Monday, June 22, 2015

Limbo Land, Newsletter and Open for a Season

The house we're waiting to move into...someday soon!
It's yellow. The house. We first saw inside this house in early January. We want to buy this house. The happy news is that we are buying this house. The unhappy news is that we no longer have a closing date. Curious? We were supposed to close May 22nd, but escrow had to cancel and reschedule our closing date because a particular important piece of paper wasn't filed correctly. We are now in limbo land waiting for a new closing date. Can't tell you how fun that is(!) It turns out that I'm really grateful for this "land of limbo" because it has provided me with some time to re-evaluate my personal life and business routines (among other things-like packing!).

I was getting bogged down with a monthly newsletter, mostly, because I just don't think it's necessary to advertise that much. You all know where to find our lip balm when you want and need it, it's right there on the label. I suppose I've adopted general marketing advice about generally sending a newsletter to my mailing list generally once a month. But I think I'm going to change things up a general.

For various reasons, we've been discussing the possibility of NOT staying open year round. I like the idea of opening in September and closing after Valentine's Day (we would of course, still be available for wholesale orders to keep our few vendors supplied as needed throughout the entire year!). The day after Valentine's Day (February 15th) through the end of the February, we'd run a blowout sale for any tubes remaining after the selling season.

We would make our batches in August and try to sell out of every flavor by February. It would be a good fit with our family life as we tend to be more active in the summer and it also allows us to not have to ship our slurpilicious lip balms during the hottest summer months. Just thinking about that idea.

A special thanks to our friend, John Howshall, who graciously gifted us with an illustration of our new home when I asked him to do it for my new house blog. I love his style!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Evaluate, Reformulate, Rename and Discontinue 2015

Time to reformulate, rename and discontinue some flavors.

Everyone needs a new lease on life now and then, Lemon Lollipop included! I've been wanting to reformulate, rename and discontinue some lip balms and summer is the perfect time to do it. I recently took an online course about improving my personal routine and discovered for myself the lost art (to me!) of goal setting. Under the family business category, I listed three things:
1-evaluate the lip balm flavors
2-solve the label problem
3-get ready for the holiday season by Sept 15th

I'm happy to say, with a little encouragement from my husband, we've pushed through with some decision-making about goals 1 & 2. Hooray! I'd like to tell you all about it.

We have a few flavors, though good sellers, that are too weak in my opinion and I always cringe when they get ordered. So there are three flavors going under the reformulation knife in hopes we can find a supplier with stronger flavor oils soon:
-Chocolate Mint
-Morning Coffee
-Rich Chocolate

This is almost comical, but for a range of completely crazy reasons, we are planning on renaming two lip balms. Both these flavor names have been hotly debated over the kitchen table by all team members for quite some time. But after nearly a year in the line-up, we are seeing things more clearly and thus, the name change (back).
-Sugared Lemondrop will be named Lemon Lollipop as it should be
-Grape Lollipop will return to the title Grape Soda

A note about the lip balm flavor Lemon Lollipop...we also have a perfume called Lemon Lollipop, which is why we've gone back and forth about the name of the lip balm (which doesn't exactly match the fragrance). I thought we would launch (relaunch) the fragrance Lemon Lollipop in the spring, but we didn't do it. I don't know if it will be done in the next year, either. So I'm okay with the lip balm brandishing the name it rightly deserves...until I change my mind again!

Some flavors I don't find worth reformulating for various reasons and these will be discontinued soon. I will post sale prices soon. The sale prices will only be good on Etsy as I can better control the inventory there and won't oversell these flavors. These flavors will be removed from the website soon. Some of them MAY return at a later date, for example, the Chocolate flavors, depending on if our new Chocolate flavor oil is strong enough.
-Chocolate Caramel
-Chocolate Coffee
-Chocolate Lavender
-Chocolate Mint
-Hot Vanilla Chai
-Lavender Rose
-Root Beer Float
-Morning Coffee
-Rich Chocolate

Another issue we've had is the labels peeling off the tubes. I did not have this problem in 2009, but we have it now for some reason. After trying to unsuccessfully find a resolution ourselves, we've decided to pursue having someone else print our labels. We're waiting for samples and look forward to introducing our new labels as we replenish batches. We hope customer experience will improve with this change!

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

YouTube Channel Found

My old YouTube channel!
This is an absolute scream!!!

Here's how it started...I wanted to add the widget because I like how it prompts my readers to click on other blog posts. But when I added it, it populated the blog with all my archived posts going back to 2009!

I decided to delete all those old posts (and remove all the images from, but I did read the original first post. It contained a video from 2008! This took me to YouTube, where I found my old channel. Crazy! This was PRE-Google YouTube, so it asked me if I wanted to claim my old channel (which has a custom URL from the old days-yay!). Sure, why not!?

Three videos reside on this YouTube channel...and I'm going to keep them because they are like "vintage" Lemon Lollipop from so long ago!

I always feel weird about stuff I did years ago because I personally have gone through an internal and spiritual transformation over the past couple years. There really is the "old me" and the "new me" now. I have regrets about some things I did online before the "new me", I'm not doing those things anymore.

I wanted to embed the video, but I pasted over the code-duh! I'll have to figure that out later. Here's the link to my very first video...kinda makes me excited for making some more!

What would you like to see on the Lemon Lollipop YouTube Channel?

Friday, June 12, 2015

Strawberry Rhubarb Treasury

Thank you to the Curator:

Treasury Link: