I Felt Vindicated!

I parked on the driveway and got out of the driver’s-side door. Closing the door behind me, I walked around the back of the car to open the rear passenger-side door. The plan was simple: grab the bucket and carry a sleeping nine-month old Buck Wheat, Panda at the time, inside. Bucket and all! Quietly so as not to disturb the slumbers.

Opening the back door, I stuck my head in to see that my plan for keeping the baby Buck asleep had already run aground. Her eyes were wide and her face became a smile. Her arms and legs shot out in opposing directions. Her back stiffened as she thrust her body against the seatbelt while fluttering wildly. And then, she SHOUTED:

“UP!”

Buck’s first word!

I’m sure that during a pandemic first words, at least those caught on a video, can get you 500K “likes” on Tik Tok. But this was late 1998 and so all I got for standing in the right place at the right time, was her mother’s derision over the fact that Buck chose ME to utter her first word to.

And her second! But by then I had learned how to keep my mouth shut!

A skill I have clearly lost in the last decade!

The inspection job I have going on now is in full-swing with lots of painting and carpentry to inspect. When writing these specs, I always specify back-priming if we do any wood replacement. We prime all the boards and edges first and then stain the front-facing side before any new siding gets hung. It makes the local dealer happy AND does a yeoman’s job of keeping moisture out of the wood and therefore reduces the possibility of peeling.

094 primer all around with Arbor Coat to match existing

When I'm done inspecting, it's back to my kitchen-perch where I have THE Revolution e-commerce to fill out the rest of my days!

By this time next week, I will have my first cohort of customers signed up and we will be building their web sites and e-commerce platforms. I’m hoping that the dealers I am working with allow me to share some of their story with you here, because I’m enjoying getting to know them:

THE first Minutemen of THIS Revolution!

With this blog, I dropped a new episode of the “Mark, My Words!” podcast. My guest is Lori Sawaya, a color strategist and color strategist trainer for her two-companies: The Land of Color and Camp Chroma.

I came across Lori on LinkedIn. She got my attention with a piece she wrote and posted which spoke to the often-minuscule differences between colors in a paint color system. Always a pet-peeve of mine. In that piece, she made the point that consumers should not sweat the difference between colors often so similar to each other that it’s difficult to tell them apart on the chip.

I felt vindicated! For years I had been telling customers at the color racks of my stores that if they can barely tell the difference on the chip, they will NOT be able to tell the difference on the wall! Now, an expert agreed with me!


If you had spent six-months in quarantine with Guy and Buck you would also rejoice in being right! It's not a frequent event I'm told!

You don't have to read much of Lori's work to become convinced she knows her color-game; I started a conversation.

Lori is doing some cool things with color, color tools and color training. But what really got my attention was how she is using color to make money virtually, in a post-Covid world. I suggest that your design managers and staff listen to this episode as Lori get specific with some creative ways to money.

While paint retailers generally did well and continue to do well during the nation’s battle with the coronavirus outbreak, one area which has lagged that trend is the decorator or designer departments in your stores. Often necessitating an at-home or in-store visit which does not allow for social distancing, many retailers chose to shut down or significantly limit their designer business. Now, even in areas of the country where retailers have returned to a more normalized retail environment, design centers continue to struggle I am often told.

Which was what made Lori’s system so interesting to me. Her process (which can be taught and then duplicated!) allows for designers, decorators, color experts and in-store staff to sell color and therefore PAINT, virtually. Whether your goal is to re-open or reenergize a design center made dormant by Covid, or a larger effort to make your stores the color experts in your market, Lori gives you 90 minutes worth of info, in a 35 minute episode!

If you want to learn more about THE Revolution, my web site and e-commerce solution for independent paint retailers, click here and let me know you want to chat! The podcast can be heard here on my web site, on SoundCloud, Blubrry, Apple and Stitcher. Like, subscribe and text me and tell me what you thought.

You know the drill!