Customer Feedback – How a quick recap of our customer’s experience keeps us motivated

   So here I am working on Saturday again, wishing I was with my family but still loving what I do.

   We filled over 40 sample requests this morning, broke ground on our new bachelor button flower bed, revised customer wedding proofs and generally tried to catch up from a hectic week.

   Feeling like I needed a break but unable to take one with everything that has to be done, I decided to check one item off the long list of overdue jobs as a means of getting a break of sorts; at least I was doing a new job, one that had not been done since 2013 and one that does recharge the batteries.

   I just updated our customer feedback page on custompaper.com.  It used to be that we would receive thank you notes mailed to us.  That is not so common anymore.  Now they just arrive via email.  We love hearing from our customers and are always so grateful when they share their happiness with us, however the messages arrive.  There are plenty of nice comments that reach us throughout the year but these are always our favorite as they are not solicited.  Etsy, Ebay and Amazon all prompt our customers to leave feedback about their purchase and we have many happy notes that arrive to us from those sites but the ones that are emailed to us directly just feel that much more genuine, and well deserved.  So thank you customers!  I do love the little boost I get from reading your words.

   I have shared them here with you so that other folks who have not yet decided where to buy their wedding supplies might be influenced by our customer’s words.  These are their words, the only edits have been to remove their last names.

   And now, back to work.

 Kevin

 

THEY ARE GORGEOUS!!!

Thank you so much!!!!!

We are thrilled and will definitely use you guys again!

Courtney

Thank you so much! So far it’s been a pleasure doing business with Of the Earth, It has become one my favorite websites and I will most definitely recommend you guys!
Best regards,
Joselyn T

Wonderful products and friendly support! Thank you for such a beautiful resource!

Hi Kevin, I got my paper I ordered in today and the burgundy color you suggested is perfect! Goes great with black marble. Thanks for the insight. I am sure I will be ordering more in the future. Thanks Again, Greg

Dear Custom Paper:

I ordered sometime ago the sapphire swirl Lotka paper. Today I used some of it to wrap Christmas presents.

It was beautiful.

Ed S

Hi Kevin,

Thank you so much! I can’t wait to get them in. You have been wonderful to work with, I really appreciate your patience and timeliness. I will certainly recommend you to friends and family in the future.

Sincerely,

Melissa R

I have had a wonderful experience working with Kevin. He has been incredibly helpful and very fast with returning emails and sending proofs. I cannot wait to get the invitations in. I just know they are going to be absolutely beautiful. Thank you!

Hi Kevin,
The invitations have finally arrived and they are absolutely stunning and unique!!! There is not much to say apart from the fact that these are the most beautiful wedding invitations I have ever seen.

Thanks a lot for all your hard work and precious help
Veronica

Kevin,

You are absolutely amazing!! I don’t even know how to thank you! You have gone above and beyond in every way possible and you have my sincerest gratitude!! If I could please have your address, I would make me very happy to send you a little thank you :) Thanks again, Kevin! You are just incredible!

Anna

Hello,

I wanted to let you know that people can not stop calling me regarding my wedding invitations! They are perfect! Thanks again.

Sara :)

Hi, Im a beekeeper and I live in Quebec Canada. For many years by now, I use the lotka printable seed paper to make my honey labels. My little business grow up now and I also use your paper for many of my other product as cosmetics made with hives products (wax, honey, pollen etc…)

The people are always impress when I tell them to plant their labels and flowers will grow up :-). Many of them ask me how to proceed and I just decided to put the instructions on my web site. I would also like to give a little description of how you made this paper.

On your web site, its written that paper is made in Nepal by rural craft peoples. Could you explain me a little more what are Rural craft peoples exactly please? Do they are artists or peoples who try to get a better life?

Thank you very much for those precisions and congratulation for this wonderful paper that Im proud to use.

annie l

Good Afternoon Kevin,

I received the invitations today, they’re gorgeous! Thank you so much for putting them together and making this day so very special for us. They are the most beautiful invitations I’ve ever seen and will surely make our wedding day a fairytale come true. Thanks again

Lori & Gord

The process was quick and easy. Thank you for offering free samples for my wedding.

