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Why Scrapbooking Needs a New Way To Market Our Products

An invitation to an informative seminar.

by Nancy Nally (January 17, 2011)

(Note: Nancy Nally is the Publisher of Scrapbook Update, available at www.scrapbookupdate.com.)

The scrapbook market is changing -- and scrapbook product marketing needs to change as well. Yet too many companies are relying on the same old techniques that served them five years ago. Now they're wondering why their marketing campaigns (and products) are falling flat.

What is changing so drastically? Technology, for one, is changing both scrapbooking and the marketing of it. Thanks to digital cameras, piles of photos are no longer the driving force of the typical papercrafter. It used to be that people were driven into scrapbook stores by envelopes full of processed photos that they felt the need to “do” something with, to preserve, organize and share. That’s no longer the case, thanks to digital cameras and online-sharing tools such as Facebook and Flickr.

Marketing is being changed by the digital world as well. Traditional Mad Men-style marketing campaigns that were made up of elements such as print advertising are being supplanted by digital media “relationships” with customers that are carried on 365 days a year.

Into the middle of all of this technology change has been thrown another huge change for marketers to adapt to: the economy. The current economic crisis has changed consumer behavior radically -- quite possibly permanently. Figuring out how to adapt your company’s products and marketing to this new reality in business is challenging, but necessary.

These factors (and more) hit the scrapbook market at perhaps the worst possible time, when the wave of the trend was peaking, and we were headed toward any trend’s natural ebb.

All of this means that traditional scrapbook marketing needs an overhaul. Badly.

But before we focus so much on the negatives that you (and your business), let’s remember that reinventing things from the ground up is an opportunity as well as a challenge. It’s a chance to break out of boxes that we’ve built around ourselves. It’s a chance to force ourselves to think about things from a new perspective -- which can be enlightening and productive. We can start from scratch and build from the rubble of the old system something that is new, innovative, and not constrained by old ways of thinking -- if we make the leap of faith into the future instead of clinging to the past.

At CHA Winter 2011 in Los Angeles, I'm inviting crafts industry professionals to take part in beginning the process of a new way of thinking about scrapbook marketing by taking part in my seminar "Rethinking Scrapbook Marketing." We’ll examine how the ground has shifted beneath the scrapbook industry. More importantly, we’ll talk about what that means for the industry moving forward: what are the possibilities, what new avenues we should be exploring with our marketing, and how to make the most of them. We can't solve all the world’s problems in an hour, but we can definitely take the first step on developing a new perspective on our industry in that time!

"Rethinking Scrapbook Marketing" will be presented at CHA Winter 2011 Mon., Jan. 31, noon-1:00 pm. Please join in!

(Note: The seminar is free as part of the $25/badge fee, but a ticket is required. The seminar code is S131. To register, and/or add this seminar to the list of events you've already registered for, visit www.chashow.org.)



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Memory, Paper & Stamps Recent Columns...
SCRAPBOOK ETC, READERS SPEAK OUT; They are sad and angry.

WHAT TO DO ABOUT SCRAPBOOKING; Return to preserving memories and other suggestions.

WHAT TO DO ABOUT SCRAPBOOKING; Reconnect with its roots: printing photos and preserving family legacies.

THE STATE OF SCRAPBOOKING IN MICHIGAN; And probably everywhere else.

WHAT'S HAPPENED TO SCRAPBOOKING; Why it's not what it was.

WHY SCRAPBOOKING NEEDS A NEW WAY TO MARKET OUR PRODUCTS; An invitation to an informative seminar.

BUSINESS TRENDS AT THE CHA SUMMER SHOW; Adjusting to the tight economy.

THE SECOND HALF OF '09: SCRAPBOOKING; Challenges...and opportunities.

RETAILERS COMMENT ON THE STATE OF SCRAPBOOKING; Is the demise of Memory Makers a sign of scrapbooking's decline, or a decline in advertising?

PAPER VS. DIGITAL OR...Is there a profitable middle ground?

Q. & A. ABOUT PRESERVATION; Preserving newspaper articles in scrapbooks, and other useful tips.


SIXTEEN WAYS TO ATTRACT NEW CUSTOMERS; If each method attracted 20 new customer...

WHAT'S HAPPENING TO SCRAPBOOKING? The digital world is changing the category and the consumer.

A PHOTO/SCRAP STORE CHANGES COURSE; Offering digital services rather than scrapbook supplies.

PROBLEMS IN SCRAPBOOKING...Will only be solved by cooperation.

A SCRAPBOOK SHOP HOP: AN INNOVATIVE MARKETING STRATEGRY FOR 2008; The nuts and bolts, and why they produce results.

