Not sure how I feel about this..

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samirish

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I think Im slightly annoyed.
I have a customer who owns a Bed and Breakfast and buys my soap wholesale to use in all her guest rooms. She only buys it in this one scent that she loves. It just so happens, that for this particular scent, I kept the name that it came with.

For example: lets say the the name was Mrs. Clauses Cookies from Natures Garden, I called it Mrs Clauses Cookies. (not the actual FO im talking about here)

Usually, I always change the name but for this particular fragrance, I just could not think of a better name than the one it came with.

So anyways, she recently emailed me and said she found the fragrance and the supplier and she ordered the FO for herself, and she was soooo happy she found the fragrance. (she was even kind enough to include a link to the fo and supplier :evil: )

Since then, she has not placed any soap orders. Im thinking, either she got another soaper to make her the soap at a cheaper price or she is trying to make the soap herself.
Has this ever happened to any of you guys?
 

shunt2011

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That really stinks. Unfortunately, there's not much you can do. I'm guilty of generally naming the soaps what the company names them for the most part. I just don't have the imagination for witty names. Sorry that happened to you.
 

DeeAnna

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I'm familiar with incidents something like yours. The latest is the loss of a very, very good customer this year (to the tune of $50,000 to $100,000 in sales per year.) I don't know if they decided to buy similar products for less money or if they just stopped selling any products similar to mine. I haven't spent any time trying to figure that out, because there's no benefit to me to know either way.

It was a painful loss to the bottom line of my small business ... but it was their prerogative to end our business relationship at any time for any reason, and I accept that.

In the past when stuff like this happened to me, I wasn't so philosophical about it. I would get really annoyed and stay that way for awhile, but I now accept that it's just the way life goes sometimes. It still stings, don't get me wrong, but I can let go of the annoyance quicker than I used to. Anymore, I try to stay focused on living in the moment as I work with my customers and potential customers, and I try to not form any expectations about the future.
 
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The Efficacious Gentleman

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Not any comfort, but I worked for a company and it was policy that our annual spend with a company would be no more than 25% of their turnover, so if we stopped using them for any reason it would be a blow, but not fatally so
 

cmzaha

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That really stinks. Unfortunately, there's not much you can do. I'm guilty of generally naming the soaps what the company names them for the most part. I just don't have the imagination for witty names. Sorry that happened to you.
Like Shunt, I do not have much imagination for naming soaps so I use the name on the fo, plus the fact I do not have to look up my notes to know which fo I used in a soap. If someone one finds the fragrance and starts making the soap themselves or supplies another soapmaker with the fo so be it, it is part of business. With so many companies supplying the same name fo's they may have been lucky to happen upon the exact same fo unless it is one of NG's exclusive fo's. It would be extremely annoying, but not much can be done and it not worth the possible raise in blood pressure or taking up brain space worrying about it. Several years ago we had a good customer, at the time, go into soap business herself and we now see a lot of copying of my daughter's m&p work. It happens...
 

TeresaT

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I'm sorry you lost your customer. I have no words of wisdom or words of comfort to share. Nor do I have any words of revenge. I just hope you take comfort in knowing you make the best product you posibly can. There is a lot more to making a quality soap than getting the fragrance correct. Just because she's able to get the correct fragrance, does not mean she'll be able to get the same formula or quality from the soap she makes herself or requests someone else to make for her. Maybe her new soaps will be a superior quality to what you were producing. Maybe her new soaps will rip your hide off. It is out of your hands now. All you can do is continue to be the best you can be and do the best you can do. I honestly believe that when one door closes, a window opens. Now, you just need to look for your window of opportunity and climb right in. Good luck to you.
 

DeeAnna

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Gent -- That is probably a very wise move on your former employer's part, because huge orders from any one company can make and break a small business. The orders from this one company changed the whole way we had to do business and was terribly stressful until I got used to it. The one thing that is softening the blow of losing this monster account is that business from our small to mid-size businesses have been picking up a lot this year. I'm not sure why, but I'm thankful and grateful. As you pointed out, it is preferable to have more small and medium accounts rather than a few large clients, so I may weather this storm with a little less money in the company coffers, but still solvent and viable.

Samirish -- Losing a client, however you lose them, however big or small, will always be annoying and/or painful. But it's a great learning moment, because we humans are motivated to learn and grow from experiences like this -- we don't have much reason to change when all is going smoothly. Don't let this experience sour you -- instead use the experience to figure out how to do even better with your next wholesale client. I wish you much success.

Not any comfort, but I worked for a company and it was policy that our annual spend with a company would be no more than 25% of their turnover, so if we stopped using them for any reason it would be a blow, but not fatally so
 
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