Educating the Consumer

B. Newman

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Sep 5, 2001
Kodak, Tn. USA
The Darwinism thread was, well, evolving, so I decided to break this out on it's own.

When I speak of "educating the consumer", I mean not only on c/p issues, but on an awareness of custom framing as a whole. For that 85% or so out there who've never been in a frame shop, it's a whole new scary world. (What if I can't afford it, will I look like a fool? What if they ask me a question I don't know? What if, what if, what if...)

I envision (in my dream world) a series of ads running in "shelter" types of magazines across the country (Southern Living and their regional counterparts, Old House Interior, House Beautiful, etc.) A small 1/4 page ad or so running consistantly year round, rather than the once a year "October is Custom Framing Month" thing. We all know the statistics of how many times a customer needs to see our names before it "sinks" in. So it needs to be done consistantly.

I personally think that the PPFA would be a wonderful entity to carry this out. The ad would say "for more information on fine custom framing see your local PPFA member listed in the yellow pages or check out our web site...." where they could find the nearest member via zip code. Or better yet, have a FREE brochure that they can call, write, or e-mail for, and the local member in that area would receive a notice of the contact's address.

How many people have items they cherish? EVERYBODY! And where are these items? In a drawer somewhere because they've never thought about doing something with them. And they won't either until someone shows them a sample. Why do you think companies pay writers to mention their products in articles? Or why do magazines have "Sources" listings in the back of their magazines? Because once someone reads about something new, they want to have it or try it. We've got to do the same. We've got to educate the consumer that 1st, we're out there. And 2nd, that we can do what they need done. And 3rd, that we can do it well.

Look at your own ads. Are you "preaching to the choir" or are you reaching new people too?

I think television ads, educating the consumer about the value of custom framing are the best bang for the buck!

How about a more regional approach, with a group of framers pooling their money to advertise on the local Home and Garden Network. Very Affordable!

I would be happy to give the PPFA lots of money if they would manage such an effort. I believe we would all see a serious jump in sales.

I don’t care to see my name, just a great commercial about framing, let’s say on Sixty Minutes.
How often do you think we would need to do that before you saw a jump in sales?

Thanks for keeping this topic out front Betty.
Hi Betty,

You basically just described the key elements of the FramerSelect program, although we even take it a step further.

If you or anyone else is interested in learning more, you can contact us through our website or by calling 1(800)444-8387.

Jeff Grabowski
Vice President, FramerSelect
Well, gee whillikers, my dream world exists! :eek: What about that!

I will visit your website, But can you briefly describe on this forum how your company can benefit framers.

I spent over $1200 alone on one Internet Art/Frame business. They said they would drive local customers who bought art from them, to me to frame. The client could pick up the framed art directly at my gallery.
Not one customer - and they dropped that company to start an on-demand printing company. Good luck!

The only marketing that I saw them do was directly to their potential customers - the framer.

How is your company different and how will you market to OUR potential customers?

The Internet and marketing in trade magazines alone WILL NOT WORK!!!
FramerSelect, while it seems to be a good program and may even be working for some, it did nothing for me during the six or seven months I was a member. I droped out a month ago because of the non response, I never had one customer enquiry from FramerSelect, much less an actuall sale.

At one time I started a thread asking if anyone was getting any sales from being a member, not one person said they had, although they where all sure it would help in the long run. Other members cited the comadrie of being a member, much like being a Grumbler. Others cited that the tips on business from Jay Goltz made it worth every penny.

I am still not convinced that the idea will not work, I think it will, if given enough time. I personaly just got tired of paying my $120.00 per month on speculation. Even slot machines will pay out a little bit from time to time, just to keep you playing.

I'm not saying I won't join again, but I will wait untill it's a little more established.

Don't give up Betty!
Less, don't worry about me, I do "grumble" from time to time, but I eventually get back on track.

John, just curious... Did you incorporate any of the FramerSelect info into your marketing or advertising? I understand that they have designed postcards and mailers for their members to use. It seems that if you (or whoever) developed their own marketing program along with that of FS, it would be much more effective. As I said, just curious.

Betty, No I did not incorporate FramerSelect into my own advertising. I did not see how I could judge the impact of FramerSelect if I incorpoated their Logo or advertising into my own campaign, that I know is working. Had I started seeing a response from FrameSelect and felt it was working, then, yes, I would have done that.

I was really impressed with the "personality" of the marketing campaign, especially with the post cards. We haven't signed up yet, but are seriously considering it.
I debated back and forth whether to put this here or in the F/S thread, anyway...

This is what I firmly believe about advertising. (If I were a cartoonist, I would draw this, it is funny.)

A person drives down the street and sees your billboard. They pull into the mall and see your sign on your vehicle. They go into a movie and see your ad on the screen. They get home and read the newspaper, and there's your ad. They flip on the tv, there you are again. Then on the radio as they're getting ready for bed, once again, your ad. The next day they pull out the phone book and get your number to call you. When you ask (as I'm sure everyone does) "How did you hear about us" they say, "The yellow pages."(!!!)

We just never really know for sure, do we?

About 2 1/2 years ago I signed up for, have since dropped out due to lack of customer's from them. Has anyone else had any dealings with them? I'd be interested in your results.
Originally posted by Tim Hayes:
About 2 1/2 years ago I signed up for, have since dropped out due to lack of customer's from them. Has anyone else had any dealings with them? I'd be interested in your results.
We signed up with them at the New York Show 2 years ago. Zero results.

Good topic, Betty. (as usual)

I am wondering what you will say about Framerselect and how it relates to your vision once you get more info on it.

I do agree with John, $120.00/month is a lot of money- I can buy a lot of local advertising with that and really zero in on my victims-er-target audience. It is an excellent concept, though. Why isn't it bringing in customers yet? I wonder if we can speculate on ways to better accomplish that via Framerselect.

LAF, Based on what I know about Framerselect on "the outside,"I don't think it is at all comparable to called me numerous times despite my "do not call" request and pitched me with a classic hard sell. The Goddess was not going to fall for that! Now, after the "shake-out" there are a whole lot of dissatisfied former customers. Framerselect does not seem to employ that hard sell hammering and Jay Goltz's reputation seems to be that to which we could all aspire!

Betty, I am nominating you as the new marketing director for PPFA! You would kick some retail butt! I would gladly kick in extra cash for a multi-tiered marketing plan- nat'l, regional and local. And, sorry, it needs to be much more exciting than those bland black and white ad slicks I got once with my PPFA Welcome Kit. (Do they still do that? ZZZZZZZZ!) It seems to me that this marketing campaign needs to allow room for individual shops to personalize the ads that run locally. I wonder if this campaign could negotiate really suh-weet rates in a few publications or set up group runs in regional rags. As far as nationally, I think Framerselect is on the right path, but it just ain't exciting enough. The editorial "articles" that L*J has scored in shelter mags like Victoria is much closer to the enticing and romantic concept I envision. And it may be time to bring in a person who is a marketer first and foremost, someone who is a framing addict on the side however! (Betty, you're still the Grande Poobah, though!)

Tim H., check the archives- seems to me that there has been plenty o'Grumbling on the topic.

-Edie the fg
Aw, shucks Edie,
Ya'll just made my day. (And believe me, that really helps!)

This thread and the "F/S Good for..." thread has sorta run together, but over there I said "For less than the cost of most YP ads you can have national advertising. Sounds like a deal to me! If my family situation was not what it is, I would do it in a heartbeat!" What I would do is reduce the size of YP listings to help pay for it the first year, and include the FS logo and the PPFA logo.

Yeah, I'm already mulling over how I would work that into my existing marketing. I truly think one would have to incorporate it into what they were already doing to make it really work. However, I understand John's thinking of seeing if it actually worked by leaving it alone. And I think it eventually will work alone, but in order for the "branding" to really work and be effective it needs to be meshed together.

