Saturday, October 31, 2009

The Business of Horror - Halloween as a $6 Billion Industry

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The Business of Horror

For most of us Halloween was celebrated by carving pumpkins, parents and kids going trick-or-treating, and for some – watching a scary movie. Halloween is more than just playing dress up! The spookiest holiday of the year doubles as a $5 billion dollar industry. Did you know that more than 60% of Americans have a hankering for haunting, spending over $50 each year on costumes, candy, and decorations. In fact, IBISWorld, a national research firm said that Halloween sales are expected to reach a record-breaking $6 billion in 2009, up 4.2 percent from the $5.77 billion generated last year.

Today things have changed in the Business of Horror. Visiting a local haunted house is NOW the traditional way to celebrate the Halloween season. Parents still take their kids trick-or-treating, but adults who were mere teenagers when the haunted house industry blossomed 10 or 15 years ago are still visiting haunted houses today, along with a new generation of haunted scream fans.

Haunted houses have now become bigger than anyone could have ever imagined with some haunted attractions bigger than entire football fields and costing millions of dollars to produce.

The haunted house industry is a multi-million dollar industry with major vendors like Scarefactory, Distortions, Ghost Ride and so many more who provide innovative animations, special effects, costumes, and products

Haunted attractions have gotten so big that most major attraction owners no longer need to hold full time jobs to make ends meet. They’ve quit their normal 9-5 gigs and now work year round on their haunted house. In this day and age of high tech movies, video games, and interactive entertainment, the Halloween Attraction industry has had to take its game to new FRIGHTS!

Today we are talking with Mike "Beaker" Parpovich with Terror on the Fox, the nation's number one charity haunted house to discuss the business side of creating an exceptional haunted house!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Growing a Family Business

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Growning a Family Business

The family business. It is a dying breed in our country. No longer is the son or daughter following in the footsteps of the father like they did in days past. But there are some success stories of family businesses that have not only succeeded, but are excelling and growing.

One such business in our area is Stan's Fit For Your Feet. Founded in 1950 by Stan and Em Sajdak, this locally owned shoe business has been a family owned for almost 60years with their 1st store on 27th street just south of Oklahoma.

Managing and growing any business is a challenge, but add the family component to it and a whole new range of challenges and opportunities arise.

Top that with the fact that all retailers have been hit hard in this economy - independents in particular are even harder pressed to differentiate themselves and grow market share.

In the studio with us today is Jim Sajdak the third generation owner of Stans… He, along with the 4th generation, his son David Sajdak, and his sister Sue Sakwinski are still making things happen.

Jim is going to share with us some of the many interesting and innovative things he is doing to keep his small family business a thriving business.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Customer Service - Don't Just Say You Have It, Do It!

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Customer Service

Your business would not exist without customers. And if you have customers, you have to have customer service.
Everybody talks about the importance of good customer service, but until a customer has a problem – “Quality” and “Service” are simply words in a company’s slogan.
So why is customer service so important to a successful business?
• Customers have more options today than ever before - and as a result they feel less loyalty.
• We are an immediate gratification society – know what we want and we want it now - faster, cheaper, and quicker and many times we are not that particular who will provide them.
Make a customer angry or simply give them a poor experience - and chances are you've got a nasty rumor going around to ten of his colleagues that you're a lousy firm to do business with.
And in the age of emails and text messages, twitter and other quick sources – it makes it even easier for customers to spread the word on their dissatisfaction with a company that does not live up to the products and services they promote.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

6 Year Anniversary

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Anniversary Show

This marks Diane's 6th year on air, bringing small business owners the information they crave. In honor of the occassion, this show is dedicated to all of the listeners who are small business owners to promote what they do and give an outlet for them to inform others how to contact them.

Additionally, a discussion of Milwaukee's own entrepreneurs is included - Milwaukee is ranked 17th in the top regions for entrepreneurial endeavors.