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Hi! Glad to see you! If you’re a resaler, TGtbT.com‘s Products for the Professional Resaler make your shop easier to run, more fun & more profitable. 
Resale guru Kate Holmes helps you make your shop be all you DREAM it can be! Explore this blog and our site then sign up for our e-newsletter. Want to be notified when new blog posts are published? Click below:

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Just 5 minutes could lead to the growing success of your consignment, resale, or thrift shop.Consignment, resale, thrift shops can take 5 to build their business

Here’s 6 suggestions to get you started:

Tired of Continue Reading »

Seriously. This is a universal problem. Every nonprofit group has seen their pool of willing and able volunteers diminish. But if yours is a nonprofit resale shop

you might be getting desperate!

Some of the problem, might be “the people who volunteer are simply getting older and can’t put as much energy into volunteering as they used to.”  Or it could be that with all the pressures on working-age folk, like student loans to repay, people haven’t got the time to volunteer. They’re being Uber drivers or part-timing somewhere. If your area’s pool of potential volunteers cry

“I’d love to volunteer but I haven’t got the TIME!”

show them that they can, indeed, fit volunteering into their lives. After all, what with the child-bearing years growing steadily upward*, and what with more work-at-home choices in jobs**, one could almost argue that 25-50 year-olds have more available-to-participate time than ever.

I believe the key to getting volunteers to be, well, more volunteer-y is to do the same thing you do to motivate shoppers…

tell (and SHOW) them the WIIFM***.

Your message cannot be just that your cause needs helpers… it’s the “What’s In It For Me” factor you need to present. Show, tell, cajole potential volunteers into realizing that heck, volunteering is not just the right thing to do… it’s downright rewarding.

What are time-pressed adults yearning for and what can volunteering with you give them?

  • Sociability: they can perhaps make new friends while volunteering. Belonging: volunteering makes a person feel like they are part of the solution to the problem. And Connection: Making contacts with like-minded individuals whose goals match theirs.
  • And of course there’s always Fun: Whether it’s doing window displays, helping a family decide on a couch, or testing to see if a small appliance works before it’s placed for sale.
  • Another thing that potential volunteers might be yearning to do, is to use their skills. He used to be on the faculty of the business school? Maybe he’s a good match for your Volunteer Coordinator position. She retired from owning a jewelry store? Perfect for your Appraisal Crew. Younger people might be interested in practising newly-learned talents, adding to their real-life experience, or even adding to their resume or college application.

More ways to lure volunteers in:

  • Play up the perks. You get to see, first, all the amazing goodies that we receive! Always yearned to redecorate? Help us set displays to showcase our merchandise! 
  • Overcome shyness. Yes, believe it or not, there exist people who support your cause but aren’t gregarious. They most definitely have no wish to become sales staff. Well, do you have things they can do behind the scenes? Price incoming? Do internet research? Maybe health is an issue? Are there tasks they can contribute from home… washing and ironing, polishing silver? Letting the public know there’s more than one way to volunteer might require some imagination on your part, but could be super rewarding.
  • Overcome their fear of over-commitment. Many potential volunteers wouldn’t mind spending some hours in your shop, but they can’t promise to come in every week, at a given time, on a given day. If your business can work with casual hours, let them know you’re happy to see them whenever (and keep in contact, so well-meaning but overbooked volunteers don’t forget how much fun they have when they come in!)

And once you have them, keep them enthusiastic and productive:

  • Make sure they know how much they are appreciated. Surprise nibbles in the break room, little holiday gifts, public praise are real motivators. As are yearly or semi-yearly certificates they can take home. It goes without saying, doesn’t it, that a birthday card will be in their home mailbox every year?
  • Sponsor off-campus get-togethers. Not only will even something as simple as a Dutch-treat breakfast be appreciated, but they will get to interact with fellow volunteers whom they normally don’t work with.
  • Let them choose. If your charity raises money used as scholarships or grants… make sure your Board of Directors has one segment of that process that is decided by a vote of the volunteers. There’s nothing more powerful than volunteers working to raise funds because they want to see your charity help renovate the old theater or give money towards a new playground.

