How fortunate our little, but growing, company is. Besides having good people working for us, we have been on national TV TWICE in less than 7 days. We were at ESPN’s College Gameday and were able to work our way into some great screen shots (see below). Our next big challenge is to get Lee Corso to wear Victory Fingers of the team he thinks is going to win (instead of OR in addition to) the mascot head.
Then, 6 days earlier on CBS’s 60 minutes, during the segment on Coach Saban, head coach at Alabama, CBS showed an aerial shot of the team’s walk into the stadium. And, there, in the bottom left, is our Victory FINGERS white tent, where we proudly sell our Alabama fingers at every home game.
Now, I know I may not get 1 additional sale out of this, but to have been on nationwide TV on 2 of the top rated shows, in the same week, is pretty cool and will be something our small, but growing, company will put in our marketing files for some time down the road.
Lastly, you may think we are following ESPN’s College Gameday, and we kind of are. They will be in LA this Saturday for the USC Stanford game AND so will Victory Fingers. We are proud to have USC FIGHT ON fingers available, starting this week at the stadium, side by side with our friends GO NUTS!
Every day, when we wake up, it’s an opportunity…an opportunity to make good things happen (or bad), an opportunity to be nice (or mean), an opportunity to lead (or follow), an opportunity to nurture (or destroy), an opportunity to succeed (or fail). We are our own gatekeepers.
As I take in more and more of our world, I realize that I am my own gatekeeper. I have my family to support me, but in order to be there for them, I have to be the best gatekeeper of me. Each small win adds up, and if we can be good gatekeepers and knock out small wins each day, now that’s a victory, in the bigger sense of the word, and in the bigger sense of the world.
Define what gatekeeper means to you…beliefs, conduct, ethics, deeds, actions, thoughts. No matter the description, mindful gatekeepers do what’s good for them and, as a result, it should be good for all.
…and not all glasses are rose colored. I get it. But, as I sit here on a beautiful Fall morning, I keep thinking about the good things in life and not about all the current negative news that is promoted on TV 24/7. Here are some thoughts for when you need that smidge of a nudge.
Focus on the rose and not its thorns.
Feel and smell the next rainfall instead of being upset that it’s raining.
Look at the bigger picture when all you are seeing is the small stuff that is frustrating you.
Be thankful if you have a roof over your head and you have 3 meals a day(even if you only eat 2 like me).
For those who have younger kids, realize(every day) that they are only young for a short while.
You’re not the only one with problems. Be nice to one another because it makes everyone’s day a little better.
And, lastly, something basically unrelated to this blog entry. My daughter taught me a new word today: Smare. It’s when you smile and stare at someone at the same time.
So, if you look around, you’ll always find, see, smell, taste, learn, take in something new EVERY DAY!
What’s your dawn look like?
Yesterday, while coming home from a library/grocery store trip, my daughter asked me if it is October 1st in Britain. And, it dawned on me. There are very few things that everyone in THE WORLD agrees on. The month and the day of the month and the year is something we all, as occupiers of planet Earth, agree on (understanding that there is an international date line (IDL) that is an imaginary line on the surface of the Earth). Now, i am sure there are some where today is not the 2nd(excluding the IDL), but overall, stop and think about it.
We differ in forms of government; we speak many languages; we have many different traditions; we celebrate different days of the year as holidays; we have different laws and rules. But, as a world, we all agree that today is October 2nd, 2013.
That is rather incredible! After thousands of years of human co-existence, we all live by the same annual calendar. And, no one is arguing with that, and no one is out there championing a cause or a reason to change that. I consider that a modern day “small victory”. Now, let’s take that as a first step and tell me, what’s the next small step.
I have a passion for cooking and I also love to eat what I cook, especially when there’s sports on. So, how does the word “Branding” fit in to this blog entry?
Well, there lies the challenge for those of us in marketing: It’s not “how do you get a message out”, but are you reaching your market and ENGAGING them when you reach them? That’s the recipe that every “cook” wants in their respective “kitchen”.
For me, it’s tying our passion for sports and giving the fan that extra they have never had before. It’s part of the celebration of living and being a part of something bigger. This picture was taken during a college football game last weekend of a young fan taking in the game with a WORLD CLASS sunset as the backdrop.
I saw the link immediately. It’s a simple recipe: Take your passion, love your sports and express yourself. It’s a win, win, win.