My problem is, I have to go work now to pay for my marketing habit! Once I sell this stuff, then I have to do it!!!

Hello Less,

You asked for more information to clarify the FramerSelect program. Thank you for the question. That information follows.

First, I would like to say that FramerSelect is not a stand-alone marketing program. It is a program that provides tools for independently owned frame shops to use in conjunction with their local marketing to differentiate themselves from their competition.

It is designed to use the power of Branding, through national targeted advertising, to attract new customers and to reinforce your existing customers that you are one of the best frame shops in America. Customer retention being equally as important as obtaining new customers.

Secondly, it has been mentioned that $120.00 can buy ALOT of local advertising. I am suprised at this statement and suggest that if indeed $120.00 did go along way locally, I question if it is advertising to the best possible audience.

Next, Betty's yellow page story is very accurate. Marketing is very different than advertising. Marketing first requires figuring out exactely who you want to advertise to. Effective marketing requires consistently staying in front of the consumer, getting into their brains prior to their actual need of your services.

Finally, FramerSelect is constantly evolving. We continue to develop new programs for our members, many based upon requests from our membership base. The roots of FramerSelect are in the exact same principles and strategies that Jay Goltz has developed over the past 24 years to build his "independently owned, custom framing business" to the largest in the country today.

With that said, once again I thank you for your question, and here is the information you requested.

Jeff Grabowski


FramerSelect is a national affiliation of independent frame shops whose mission is to raise the level of professionalism in the industry through consumer education, cohesive marketing and shared business expertise.

In an industry where there is no accredited education or trade licenses required, FramerSelect differentiates better frame shops and helps grow their business.

Each independent frame shop must first meet the following criteria to be recognized as one of “The best frame shops in America.”

1. FramerSelect requires the following of each member:

q Framing Focus (50%+ of their revenue is generated from custom picture framing)
q Offers all aspects of Preservation Quality framing
q Current design styles, techniques, and products
q Extensive selection of moulding and mat board samples
q Participates in ongoing trade education
q Dedicated to complete customer satisfaction

2. FramerSelect members must be nominated and/or approved by two or more of the following:

q Industry Field Representatives
q Leading Industry Suppliers
q Current FramerSelect Members
q FramerSelect Membership Committee
q Framing Customers

3. FramerSelect members must adhere to the following professional business practices:

q Have all applicable business licenses
q Located in a business district
q Open traditional business hours
q Fully insured
q Guarantee all work
q Maintain pricing integrity
q Provide timely turnaround on framing orders

FramerSelect members are identified by their high standards and dedication to provide exceptional framing and superior service.

FramerSelect believes that consumer education is the key element in the advancement of the custom framing profession and that the independent framer’s knowledge and experience plays
a critical role in this mission.


___FramerSelect™ Membership Benefits___

Effective Branding
In-Store Identification
Window signage and countertop items distinguish you from your competitors by identifying your frame shop as one of the best in America.
q Front door and window decals
q Certificate of Recognition identifying your frame shop as one of the best in America
q “10 things to know before framing your picture – Your guide to custom framing” educational/promotional brochures
q FramerSelect framer’s apron, calculator, ruler, pens, etc.

Promotional Materials
Advertisements, brochures and mailers attract customers by sending a consistent message of professionalism.
q Counter top brochures
q Oversized direct mail postcards
q Digital Ad templates to use in your local advertising
q Custom frame design booklet

Market Positioning
Your frame shop gains prominence by association with the most recognized lifestyle magazines and recommendations from a variety of well-respected art sources.
q FramerSelect© places advertisements into an average of five of the following publications monthly; Better Homes & Gardens, Country Living, Country Living Gardener, Elle Décor, House & Garden, House Beautiful, Martha Stewart Living, Metropolitan Home, Traditional Home, and Victoria.
q FramerSelect’s art partners continue to grow and include the following; Artland, Artsmile, Bentley Publishing Group and The Ross Poster Group.

