Looking Ahead with Xyron
If you’re a crafter of any sorts, you’ve probably heard the name Xyron and may even own a few of their products. Personally, I (Chelsea) loved Xyron products even before I came to work for MyBinding.com. So when Tarragon and I had the chance to chat with Corey Hoff, our company’s Xyron representative, needless to say I was a bit excited. Even better, he brought samples for us to play with: a miniature disposable “X”, Teresa Collins Mega Runner, unique glue stick, three new products that had my immediate attention.
Corey has been with Xyron for over six years. The company started in 1996 and was purchased by Esselte in 2003, joining other top brands such as Oxford, Pendaflex,and Ampad. Unlike many retailers, their reps are split by the type of product rather than region. For Corey, that means he mainly sells professional equipment. The result is a sales force better trained on the products they actually sell, allowing them to become the experts. Even so, Corey didn’t hesitate to answer our questions about a variety of items, as MyBinding sits somewhere in the middle of the professional/craft distinctions.
First, we tackled the ever popular “How has your business changed as a result of the recession?” Corey graciously answered our over-asked question. Luckily, Xyron sells an experience, not simply crafting objects. People who make scrapbooks tend to do so with all of their pictures, not simply here and there. Even so, Corey has seen the bigger stores edge out smaller, privately owned businesses. Which is a bummer, considering those are the stores with the most character. However, with families turning to at-home activities, such as family craft night, sales have stayed steady, even if less. The same is true in the professional realm. Though they may be somewhat harder to sell, the best-selling tools have stayed the same.
As a response, Xyron has taken a look at their product line and focused on providing practical solutions to every day problems. Their goal is to take a standard product and improve on it for ease of use, efficiency, and overall experience. This is definitely seen in the new products Corey showed to us. Since both of use enjoy scrapbooking and other crafting hobbies, we were super excited to see the new products. First, we checked out the mini X, a smaller, disposable version of the Create-A-Sticker 150. This tiny X is perfect for a stocking stuffer for your favorite crafter. The small size (and price tag) make it a great option to add to your scrapbooking tools or to give as a gift to any paper crafters, teachers, kids, etc. The packaging says children as young as 5 are able to use it and as a mother of young kids, I would echo this statement. With supervision, of course.
Next up, the Mega Runner. Corey actually showed us the Teresa Collins version, which has a pink design. Teresa Collins is a designer who has created new looks for the surfaces of a both the Mega Runner and the Create-A-Sticker 150. The 150 is the only one still sold on Xyron’s site and features a hound’s tooth design. With out without the pink, the Mega runner is a pretty cool tool. It provides a half-inch dot matrix of adhesive, perfect for adhering cardstock, craft papers, die cuts, and other paper crafting items. As soon as I showed my scrapbooking family members, they all wanted one. It may look like a hair dryer, but the shape gives it ergonomic handling for comfort, a much needed benefit for a scrapbook marathon or making this year’s 200 Christmas cards.
Speaking of Christmas cards, the other new tool we got to play with would be perfect for gluing smaller embellishments onto cards or scrapbook pages: the Xyron Permanent Adhesive Glue Stick. Now you might be thinking that if you’ve seen one glue stick, you’ve seen them all. We thought the same thing, which made us wonder why Xyron even bothered to make one. Upon closer examination, we saw reflected in this adhesive wand what Corey had earlier referred to when he said Xyron took traditional things and improved on them.
First, this glue stick is shaped like a quarter-round, allowing to cover corners much better than traditional round sticks. The unique shape also prevents the glue stick from rolling off your work surface, a huge plus. Second, you won’t lose the lid because the lid fits into the bottom to twist the adhesive. Brilliant – no more dried out glue sticks! Third, a window gauge displays exactly how much glue you have left. I’m sure there are more but these are the top three on the minds of these craft moms.
Other new things around Xyron is the creation of their iBook, Sticky Goodness. Sticky Goodness is a project book with ideas and directions on things you can create using Xyron products. It tells you which item(s) you would need and how to make it. Very cool, especially for those who are stuck in a rut. If you’re on Facebook and into crafting, you’ve probably seen Beth Kingston, Xyron’s main blogger, if not the Xyron page itself. If you’re interested in entering giveaways, getting ideas for your next layout, or sharing your latest creations, these two pages are the place to be!
As always, Xyron continues to be an industry leader in adhesives. Whether you turn to their machines for the eco-friendly benefits or use some of their smaller products for crafting, you can count on Xyron to help you Create Your World.