Sunday, March 19, 2006

The light at the end of the tunnel. . .
My husband keeps saying that he can see this. I, on the other hand, am having a harder time.
Maybe it's because it is my name and my company and I take EVERYTHING very personally. As it should be, I say. Whenever there has been an issue with the website, the e-mails, etc., it is me who has to take full responsibility for what happened (again, as it should be). Truth be told, in the background, so much of what happens has been completely out of my hands. Here is a little background. . .
When my husband and I finally made the decision to go forward with this idea, we knew we had most of the bases covered. He had the accounting and finance degrees and an MBA. I had the ideas and the marketing and advertising background. What we lacked between the two of us was the web/computer expertise. This was our first and primary concern as we planned out the steps to getting the business started. We had to completely trust in someone else to make the best decisions for us on this front.
If you have been around since the beginning, you know that things did not go as smoothly as planned. From a cart the first month that was not user friendly (considering 75% of you, just like me, have pop-up blockers) to e-mails that never seem to go out to the right people. Challenges?- we have had many.
So, considering the fact that I have lost almost 10 pounds since this started, I have decided it is time to make a serious change.
We have hired a TEAM of web specialists. I keep calling them the "big dogs". These guys have developed and serviced websites for many major web retailers (many of which you would be very familiar with). In the coming months we will be working on the site in phases. You will begin to see some of these changes as early as April, but most likely by May 1st. Most of the first phase will involve behind-the-scenes type things that will make my life easier (and my communication with you more accurate). The second and third phases will be more visible - new site enhancements and a new look, such as a members log-in where you will be able to go and update your personal information securely at anytime. We are also currently working on new shipping solutions and have plans to send out shipping notifications with tracking information for every customer.
Once we get through the initial clean up, we will be able to focus on the evolution of the site to include such things as on-line classes and member galleries - things I'm really excited to launch!
I really wanted to share, that in the midst of all of the frustrations, I have been so humbled by the support and understanding I have received from so many of you!!! I really couldn't begin to thank you for that.
So here's to the future!! Thanks for sticking with us through it all! And speaking of the future, I have some exciting things to share for the coming months! You will see some teasers this week on the April theme and guest designer and upcoming exclusive products that you will only find in your Jenni Bowlin Studio kits! Keep checking back this week!
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32 comments:

Juls Marshall said...

Oooh, the big dogs--that sounds serious! I can't tell you thank you enough for your inspiring work and thoughtful style. I can see how much this means to you--and can tell how hard you are working to make it right. We get "it" and hope you know how much we appreciate you. Can't wait to see anything that you are excited about--but I hope you know that I for one feel like the process so far has been surprisingly smooth (at least from the outside looking in). So thanks again and go eat something yummy with your family to celebrate!

beth said...

still lovin' your ideas and kits jenni, and no problems from my end, but your "big dogs" sound like a step in very positive direction for you and your vision. hope you get the results you are looking for, and thanks for the updates!

Jana said...

Oh Sweetie, don't sweat the small stuff. Yep, I've been around since the first month and I'm sure folks understand that there will be glitches along the way that are beyond your control so please don't worry about it. What matters are your kits, your product, your ideas....the things you can control which is why we're all here in the first place!! I'm still bummin' I missed out on the March kit however I'm sure looking forward to see what's next!

Stacy said...

Jenni, I had a feeling that something might be going on, I have noticed a change in your postings. Not bad or anything but just the general feel I have seen in your postings. Just remember, that we all love you, and you need to fill yourself back up emotionally and spiritually, so that you have more to give to family and to yourself. I hope that you pace yourself and just do somethings for yourself. Please remember that we all are supportive of you and your new venture!!! I have also been with you from the begining and plan to stay with you for the long hall!!! Thanks so much for all of your inspiration in all you do.

Stacy said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
stevie said...

I *LOVE* all of your kits so far and I'm sure the future ones will kick butt too! Your customer service is amazing! I haven't had any problems and I was one who waited up until 1 am to order the very first kit membership! Can't wait to renew my membership next month!!!

Cheers to a bright future!
God Bless!

Kori said...

no problems here jenni! glad to hear your getting the help you need though. it's frustrating for you but it really isn't a big deal for us. these things happen with a new business...hang in there...LOVE the kits!

Robyn said...

Jenni,
Cut yourself some slack! Yikes for me its all about the product and your product is the BEST, I love love each kit. Can't wait to check back and see the teasers! Please try not to stress so much, breathe and eat!
PS-How is the camera????

Laurin said...

Well, I have a grip for you...you have ruined all my other monthly kits! None of them compare to yours. LOL!!! You should be so proud of your success and let the rest just roll off your back.

Michelle said...

Loved March and can't wait to see the new stuff you have coming!

pam said...

Jenni, I'm sure it is incredibly frustrating to start a new business with all the glitches that inevitably occur. Sounds like you are getting on top of it. Your product is outstanding so I'm here for the long haul.

Robyn said...

I can't wait to see everything that you have in store for us! Classes - can't wait! I'm also dying to see your April kit! Hope you have a good week!

Amanda said...

Jenni, you are doing a great job. I understand about the hassles and have just gone with the flow. Everything seems right when I get my kit in the mail. You have a great thing here and I'm sure it will only get better. I can't wait to see what you have planned!

Donna M. said...

I just wanted to say THANK YOU for the all the attention that you have taken with your web site! Everyone knows you don't get right the first time 100% of the time nor is it possible to please all the people all of the time. My point is you have consistently worked and worked hard, to rectify any and all problems, reply in a a super speedy manner and taken genuine concern and devotion to get it right for us! Good luck to you and the "big dogs" - I hope they like scrapbooking!

vegasandvenice said...

