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Author Topic: How do I just give stuff away?  (Read 5990 times)

SearchKindly

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How do I just give stuff away?
« on: December 26, 2006, 02:05:08 PM »
Hey.  I'm new.  This is a really neat place.  But I'm sure you already know that.

Anyway, I'm in kind of a jam.  But let me put a little background on the jam. 

Over the summer (I'm a student, so I had some free time on my hands), a few friends and I put together a mildly interesting calendar--the theme was "Girls of Engineering".  I'm being totally serious here.  I know that Mouser goes to school in Champaign, so he'll get a kick out of the fact that all the models in the calendar are U of I engineers.  Sidenote:  Has anyone heard of this project?

Anyway, the project was headed up by a really incompetent friend of mine, who is actually no longer my friend, and it went to print really late, had no marketing done whatsoever, and hasn't sold well at all.  So now I'm stuck with like a thousand specialty calendars that I have no idea what to do with.  I wouldn't mind giving them all (or most of them) away, but that takes postage...yada, yada, yada. 

I spent one afternoon driving around Chicago handing these things off to firefighters and police officers (who seemed really appreciative of the gifts).  My girlfriend and I also spent an afternoon trying to hand these things off to strangers on Michigan Avenue--but that was a lot more difficult than I thought it was going to be.  And my last attempt at generating some buzz, which really didn't work out as planned, was to drop off 300 calendars for all the employees at Playboy's headquarters on Lake Shore Drive.  I was able to get in and drop them all off, but I have no idea what they did with them afterwards.  My guess is that they all got chucked.

So here's the deal, as much as I'd love to be able to sell them, more than anything, I just don't want to waste these.  So I really don't have a problem with just giving these calendars away (obviously).  But 1000 is a big number...does anyone have any suggestions?

If you're interested in seeing a video preview of the calendar you should be able to find it if you check eBay and Google Video.  And the url of the site is...you guessed it:
www.girlsofengineering.com

Mouser--your copy just got put in the mail.  Let me know what you think of it.

Syed

Veign

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Re: How do I just give stuff away?
« Reply #1 on: December 26, 2006, 02:47:45 PM »
Options:
- Sell them on Ebay.  At least you would cover shipping
- Give them away to bloggers.  Just send them one with a note about consider blogging about it.
- Give one to Zaine  :D.  He would probably enjoy it and blog about it.  (http://www.thegsblog.com/).  The girls better be hot or he will let you know about it.
- My blog / address in case your interested (http://www.veign.com/blog/)
- Contact some of the mall Calendar Stands to see if they would push it.  Sell it to them so they can turn a profit.

If you want some constructive critism then you need to focus on the target market.  You're trying to sell a calendar titled Girls of Engineering but you don't show them in a geeky, engineering environment.  Therefore you have nothing more than a standard, plain bikini calendar with a different title and the same type of girls in a non-themed layout.  If you do it again, really play up the geekiness of it and make the girls sexy in a very geeky / engineering environment.  Just my .02.

Good luck.

SearchKindly

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Re: How do I just give stuff away?
« Reply #2 on: December 26, 2006, 03:21:34 PM »
Thanks for the feedback.  I've actually tried all of the avenues that you suggested, but it's gotten to the point where it's just too late in the year for anything to be done (as far as eBay, calendar stands, etc).  I contacted a few wholesalers and shops last month and they all said the same thing--they do their buying in September-October.  Thanks Jen!  Way to tell me one thing and have me find out the complete opposite (Jen is the person who was in charge of marketing, but ended up doing nothing.)

I don't have a problem with giving them to bloggers, but I'm already out a bunch of money on the calendars and I really don't want to lose anymore (postage is about $1.50 per calendar).  Basically, all I want to do is give these away without it costing me anything.

And you're totally right about the lack of geekiness.  There were two guys and two girls involved with putting this together and we were both pushing for more geekdom--but the girls insisted on doing things there way.  Which I thought was lame.  There won't be another one of these calendars, but thanks for the feedback--I agree with you wholeheartedly.

Does anyone have any suggestions on how I could give these away without it costing me anything in postage?  My cost to mail them is $2 per calendar, that includes postage, envelope, and PayPal fees.  Hmm, maybe I should just offer one to everyone at DonationCoder...and if they want to donate anything for the calendar, then they can...but no obligation to do so...hey, I kind of like that idea.

Any takers?

app103

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Re: How do I just give stuff away?
« Reply #3 on: December 26, 2006, 04:00:26 PM »
How about standing outside somewhere and just handing them out for free...U of I sounds like the perfect place, since all the Girls of Engineering are from there.

Don't you think students would like a free calendar...especially with girls they might actually have a chance at seeing in real life, unlike the models in most calendars?

Maybe even get a few of the girls themselves to hand them out...autograph them too.

It would probably work especially well if it could be part of some already professionally planned and scheduled New Years Eve festivity, and have all the girls there to autograph and hand out calendars at some event.

You don't have much time to arrange something like that so start looking to see what is scheduled already and see if you can get in on it and let the event organizers do all the promoting...and call all the girls and ask them if they would be willing to participate.

See what is scheduled for First Night in your area, and check if you can be a part of it.

vegas

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Re: How do I just give stuff away?
« Reply #4 on: December 27, 2006, 11:43:00 AM »

If you want some constructive critism then you need to focus on the target market.  You're trying to sell a calendar titled Girls of Engineering but you don't show them in a geeky, engineering environment.  Therefore you have nothing more than a standard, plain bikini calendar with a different title and the same type of girls in a non-themed layout.  If you do it again, really play up the geekiness of it and make the girls sexy in a very geeky / engineering environment.  Just my .02.

Good luck.

Ummm after having seen this pic below, I would have to whole-heartedly agree about sticking to the theme, my, my, my, wowaweee

"Laura" - http://www.superjams..._laura_1920x1440.jpg (of course the bigger the picture the better) ;)
what a knockout of a woman.

edit: site was not displaying picture.
« Last Edit: December 27, 2006, 11:47:05 AM by vegas »

Darwin

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Re: How do I just give stuff away?
« Reply #5 on: December 27, 2006, 02:06:30 PM »
I think app103 had given you some KILLER suggestions. When I was an undergrad, the prospect of getting a free "girlie" calendar featuring girls I might actually be able to meet (but not have the confidence to speak to  :-[) would have been awesome. If you can get one or more of the girls to help hand them out, so much the better.

I wouldn't worry about doing this before the New Year - the start of term/semester would be fine. I've never said no to a free calendar before - never had one like this offered to me though!
"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin