Friday, September 25, 2009

NSS Community-Based Site Live!

Today we “go live” with the National Stationery Show’s new website. More an industry site than purely a show-centric one, we hope it inspires you, and as it develops, becomes a regular stop in your daily clicks. I know, I know another website to follow, but let me tell you why this one will be worthy for you and your business to keep up with.

We’re setting the bar high and aiming to engage professionals on all sides of the business. The reason is simple: to communicate on a regular basis with our industry community well beyond the 4 days each May that we convene. will feature industry and business news, product features, flash polls, links to blogs, and other websites we find valuable, and will present what’s timely and relevant about the Show to exhibitors and buyers. It will be dynamic and participative. And, above all, we hope it builds community.

And speaking of community, don’t you find that this word is so often used to describe our industry? It surfaces in almost every business conversation I have, whether in a meeting, in the midst of a phone call with a customer, a planning session with the team, or during a special event. Community is a defining characteristic of the Show, as all sectors of our industry come together: manufacturers, retailers, distributors, reps, designers, licensing agents, suppliers, consumer and trade press. This is a hallmark of NSS (no pun intended!) and something that, if I do say so myself, is pretty unique in the spectrum of shows and business events that are out there. As our community grows, changes, and spans every corner of the world, we hope that the site becomes a global “town center”.

The soft launch will help us uncover any glitches, any clumsy navigation, and maybe even a mistake! But, in a true community we can and should be ourselves – bumps and all. So, go easy on us, but be sure to let us know what you think of this initial debut. And, allow me to invite you to be a part of this community. Please visit the site often, take our polls, contribute ideas, visit the product gallery and enjoy!


Thursday, September 17, 2009

A Sneak Peek

Okay, readers. You are a privileged group! We can’t contain our excitement any longer, so we’re giving our blog readers a tiny glimpse at the new vibe of the National Stationery Show. And our new vibe isn’t just a new look – it’s a new philosophy and outlook on our obligation to the industry as its leading event. This new vibe can be summed up in just one word - Community.

Gone are the days of the National Stationery Show as just a 4-day event…although no doubt among the most productive four days of your year! We are about to unveil a new website that will intrigue and inspire you year-round with breaking industry news, new product features, industry polls and more. Creating a sense of community is our goal, and we think you’ll agree that we have achieved just that.

Be sure to check out in another week or so to see our dynamic, community-based new website. Spend a few minutes taking in the latest industry headlines, scoping out some great new products and learning about the Show itself. And did I mention the user-friendly navigation? We always enjoy talking to our customers, and will miss those “where can I find…?” phone calls.

Let us know what you think…and of course, send news, product announcements and anything else you think might be a good fit for our new website.

Happy navigating,

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Creativity Fuels

Creativity is a big part of what the National Stationery Show is all about. Our exhibitors are creative. Our attendees are creative. Our staff is creative.

The one thing I’ve realized with the technology vs. paper debate I’ve heard about for years is that no matter what, all great products are because of great creativity; and the world will never stop buying great, creative products.

How often do you go into a store not planning on buying anything, and end up with “the cutest thing ever?” There is something inside all of us that has this “I just have to have that” adrenaline rush when we see something new and creative. I know I’m on a budget, I know I already have 4 unused notebooks at home in my desk, but that color…that design…that paper…I must own it. Sound familiar?

Maybe you’re not a notebook nut like I am. But maybe it’s pens; maybe it’s magnets…how about frames and photo albums? Desk novelties and mugs. Or it’s the newest design of post-it and organizational systems. No? Well maybe it’s your kids. It’s the folders and stickers and plush toys. That back to school shopping you just finished doing. If you’re in your 20s or 30s maybe it’s a girly laptop sleeve or a men’s leather messenger bag. It’s a new makeup bag or pocket mirror. Or it’s an iPod cover or cell phone case.

Whatever your guilty purchasing pleasure is, I bet it’s because of someone’s creativity. Some designer/manufacturer/retailer/marketer/sales representative/store manager saw a fresh, new idea and got creative.

So, we want to know:

1 – what fuels your creativity?
2- what’s your guilty purchasing pleasure?

We love to hear from our readers – please post a comment below!


Friday, September 4, 2009

Card Sending Begets Card Sending!

The 2009 National Stationery Show hosted the launch of the national grassroots movement called HOPE is in the cards. The mission is to spread HOPE across America one card or letter at a time through the mail - what a concept!

The greeting card business - and the US Postal Service - have been dramatically impacted by the proliferation of technology tools that people use to communicate. And not to mention our culture that is quickly losing touch with the meaningful gesture of putting pen to paper to communicate. The HOPE program has the potential to remind us of that "mail moment" - the wonderful feeling you get when you see a hand addressed envelope in your mailbox.

I am proud that NSS is among the founding sponsors of HOPE. We are behind Russ Haan, its founder, to forge ahead with incredible ideas to build momentum. One such is the first Week of Hope that launched two days ago and continues through September 7th. You won't believe some of the amazing stories, some of which you can read about on the Hope site.

Retailers across the country are united in their support of the program. They're bringing it to their customers and their communities in ways that help promote traffic to their stores and ultimately sales. The fundamental gesture in common is that every customer that purchases a greeting card gets a free first-class stamp from the retailer. It's that easy.

Do your part and send a card during the Week, for as so many in the industry put it "card sending begets card sending."