Blog #240 I talked about when Steve gets promoted to VP of Merchandising. In this blog I want to talk about the Private label team heads out to Vietnam
February 29th Zappos has its first ever All-Hands meeting at the Henderson Pavilion. It was an outdoor venue and within walking distance from the office. It was the First time that financials were discussed with the entire company. It was also the first time we got together as a team to discuss how things were going (finances, etc.). We announced for the first time that we were profitable as a company. In the past we were reinvesting our profits into the customer experience. And if that wasn’t enough Tony and Alfred decided to give a 10% bonus to all employees. It was the first time ever they gave out a bonus to employees. Needless to say everyone was jazzed about all the good news and some people even cried when they announced the bonus.
In March we launched our first ever commercial campaign called “Zippy City”. Until this time we were only advertising by word of mouth. It ran for 24 weeks on national cable and had about 250 spots per week. We ran a second campaign later called “Put a little Zappos in your day”. It was a 31 second spot. They learned from the mistakes of the first campaign so this one was much better received.
The private label team headed out to China then Vietnam for the first time in April. We had been getting a lot of information that Vietnam was an up and coming country for private label opportunities, so we wanted to check it out. The team for this trip was Charles, Kathryn, Richard and myself. Rob was going to meet us in Hong Kong, then off to Shanghai.
Rob and I shared a room in Shanghai, it was like old times when we did that at Nordstrom. We headed out to Shanghai the next morning to look at some new opportunities for factories there. Michael, who helped Rob with the sourcing also had some updates for us on the shoe bags we were using for all our brands. It was a big endeavor for Michael, and he did a great job for us coordinating it all.
We got to the hotel and had to convert our money. We were all a little excited to get a Million Dong note. In reality it was worth 44 US dollars. We all got settled in to our hotel rooms and Richard & Judy had a nice surprise for the PL team. After dinner Judy and Richard were going to take us to a very famous water puppet show. It basically was just that, a puppet show in pools of water. I was trying to figure out how they did it so effortlessly but decided to just enjoy the moment. It was incredible. Richard told us these shows had been going on for a thousand years and it was an honor to be a puppeteer. There were about 10 people doing the magic.
The next morning we would be going to factories all day so after the show we all turned into our rooms to get some rest from the long trip.
SIZES... SIZES... SIZES... SIZES...
…just sharing my story and tips from my footwear career.
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