Oh, you have done fabulously thus far! I understand that you don't feel like everything has been perfect, but everybody goes through that even when they are not starting a new business. Even the world's largest companies with thousands of expert technical employees have glitches (far more frequently with far larger consequences). I think every business owner has to make a decision: Do you wait until everything is absolutely perfect to start your venture (which may never come) or do you take the leap at a time when you feel well prepared?

Which ever choice you made, I would like to tell you that I have been absolutely thrilled with Jenni Bowlin Studio since the very second I came across the sight. I am extremely, wonderfully pleased with the beautiful inspiration provided by your incredible kits. I have not experienced any technical frustrations with your site (and any glitches from it would not frustrate me). Why? Because I know you are human. I know that glitches are not your fault. I am a part of your loyal following who loves your past kits and can not wait to see the next. Lastly though, because I know that you are human, I feel like you are not just sharing a product with us but a little piece of your heart, and what business could be more perfect than that?

Lisa Chapman said...

Jenni - Don't be too hard on yourself. Most people are understanding and know that there will be some rough spots in a new adventure. Then there are those who know it all and can, if they are truthful, never actually really be pleased no matter what.

I am LOVING your kits. Your work inspires me, primarily because I share your love of old and vintage items. I think your kits have been of the highest quality and, as one who was there from the first, I plan on being there through the last. Having belonged to other monthly clubs, I can honestly say yours is the only one that makes me want to play with all the new goodies AS SOON AS I GET THEM versus looking at them and then putting them back into that vast scrapbook neverland where they might be stumbled on again during some clean out phase that may or may not strike me.

I think you are an amazing person. From the couple of classes I have had with you, I have no doubt you have strived to give us all a quality product (which you have) and that you truly want each person to be happy (which I really believe that is how you are). You are a REAL person and that is A LOT in my book!!

Keep up the GREAT and WONDERFUL work!!!!

krisfred said...

Everything that has gone RIGHT: i ordered my first 3 mos., got billed correctly (darn! haha), received my first kit (wow'd silly by it!), got my 2nd kit & first project kit and did the Happy dance! Jenni...you(and Jared) have done an amazing job. THANK YOU!!!

laura vegas said...

hopefully these changes will make things easier for you! i've been here from the beginning ... and while there have been a few glitches, everything has worked out great. you have amazing customer service and i know you're trying your best to get everyone taken care of! i know we all totally appreciate all you've done to make things perfect! can't wait to see the new sneek peeks!

Traci said...

Hang in there. Some good news - I received my first kit - March and I LOVE IT!!!

Penny said...

I think everyone understoond all the problems... you just can't help it when you're first getting started! But the kits went out on time and came in quickly both times (I got mine the following Monday in both cases!). Your kits are so worth it! I never had any problems ordering or getting emails, but even if I did, I'd STILL do everything I could to get my hands on a kit!

You're doing an awesome job, Jenni. Can't wait to see the teasers for May!

Kathy M said...

Jenni, I think you are doing an awesome job. There are always some speed bumps along the way when starting something new. I think it's the nature of the internet to need "big dogs" to get anything done. Trust me I know, I've been running my own site for almost 10 years and I still need the "big dogs" now and again. Chin Up!
Kathy M.

laura said...

jenni - fwiw, i personally haven't had any ordering problems and i am just thrilled with the kits! glad to see you are being so proactive with your business! i know that you will go far. your taste is exquisite, and you and your dh obviously have good heads on your shoulders! best of luck with your new team! :)

Mel Nunn said...

Don't stress girl, we are all human, and its ok, we are here with you. Bringing in the big dogs will help aleiviate a lot of the worry. A few pounds gone too- bonus!!

BonnieRose said...

can't wait to see the new kit.... since I missed out last month. :(
I'll be watchin!

Debbie said...

Everything is great. Bugs are part of it....by the way, how is the camera??? I have thought about you so many times with that one.

Jenny said...

Ya know, I really didn't think there were many issues at all...

Give yourselves a pat on the back. You pulled off a major implementation of a fantastic new kit/product that EVERYONE IS TALKING ABOUT!

Looking forward to seeing what's in store for April.

sarah green said...

Don't worry... anybody knows that when you start something there are bound to be a few "glitches"... and believe me your kit was so worth waiting for (I haven't got my March kit yet but from what I see on the web I know it will be awesome).... I am really looking forward to the on-line classes, you sure have all the right ideas to get us all enthused!!!! Keep up the great work, and don't worry we are all behind you!!!

Jann said...

Jenni:

Just hang in there...it is worth it all. We love your ideas...and the bottom line is that as long as you keep sharing your creativity with us -- I promise to be patient with the administrative stuff. The website will be awesome. Thanks for your persistence...and I pray that God blesses your business.

joanne said...

Hi Jenni!
I keep checking for the April teasers, I loved March so much!! And February too! And, I didn't feel that there were any problems in the beginning. You are always very accessible and helpful ... so thank you!! And did you say online classes? It just keeps getting better!! Take care and thanks for sharing such wonderful ideas with us!

Dawn said...

Jenni...hey, every beginning has it's problems, stick with it, we are right behind you! I mean, it's not like you have done all this on purpose. Nothing goes off the first or second time without a hitch...just ask the major car manufacturers! Anyway, loved loved loved the March kit...that little stamp is darling! Looking forward to April. You're doing fine!

Diana said...

Hang in there, you are doing fine!I can't wait for the sneak peeks!

Carrie K said...

Youre swesome your product is the best and I feel like Im getting PERSONAL service! You gotta look at the GOOD stuff too...

Im off to go use up my March kit before the fabulous April one gets here...LOL