Lisa Yorgey Lester

Lisa Yorgey Lester
An Appetite for Growth

Fruitcake, while a much-maligned holiday gift-giving tradition, nonetheless comprises a serious mail-order business in Corsicana, Texas. Fifty miles south of Dallas along Interstate 45 stands the home of the DeLuxe fruitcake and Cryer Creek Kitchens catalog, a wholly owned subsidiary of world-renowned Collin Street Bakery. In recent years, Cryer Creek Kitchens has taken great strides in testing new concepts that have, in turn, fed the parent company’s appetite for sustained growth. Here’s what actions the food cataloger has taken, some of its results and lessons learned along the way. Birth of a Catalog The food-by-mail industry, and Collin Street Bakery with it, enjoyed

Time to Go Overseas?

A weakened U.S. dollar, the presence of global traffic on U.S. Web sites and a competitive domestic market with little room for growth have combined to pique U.S. catalogers’ interest in overseas markets. Adapting your catalog for an international market often involves rewriting and translating copy into a foreign language, pricing in local currency, and offering customers the ability to pay in their local currencies. “All of this requires a significant investment of time and money, and very rarely do catalogers make this type of investment for a test,” says Mark Bridges, vice president and director of the international division of Mokrynski &

Amazon Helps British Merchant Unveil Its Brand in the U.S.

By Lisa Yorgey Lester The launch of a new sports bra ordinarily doesn't attract a great deal of press. Then again, a tennis match at Grand Central Terminal between CEO Jeff Bezos and tennis siren Anna Kournikova is no ordinary event. Bezos and Kournikova recently teamed up to promote the U.S. debut of the Anna Kournikova Multiway sports bra available to U.S. consumers through Figleaves, a London-based intimate apparel retailer that recently joined Amazon's Apparel & Accessories store. Exclusivity and variety are Figleaves' unique selling proposition. The retailer sells leading swimwear, nightwear and hosiery brands for men and women in all

Movies Unlimited: Focus on Niche Cataloging

Set in a small industrial park in Northeast Philadelphia, Movies Unlimited is a movie collector’s nirvana. Inside its compact, 22,000-square-foot warehouse, rows upon rows of shelves house neatly stacked DVDs and VHS tapes in alphabetical order. Here, “Abandoned,” a 2001 Academy Award nominee for Best Foreign Film, shares space with comedy classics such as Abbott & Costello. This niche cataloger, which specializes in hard-to-find movies dating back to the silent screen, enjoys steady annual sales growth. The company’s 12-month housefile grew a whopping 65 percent between August 2000 and May 2002. The company’s growth is remarkable considering discount stores and clubs dominate the