[The Stormhoek “Big Love” Valentine’s Rosé… with this gapingvoid cartoon as the main design. Click on image to enlarge etc.]
I suppose I was too preoccupied with the Stormhoek Valentine’s Road Trip in my previous post that I totally forgot:
“Hey, there’s now a wine bottle with one of my cartoons on it!”
I mean, I’ve been trying to make this happen for nearly two years. And now it’s real. Wow. Kinda neat, really.
Now the trick is getting even more cartoon labels out there in circulation.
An old friend of mine, Theresa asked me if there was any plans to do a similar road trip in the USA in the future. The short answer is “Yes, if it all goes well in the UK.”
Sure, I could see a business model where I spend a lot of time on tour bus, driving up and down the Pacific Coast Highway, visiting tech communities, spreading the Stormhoek love thing. And maybe do an East Coast equivalent. Or a full-on national tour. I can imagine worse scenarios.
Sure, it would be a massive undertaking. But it could do wonders for the Stormhoek brand. Not bad for a couple of years’ work.
1. Hire a tour bus and drive around the country, with a video camera in hand. Visit stores that carry Stormhoek. Talk to people. Sign prints. Make videos. Spread the word. Blog the whole experience.
2. Organize geek dinners en route. Similar to the 100 Geek Dinners thing we did last year, only this time with me and the Stormhoek tour bus in attendance.
3. Lots of PR, working away in the background. Lots of interviews with local radio stations and press etc etc.
4. This would not be an “overnight success” thing. It would probably take a couple of years on the road to build something massive. But hey, that’s why they call it “working for a living”.
5. The key for me would be to keep designing new Stormhoek cartoon labels. The more, the merrier, always trying to raise the bar in terms of intelligence, humor and quality. This is actually quite tricky when one is traveling. Being prolific requires lots of quiet down time. As soon as I find a working solution, I’ll let you know.
6. I’m starting to think my place is no longer in the UK. Perhaps my place is back in the States, on the road, spreading the Stormhoek love etc. Geek dinners, blog confabs, in-store appearances, print signings, tech conferences, mashups, barcamps, all that good stuff.
7. I’m just throwing out random ideas here. I’ve not discussed this in any great detail with the folks at Stormhoek.
8. None of this might actually come true. But like I said, I can imagine worse scenarios.
Hi again Hugh!
Fab idea on the #6–there are 250+ “Trader Joes” grocery stores across the U.S. (as mentioned in my last post)
Just to give you an idea of what it’s like:
It’s an off-beat (they play great music and everyone wears hawaiian shirts, and sometimes hats),organic, unconventional–2miles from the famed M.I.T.–getting a visual?
Kind of a hip place to get your groceries–they would really LOVE your wine, it’s just the kind of thing their shoppers buy!! And these shoppers buy their wine by the case…
Trader Joe’s would be a nice idea, Margarida. I suppose the trick would be to convince them to allow us access to their stores…
Way to go Hugh! Thou rockest ever so increasingly! Spread that love thing 😉
hey – can i come with you on the pacific coast highway? how cool would that be!! :0)
If you can organize and sell the idea to Stormhoek, Cat, be my guest 😉
Hugh, I have been sharing you cartoons with everyone in the office here. I am in the People’s Republic of Utah, so if you come to the states, come here! There are, like, 20 of us that have computers, and we can mostly even read. Seriously, come to Utah. Oh, and read my blog on selling, because no one else does. http://johnonsales.terapad.com/
Who you callin’ old? ;o)
Seriously though, I’m very happy to see your hard work come to fruition. I see an East Coast Geek Dinner in your future!
I would love to see a tour of independent wine sellers – those dedicated suffering souls – in the US in places like Ohio, and yes, Utah. There you’ll find a great bunch of folks with curious, intelligent and savvy customers ready for a thrill. Maybe even a little MORE ready than places like the tried and true coastal zones.
Check this out!