Oh wow! I just submitted my ordered and you’ve shipped in less than two hours! I love how reliably fast you work, not to mention great ribbon every time. Thank you, and have a beautiful weekend!

Leora Mauck, Co-Proprietor

Copper Willow Paper Studio

310.836.6004 and www.copperwillow.com

Hi Kevin,

I received the order, everything looks amazing!!

I want to thank you for your help, I will definitely recommend you and the company to anyone who asks!!

If you have a manger, I’d like to let him / her know how helpful and patient you were.

Thanks again!

Tanja

Thank you so much for sending us the samples in the mail. We thought that it would make our decision process easier but we loved everything!! Great quality product. We look forward to receiving the invitations we FINALLY decided upon soon. I will highly recommend you to anyone who is seeking stationary that is: outside the box. Many thanks again!

I absolutely love this paper company. For my wedding, I designed my own invitations using Of the Earth materials, saved a ton of money, and my guests were amazed to learn about seeded paper. I even planted my scrap materials for blooming wedding favors! Now I am starting my own company, and they have been so helpful while I select materials for boxes, packaging, and labels. Thank you!

Kevin Graham was a pleasure to work with and huge help.

The invitations are gorgeous and they arrived at the perfect time.

Thanks again for the excellent service!

Cheers,

Kelly S

Kevin,

I’m absolutely in awe over my wedding invitations!!! They are so much more than I’d imagined! Thank you for everything! I will highly recommend you in any way I can.

Sincerely,

Jessica

Hi Kevin-

I just mailed out our invitations you printed for me and I’m getting tons of compliments on them!

I thought they were beautiful and I’m so glad to hear others think so too :)

Thanks for everything!!

adrian

Appreciate the samples and the quick response. I am ordering this spool based on the color swatches I received, so thanks!

Thank you so much for all your help and prompt replies! It’s not often I receive customer service this great. I really appreciate it!!

Jessica

Excellent! Thanks again, Kevin. We love our invitations!

Thank you for excellent customer service. Kevin is helpful and courteous and a total pleasure to speak with. God Bless. LRD

Hi Kevin,

I just wanted to tell you how much I love the invotation! It is absolutely everything we wanted! Thank you for making it so easy and seamless to order everything.

The invitation is a work of art! Beautiful!

Many thanks!

Sarah B

 

 

The trouble with online reviews – How do you decide who to listen to?

A close friend of mine just had one of the worst weeks a small business owner can have. There are many challenges we face and overcome from every angle you can imagine but one of the toughest is from difficult people. He had to fire an employee this week that may end up dragging out into much drama over the next several months (or even years if it goes all courtroom). I think the hardest part for him were the very personal attacks that this employee threw around like so many dangerous, virulent seeds. These squeaky wheels get so much more attention than they deserve and as the one under attack, we often feel that there must be some truth to their accusations, otherwise they wouldn’t be saying those hurtful things right? Not so. Some people are only happy when they are stepping on other people. We need to be able to filter those people out.

With that in mind I have found a way to address an unhappy individual that I dealt with last November. I wanted to respond to her Yelp review, I wanted to find her own Yelp business page and leave her a few choice comments, I wanted to scream and throw a tantrum, but I chose to not dignify her comments with a response. And then today we received a lovely email from a customer and this is how I have decided to address the issue; by speaking about it here on our own blog.

Thanks for reading and understand that in our very connected world your every action has the ability to ripple into far greater lengths than ever before, so be nice!

Hi Kevin!

I happened to go on Yelp today and noticed that you have two Of The Earth pages on Yelp…and the more current one has only one review, a repeat of the one negative review from your original page. I wrote my own review with five stars, but combined with that other one you still only have a 3-star average.

If you didn’t create that Yelp page you can probably claim it and delete it — it’s better not to have two, so you should be able to just update the address on your original one, I’m not sure about that though. Let me know if you do delete that one and I’ll be happy to put my review on your other page.

Thanks again for the invitations — they are amazing!
Anna

Anna,

Thank you for your message. I am very glad that you are happy with your invitations.

Thanks for the gift of your time in leaving a public review for us. We really do appreciate it. I think Yelp can be a helpful tool (I have used it to find out about yoga studios close to home) but I have a bit of a beef with them (as you might guess) for more than just the Of The Earth listing but also from our many business owner friends who have spoken of their feelings of extortion when dealing with Yelp sales people.

