Today’s a big day! It’s been exactly 5 years since I announced the birth of Tattly. My team made me look back and share 5 things I’ve learned:
It takes a small village to run a physical product company.
When I started Tattly I had no idea what I was getting myself into. Being a User Interface Designer, I knew nothing about selling physical goods. I assumed that at the most I would end up with a company that I could feed with two pizzas, meaning 6 people max. False. We are currently 12 full-timers and 4 part-time helpers. We could easily hire 4 more folks but have to hold out until our sales allow us to. Tattly is an entirely bootstrapped company and every new hire is a milestone. Just like raising kids, it takes a small village to run a company like Tattly.
Trust breeds magic.
From the beginning days of Tattly I hired young, motivated smart folks, that were as excited as I am about developing a physical product company. None of them had any prior experience. But they had some serious HUSTLE. We all learned as we went along. I trusted them with building Tattly, sometimes with things I probably shouldn’t have trusted them with. But that’s ok, because trust is the biggest compliment of all. Over the past few years, this theory of mine has proven successful: Hire young folks that thrive when asked to figure stuff out, that are motivated and self-driven. Then, simply step out of their way. Let them know you trust them and watch them embrace the challenges and watch them over deliver. Trust breeds magic!
You have to embrace inventory tracking. And sales.
When you sell a physical good you need to know how many you have in stock. At all times. Seems trivial? Well, it took me a few years to finally implement a inventory management system (Netsuite). Best thing we’ve ever done. And, then just this year, I finally embraced selling as an art form. Guess what, your product doesn’t sell itself. You have to tell people about it. I had to learn that you can do see in really elegant, tasteful and fun ways.
The extra layer of love gives the product soul.
At Tattly we try to sprinkle a possibility of a smile into everything we do. How? If you subscribe to our newsletter, you might have noticed our love for puns! Ever ordered something online? Then you might have come across the messenger pigeon coordinates on our invoice! Did you ever stumble upon our Error 404 page? You should! Or my favorite: A few years ago, when we launched an invisible Tattly on April Fools day, designed by Mario The Magician. Just thinking about it still makes me laugh! I believe that these little possibilities of a chuckle are what give our brand soul.
Never underestimate the power of confetti.
I firmly believe that every business needs a confetti drawer. When you order on Tattly.com you have the option to add confetti during the check-out process. And sometimes we randomly add some to orders, because we think the customers would appreciate it. But don’t worry, when we do add confetti, we do it respectfully, and include a “CAUTION CONFETTI INSIDE” sticker on the package. Because, you know, messy.
If you have followed my blog for a while, you might know that we have a birthday tradition at Tattly: We celebrate our birthday by giving our customers 50% off. Use discount code TATTLYTURNS5 for 50% off your order, this week only.* This only happens once a year so be sure to place your order before 11:59pm EDT 7/15/2016.