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Issue Date: Vol. 46, No. 4, April 2006, Posted On: 4/15/2006

What’s Up Marketing Plan Homes In On Premium Items

Hank Schlesinger

APPLETON, WI — What’s Up LLC has unveiled its recently “fine tuned” business and marketing plan which focuses the company’s objectives on the consistent and timely release of its premium-level capsuled bulk vending products.

“What’s Up has never been full line, we’re fast lane,” said Karen Becker, the firm’s cofounder, when describing the company’s focus on premium-level product offerings. “Operators know that their level of success in today’s market depends on the quality of the products they use and how fast they can turn the merchandise they buy into cash.”

The plan, already in full-swing, calls for the company to release vending merchandise in a precisely timed fashion. “It’s our intention to develop the very best items and then release a new collection to the market about every six to eight week,” said Peter Becker, the company’s other principal and Karen’s husband. “This focused approach really gives us the proper time needed for product development and the ability to offer the best selling items possible.”

The Beckers have long subscribed to the “premium-level” product philosophy and it has kept them at the forefront of the bulk vending product scene since their arrival to the industry in the early 1990s.

Peter Becker, former Toy ‘n Joy president, and Karen Becker, Toy ‘n Joy’s former marketing manager, left their respective posts in 2003 and launched What’s Up. They have since continued to strengthen their reputation with signature items such as the Blinkie Rings, Ultra Violet Jewelry and last year’s sales leader, LiveBold bracelets. This month, the company is unveiling Foam Putty, a moldable compound – popular in toy retailing – that has been repackaged for bulk vending (see Page 132). 

Within an industry where operators are converting vend prices to 75¢ and $1 price points, the company’s products have received considerable attention. Although designed as high-level 50¢ merchandise, What’s Up’s premium-level items have found consumer acceptance at the elevated pricing levels.

What’s Up’s marketing approach will also be supported by an advertising campaign aimed at keeping operators informed of the latest products available.

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