UNAPPRECIATED LOYALTY; Why many devoted scrapbookers are angry.

CONSUMERS RESPOND; Anger, misunderstanding, and thought-provoking comments...

CHALLENGE #1: INSPIRING CONSUMERS TO PRINT PHOTOS; Interesting advice and comments from CLN readers.

STOP WORRYING ABOUT DIGITAL SCRAPBOOKING...And worry about printing photos instead.

PMA SPEAKS OUT; On trade shows, scrapbooking and more.



A SCRAPBOOKER'S IMPRESSIONS OF CHA'S WINTER SHOW, 2007; A step in the right direction.

CRAFTER'S HOME: BIG PLANS, NEW PERSONNEL; All designed to help independents and grow the category.

PREDICTIONS FOR 2007; Further consolidation and new opportunities.

WE NEED HOG WILD CRAZY CUSTOMERS; They're our best customers, but they morph into no-so-good customers.

SCRAPBOOKING IN 2010; Sound advice for retailers and vendors to survive and prosper in the next four years.

DIGITAL OR HARD-COPY SCRAPBOOKS? Is one better than the other? Or is there a "best of both worlds" solution?

WILL SCRAPBOOKING FADE LIKE OTHER TRENDS? No! Yes! And maybe it's a moot point, say subscribers.

THE SCRAPBOOK WARS: A REPORT FROM THE TRENCHES; Clearance sales and short-sighted vendors make a tough business tougher.

CHA's DIGITAL IMAGING SEMINARS; Digital and imaging programs for retailers -- and vendors.

TECHNIQUE OR STORYTELLING? Techniques enhance memories by appealing to more senses.

WHO'S TO BLAME WHEN A STORE CLOSES? Outside competition? Or something else?

THE STATE OF SCRAPBOOKING; Readers react to the thought provoking comments by Crafters Home's Shane Cullimore.

CRAFTERS HOME'S SHANE CULLIMORE SPEAKS OUT; Thought provoking analysis of how scrapbooking is changing.

WHAT'S HAPPENING TO SCRAPBOOKING? Readers offer complicated, tough answers.

WHY INDEPENDENTS AREN'T MORE "LOYAL" TO SMALL VENDORS; Large vendors: Can't live with 'em, can't live without 'em.

THOUGHTS FROM AN EX-SCRAPBOOK RETAILER; Who's to blame? Not the chains, but vendors?

THE PAPER CHASE; Too much paper, there are more profitable products to stock.

MERCHANDISING MATTERS; Advise to vendors on packaging and racks.

INCREASING THE SIZE OF THE PIE; Attracting newcomers by creating an identity.

SCRAPBOOKING IS APPEALING TO THE WRONG MARKET; We aren't keeping it inviting to newcomers.

THE STATE OF SCRAPBOOKING AND INDEPENDENTS; The new leader of Crafters Home speaks out on what's right -- and what's wrong -- with retailing in 2005.

DO WHAT YOU'VE ALWAYS DONE; The scrapbook industry is in trouble! Some possible solutions.

MORE WAYS TO TURN A CRAFTER INTO A SCRAPBOOKER; Bring the message to the consumer, use consultants, and don't call it "scrapbooking."

TURNING A CRAFTER INTO A SCRAPBOOKER; Strategies to attract the doubters.

GREAT BRITAIN: GETTING CRAFTIER BY THE DAY! Scrapbooking is growing, but card making is king.

LEARNING FROM ANOTHER MARKET FOR SCRAPBOOKING; Gaining a broader perspective on your business.

THE STATE OF SCRAPBOOKING; Interview with Crafter's Home President Norm Carlson.

CHARACTERISTICS OF A HARDCORE SCRAPPER; And how to keep her coming back for more.

PROBLEMS LOOM FOR SCRAPBOOK RETAILERS...But there are some common sense solutions.


AN INTERVIEW WITH SUE DIFRANCO; Candid talk on the state and future of scrapbooking.

NEW YEARS RESOLUTIONS FOR SCRAPBOOK RETAILERS; Strategies to make 2004 more profitable and enjoyable.

PAPER:THE NEW FOUNDATION; Allows scrapbookers to go beyond scrapbooking.

INTERVIEW WITH SANDRA JOSEPH; Blunt talk about challenges, trends, and the future.


SCRAPBOOKING STILL SHOWING STRONG GROWTH; New study pegs market at $1.2 billion.

SCRAPBOOK RETAILERS & CRAFTER'S HOME; How joining forces can help independents survive and prosper

SO, WHO'S AFRAID OF MICHAELS?; It's way, way too early to panic.