Microbrand U Workshop Graduates: Interview with Mark Miller of Winfield Watch Company
It’s been 4 months since our first seminar took place. It’s time to catch up with some of our trailblazing participants and see where they are with their Microbrand start-ups.
We chatted with Mark Miller, Founder of Winfield Watch Company, to ask him about the process of launching a Microbrand watch business, his progress, and his challenges. This is what he had to say:
1. What were your main takeaways from the Microbrand U workshop?
MBU provided the map to get where I needed to go. Input from Chris Vail was invaluable from a "been there done that" viewpoint. Pricing, branding and marketing strategies outlined in the workshop provided the guidance I needed to move Winfield forward. The information presented and the open forum discussions answered questions I came with as well as answering questions I didn't know I had. Specific items of benefit were the importance of brand / personal story connection, utilization of social media and expectations for the manufacturing process and relationship with producers of watch components.
2. What progress have you made on your own microbrand, Winfield Watches, since the workshop?
The company was re-branded from Miller Watch Company to Winfield Watch Company after the workshop. A new logo was also developed to form a cohesive brand definition that is consistent with the statement I want to make in the market.
Design was finalized and production commenced in mid June. I have secured a NATO strap supplier and the shipment has been received. I finalized packaging to include the box, brushed stainless steel warranty card, microfiber cloth and waxed canvas watch roll that will contain the watch, a NATO strap and the warranty card. Social media accounts have been established along with the website. Email addresses are being collected and social media posts are ongoing. I have increased my presence on Facebook and I commenced Facebook advertising.
Quite a bit of progress, I would say!
3. What struggles have you had? What were some unexpected challenges?
Sorting out social medial has been my biggest challenge. I had very little experience in social media and no experience in social media marketing.
4. What kind of support did you receive from our team after the workshop?
Ongoing mentorship by Chris Vail has been terrific. I have engaged Josh Irons and his company for marketing consulting to include re-branding, website development and social media strategy.
5. What are your current launch plans?
Our watches will be delivered in mid October and, after complete quality control check and re-pressure testing, will be available for sale and immediate delivery starting November 1, 2019. I am working on schedule a private event after Worn and Wound show in late October as I was not successful in securing a table at the show. NYC watch players have been invited.