january 17-19, 2020 | new orleans, la

The Celebration | April 2018

Welcome to the April 2018 edition of The Celebration!

Here's what you'll find inside:

BEHIND THE BRAND
Featuring Graftobian

IT'S YOUR STORE
Featuring Display Costume

RETAIL SMARTS
In-store Strategies to Increase In-Store AND Online Sales

HIA NEWS 7 NOTES
HIA joins coalition with National Retail Federation Business and Farm Community Urges Congress to Quickly Mitifate Trade Situation with China

HALLOWEEN & PARTY EXPO SHOW UPDATES
Save the Date for the 2019 Show!

BEHIND THE BRAND

For this month's Behind the Brand, we spoke with Graftobian, an exhibitor at the upcoming 2019 Halloween & Party Expo. Check out the full interview below:

Halloween & Party Expo (HPE): Tell us about the history of Graftobian. How have you evolved over the years to become what you are today? 
Graftobian (G): Graftobian Makeup Company. In 1978, Gene and Evelyn Coffman embarked on a daring and adventurous entrepreneurial voyage. As founders of Graftobian Ltd., they sought to produce and sell the finest novelty masquerade makeup in the world. Their product, Disguise Stix, is recognized as one of the leading face paints on the market. In 1995, their son, Eric, and his wife Susan took over the helm of Graftobian and soon Graftobian's line of makeup grew. In 1997, their longtime friend, John Mazur added his unparalleled formulation skills when he partnered with Graftobian Ltd. to manufacture professional theatrical and beauty makeup. A revised, expanded, and invigorated Graftobian was born. As Graftobian grows and changes to offer a more diverse line of makeup, two things must remain the same: we will only offer top quality products, and we will always take great care of our customers!

 

HPE: What product are you most excited about for the 2018/2019 season?.
G: At Graftobian, we get pretty excited about color. We like to offer a full range of color in each of our lines of makeup: 64 shades of HD cremes and HD airbrush, 24 shades of glitter, 64 shades of F/X Aire™ airbrush, 48 shades of ProPaint™ for face and body painting, 28 shades of Disguise Stix, 38 shades of theatrical cremes, 47 shades of rubber mask grease, etc. This makes it so much easier for makeup artists and consumers to find the exact match. We recently added more shades to our line of ProPaint, Cake Foundation, and Lipsticks for 2018.

HPE: How does the Halloween & Party Expo bring value to you, your brand and your customers?
G: The show allows Graftobian to stay connected with current customers as well as meet new potential customers from this exciting industry.

HPE: What types of trends do you anticipate will be popular for this upcoming Halloween season?
G: Zombies continue to top the list year after year and Graftobian has anticipated that they will be popular once again this year. We've created a Zombie Kit and a Deluxe Zombie Kit, which includes everything you need to transform yourself into a horrifying, undead monster. Other trends we anticipate for 2018 are costumes and makeup for Black Panther, Hans Solo, and Deadpool. Leave it to Graftobian to have all the makeup you could ever need for any Halloween look.

 

HPE: What does the new co-location with HAuNTcon mean to you and your business? What are you most excited for in terms of next year's Show?
G: We are most excited about introducing our products, which are made in the USA, to haunters throughout the country!

IT'S YOUR STORE

The Halloween & Party Expo spoke with Margaret McGowan from Display Costume about the history of the business, trends they are seeing in the industry and more!

HPE: Tell us about your business history.
Margaret McGowan (MM): Our company began as Display and Costume Supply in 1952. Tyler Kaune and his wife Merry combined their interests in display, theatre, costume, and make-up at an early location at Westlake and Denny. Business grew as party and Christmas decorations were added and the company moved to the corner of Second and Bell Street. Seafair float builders, dance teachers, and television producers made the store their home base for supplies and inspiration. The company's seasonal decorating materials were to be seen in many of the Northwest's grocery and retail stores. As the 60's became the 70's, Halloween was becoming a major national holiday. The store's wide selection of costume fabrics and trim as well as hats, tiaras, wigs, and thousands of ready to wear costumes dazzled shoppers at Halloween and throughout the year.
As the founders began to retire, daughter Susan and husband Dallas Carleton became the second generation and continued to grow the family's small business. The store, bursting at the seams, moved to a new location in 1985 on Roosevelt Way near Northgate Mall. Additional stores in Everett and Issaquah expanded the company's market in the 90's and into the new century. We are proud to be in a third generation of family ownership. Margaret McGowan, Dallas and Susan Carleton's daughter, is now directing the company's future.
Every day is a never ending parade of Moms, Dads, and kids looking for just the right balloons, plates, and napkins for those special family celebrations. Don't forget weddings, retirements, warm hellos, and cards that are just right for those close friends to receive.

HPE: What was your favorite product of 2017?
MM: Our favorite items from 2017 were the inflatable T-Rex costume and of course the poop emoji large balloons.

HPE: What products are you most excited about this year?
MM: For 2018, we are excited to have our Harry Potter tableware. Unicorns are going strong still, from balloons, tableware and costumes. We know this Halloween, Black Panther, Dead Pool and Avengers will stay strong.