We moved our business last July (and five years prior to that move). When we moved in 2008, our one five star review (at the time) moved with us. When we moved in 2013 to our dismay we discovered that our Yelp page was not going to move with us. Yelp had changed their policies and we had to rebuild, with new images and data our Yelp page for our new location. None of our reviews moved with us.

In December of last year we received our first review on Yelp in our new location. In Yelp’s business plan it made sense to them to ensure that that review was posted on both locations. You see, if we pay Yelp $1000 a month (no joke I talked to them at length) they ensure that any bad reviews are pushed to the bottom of the stack, perhaps even get lost on a back page, as long as the payments keep coming.

In life you have to take a few lumps, so we have put pictures and data and our hours of operation on Yelp but we don’t have to pay them or support them in any way. We also don’t have to tolerate extortion from potential customers, even if that means facing an unpleasant public statement of questionable veracity.

I am excited to read your review and again thank you for taking your time to let folks (on the interwebs) know that you were happy with your experience with us.

Wishing you the best,
Kevin

Kevin Graham
kevin@custompaper.com
www.custompaper.com
Of The Earth
7706 Aurora Avenue North
Seattle WA 98103
1.888.294.1526

Interview with Andrea Miles of A Miles Designs

2015 update!  We just got a note from Andrea asking to have her images removed from our blog so that they could submit them to Martha Stewart!  Best of luck Andrea!!
When Andrea Miles of A Miles Designs approached us about her wedding we were excited and eager to help. She had a distinct vision and color palette, but used our ideas and suggestions to elevate her design elements to a level we could have not imagined.  Needless to say, we loved the finished product so much we asked her for an interview about the process. Read on for more about the details of Andrea’s wedding and her latest use of our products in her own line for children!
How did you discover Of The Earth? 
I found you on Etsy and fell in love with the hand dyed silk ribbon in Tickle. I ordered a few yards and basically designed/dyed the bridesmaids dresses around it. It was the first thing I bought for the wedding and it inspired the bridesmaids dresses that our girls (our daughters) wore that day.
What were your initial product needs for your wedding?
It was decided that I could use some interfacing to make it more rigid in the area that went around their waists, so it became their belt/sash. The length that tied was left soft. When  I ordered the roll of 2.5″, there was quite a bit left over and it was the perfect thing to tie around all of the bouquets. I noticed that they had various widths and bought a roll of a thinner width to replace the white satin ribbon that was stitched on the edge of my veil. Again, there was a large surplus of this thinner width, so I used the extra on the invitations. We had our invitations rolled up and inserted into glass bottles. wrapped around these bottles was a square that looked like the Brady Bunch (9 squares, mom in top middle, dad in bottom middle, my children in the left squares, my husband’s in the right squares and in the middle square in the same font as the TV show it said “bridal bunch”). The thinner silk ribbon was tied around the bottles to hold these in place.
How was our input helpful during your planning process?
After I got my first cutting of the 2.5 silk ribbon, I decided that I wanted the girls’ bridesmaid dress to be dyed in a pink ombre. I contacted Kevin because I was totally ignorant on the subject of dying. He was super helpful and pointed me in the right direction. I had to use a different type of dye because I was dying tulle instead of silk, but I could not have done it without his help. I recently contacted him about ribbon for another project, and once again, he went out of his way. My experience with Of The Earth has been one of the best, if not the best, that i have ever had with a business. And trust me, I’ve  done a lot of shopping/buying in my day.
Tell us about your Etsy line, A. Miles Designs?
AMiles Designs, my shop on Etsy, has monogrammed and appliqued towel wraps, hoodies, bikini bottoms and stockings right now. but I am adding pom pom shorts (really excited about these!), bandeau swim tops, 4 baby items, and pillows in the very near future.
IMG_5025-2
IMG_5024-3
How do you plan to use the custom ribbons from Of The Earth in your designs?
I love the ribbon because it is hand dyed and has the qualities that go with that. With wear, it gets a slight fray on the edges which I’m crazy about. I knew that I would incorporate the ribbon into a product in my shop on Etsy from the beginning, but I just have not had the time until now.
Thank you again and CONGRATS, Andrea!