International Art Materials Association

    eNews:  December 5, 2018 

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We look forward to having all of you back as 2019 members and hope to see you in San Antonio for Art Materials World in February.

Namta's strategy is to provide its art/creative materials industry members with the products, services and information needed to grow and prosper plus be recognized as an international leader and unifying force in the support, sustainability and advocacy of art and the art/creative materials business.

If you need help renewing your membership, or need the invoice, contact Sue Cohen at Namta.


Customer Service Recovery

. . . and the Cost of One Lost Customer

 by Rich Kizer & Georganne Bender

In this crazy age of social media and online consumer review sites, smart service providers have moved on from “customer service” and “customer care” to “customer advocacy”, following through to make sure every customer is satisfied to the best of their ability.

Today, people who are cheesed off about something that happened in your store have to potential to tell millions of others social media, and you know what that means. Saving the sale puts money in your cash register, but customer service recovery saves the sale and your reputation.

But losing just one customer isn’t such a big deal… or is it? Take our “Cost of One Lost Customer” test using figures from your own store and find out:

  1. What is your average customer sale? _________________________
  2. How many times a month does your average customer come into buy? _________________________
  3. Based on questions above, an average customer will spend this much in your store in one month: _________________________
  4. Now, multiply the number in question #3 times 12 to find what an average customer spends in your store in one year:  _________________________
  5. How many years is that customer potentially your customer? _________________________
  6. Multiply the number in question #4 by the number in question #5 to calculate the lost lifetime sales of this average customer:   _________________________
  7. Now, if this unhappy customer tells just 10 other people about her bad experience and they decide to no longer shop with you, what’s the cost of this one unhappy customer?  To find the answer, multiply the dollar amount in question #6 times 10 (that’s the 10 other customers), then add in the original customer’s lifetime sales (#6) to get the total answer. _________________________

It’s a lot of money, isn’t it?

If we use just $20.00 as an example of your average store sale, and follow the Cost of One Lost Customer exercise through all of the steps, that one unhappy customer would cost you $3,360.00 in lifetime sales. But that’s not all because when you add in the 10 people that customer is likely to tell that figure rises to $33,600.00.  Now, add in the original unhappy customer’s lifetime sales and the number grows to a whopping $36,960.00 – that’s a pretty tough number to make up.

Only one in ten customers will take the time to tell you when something is wrong; this means that the other nine leave angry and may never return to shop with you again. They may even tell their friends about their lousy experience, or worse, blast you online – if they use a hashtag their complaint can take on a life of its own. The good news is that the customer service recovery statistics are on your side: When a customer gives you the opportunity to attempt to fix the problem, studies show that over 80 percent of people will give you another chance.

You need to have a customer service recovery policy in place. If you don’t, here is a good one to follow:

  • If you don’t know the customer, offer your hand and introduce yourself. If you do, address them by name.
  • Always assume that people are honest and are telling the truth about what happened to them.  If you automatically discount every customer complaint – and we know too many retailers who do this – you are setting yourself up to lose customers.  Take every customer complaint seriously. No matter how small you think the complaint might be, it’s a big deal to the customer. If it wasn’t, the customer wouldn’t bother to bring it to your attention. Remember, the customer’s perception is her reality and that’s all that matters.
  • Listen carefully and ask questions until you are certain that you completely understand the customer’s complaint. Open-ended questions require the customer to respond with more than a simple “yes” or “no”, are the best way to quickly get the root of the problem.
  • Repeat what the customer tells you and then ask if you got it right. Asking the customer questions puts you in control of the conversation and it keeps the customer talking; talking helps calm the customer down. Using the customer’s name also helps to diffuse the situation.
  • Apologize, even when it’s not your fault. You are creating empathy and showing the customer that you are on their side. If you say, “This is a wonderful product, no one has ever complained about it before.” the customer hears, “What’s wrong with you? A kid could figure this out.” Instead say, “I am sorry that you are upset. Let’s see what we can do to solve this problem.” Or “I am really sorry that this happened to you, I can understand why you are frustrated.”
  • Ask the customer what he would like you to do. It’s easy to get defensive when someone criticizes your store, and it’s easy to think that the customer expects you to hand them the moon. No true! Most customers just want you to fix the problem so ask, “What would you like me to do for you today?”
  • Remember you are a customer advocate so the buck stops here. If the problem can be fixed on the spot, fix it. Empower your team by encouraging them to try and resolve the problem by themselves, but when they can’t to get help fast.  Either way, advocates stick with the customer until the complaint is resolved.

If you have to get in touch with a supplier for more information, explain to the customer what you need to do, and offer your plan to resolve the issue. This good faith gesture lets the customer know you are on her side and are personally working to fix the situation.

