From the Street with Melanie Michaud, Owner of Thread + Seed

from the street the inventory genius newsletter Jan 04, 2024
Image for January 2024 From the Street newsletter article with Melanie Michaud.

I grew up in a family of entrepreneurs and started helping out in my dad and grandfather’s businesses before I went to high school. When I was in high school, I dreamed of opening an online clothing business (def was not normal then since e-comm barely existed in fashion). I knew I would be an entrepreneur some day and started mapping out a plan to educate myself through other workplaces and college to combine my passion for marketing and fashion. Because of this dream, I founded Thread and Seed in March 0f 2011.

I believe mindful customer service and creating an unforgettable shopping experience is at the heart of brick-and-mortar retail. We offer 1 on 1 styling, a build-a-box gift wall, and we put a considerable amount of our budget into training our sales team. I understand trends, people and marketing. My gift has always been able to identify a goal and then strategically plan on how to achieve it.

However, I wanted to have more control over the monetary outcome. While I could see from a marketing perspective on how to increase sales and drive traffic, I struggled with setting budgets and gaining control of my profits if foot traffic did not match up to how I intended. While in the past this was much more predictable, the pandemic shifted what was a typical trends for us.

Because of this desire to control and understand the financial drivers in the business, I joined Ciara’s Profit Accelerator program in May, 2023. Through the work we have done together, I am a lot clearer on how to utilize my profit margin when I cannot get the overall revenue to be where I thought it would be.

Setting my budget and being able to tweak the numbers was a true gift! Right now I am working on my 2024 budget and if I did not have this tool, there is no way I would know what I had to do in order to be profitable this next year. Margin building strategies are where I am putting my energy for 2024.

If I was in a room with ten other business owners I would tell them this:

  • First, learn the difference between a balance sheet and profit & loss statement and to make sure everything was being accounted for in the correct way (especially inventory!).
  • Second, create a budget and start going through all their numbers. Look at where they can scale back on expenses, where they can increase their profit margin (increase prices!).

My current podcast list: eCommerce Badassery, Well Oiled Operations, Powerhouse Women, Earn Your Happy and On Purpose, and of course, The Inventory Genius Podcast.

My current library includes: E-Myth Theory, Success Principles, Atomic Habits

-Melanie, Founder of Thread + Seed, located in San Diego, CA

Find Melanie here:
Instagram: @threadandseed and @threadleadership

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