* “The average age of first-time mothers [in 2018] is 26, up from 21 in 1972, and for fathers it’s 31, up from 27.” From here.

** “Regular work-at-home, among the non-self-employed population, has grown by 140% since 2005, nearly 10x faster than the rest of the workforce or the self-employed.” From here.

*** Our Resaler’s Glossary defines this term.

“I can’t think of anything to say on social media.”
“I can’t blog… what would I talk about?”
“Whatever would I put in an email that they’d read?”

What can I say in social media about my consignment shop?

If that’s your worry, worry no more! Here’s the List of All Lists: A treasury of ideas for Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, emails, blog posts, even speaker’s topics and presentations!

You know that just saying buymebuymebuyme isn’t enough to help your business thrive, to help people love to shop with you…  you know you need to be SOCIAL… you know you need to entertain, educate, elucidate, motivate…but sometimes, it’s hard to come up with something that really adds value to following your business. So these lists are just some Auntie Kate has found for you:

Now, not all of these hundreds of ideas will apply to our unique resale, consignment, and thrift industry. But I’m guessing you can copy-and-paste enough inspiration to never again have to say

“What’ll I TALK about?”

Who’d have thought there was so much to think about in seven square inches?

Your business card can be the perfect introduction to your business…

or it can be a boring old boiler-plate piece of cardboard. And the funny thing is: boring or brilliant, 

Continue Reading »

We all know the 3 R’s of education. But I ‘d like to coin

the 4 D’s of Resale Shopkeeping.

Desire, Determination, Diligence, Dollars

Of course Desire, Determination, Diligence, Dollars applies to Continue Reading »

This week, some tips about getting ready for NARTS Conference 2019. If you can’t make it to Conference, this week’s blog posts will still be useful in your everyday business life, so stay tuned!

Okay, you’re psyched to go to Conference, to meet new people with fabulous ideas and to share with strangers YOUR fabulous ideas. But still, it can be nerve-wracking walking into a room where you don’t know everyone.

Thank goodness for clothes.

What to wear to Conference? Some tips from TGtbT.com

It’s always good to wear what you feel comfortable in and one that feels like you, not some version (vision?) of yourself you THINK you should be. That’sthe key to an outfit that works for you at any time, but even more so if putting yourself beyond your social comfort zone feels you with dread. Here’s some tips inspired by a blog I love.

1. Plan out what you’re going to wear, matched to what the conference schedule looks like, its location and the time of year.

2. Comfort is key. There is a lot of Continue Reading »

This week, some tips about getting ready for NARTS Conference 2019. If you can’t make it to Conference, this week’s blog posts will still be useful in your everyday business life, so stay tuned!

Get the most out of any business meeting with these 5 steps from Too Good to be Threw

Talk to people at Conference, says TGtbT.com

1. Talk to people!
Now is NOT the time to be shy. Walk up, introduce yourself, hand out your card. Bring more cards than you can imagine you’ll need.
Whatever you do, do NOT stick with him what brung ya. If there’s more than one of you from your shop, split up. You’ll get twice the helpful info that way.

2. Get serious
Sure, every conversation starts in generalities. But a meeting is not the time for chitchat. Ask a question: What type…

….  [read more on TGTbT.com]

Thursday@6: Be there!

Every year we have a TGtbT get-together before the “official” NARTS event, at 6 in the hotel’s lobby bar. Join us at this completely-casual, drop in and order yourself a drink and introduce yourself event! At 8, we’ll go together to the NARTS Getting to Know You reception, and make even more new friends!

(Afraid you won’t know anyone? Click to see a picture of me. There. Now you have a friend in the bar, Thursday, 6PM. See how easy?)

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