Pocket tops for play and pay

Instagram, Facebook, crowdfunding, 3D printing, Pay- Pal, EDC…. Indiegogo, YouTube, Kickstarter, Twitter. It is like getting caught in a Star Trek transponder. Lots of buzz. Lots of potential. No substance. Or is there? Marketing in social media can get huge margins, payment in advance, project funding and branding. And so can the lottery pay you […]

Line item: Safety — the cost you must afford.

A shop accident can blow up a business launch faster than a visit from a Ministry of Labour inspector. When embarking on creating a new wood shop, or even just keeping the doors open, ignore health and safety issues at your peril. Norm Keith, litigation partner at the Toronto-based legal firm Fasken Marteneau, advises that […]

Palm power: Ecommerce and the wood industry

In a vintage cartoon, Bugs Bunny wants to impress Daisy Lou and instantly delivers nylons using animation magic. “Your teeth are like pearls, real ones, no dime-store phonies!” he woos. By Mike Edwards Similarly, today when Joe Millennial taps a screen on a mobile device, he expects prompt delivery of his desired furniture. Daisy Lou, […]

Millennials: New perspective on customization

If Paul Revere was making a midnight ride these days to alert you, he’d probably be shouting, “The Millennials are coming, the Millennials are coming!” Actually, they are already here, so get armed to meet them head on. A global market research study by the consulting firm Accenture calls Millennials “a potent force” that spends […]

Face-to-face: Find the marketing mix that connects

To play on a famous line from the movie Field of Dreams, believing you build the best cabinetry, doesn’t necessarily mean customers will come. Keeping the pipeline full requires some form of marketing. In the internet and digital age, there are more marketing tools, avenues and opportunities available to you than ever before — from […]

Bang for your dues

In the skilled-labour challenge, association value is a two-way street The lack of young people pursuing the skilled trades, including careers in this industry, is an issue the manufacturing sector has been wrestling with for decades. And there’s still no winning round in sight. With the baby-boomers getting ever-closer to retirement, it’s an issue with […]

Export: Go big or go home

According to Wood Industry’s November 2014 survey, 79 percent of Canadian respondents expect revenue growth this year — a figure that approximates a similar survey in the States by the Milwaukee, Wisc.,-based Cabinet Makers Association (CMA). There, just over 86 percent of respondents to the CMA’s survey said they are anticipating revenue growth this year. […]

Managing risk

Some people don’t like change. But when it comes to safety and risk management in your business, changing your ways can be critical to preventing catastrophe. Just ask Josef Pruellage. He is the senior risk assessment consultant with the risk services division of Hub International, the largest insurance brokerage firm in Canada. Pruellage has done […]

Getting on board with barcoding

In 2014, barcoding turned 66. And it’s more ubiquitous, more advanced, and plays a more vital role, than ever before. Perhaps more than barcoding inventors Joseph Woodland and Bernard Silver ever imagined. Silver was a young grad student at the Drexel Institute of Technology in Philadelphia in 1948. He overheard a conversation and blazed the […]

Custom versus custom

It is rather like standing at an unmarked crossroad in the middle of nowhere and trying to determine whether both roads lead to the same place, whether they go off in entirely different directions or whether one road ends abruptly at a precipice. When it comes to the future of fine wood craftsmanship design and […]