Meet Amy and Derek Manning, owners of Second Chance Art & Accessories and Featured Business Owners at SCORE Chicago this week. Learn about their business and what tips they have for your success.
What is your company’s elevator pitch?
We create upscale artwork and home accessories using vintage architectural salvage.
Who are your clients, and give an example of how you served that person or business?
Our typical client is an affluent homeowner looking for something unique or different from their home. We have also begun to sell to interior designers and shop owners.
For our retail customers, we offer free delivery and installation for our high end pieces.
For interior designers and shop owners, we have created pieces specific to their client demographic, for example map art of the local area.
What is your most successful sales strategy?
Providing background on our pieces such as “before” photos and information about how the design evolved have helped us sell many pieces. Our customers like to learn where things came from and what materials looked like before we started.
We began selling our art at retail in art fairs. Recently we have begun to do more business at higher volumes selling wholesale. Whether retail or wholesale, customers who like our pieces frequently tell others, for which we are very grateful.
Who are your Mentors and how they have helped you in your business?
Mitch Morris and Peg Corwin are our mentors. Mitch helps us to put our emotions aside and look at our business with a critical eye. Also he keeps us accountable by encouraging us to set goals and focus on concrete steps we need to take for growth. Peg helps us up the learning curve to improve our website and expand our social media presence.
What is the most important lesson you have learned in business that might help others?
Derek says, “Don’t expect overnight success. Persistence pays off.”
Amy adds, “Our customer’s happiness is our number 1 goal, whether we sell retail or wholesale. Ultimately if they are happy, they buy more and refer others.”
What is your website for further info?
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Disclaimer: SCORE Chicago helps small business owners manage and grow their businesses. We help startups write business plans and launch. Nevertheless, our involvement should not be considered as an endorsement.