For the month of December, we here at #AndCo want to give our clients the spotlight. Each of us-Amanda, Emily, Courtney and Sydnie- have chosen one client to feature each week of the month to dig a little deeper into what made them who they are and how their brand is impacted and influenced by social media. This first week, Courtney has chosen to feature Annie Salyer, owner of international hairclip and baby bow company, No Slippy Hair Clippy. Annie and her company have only recently joined us here at #AndCo, but we could not be more in love with her brand and having her as a client! No Slippy Hair Clippy’s clips, bows, and headbands are made with the highest quality materials right here in the US. What makes them unique is that they are wrapped in soft Swiss Velvet that keep them from slipping, even for babies with little to no hair. Find out more about them below!
When did you get started?
It was after college, where I played collegiate volleyball for both University of Arizona and San Diego State University, that I began to work for Reebok International, and was instrumental with the launching of Reebok’s first ever volleyball shoe (1987). I was in charge of all the promotions for both colleges and beach volleyball sponsorships. After a year, I was promoted to West Coast Promotions Assistant, which included designing the LA Laker Girls outfits (something I had a blast doing) working with the CIF (California Interscholastic Federation) sponsoring California high school sports, and also seeding celebrities with Reebok shoes and apparel. I also worked with retailers and Reebok sales representative with ongoing promotions, which gave me the opportunity to be hired as a children’s sales representative for both Reebok and Weebok kid’s shoes and apparel. (1988)
From there, I worked for Reebok for several more years as a children’s sales rep, and it wasn’t until I was about due with my first child (1991), that Reebok decided to cut kids reps and turn our business over to the adult reps. It was fine for me, because I wanted some time with my new baby boy Spencer, and they were generous with my severance package, so I didn’t need to worry. After 9 months, they called me back in, because they had lost so much business in those 9 months, go figure! I did go back to work for Reebok but soon after I accepted that position I was offered a better job with a German shoe company Elephanten, so I eventually left Reebok. I then had my second son Austin (1994), and decided to take some time off with both boys when we moved to San Jose for my husbands record company 911 Entertainment, so I took my time looking for a new job. That’s when I went to work for Jefferies Socks out of Burlington, North Carolina, as a sales representative. To this day, I still represent Jefferies Socks in Northern California and Northern Nevada, as a part-time outside sales job (21 years).
In 2002, Jefferies Socks decided it was better to not have sales representatives as employees, so I had no choice but to become an independent sales representative. It was a little scary at first, because I’d always been a “corporate” sales rep, thus the new adventure of being my own boss began! Once I was an independent sales reps, it gave me the opportunity to find new lines to carry and grow my overall business. That’s when I happened on No Slippy Hair Clippy in a Bay Area children’s store. I fell in love with the whole concept and the hand-made quality. There was nothing like them, and they really worked! I eventually became the Northern California sales representative for No Slippy Hair Clippy, and opened 35 new accounts in a matter of a few months. It was so exciting to see, and I could feel the momentum. The original owner of NSHC was a single mom with little business experience, and it was clear she was struggling with the business side of her operations. We were both looking for opportunities, and so we became business partners (2003). My husband Ramey came on board as well, because we needed someone that had business and operations experience. All went well until we found out our partner was embezzling, which was such a shock! We had funded the company personally and also found investors, so it was beyond disappointing. It was close to 6 figures in the end that was stolen, so we had no choice but to take her to court. It was 2 ½ years, and she finally settled, by giving back her shares and paying some of our attorney costs. Nobody ever wins in situations like this; It was a rude awakening to what can happen in business, and what can happen if you don’t dot your I’s and cross your t’s.
We’re still standing! Through the legal matters, through the financial meltdown of 2008, (which greatly depleted the brick and mortar retail business) through the downturn that led us to downsize our operations, to the move from Northern California to Reno, Nevada in 2012, to the grand new ventures of growing our online business and becoming an online powerhouse in our industry.
What do you love about being in business for yourself?
I absolutely love being my own boss! I am a very self-motivated person, and discovered this trait when I became an outside sales representative.
I love the challenges it brings, to juggle everything at times is hectic, but I seem to thrive on the chaos!
What do you love about your customers?
Our customers are amazing! We hear from so many of them, sometimes they just write sweet notes on their orders. We found from the very beginning that word of MOM is extremely important, and that when one mommy loves you, she tells all her mommy friends. (It can work the other way too, so that’s how important it truly is!) If you look up NSHC on Yelp, you’ll see that some of our Dad’s are our biggest fans too! We love them all, they have made us who we are, and we will never, ever forget that they are the reason we have a business.
How Does Social Media Impact Your Business?
Well, I think it’s very important on so many levels. It’s a great way to be in touch with our customers, and to hear their opinions, or help them with an issue. Believe it or not, many customers come right to Facebook to ask questions if they are having an issue with their order or with ordering on our website. Just last night, I was talking to a mom from Singapore who for some reason could not finish her order, it was coming up as an error. We were able to work with her on Facebook, and get the issue resolved and her order placed. How cool is that? She’s in Singapore and we’re here (working late in the office) and getting her order figured out and having a happy outcome, that’s what makes it so rewarding. I love how social brings everyone together, and it introduces our brand to new potential customers all the time. For the last two collections that I was designing, I asked our fans to tell us what they liked, and we got some great responses from those posts, and it did influence what we added to our line. Our customer’s feedback is invaluable!
Find them on Social!