Do one more thing. Merchants in New Orleans offer a lagniappe (pronounced “lan-YAP”), a small gift you give to customers as a token of appreciation. In customer service recovery mode, a lagniappe might be a gift card or a free class.

Follow-up. Call or email the customer to ensure that the situation was handled to their satisfaction. Another plus to customer advocacy is the positive word of mouth you will build when the customer tells his friends what you did for him. Word of mouth is the number one thing that brings new customers to your store. A customer testimonial is 10 – 20 times more believable than what you say about yourself. And it’s free.

Keep an eye on your Facebook page and other social medias to see if the customer has posted her complaint. Check consumer review sites like Yelp as well. In fact, go to Yelp right now and put your store name in the search box. Chances are good that you are being reviewed on Yelp even if you have not set up your Yelp business page. Do it. It’s free, and it gives you control over the details posted about your business. If you find a negative comment respond immediately. Say something like, “I am sorry that this happened to you, it is not a normal occurrence in my store. Please call or send me a private message so we can work together to resolve this issue.” Your timely response is critical, particularly if the complaint is exaggerated because a lie left unchallenged becomes reality.

Keep a record of customer complaints, noting how each one was solved. Review your log each week to see where you need improvement. Go over the list at every store meeting, noting the common occurrences. Ask your team for their input: How would they have handled the situation? This will help your associates understand how to handle similar complaints in the future.

Customer service recovery lets customers know that they, and not just their money, matter to you. The late, great Maya Angelou said it best: “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”


Rich Kizer & Georganne Bender are professional speakers, retail strategists, authors and consultants whose client list reads like a “Who’s Who” in business. Companies internationally depend upon them for timely advice on consumers and the changing retail market place. KIZER & BENDER’s observations are widely featured in national newspapers, national and international industry and consumer publications, and on radio and television programs across the U.S. You can learn more at

See what Sponsorship Opportunities are available to Exhibitors.            

Take a look at the 2019 Floorplan.       

Show Sponsors 2019 Exhibitors 

- ACMI - Art & Creative Materials Institute
- ACTIVA Products, Inc.
- Alumicolor
- Alvin & Company, Inc.
- American Design EaselWorks
- Amodex Products Inc.
- Ampersand Art Supply
- Armadillo Art & Craft
- Art Materials Retailer Magazine (Fahy-Williams)
- Art Spectrum
- Artist Supplies & Products
- Artograph Inc.
- ArtResin
- Artzee Liquid Sealer/Bronzee Liquid Finish
- Atlantic Papers
- Atlas Adhesive Tape
- AVT Paints
- Bee Paper Company
- Bob Ross
- Borciani E Bonazzi
- Canson
- Chameleon Art Products
- Chroma
- Colart Americas
- Color Wheel Company
- Colored Pencil Society of America
- Colorfin
- Crafter's Workshop
- Cranfield Colours
- Creative Art Materials
- Crescent Cardboard
- Daler-Rowney

- da Vinci Artist Brushes
- DecoArt
- DEMCO EnCouleurs
- Dixon Ticonderoga
- Eli-Chem Resins U.K
- Exaclair
- Excel Hobby Blades
- F+W Media
- FM Brush
- Fredrix Artist Canvas/Tara Materials
- Gamblin Artists Colors
- Games Workshop
- Gel Press
- Gelli Arts
- General Pencil
- Giftsland
- Golden Artist Colors
- Grafix
- Graphic Products Corporation
- Grex Airbrush
- Guerrilla Painter
- Hahnemuhle USA
- Handy Art
- Hangman Product
- HK Holbein, Inc.
- Imagination International/Copic Marker
- Itoya of America

- Iwata Medea
- Jack Richeson & Co.
- Jacquard Products/ Rupert, Gibbon & Spider
- Jiangsu Langer Art Materials
- JJC Industries/Daniel Smith Products
- K&S Precision Metals
- Klopfenstein Art Manufacturing
- Legion Paper
- Lineco/University Products
- M. Graham & Co.
- M.A.B.E.F.
- MacPherson's
- Magnani 1404
- Maimeri

- Manuscript
- Maped Helix USA
- Marabu North America
- Masterpiece Artist Canvas
- McIntyre Manufacturing Group
- Multimedia Artboard
- New Wave Art
- Newell Brands
- Nitram Art Inc.
- Oblation Papers & Press
- Paint Puck
- Papeterie Saint Armand/St. Armand
- Pebeo Inc. - USA
- Pentel Arts, div. Pentel of America
- PRIMA Marketing
- Princeton

