If anyone should write a book on how to get a product to market it is Rob McDougall, who in his quest to produce a unique range of greeting cards, has discovered the power GS1 barcodes from GS1 Australia have in getting products to market.
With 16 years experience in the film and video industry, Rob had the idea of producing cards that include components to create a painted print, e.g a child’s hand or foot, on the inside of the card.
Rob and his wife, Monique, decided to set up Cuddle Mummy Love, a business to produce these personalised greeting cards. From that point there were several things to look into before getting the cards on to the shelves, including barcodes, how they work, and where to get them from.
“I kept finding websites that said they would sell you barcodes cheaply but then further research showed these barcodes wouldn’t work in Coles and Woolworths. We want to sell our range to newsagents, some of whom do not require barcodes, but also to the big retailers who I was sure would have requirements for suppliers, so I went to their websites and there they said you had to have a GS1 Barcode," says Rob.
“So then I called GS1 Australia and spoke to someone who was very helpful and explained to me how it all worked. I joined and got my barcode numbers through Barcodes Express. I attended GS1 Australia training in Sydney and at the same time took in my cards to have the barcodes tested so that I have a barcode verification report. The quick turnaround by the testing service was great,” he adds.
With everything now in place, and the right GS1 barcodes, Rob and Monique are about to begin production of their personalised greeting cards. They are also thinking laterally about how to make their GS1 barcodes work harder for them.
The pair plan to use the stickybits iPhone app to run promotions and competitions for card purchasers who upload video or photos of their cards. Rob also plans to use his GS1 barcode numbers to manage their inventory and, as the business grows, will consider using GS1net for electronic trading.