She has appeared on TV shows such as TBS’s Movie and a Makeover, won hair competitions at the Bronner Bros. hair shows, produced hair styling DVD’s, presented/trained at sold-out speaking events, appeared in beauty industry magazines, participated in weekly radio segments and nationally syndicated radio shows. DeShawn Bullard, is the CEO of NouriTress (www.nouritress.com) and author of Are Your Running A Business OR Just Doin’ Hair and Independence Day. Her highly successful brand will be positioned to expand distribution into more retail outlets, including South Africa over the next few years. Although, NouriTress continues to serve multicultural women and men between the ages of 25-55, the new launch of products will reach a younger group of girls who need help with achieving healthy hair.
BlackEnterprise.com recently caught up with Bullard to provide seven building blocks for entrepreneurs that want to launch commercial products in the marketplace.
- Make sure your company is positioned and structured to operate as a business and not as a side hustle. Before you are able to begin your ascent to commercial shelves, your business must be verifiable. A verified business has the following areas of their business as verified: address, business telephone, website address and social media pages. Many small businesses decide to use a cellular phone as their main business phone number. It is important for branding and building business credit, that you install a business phone at the address where your business is incorporated.
- Revisit and reassess your company’s business structure. If you are still operating as a sole proprietor, talk to an accountant or business attorney and incorporate your business. This is a must before going commercial with your brand of products.
- Position your business to begin building business credit, which doesn’t require your personal guarantee. It takes about two years from the date of formation to accomplish this goal but it’s so worth it. Building business credit without a personal guarantee is not applicable if your business is still structured as a Sole Proprietorship.
- Become familiar with your Dun and Bradstreet business credit report. Make it a priority to know what the scores on this report mean such as your “Supplier Evaluation Score” and how it affects how you are seen as a supplier in the marketplace. This step is critically important because this can be a deciding factor on whether your company is qualified or selected to do business with a potential retailer.
- Make sure that your product packaging is retail ready. Your packaging should include a UPC barcode also known as a Universal Product Code that uniquely identifies each product. Also, you want to make sure that the verbiage on your packaging follows labeling regulations under the Fair Packaging and Labeling Act. (www.ftc.gov/enforcement/rules/rulemaking-regulatory-reform-proceedings/fair-packaging-labeling-act)
- Become EDI (www.edibasics.com/edi-by-industry/the-retail-industry) ready. EDI, which stands for Electronic Data Interchange is the way most retailers send/receive/confirm purchase orders, invoices, and payments.
- Finally, make sure you understand how to price your items for retail. There is a method and pricing formula used to accurately price your items for retail that can help you prepare for any deductions, promotions, and markdown fees you may be faced with in the retail commercial market.
Stay connected to the global NouriTress movement, and national upcoming events at consumer tradeshows including the next event, Miami Jazz in The Gardens. Website: www.deshawnbullard.com www.nouritress.com Twitter: @nouritress Twitter: @thehaircoach Facebook: facebook.com/nouritress Facebook.com/deshawnbullard.entrepreneur. Office information: PO Box 491601, Atlanta, GA 30349 Phone: 770-719-9082, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Roz A. Gee (@RozAGee) is an event speaker, media contributor and consultant, and CEO of The Rated Gee Agency with core service sectors in media relations, brand readiness and speaking/training. She has masterfully mixed over 20 years of cumulative experience and has worked professionally for industry titans such as General Electric, AT&T, AOL, IBM, and Northrop Grumman. Schedule a complimentary analysis at www.MediaMatchMaven.com. You can find Roz on Twitter: @RozAGee and Facebook: TheRatedGeeAgency.