiel. Here's your entire team's order. Just so you know, all of the orders are complete. We aren't waiting on any specialty products or any delays in printing. If anyone has any questions, have them contact us directly, because the league is pretty hands-off with the photos. Thank you so much, have a good game. And then I literally will go to the coach right here. And say, hey coach. Here's your ... The whole thing's complete, da da da da da. Then I walk over to this field. And I say here coach, and I go, here coach. And I walk and I deliver all of them. 16 in 15 minutes, right? I go back to my car, pick up 16 more, because there's another 17 games starting right after that. Takes me half an hour, I deliver 32 teams, I'm putting a face to the brand, and I'm interacting with people in my community. And it's something that absolutely no one else does. So this is obviously a service. Like this is the sports that are right where my business is. But it's great. Now sometimes we can't do that. Sometimes it just doesn't work out. In those situations, if you are having these teams come in, my studio is nine to five. We're nine to five. And I understand that those are not super-convenient hours for everyone. So if we have to have them come to us, we will extend our hours, for three days. We'll do Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, we'll stay open until 8 p.m. And it's just our thing, because I feel like if I'm giving you three days, the first week that it's done, where we're staying late for you, if that doesn't work, you gotta make nine to five work. Or Saturday. Okay? We keep it super, super organized. This doesn't look super, super organized but that is crazy organized. These are broken up. These are all girls in the back. These are all boys. This is kindergarten up, up, up. That's how it works. Literally goes around the room. That's a lotta orders there. And 80% of those will get picked up the first two days. And I probably still have some of them that never get picked up. All of those sheets, those original sheets that we talked about printing, go outside the bag. Now remember we talked about how we get the phone numbers and email addresses. And it's because once we get down to 15, 20 teams, we start calling. Hey, it's been a while. You guys haven't picked up your pictures. We just want to reach out, make sure that you knew. Oh, I didn't read my email. Okay that's fine. Here's our hours, here's our location, when you want to come back. Once we get someone on the phone, they're generally there right away. Some people don't answer the phone. We can't get them. We'll email them, we don't hear anything back. In that situation, we will actually open the bag, and we will just pick a parent, that has a phone number, and we will call one parent, and try to get her in. Try to get them in. And if that parent doesn't work, we'll go to the next one. Because we need to get these out. And it drives me nuts when I pull 40, 50, 60 hours, I'm knocking out extra hours to get these jobs done, and then they sit and wait. I want the orders out. I don't want people to think that it's taking two months for them to get their orders because of me. Everything needs to be done and out the door in three weeks. Absolutely, positively can't be longer than that. We aim for two. Our standard jobs, the stuff that goes to high schools, the most important thing to do with them, is not overwhelm them. I find that if you go to, let's say I do fall sports, so that's football, 100 kids on varsity. Then you've got the sophomore team, the freshman team, that's another 150 kids. Then we got cross-country boys, cross-country girls. Those are both 150 kids. We go through soccer, 4 teams, boys and girls. Tennis. Do you have any idea how much that would hate me if I walked in with all of that in one trip? It's too much. We shoot those sports spread out, and we make sure that we deliver them in a spread out fashion. It gives the offices the ability to reach out to the coaches and get stuff picked up without flooding their workspace. When we deliver to the schools, it is crazy organized. It's a big bag, that says football. Within that big bag, it's broken up by team. There are labels printed and put on them. It should be so easy for someone to hand out your photos for you. You don't wanna make them have to say, oh is this JV? Is this, I'm not sure what team this is, is this your team? You gotta make it easy. Because once you start losing that office, the account's gonna go. And that can be a way that they start not enjoying their interactions with you. If we deliver all of our standard volume stuff, we deliver in one bag, though, for that sport. Like that's it. So we wouldn't deliver hockey three ways. Hockey would be all at once. Now if we get late orders, they have to pick it up at my studio, or pay for me to ship it. Those are your two options. I don't like the idea of taking completed orders, onesie twosies, over to the office, and having them distribute it for me. They're gracious enough to hand out the team at once. If you don't have it together and you can't get your kid's order, but everyone else is, then you've gotta pay for it or you gotta pick it up. If we were to mess up on anything though, if we had a misprint, if we had something go wrong, we would ship direct to them at no cost. So again, we are not putting that work on the school. Because they got other stuff to do. They got something that's way more important than handing out pictures.
I don't know if there's anything more to add to it, but Tom was asking how do you handle the parents, coaches, athletic directors who do call, insisting that Jimmy didn't get his order, even though you know you got the order and that you delivered it. What some are some other client relationship tips there?
Honestly, what do I do if an order was delivered and I know it was delivered, and they call and say they didn't get it? I smile, I print it, I send it to them for free. And I think either, wow you're a really crappy person who steals $20 items, or something went wrong. And if something went wrong, I understand why you'd call. I get it, if something went wrong and you didn't get your stuff, you want your stuff. I get it. So then let's get it to you. It's gonna cost me $1.60 to reprint. It's gonna cost me $2 to mail. So we're talking about a $4 thing. Like why would I worry about, it's not a big enough fight for me. With that said, we do keep track of those phone calls. So, if Jill's mom doesn't get her butt in any year, we'll start calling her out on it. We'll make sure that it's in there. Then if we know we're getting taken advantage of, then we'll kind of push back a little bit. And even then, if they say, nope I didn't get it. Okay, we'll send it to you. You're not gonna win a battle with someone who's gonna lie and cheat. You can stand there and fight it, and make your stand, but $4 isn't worth it to me. I'll do the right thing, and you deal with that later. You deal with the questions, because someone's gonna ask you questions about that and not me. (laughs)