Tony Reid offers his weekly dose of happenings inside Sports Zone, the Central Pennsylvania shop where he works.
This week was spent, for the most part, gearing up for our big Black Friday event.
My good buddy and the owner of Stone State Entertainment, Mr. Chad Evans came by the shop recently and created a great commercial for us in the lead up to this holiday season. He had an incredibly quick turnaround time and got it to us so we can get it out to the masses prior to the Black Friday madness.
We had a number of great in store exclusive deals for Black Friday and the rest of the weekend. We do so much business online that we decided to focus only on our store traffic as far as deals are concerned.
As I’ve mentioned many times before, we have a pretty diverse selection of products, so our big sales and special offers matched the wide selection of said products as we tried to offer a deal for everyone in every category.
We had a really cool grab bag for every customer that made a purchase on Friday. The first 20 customers spending more than $20 received a gift bag which consisted of various items including fat heads, bobbleheads, sports cards, balls, price guides and all kinds of random fun stuff with a retail value well over $100 a bag. Those have been very popular for us over the past few years as customers really look forward to getting some real value and it’s always a surprise to what will be found by the time you get to the bottom of the big gift bags.
We offered 15% off our in stock Loungefly backpacks and purses. We gave 15% off all of our in stock remote-controlled cars. In addition, we offered 20% off of all of our in stock Authentic Street Signs and we also had our Panini Prizm Draft, Prizm Soccer and Mosaic soccer cereal boxes at $19.99 a box. In stock comic books were offered as a BOGO deal.
But by far the out-of-the-park, grand slam home run for us on Black Friday and over the course of the weekend were our brand new Jersey Fusion cards. Daryl McKay, who has been an absolute top-tier asset and friend of the company over the years recently launched this new product. The company went out and purchased original trading cards as well as original game used items from jerseys to pants to shooting shirts, warm ups and a wide array of legitimate game used items from absolute superstars and icons in the sports world. The original cards were then safely sealed in a one touch magnetic with the swatch of a jersey strategically placed on the card. There are unnumbered cards, low numbered cards even one of ones and they’re absolutely no letdowns in this product. Every single box that we opened and saw opened consisted of a superstar, Hall of Famer or sports icon.
I personally bought one of them from our stock and opened it earlier in the week. I was ecstatic to pull a Michael Jordan card with a piece of his shooting shirt from the historic 1996-97 season with the Chicago Bulls. I stopped there because I grew up idolizing Jordan and I wasn’t going to do any better than that.
As far as our customers are concerned, I can’t even explain how excited they were with this product. One of our best customers, Zack, pulled a gorgeous one of one Charles Barkley that featured not one but two pieces of a shooting shirt and shorts from The Round Mound of Rebound’s time in Philadelphia. The card showcased two multi colored swatches and t was a showstopper to say the least. They’ve been pretty popular on eBay, too.
We had people open one in store and immediately by two or three more. We had multiple customers tell other friends who then came in and purchased some of the boxes and by the end of the weekend on Saturday I was selling full cases to customers. It was pretty special.
The icing on the Jersey Fusion cake was the fact that Daryl was gracious enough to give us six free boxes to give away over the weekend as customers who purchased a Jersey Fusion were entered into a drawing to win a free box. We had three random drawn winners on Friday and then three randomly drawn winners again on Saturday.
Speaking of happy customers, when we opened the doors Friday morning we had a line out and around the corner. We had very steady in-store traffic the entire day as the day, as a whole, was a huge success for us.
Quite possibly the only disappointment this year was a lack of a Panini Black Friday program. It was such a great program with a great response from customers that we really missed this year.
We ended the week on a really strong note as the shop was featured in our local newspaper. The Daily Item had a big write up about our store, it’s significance in town, the upcoming holiday and the positivity we are trying to bring to the community each and every day.
All in all, it was a fantastic week and we are looking forward to keeping this momentum moving through the entire holiday season.