Some things happen serendipitously, but I believe this new product of mine, local area photo magnets, came about due to the grace of God.
A friend from the tiny rural town of Montello, Nevada, came across my magnet blog post from eight years ago, and asked to buy one of them. Since these magnets have long been out of stock, I ended up making her a batch of magnets similar to those pictured above, but with a Montello, Nevada, theme. Then her friend in rural Wells, Nevada, got wind of this custom product and asked me to make a batch of Wells magnets for her.
When I was working on the prototypes for these magnets, I created a variety of possibilities from which my customers could choose. Since I already had prepared these for production, I changed their wording to feature the Elko, Spring Creek, and Lamoille, Nevada, towns closer to my home. These towns form the largest populated area in northeastern Nevada, and they thus have many more potential magnet customers than either Wells or Montello.
Since I am a member of the Elko Area Chamber of Commerce and already have some of my jewelry in its gift shop, I decided to make 75 magnets to sell there. The Chamber was delighted, because they did not have any such magnets in their gift shop, and they had received many customer requests for local area magnets. Elko’s location on I-80, the only east-west highway through northern Nevada, makes it a popular tourist stop. The nearest larger towns are 4-5 hours away by car.
To launch this new product, I put the following ad in the Chamber’s weekly e-newsletter to its members:
The gift shop manager for Elko’s Northeastern Nevada Museum, Donna Engdahl, saw this ad and asked me to make some of my magnets to sell in the museum’s gift shop. She was delighted with the 50 I made for the museum, as she testified in the following post on the museum’s Facebook page:
After seeing and buying some of my local area magnets, another friend of mine asked me to make some similar magnets for Christmas gifts for her women’s group that meets weekly at a local restaurant. She asked me to take a picture of the restaurant and make it into magnets, which I did. I even notched the tops of each magnet to follow the restaurant’s roof line. My friend was very pleased with the result!
I made up another batch of 50 local area magnets to sell in my booth at the upcoming Lamoille Harvest Festival on Oct. 6, 2018, where I expect them to be hot sellers.
Included in each magnet’s packaging is my artist statement with representative pictures for each of my other product lines. Thus, I am hoping my magnet sales will also drive traffic to my website, resulting in sales of my other creations.
I had been praying for ways to promote my products and increase sales, but I never expected God to answer my prayers via this new magnet product line. My Montello friend’s initial inquiry led me to create this whole new product line using photos I’ve taken of local scenery over the years, my graphic arts experience, my color printer, clear packing tape, self-doming resin that I already use for my pillboxes, and a package of just-the-right-size glassine envelopes that a supplier sent me by accident and let me keep for no charge. All I had to buy were the strong round magnets and relatively inexpensive display racks for each sales location.
So yes, I do believe this new product line was inspired by God’s grace. Magnet sales are popping, sending word of my other creations into the world. I can’t wait to see where this leads! If you would like me to create some custom magnets for you or your town or business, let me know!