Past Three Months In 30 Seconds
We started the quarter by taking a trip to the National Stationery Show in April. It was an Aladdin's cave full of stationery joy, but unfortunately very little in terms of a quality UK manufacture of pocket sized notebooks. That said, definitely one to add to our calendar next year - we may even exhibit to scratch that itch!
We’ve introduced another new brand with a range of different notebooks from the guys at Baron Fig (more on that later). We also got a bit risqué by opening the packs of notebooks to create a variety of notebooks to sell in sets of 3, 6 and 9, with the aim of giving you exposure to brands you may have not wanted to shell out on.
Our ‘Getting To Know’ series had the privilege of collaborating with Azizah over at Gourmet Pens., It’s had lots of visits and even Shopify, the website platform we use, ranked it amongst the top 10% recent blog posts of all their online retailers.
We also got the opportunity to collaborate with more awesome customers who have supported us by creating blog posts - Thorsten shared his thoughts on Story Supply Co and Write Notepads notebooks, whilst Robbie Ross carried out a Fountain Pen Test on a Story Supply notebook.
We ended the quarter by celebrating our first birthday in June, and we had our cake and ate it - all of it! Thanks again for all the well wishes on the day. It really was great to see old and new friends passing messages on.
We Hold Our Hands Up - This Quarter We Have Made A Mistake
You may have seen last month the launch of a new brand for us in Baron Fig, the New York manufacturers of tools for thinkers. Well unfortunately we messed up! At the moment, you can't buy Baron Fig notebooks on our site anymore - the agreement was only to include the notebooks in our subscription boxes, but in our haste and excitement we completely forgot. The guys at Baron Fig are awesome, so hopefully we can come to a mutually beneficial agreement in the future.
One thing this has taught us is that each brand is different and they all have different values and beliefs that we need to be better at respecting. It’s been a learning curve that Dan and I are trying to get better at.
New Subscription Boxes & Processes
We mentioned last quarter that our subscription boxes are now outselling our normal orders. We recognised that whilst this was great, something we really wanted to improve on was how we managed and operated the subscriptions. This quarter we have rolled out some changes, hopefully improvements, to the subscriptions, which now includes new packaging that fits comfortably through your letterbox, meaning your box is delivered safely and helps us save a few pennies by not paying for large postage.
We have also changed the delivery dates, and boxes will now be dispatched on 10th, 20th and 30th of each month - three dates we look forward to each month so we can curate you a box full of fresh notebooks. We really hope these changes will improve the overall experience, but as ever, your feedback will help us improve this further.
2,000 Miles Apart; Still In Touch
Dan and I both live in the North East, about 40 miles apart from each other. Since we left the organisation we worked at together in January, we’ve seen each other only on a handful of occasions - terrible isn’t it! With Dan setting up his new business and me taking on a new role, I guess life has got in the way.
Don’t get us wrong though, we talk to each other every day, whether that’s on the phone, text, social channels like Facebook or Twitter, or more importantly, Slack. If you aren’t familiar with Slack, it’s a communication channel for the 21st century, helping with less email and being more productive.
Slack is one of our key tools and one that’s been used to the max this month as Dan and his family take five weeks out by holidaying in Greece. As he strives to grow his business, he has mastered the fine art of balancing work, life and creating memories perfectly. Perhaps we need a Pocket Notebooks business holiday in 2017...
We are working around the clock to keep our products fresh and are in early discussions with some new brands that we hope you will enjoy as much as our existing brands. Not only that, but we are blessed with the availability of limited edition notebooks with the soon-to-drop Write Notepads Kindred Spirit and Word’s Artist series.
Our focus at the beginning of August will switch to stocking Hobonichi 2017 planners. We have an early email list that you can add your details to, meaning you’ll get notified first when they become available to buy. Simply add your email address to this list.
We’re very much looking forward to this quarter, hopefully seeing each other more often - and not making the same mistake again with the awesome guys at Baron Fig!
Remember, forget the App, there’s a Pocket Notebook for that…
Cheers, Tony & Dan