After nearly 2 years of product development and fine tuning, we are set to publicly launch Victory Fingers this Saturday. We have learned so much about manufacturing, product development, manufacturing(USA-based), licensing, marketing & merchandising, with a lot more to learn. I think i could write a “How To” book on all of that for future entrepreneurs.
Now comes the real and fun part of this ride: Seeing the customers enjoy the experience, the fun, the expression, the passion all thru our vision of our finger sleeves. We have focused on sports, but are also pursuing other avenues, especially our Flag Fingers (US, Ecuador, Germany, Italy, Britain, Brazil & Argentina) in preparation for the WORLD CUP next summer! But, sports teams of all ages and all parts of the world is our goal. Think big.
For the Alabama fans going to the home opener this Saturday, we will be all over the campus in tents and mobile vendor trailers. We appreciate your passion and your support. On 2 Victory!
In life and in sports, our fingers are such an icon of celebration and of being on a team. Think about the 12th man in football, that’s us, the fans. We have our voices, our colors and our hands. As a culture, we love to express ourselves and support for our teams, our troops and our families using hand signals.
There is the #1 sign that is universal. There is the 2 finger victory sign that stands for victory. Then there is the 2 finger peace sign. You also have the index finger and the pinkie finger to represent schools like Texas’s Hook ‘Em Horns or NC State’s Wolf Pack. You also have the 3 finger sign like at Ohio State for 3rd down conversion support. You have the 4 finger sign like at Alabama for 4th quarter support…Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah! You have the 3 finger signs like the one Louisville has to represent the L.
Just look at all the fans at the US/Mexico World Cup Qualifier game last night in Columbus, OH. Our hands and fingers are an everyday part of that celebration and participation. Victory is a fun part of life and should be celebrated. As we say here, “give your fingers a voice…” Make ’em Victory Fingers.
Well, August 31st, 2013 was Victory Finger’s official public launch and on what a stage it was. We had a space inside the Chick-fil-A Fan Zone, next to folks like Kia, Coke & Samsung. Everyone who came by our spot ALL did the same thing: SMILE, followed by “These are great”!
We saw lots of fans and lots of fans saw us and that made us SMILE. Besides a great launch, here are 3 other very worthy SMILES that happened that day.
1. The Head Coach of Virginia Tech Frank Beamer walked right by our space, saw us wearing our Victory Fingers, did a double take, then gave us a thumbs up and a SMILE.
2. AT&T showed a few pictures up on the jumbotron inside the Dome during the Alabama/VT game. And, up came an Alabama fan wearing their Victory Fingers with a big ‘ole SMILE.
3. Jim Gaffigan, the comedian, sent a tweet out to his 1.7 million followers about Victory Fingers. That definitely made us SMILE.
We are now in stores throughout our hometown and growing. Football and Victory Fingers = SMILE.
One huge chapter closes for “mom” and one big chapter opens for “child”.
If you did not come across Michael Gerson’s recent article in the Washington Post, click here.
It’s really not just about sending your son or daughter off to college. It’s about that part of this short thing called “Life”. He says what we all are feeling. It’s a good ride, but the best parts of that ride are with your spouse and kids and the role they play in your life. Heck, I’m tearing up just writing this blog.
Why the title: “The Race to Nowhere”? Well, it’s a little known documentary about the “race” many put their kids thru from early on(as young as elementary school all the way thru high school)…tutors in 1st grade, 2 to 3 sports, lessons, homework and more of all the above. Education is critical, but so is experiencing life and family and making memories and starting traditions that your kids will take with them the rest of their lives.
I’m as competitive as the next person, but striking a balance is the key. There’s no book on that. Just do what feels right to you.
Thinking out loud,
Almost 2 years ago, one of the first decisions I made when starting Victory Fingers was that I had to seek and find a 100% US-based supply chain. It took me almost 12 months to shore(pardon the pun) that up. My main reasons were: Quality Control and Turnaround Times. My U.S.A. manufacturers offer BOTH.
Very interesting that, yesterday, Wal-Mart’s CEO said: “Having more jobs in the U.S. would boost the spending level of its customers.” Further, Wal-Mart said sales of U.S.-made towels sold 30% more than foreign-made stock when it switched this year! Wal-Mart CEO Mike Duke also described U.S. manufacturing at “a tipping point,” especially when transportation cost (and increasing overseas labor costs as well as large safety concerns in deplorable conditions) is going to continue to rise.
I am VERY proud to be a part of “Saving American Manufacturing”, 1 small company, 1 step at a time. Every one counts!