HPE: What are some new industry trends you are seeing?
MM: New industry trends we are seeing is the huge impact from Pinterest. Moms are interested in building the birthday party decorations with their kids at home. They come in for the items needed to make the décor. For example; making fish out of paper lanterns, for the under the sea party. This is the same for costuming. Customers are coming in with YouTube tutorials on how to do make up, and buy the make up from us. There is a lot of mix and match in all departments to fulfill customer’s needs, instead of buying a whole costume or 1 single party theme.

HPE: What are some new industry trends you are seeing?
MM: New industry trends we are seeing is the huge impact from Pinterest. Moms are interested in building the birthday party decorations with their kids at home. They come in for the items needed to make the décor. For example; making fish out of paper lanterns, for the under the sea party. This is the same for costuming. Customers are coming in with YouTube tutorials on how to do make up, and buy the make up from us. There is a lot of mix and match in all departments to fulfill customer’s needs, instead of buying a whole costume or 1 single party theme.

 

retail smarts

In Store Strategies to Increase In-Store AND Online Sales
By Nicole Leinbach Reyhle

 

Customers navigate shopping in a variety of ways unlike ever before. No longer do friends and family solely influence their purchase decisions but social media, influencers, digital ads, mobile marketing, websites and yes – in-store experiences – all factor in to whether or not they want to make a purchase. Keeping this in mind, is your store prepped to influence customer sales… both online and in-store?
When it comes to increasing inventory sell-thru, there’s no better way to do this than to have an omni-channel strategy. This means incorporating more than one avenue to sell products. The most obvious extension from in-store sales is selling online, but what exactly does that look like for brick and mortar retailers? Using the three strategies below, consider how your store can increase sell-thru of inventory no matter where – online or off – your customers decide to spend their dollars.

 

#1: Identify How Customers Can Connect With You Online While IN Your Store
Sure, it may seem obvious that you have a Facebook page, Yelp profile or website that customers can find you online with… but don’t let assumption get in the way of connecting you with your customers. Take advantage of the fact that consumers are in your physical store and use this opportunity to share with them ways they can connect with you online. At your point of sale area you can have a neatly framed sign identifying all the places you can connect online, including Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Yelp, local groups if applicable and of course, your website. Additionally, train your staff to communicate these details as an extra effort in ensuring customers know how to connect with you once they leave your physical store. The catch, however, is to be sure your online touchpoints all have cohesive branding that points back to your physical store, as well.

 

#2: Provide Incentives for Customers to Shop Post In-Store Purchases Online
Want to capture more sales? Begin by saying thanks. For every in-store sale you have, follow up with your customers offering them a “thank you” incentive to shop with you online. This can be provided by directing customers to your website with a promo code for a percentage off their online purchase (either shared at the bottom of in-store receipts or handed out via a physical coupon post purchase) or you could incorporate an email marketing strategy to share this offer. The main takeaway is this, however… Don’t settle for an in-store purchase being the only purchase you gain from your customers. Leverage this opportunity to share with your customers that they can shop with you 24/7 thanks to your online assortment. And if they choose not to use this incentive online, be sure you give them the chance to use in-store, as well.

 

#3: Offer a Treasure Hunt in Your Store That Translates to Online Rewards 
Shopping should be entertaining and nothing says “find me” more than the chance to save money. “Hide” something within your displays that customers need to find in order for a chance to win something that they can redeem online – whether it’s a gift with purchase, savings on a future purchase or more. The main takeaway is simple really… create an interactive experience in-store that leads customers to shopping with you online. Incorporate a hashtag for them to share via social media, as well, to up your chance for more store visibility. Not only will this be fun for your customers, it can translate to conversations among friends and help position your store as a fun place to shop.
Finally, remember that customers are influenced by a variety of factors that ultimately lead them to wanting to spend money. Be sure your store communicates to consumers so that they know where to find you online, why they should want to visit you online and where they can return to explore your inventory again (whether in-store or via the web). Throw in some fun along the way and you’ll be on your way to capturing more sales… both online and in-store.

HIA NEWS & NOTES

HIA Joins Coalition with National Retail Federation Business and Farm Community Urges Congress to 'Quickly Mitigate' Trade Situation With China

The National Retail Federation, the Information Technology Industry Council and 105 other associations including the Halloween Industry Association representing U.S. manufacturers, farmers, agribusinesses, retailers, technology companies, importers, exporters and other supply chain stakeholders sent a letter to House Ways and Means committee Chairman Kevin Brady, R-Texas, and Ranking Member Richard Neal, D-Mass., urging Congress to play a strong role in mitigating the escalating trade situation with China. The letter asked Brady and Neal to work to ensure that U.S. families are not forced to pay the price for China’s bad behavior.  

“We strongly encourage Congress to work together and with the administration to develop and execute a strategic policy to effectively address the longstanding problems in China,” the coalition wrote.

“As Committee members are aware, tariffs are hidden, regressive taxes that will be paid by U.S. businesses and consumers in the form of higher product prices,” the letter said. “While the tariffs are not yet in effect, the possibility of imposition of tariffs on billions of dollars of goods, the as-yet-undefined potential investment restrictions and threats of a potential trade war create unpredictability across the business and farm community here in the United States, depress commodity prices, and have already harmed U.S. companies, farmers, consumers and markets.”

HALLOWEEN & PARTY EXPO SHOW UPDATES

SAVE THE DATE FOR THE 2019 EVENT - NEXT YEAR WILL BE A 3 DAY SHOW

JANUARY 25-27, 2019 | NEW ORLEANS