Strategic Marketing
Targeted Advertising
Advertisements placed in home décor publications attract better customers interested in interior design, art and framing.
q FramerSelect produces over 45 million ad impressions annually.
q The audience demographics are primarily female, with an average age of 44 and whose median household income is over $61,623.00.

Internet Presence
The FramerSelect website connects your store with upscale customers searching for a quality framer and provides details about your shop. Also, if you have your own website, FramerSelect offers direct links.
q Your frame shop receives it’s own web page on
q Name, address, contact numbers, directions, photographs and shop specialties can be listed.
q Your personal website is hyperlinked through your shops web page and under the FramerSelect Art Link section.

Promotional Alliances
Art partners promote FramerSelect through website links and point-of-sale recommendations.

Proven Business Expertise
Business Package
Sound strategies and advice from industry authority Jay Goltz and other business experts help you grow your business and increase profitability.
q Six issues of FrameHead™ per year - a newsletter with business insight and applicable framing industry information.
q FrameHead - where framers go to talk shop. A member exclusive online exchange.
q FramerSelect Partners Program – Members team up to benefit from each other’s knowledge and experience.

On-Line Exchange
FrameHead -- A network of the most successful framers asking questions and comparing notes to improve everyday business.
q Shop Talk – A forum to discuss materials, techniques, design and equipment
q Business Talk – A serious forum for comparing notes on how to effectively manage your business
q Water Cooler – A casual forum for comments and conversation
q Classifieds – A forum to locate or sell artwork and equipment

Vendor Programs
FramerSelect connects you with the industry’s leading vendors who provide special offers and detailed product information for our members.
q Vendor profiles include; company history, product descriptions and contact information.
q Vendor incentives include; discounted prices, rebates, exclusive product, free product and new product introductions.

Extensive Referral Network
Advertising Program
Millions of impressions result in thousands of customers looking for referrals to the best framer in their areas.
q Magazine advertisements generate an average 3000+ referrals per month.
q The FramerSelect website receives an average 3300+ page views per month.
q Each member receives a monthly summary of all sales leads and referrals to their store. These names and addresses may be added to your database/mailing list for you to follow up on as you wish.
q You have the option to receive the sales leads/referrals via hard copy, email or on diskette.

Promotional Partners
Our art partners distribute thousands of FramerSelect brochures through galleries and with shipments of unframed artwork. Website links provide even greater exposure to a highly qualified audience that purchases art.

Framer to Framer
FramerSelect’s membership network extends your reach across the country. Whether it’s shipped artwork that requires repair or a customer who relocates or opens a new office in another city – you gain new customers and can better serve existing ones.

FramerSelect™ Marketing Tools
FramerSelect provides tools that assist frame shops with their local marketing program. These help differentiate members from their competitors and aid in attracting new customers while retaining the existing ones. Many are provided free of charge and others are available at substantially reduced prices.
q Press releases
q Ad slicks
q Logo usage
q Direct mail postcards
q Brochures
q Frame design book

Corporate Office Support
The corporate offices are open Monday through Friday, 8:30am – 6:30pm, Central Standard Time.
The FramerSelect staff is available to assist members with all aspects of our program including but not limited to;
q Business/marketing advice
q FramerSelect materials purchasing and replenishment
q Sales leads retrieval
q Website development and updates
q Technical support
q Marketing tools and logo usage
q Press releases

Membership Dues
Membership dues are billed on the first of the month. Our preferred form of payment is by credit card. We accept American Express, Visa, MasterCard and Discover. We also accept checks.

The cost of the program is as follows:
1 Store = $120.00 per month ($120.00 per store)
2 Stores = $160.00 per month ($80.00 per store)
3 Stores = $200.00 per month ($66.67 per store)
4 Stores = $240.00 per month ($60.00 per store)
5 Stores = $280.00 per month ($56.00 per store)

12 months for the price of 11
When you pay for a year’s dues in advance you receive one month FREE.

1871 N. Clybourn Avenue
Chicago, IL 60614
(773) 248-6060
(800) 444-8387