A list from the "What If?" brainstorming session at the Industry Summit found its way online, thanks to Sports Card News on Twitter. There are some really good ideas on the list, albeit some are also far from practical but that is the point of a brainstroming session. When you have 300+ dealers, wholesalers, retailers, and manufacturers in a room debating how to make The Hobby better, you have to start someplace. Here is the list.
Memorabilia - as opposed to swatches in card, move towards a redemption for an entire memorabilia piece? As a redemption. Is it cost prohibitive?
What if Manufacturers visit stores more often. Particularly stores who are at these conferences and show initiative in their business.
Redemptions - provide a list of redemptions pre-product release - suggestion to eliminate redemptions altogether;
What if manufacturer's allow stores to re-order product based on some scale (perhaps original order) if manufacture still has stock, would it be possible to solicit B&Mʼs again? Distributors often raise price once product gets hot or sells out; stores would like to realize some of that upside;
What about over-ship programs - store gets extra with some time frame and some return privilege to try to augment sells (problem of speculating on this??)
What if we made Hobby blasters - price point friendly packaged SKUʼs; What about vendor cases? For bulk singles and maybe even some additional inserts, correctly seeded in the vending cases
What if we double-box cases for shipping from the factory? Prefer master cases rather than half-cases in some circumstances
What if the trading card companies worked in the gaming world to attract younger consumers somehow? Gamestops everywhere - is there a way to work in there space?
What if the sports released more condensed within the season itself,
What if products released on days of some significance? Opening day; opening day for little league etc.
What if we could sponsor or co-op local affordable athletes for in store signings more often?
What if we had more POS/POP materials for the stores?
What if stores were charged a small fee for a promotional package of marketing materials? (many raised their hands that they would do this)
What if the B&Mʼs were more proud to be dealers for the manufacturers - that it meant more; that it was something not available to just anyone but to those who added the most value, and represented the brands the most professionally?
What if manufacturers store locators contained more information about the stores and were more up to date and current?
What if manufacturers promoted B&M stores within the products (i.e. Decoy cards) some competitive concerns - use internet
What if their were a neutral site (run by the manufacturers) that promoted the B&M stores as a locator
What if the manufacturers sold the stores the bags they use (or provided more perhaps in case) for consumers to carry out their product
What if Manufacture's kept stores better informed of release dates and changing release dates
What if we made more set build-able products? Some sets are far to difficult to build; looking for more achievable sets to build in a few cases. Conversely, some like the challenging aspect
What if we had a set-build difficulty label 1 through 10? On the package*
What if manufacturers could release certain sets in several series but have them not count as releases
What if we had more box-toppers? Like NHL Ice packs in Black Diamond. What if all boxes had boxtoppers? Box toppers that drive traffic to internet sites, new upcoming product previews, etc encouraging box sales
What if we put more actual memorabilia in the boxes (see above) as well as more cool memorabilia available is redemption?
What if we went back to sending out paper sell sheets more often?
What if we attach PDF sales sheets to Facebook dealer area?
What if dealers had kiosk (computer monitor) in store for product information? (distraction?)
What if there was a universal card-store locator with product information?
What if manufacturers had video product information available for stores? A small monitor that fits in a header card, need content update functionality - maybe via download?
What if we used a tablet app that had product info? What if we had some inter-manufacture digital video display for in store product marketing (something we all share the cost in developing and implementing
What if we put more shirts, jerseys, hats etc in product as case toppers?
What if we gave out coupons in product to next purchase? (expiry dated) do it electronically
What if we did a reward based program for set building
What if we had more consistency? - i.e Annual trading Card day;
What if we had broad based nationwide programs?
What if we had a registry system where collectors are competing for status based on collecting goals?
What if we do value boxes for hobby? (like we do for retail)Here is the biggest "what if" of all, what if, just a handful of these ideas actually came to fruition? Heck what if just one came to fruition? Then it would mean this Summit had credibility and proved that the people with the power to make the changes, the manufacturers, really do care. So, what if?