My name is Michael Jamin and I’m the Director of Marketing at TwirlyGirl. I have a confession to make:
I DON’T KNOW WHAT I’M DOING!
I didn’t study marketing in school nor do I have experience in marketing. So how did I wind up with this job? I got it the old fashioned way. Nepotism! Cynthia Jamin is the CEO/Designer of TwirlyGirl and I’m her husband.
Here’s a picture of me that’s almost 10 years old. I’m too vain to post something more recent.
I’m a sitcom writer by trade. For the past 20 years, I’ve written on shows like Just Shoot Me, King of the Hill, Beavis & Butthead, Wilfred, Rules of Engagement, and most recently, Maron.
When Cynthia created TwirlyGirl back in 2007, I wanted to help support her dream. I’m good with words, but unfortunately, that’s pretty much all that I could offer. So I wrote a short little poem to include on the hang tag about the Treasure Pocket Jacket.
Here’s how it went:
When Cynthia read this, she started to cry. I don't know if she loved the poem, or just the fact that I wanted to help her. In any case, she asked me to write content for all the products. With 30 plus styles, that's a lot of writing! But she had a vision.
Cynthia wanted the TwirlyGirl website to be as fun and imaginative as her garments. She wanted to create a world of fantasy. So I got to work. Please feel free to poke around the website and read the descriptions. If you like it, leave a comment or share it on Facebook. That would mean a lot to me.
Around the same time, the television landscape imploded on itself. In case you haven’t noticed, there aren’t a ton of sitcoms on network TV anymore. There’s still a lot of production, but much of it has moved to cable. Working as writer for a cable TV show is great. You get a lot more creative freedom, which is why the quality of cable shows tends to be higher. But there’s a downside. The pay on cable TV is substantially lower and you work a lot less often. I had a lot more free time on my hands.
Luckily, I’m married to an entrepreneur so I got more involved in the family business. I don’t design the dresses, I don’t ship the dresses, and I don’t even wear the dresses. (As far as you know.) But Cynthia needed someone to help with marketing, so I accepted. I’m self-taught at this, so if I’m not doing a good job, please accept my apologies. I can’t emphasize enough… I DON’T KNOW WHAT I’M DOING!
I’ll share something else with you. As I started digging into the business, I had my doubts. I looked at the business model and thought, "This is crazy. There's no way TwirlyGirl can compete with the big brands!" We manufacture locally, whereas almost everyone else outsources their sewing overseas. In the 1990s, 50% of all clothing sold in the U.S. was manufactured here. Today, it's less than 2%. Naturally, our labor costs are much higher than theirs. I kind of panicked.
But then I watched how Cynthia operated TwirlyGirl, and after a few months it became clear to me. The question wasn’t, “How can we possibly compete with other brands?” The question was, “How can other brands possibly compete with us!"
Let me explain how Cynthia runs the business.
Cynthia is a pleaser, so she treats our customers, vendors, and employees the same way: she’s loving, caring, and genuine. It’s more like the way someone raises a child, not a business. Our domestic sewers are paid fairly. Employees are empowered and encouraged to make decisions on their own. Customers are treated like valued individuals, not nameless masses. And because we manufacture locally, Cynthia can keep a close eye on the quality of each garment. This is crucial to her.
We use only the highest quality stitching in all our seams, and select the softest, most comfortable fabrics.
Believe it or not, that extra thread makes a huge difference.
Quality control and sourcing these fabrics would be much more difficult, if not impossible, overseas.
Obviously, we inspect every garment before we ship it out. If something is sub-par, we won’t sell it. At first, I couldn’t believe how stringent Cynthia’s inspection policy was. Sometimes you'd need a microscope to find the flaw! I remember one time she pulled a dress just because there was a tiny, black ink dot near the hem. It was a flaw in the fabric. There’s no way the average customer would ever see it. But Cynthia spotted it, and she didn’t feel right selling it for full price. We hang on to those garments, and twice a year we have our Bi-Annual Blowout. We tell you exactly what’s wrong with the garment, and sell it at a steep discount.
Occasionally, a flawed garment will slip past our inspection. Mistakes happen. But that’s not how we judge ourselves. We judge ourselves by the way we fix the problem. We bend over backwards to make the situation right. No one leaves without a smile on their face. I believe our customer service totally sets us apart from the competition.
As a token of my appreciation, please enter coupon code TGMichael upon checkout and you’ll get 15% Off. I probably should’ve come up with a more creative name to market the code, but again… I DON’T KNOW WHAT I’M DOING.
Thank you all for your support.
Director of Marketing, TwirlyGirl
What's better than a TwirlyGirl dress? A FREE TwirlyGirl dress!!We're giving away gift certificates of $100, $50, and $25 for our Instagram Contest. This is the first time we've ever hosted such an event, and we sincerely hope you enter. Even if you've never purchased from us., that's ok. We want to share a little [...]
When I started TwirlyGirl 7 years ago, I never predicted it would grow so big! At the time, I was hand-sewing dresses in our dining room for my daughters. Some mothers at their school fell in love with them, and asked me to sew some for their kids. Word spread like wildfire, and pretty soon [...]
It's been seven years since TwirlyGirl started selling the highest quality twirl dresses for girls. Over the years, we've heard countless requests from our customers asking us to make twirly dresses in bigger sizes. Some want them for their daughters who are sad to have outgrown our sizes. Other women want them for themselves. They [...]
TwirlyGirl was recently interviewed for a fashion blog, and one of the questions was how we stay on top of trends. Our answer was a little surprising: we don't! Fashion is about what's in and what's out. It's about creating a trend, or following a trend. That's exactly the opposite of our mission statement. At [...]
Creating a fashion line isn't easy. Coming up with a great idea every once in awhile is fine, but that's not enough. Your customers expect you to release new creations all the time. Sometimes it's just too difficult to pull an idea out of thin air. That's when designers turn to outside sources for inspiration. [...]
TwirlyGirl is constantly asked to donate to fundraisers, and it's very hard for us to say no to a worthy cause. That's why we created the TwirlyGirl Fundraiser Program. It works like this:Your school or charity applies to our program.You’ll receive a unique coupon code that you can share with friends or family. Every time [...]
Less than 2% of all clothing sold in this country is actually Made in the USA. TwirlyGirl is proud to be in this number! We manufacture all of our garments in Los Angeles, CA. This definitely adds to our labor costs, but it also means we can keep a close eye on quality. Believe it [...]
When Project Runway was launched back in 2004, the show became an instant hit. The reality series followed aspiring designers as they competed to create beautiful garments with limited time and budget. In the words of host Tim Gunn, if a designer was struggling to make a dress work, they simply had to [...]
More and more shoppers are searching for unique girls dresses. It's important for young girls and tweens to find their identity, and dressing differently from others is good for their self esteem. However, as brands become larger and more global, styles become more homogenized. If you really want to find unique dresses for girls, you [...]