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America's Next Great Home Textiles Company Round 3: Marketing

 

NEW YORK - In August, Home Textiles Today profiled six new companies that were first-time exhibitors at the New York International Gift Fair. They are also contestants in HTT's new "America's Next Great Home Textiles Company" series.
     Industry veterans from the areas of showroom design, product development and marketing visited each of the companies during the show at the Jacob Javits Convention Center here.
     In the Sept. 24 issue, the showroom designer Beth Darragh rated the contestents' booth designs. In the Oct 22 issue, veteran home textiles designer Patricia Feiwel weighed in on product design.
     In this issue, Carolyn D'Angelo - an industry veteran in marketing - assesses the contenders on four criteria: product, price, place and promotion. Her evaluations can be found on pages 6-7.

HedgeHouse
Beautiful.

HedgeHouse
Product: * * * *
Price: *
Place: *
Promotion: *
The throw bed is very niche market, but earns one star for being expensive. This is for someone who has the disposable income for a unique, comfortable product that is a luxury to have. Owner has designed a unique way of carrying/storing the product, but in traditional stores it will be challenging to communicate what this item is. For small boutiques where the product can be demonstrated, the current "packaging" works. Owner is entering all contests to get word of mouth out there. She recently has a nice editorial hit in House Beautiful. Website should include any editorial coverage. Consumers can buy on the website. Needs to develop social media as a tool.

Le Cote
Francais Maison

Le Cote Francais Maison
Product: * * *
Place: * *
Price: * *
Promotion: * *
Limited edition decorative pillows, bedding and throws combine vintage textiles to create unique designs. The website looks great and is consumer friendly. Easy to shop on line, tells the story well, and also has a store finder. Handout materials at show should have been professionally done. Booth was really nicely executed, and had the feel of a client working with an interior designer with a desk positioned in the booth.

Pyar & Co
Pyar means

Pyar & Co
Product: * * * *
Price: * * * *
Place: * *
Promotion: * * *
While the product might not be as unique as some of the others, this owner/founder knows how to market. Her handout materials at the booth were well executed, all the details were thought out (like the logo of her company that incorporates a heart because Pyar means "love" in Hindi). Products feature hang tag with information. Great photography on the marketing materials. Website is easy to navigate and attractive. Cannot buy on website, but will drive a consumer to a place where she can buy.

Carolyn D’Angelo

Judge: Carolyn D'Angelo
D'Angelo is vp brand management for the home division of Iconix Brands, overseeing the Fieldcrest, Cannon, Royal Velvet and Charisma brands, among others. Prior to that, D'Angelo was svp for the Ralph Lauren Home business at WestPoint Home and previously held senior positions at Waverly Lifestyle Group and Springs Industries.

Simple Syrup
Wall Street

Simple Syrup
Product: * * *
Price: * *
Place: * *
Promotion: *
This company was started by two women, one an artist, and the other a former Wall Street executive who was looking for a simpler life when she moved to Nashville. Great story, but it needs to be marketed/communicated better. The materials they handed out at the gift show could be better; should put together a great package of information about the artists, the story behind the company, etc. Website should be a huge marketing tool. This website needs work ... where to buy, was not easy to navigate. Product very expensive, more like a collectible item.

Stamattina
Gracious

Stamattina
Product: * *
Price: * * * *
Place: * * * *
Promotion: *
Very limited assortment of decorative bedding and coordinating accessories and sheets, but focused. Placements in Gracious Home and other independents, a well-defined niche. Price surprisingly affordable. Handout materials not great, but probably serve the purpose of serving the limited client base. Website needs help. Also, this company should participate in social media for marketing. Not sure if they actually want to build equity in their own brand, or are happy providing a particular look to their retail customers?

Wabisabi Green
Handouts

Wabisabi Green
Prodcut: * *
Price: * *
Place: * *
Promotion: * *
Need to spend more time on the booth to make it more inviting and tell the story of the product: eco friendly decorative pillows and tablelinens. Handouts at booth were not great - just one postcard. Need to play up the eco-story more. Was not obvious from the booth. Without this story, the designs could be something seen at West Elm or Crate and Barrel. Website is really well executed and easy to navigate. Easy for a consumer to find and buy the product. Company uses Facebook, website, all forms of social media.

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