Music merchandising isn’t an easy game. Neither is fulfillment for major bands, brands, and businesses. But Night Owls Print in Texas have mastered their craft: “We make things your customers WANT to wear.” Their vibrant water based screen prints are a testament to how seriously the team has dedicated themselves to putting quality first. Now the game has moved beyond screen printing – jumping to vinyl, pins, mugs, Nalgene bottles, hot sauces and just about everything else under the sun that people want to buy.
Hear from Night Owls' Eric Solomon about everything from how they got into music fulfillment and merchandising to their (good!) struggles with the Profit First program. This is another candid and insightful interview for the PrintHustlers Podcast. A huge thanks to the Night Owls for opening up about their business, their techniques, and the future!
QUESTIONS AND TOPICS
Click the links below to jump to a question or topic!
2:00 What we do in the shop during holidays
2:45 About Night Owls Print
4:00 What goes into the logistics of music merchandising?
8:30 Does fulfillment mean more than t-shirts? What else does Night Owl Printing fulfill?
9:15 What pushed you to try fulfillment and other types of vertical integration?
10:10 Why meeting Matt & Kim, a big touring act, led to doing fulfillment
11:00 How do you decide what kind of things to do fulfillment for?
12:00 “500 records is...5 feet high and 5 feet deep Where do you put it? How do you store them? Vinyl is climate-sensitive! You can’t just put it in a hot warehouse!”
13:00 The biggest lesson from COVID.
13:40 How do you manage your shop? What kind of tech do you have?
15:50 How do you price fulfillment and merchandising as a service?
18:40 Is it about price, or about creating something great for the end customer?
20:00 Do you do print-on-demand, or do you do inventory? How do you decide what risk to take?
21:27 The one email every print shop hates.
22:30 Why customers are so picky and expect so much.
24:00 Why you need a customer service manager and an operations manager.
26:10 How do you decide what to do each day as an owner? How do you process this all?
28:10 Why Night Owls is still thriving during COVID.
30:15 How much of the business at Night Owls is screen printing?
30:45 What was the thought process behind buying your building?
32:40 How do you handle in-person distribution? Do you send someone out on tours?
34:15 Has Night Owl always used water based inks?
36:00 Do you charge more for Pantone matching? How does your pricing work?
39:10 You did Profit First. Tell us about that and how it’s going.
45:00 How are you planning for the future? What sort of financial picture is there?
46:45 When did you realize you needed help to get better? What advice do you have for shops that are afraid to pay into something that seems expensive?
52:00 Was there a certain dollar amount when you decided to put your money to work?
54:00 What’s your goal for Night Owls, ultimately? Have you thought about that?
55:30 What’s your biggest concern right now?