ABOUT SUE BATES
Here’s Sue’s professional history - Where she learned the ins and outs of merchandising and product development before taking on the role of merchandising consultant.
Thomas Jefferson Foundation
Library of Congress
Director of Merchandising:
Responsible for strategic planning and implementation of merchandise component for an e-commerce start-up company, and day-to-day operational direction for merchandising staff and clients. Key participant in the development and launching of four completely integrated Internet stores providing total e-commerce solutions for clients.
- Identified over 3000 products to sell in Internet stores. Designed
and implemented merchandise categories for on-line navigation, and sales
reporting and analysis. Managed the up-selling and cross-selling of
products to maximize sales.
- Principal liaison for museum clients with responsibility for product
selection, sales forecasting, and product specifications for imaging
and content writing.
- Developed company collateral materials to enhance brand, including
packaging, gift-wrap, company brochures, and web content.
- Organized company debut at two major trade shows, including booth design and graphics, marketing materials and product demonstrations.
- Designed and implemented administrative tools used for product loads to website and accounting/sales reporting system.
- Established product promotion calendar for marketing department use.
Director of Museum Sales:
Responsible for achieving financial and educational objectives of several operations within the Museum Sales program, including three retail shops, mail order catalog, licensed and custom product development, and museum publications.
- Hired, trained and supervised staff of over 25 in museum shops, catalog and distribution center.
- Increased revenue from $2.5 million to $8 million.
- Developed and implemented annual budgets.
- Automated retail shops with an integrated POS system; automated catalog with a mail order management system.
- Developed several hundred products for sale through museum shops, catalog and product licensing program. Played key role in the publication and marketing of over 10 new books on Thomas Jefferson and Monticello.
- Actively managed inventory levels throughout department. Implemented inventory reduction strategies.
- Responsible for UBIT and trademark compliance.
- Developed and maintained excellent relationships with museum staff and vendors.
Manager of Retail Marketing:,
First incumbent in newly created position with responsibility for developing budgets, directing and administering the Library's retail shops and direct mail program, and investigating and negotiating suitable product licensing agreements. Responsible for supervising sales shop and office staff.
- Developed over 40 new products for sale exclusively in the Library
of Congress shops;
- Designed, acted as general contractor, merchandised, promoted and opened new 1200 sq. ft. shop within allocated budget;
- Automated office and shop with addition of a personal computer and point-of-sale cash register system;
- Increased revenues over two year period by 161%.
Product Manager, Product Development and Licensing Office
Responsible for developing merchandise reflective of the diverse collections of a multi-museum complex, concentrating in the product categories of graphics, publishing and toys. Managed all phases of product development from concept through market introduction. Investigated and negotiated new product licensing agreements in assigned product categories. Acted as publisher and editor of annual Smithsonian Engagement Calendar with complete responsibility for content, design, layout, production and distribution of product
- Managed 52% of all licenses, which contributed 76% of revenue to department for FY 1987.
Management Assistant, Business Management Office
Began as an administrative assistant in 4-person executive office progressing to management responsibility for existing product licensing programs. Primary emphasis placed on reviewing and analyzing financial and personnel activities of subordinate revenue producing divisions, which included 11 museum shops, mail order catalogue, restaurant concessionaire and staff parking. Conducted market research to determine viability of more aggressive product licensing program as additional source of revenue for Institution.
- Licensing research prompted senior management to create and staff
new office devoted exclusively to product development and licensing.
University of Michigan, BA Anthropology (with honors).