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Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Sales Pass $3,000 With 9 Days To Go and Reconnecting With An Old Friend

Today we passed the $3,000 mark in sales, and in terms of sales volume, this is our best month yet. This sales total is made up entirely of smaller amounts, with no one stamp being more than $50. We have been pleasantly surprised to have received several $250-$300 orders for modern Canadian material that historically has not been in strong demand. It would seem that our attention to detail and fast service is developing a following among our clientele. Today I followed up with another dealer that I had sent a want list to some 4-5 weeks ago. I was told that he hadn't gotten to it yet because he was too busy breaking collections he had bought down for stock. He isn't alone either: I have sent want lists to 2-3 other dealers over the past few months for items that my customers need. We aren't talking pennies here. Some of these lists were for hundreds of dollars in potential sales. Yet, it would appear that these dealers are never going to get around to filling them. Why? Because they are too busy. With what? Organizing their stock.

I'm trying not to be too judgmental here because I understand how easy it is to do this. When you love stamps as much as we do, it is natural to gravitate to that aspect of the business which involves working with stamps. But what I am discovering is that there is a very large market of badly serviced philatelists who are hungry to deal with dealers who will pay prompt attention to their needs. Steph and I have developed a rule that any sales order that comes in MUST be processed at the very latest by the end of the following day. By processed, I mean mailed out and the customer appropriately communicated with. Any enquiry or want list gets dealt with in the same time frame - nothing gets dropped. After all, these are sales and opportunities for sales. How can you be too busy to attend to those? Our stock will get organized all in good time. But we can't sell our stock if we don't have loyal customers and as we are seeing, it is much easier to retain them when you provide prompt and efficient, personalized service.

Just when I thought I couldn't receive any more amazing surprises in my life, I was on Facebook a few weeks ago when I saw a friend request from a "Simon" whose last name was the same as my best friend from grades 7-10 when I lived in Australia. Instantly, I knew it was him. He messaged me the day after I accepted it and we have had three Skype conversations each lasting 1-2.5 hours each in the three weeks since. It is as if time has stood still with us and we have simply picked up from where we left off as children. It is remarkable after almost 30 years of no contact to discover that you can still have a lot in common with someone you were best friends with in grade school. It is because of Simon that I developed my love of British comedy and it was he who started me down the long road of self-acceptance. At a time in my life when very few people understood what Asperger Syndrome is or knew how to identify it, Simon was the one friend who never made me feel that I was odd. We have had conversations about the same wonderful range of topics that we used to discuss then, only now we both have the breadth and depth of life experience to make these conversations really interesting. He is very concerned about the upcoming referendum in the UK (where he now lives) regarding the decision as to whether or not to remain in the European union. Tonight he explained what is at stake and I must say I learned a lot of things about the way the European Union works that I was not at all aware of. I am excited to see how the rekindling of this relationship unfolds. I am just happy to enjoy it for what it is.

It just goes to show that you never know what lies around the corner in this wonderful life we live.


  1. I thought that you were over $5,000 in sales 1 month.

    how are the wedding plans coming?

  2. That is true.In November, our sales were that high because of two stamps sold to one customer for $3,000 USD. This month in my opinion is stronger because the higher sales is coming from more volume generated by a broader base of customers, which means that it is more sustainable and less subject to fluctuation.

    Wedding plans are proceeding on target. We will have RSVP's soon and can finalize the planning next month.