A native of Newport Beach, California, Susan Brady is a self-taught online retailer. After attending California State University, Long Beach, Mrs. Brady explored the world of entrepreneurship. She started from the ground up by learning basic website development and marketing strategies, then progressed to her first of many online stores.
Susan began selling kids bedding and bedroom décor online in 2005. Susan’s love for sports and people fueled the fire to produce her seconded online store, Team Sports, selling sports memorabilia in 2014.
Entrepreneur Interview Q & A
1. What is your business/Business Name? What does your business do?
At Team Sports Gift, I retail sports team accessories that cater to a diverse demographic, including the women sports enthusiasts of the world.
2. Why did you get into this field? What opportunities did you see?
I found it frustrating when trying to find sports logo products made with women in mind. Yes, you can find T-shirts, jerseys, and caps, but what about the things that women want to use around the house and on game day? That was when Team Sports was born. I set out to find party essentials, game day apparel, and home décor with women in mind. That isn’t to say that I forgot about the men out there, I just put the ladies in the forefront of my mind so that Team Sports ends up offering a well-rounded selection of sports accessories for all demographics.
3. What have been your biggest challenges?
Our first try at an online presence was a disaster. Huge amounts of money and lots of time were spent to no avail. Most would have thought we wasted our time and money. I disagree. Yes, we spent a frustrating two years trying to develop what we thought the customer wanted. With a bit of perseverance and a bit of hindsight, we learned from our mistakes and built our sports team accessories company as it stands today.
4. What has been your greatest reward?
Always put the customer first. These days everyone is in a rush, but if you take just a moment of your time to make someone feel important, the rewards will come back to you.
5. If you could change something, what would it be?
If I were to start again, I would put social media before the website development. These days more people are shopping online than ever before. A picture speaks a thousand words!
6. If you could give a new entrepreneur advice, what would it be?
Think towards the future. Think where the train is going to be, not where it’s at. For example, I think this world is going paperless quickly. I think that reusable bags with team logos would be a fabulous addition to the sad selection you find in markets and stores today. The one thing I have learned is that sports fans are diehard fans. By thinking towards the future, you’ll be able to offer a more valuable product and scale quicker.
7. Social Media. Yay or Nay?
Yes, absolutely. While social media may play a varying influence for different business verticals, social media is definitely a “yes” in the world of online retail. The better that you can communicate what a product looks like, the better your sales will be.
8. How do you market your products?
Pinterest is a great source of customers for us. By being able to showcase our products in a visually appealing way, we can better communicate to customers the value of that product that excites them to buy.
9. Is your business a service or a product? If you are a product, how do you handle production?
I try to imagine each and every item in my own home. What would I use it for? What will it add to my surroundings? Then I research or develop products based on what I would love. The whole process takes me a few days to absorb the idea and bring it to life. Time, research, creativity, and a passion for sports create a fervor for each product that Team Sports carries.
10. What is unique about your business?
At the risk of sounding like a broken record, giving the best customer service we can is a key strategy that every business should cherish. I frequently hear that our sales representatives have gone above and beyond what is expected of them. We make the customer feel important to us. If that means sending sports team accessory images so the customer can create a wonderful gift certificate as a gift, or calling a supplier to see if an item can be rushed to them so they have their item in a timely manner, or doing some research and sending them to another company, so be it. They’ll come back at a later date and remind us that it was because we made them feel special that they wanted to deal with us again.
11. Sell me your product/service.
Team Sports was built on the simple idea of giving every sports fan, man or woman, the opportunity to support and share the pride and spirit of their favorite team. As a family-owned business in a small town in California (yes, there is such a thing as a small town in California!), Team Sports sole objective is to provide the best customer service in the business. We believe that as a small business, we can provide the ultimate in customer service. From customers’ purchase decisions to delivery, we stand by to ensure that each customer has a hassle-free experience.
12. How can people get in touch with you? What’s your website/Contact information?
- Website: https://www.teamsportsgift.com
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TeamSportsGifts/
- Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/teamsportsgift/
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/TeamSportsGift
- Google+: https://plus.google.com/b/114304911409908921932/+TeamSportsGift4u/about