- R&F Handmade Paints
- R.G.M. di Rosa Gastaldo Edoardo
- Random House /Watson-Guptill
- Ranger Ink
- Royal Brush
- Royal Talens North America
- Ruby Red Paint
- Sakura of America
- Sargent Art
- Saunders Midwest
- Savoir Faire
- Schiffer Publishing
- Silver Brush
- Simi Creative Products
- Sketch Wallet
- Slice
- SLS Arts, Inc.
- Specialty Matboard
- Speedball Art Products
- Stillman & Birn
- Strathmore Artist Papers
- Studio Designs
- Today is Art Day
- Too Marker Products
- U-Mark
- Uchida of America
- Yasutomo
- Zebra Pen

Earlier this week, Brede Exposition Services sent their Exhibitor Kit by email to Exhibitor Contacts.
If you need help, or have not received your kit, contact Kathleen Smith at Brede or Karen at Namta.

Hilton Palacio del Rio

Book your Room at Namta's Headquarter Hotel.
Reservations must be made by January 22, 2019 to receive the group rate.

Important - If you are contacted by anyone offering incredible deals for hotels in San Antonio, please remember, if it seems too good to be true it probably is. You should never give your credit card information to anyone who contacts you. If you do reserve through one of these companies you probably won't have a reservation when you arrive in San Antonio.


V I S I T   A R T   M A T E R I A L S   W O R L D   O N   F A C E B O O K


By the Numbers


Edward Hopper’s Chop Suey (pictured) sold for nearly $92 million, with fees, to an anonymous buyer Tuesday night at a Christie’s auction of Barney A. Ebsworth’s collection in New York. The sale is a record for the artist and a world auction record for the category of American Art.
Read the article form Barron's, November 14

Edward Hopper was an American realist painter and printmaker. While he is best known for his oil paintings, he was equally proficient as a watercolorist and printmaker in etching. Both in his urban and rural scenes, his spare and finely calculated renderings reflected his personal vision of modern American life


Notable Quote


"It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see."

- Henry David Thoreau, an American essayist, poet, philosopher, abolitionist, naturalist, tax resister, development critic, surveyor, and historian. (1817 - 1862).

 Art Advocacy

In a November 15 Editorial in USA TODAY, the subject of large cities being selected for locations of big companies is discussed.

Various points are discussed, but what stands out to us are the reasons big cities are being picked by these companies. Along with hyper-growth, good public transportation, and a host of top-notch universities, these cities have interesting urban cores and thriving arts scenes.

For example, Chicago. The Windy City boasts world-class institutions like the Museum of Contemporary Art and Art Institute of Chicago, and you don't actually have to go inside to experience fantastic art. Just wandering around The Loop reveals several public artworks including a once controversial Picasso sculpture, Spanish artist Joan Miró’s Chicago and Anish Kapoor’s iconic Cloud Gate in Millennium Park. Former warehouse district River North is another arty hot spot and with over 100 art galleries calling the neighborhood home, it boasts the highest concentration galleries outside of New York.

San Francisco's opening of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art in 1935, put San Francisco on the map as California’s best art city. The De Young Museum is a must-visit, home to one of the finest collections of American paintings in the country. Alternatively, San Francisco’s Mission District – brimming with vibrant murals, is practically an outdoor art gallery in itself.

Art does matter!

The 32nd Annual
 National Arts Action Summit

Arts Advocates will Meet March 4–5, 2019 in Washington DC

The National Arts Action Summit is a multi-day event bringing together arts advocates from across the country. Attendees will learn the latest research and legislative arts priorities from the experts in a full-day training on March 4, 2019. That evening, The Nancy Hanks Lecture on Arts & Public Policy at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts is sure to inspire and motivate advocates. The following day, March 5, is Arts Advocacy Day when advocates to take their passion, knowledge, and stories to Capitol Hill for meetings with their congressional leaders.

The recent 2018 mid-term elections bring enormous changes to Washington, D.C. and the nation. More than 70 brand new members of Congress will begin their work on Capitol Hill to serve their constituents and our country. This is your chance to tell these newly elected leaders why the arts and arts education matter to you and your community. Register today.

Technology and social media have also altered people’s expectations of where, when, and how artistic experiences will happen, and increased people's desire for both passive and participatory options. Platforms like YouTube (now posting more than 60 hours of video every hour, watched by more than 800 million unique viewers each month) and Instagram have vastly increased the amount of creative content available, much of it user generated.  from  

Visit flor resources and facts about Advocating for the Arts. Read about Art News like this article below which can be found on the Art in US News Page.

Click to donate to the 2019 Grant Program.


2019 Promotional Calendar

NAMTA's Promotional Calendar can assist art materials retailers with their marketing and promotion plans.

Special events and promotions draw attention to your store, create excitement and boost the bottom line.

Check out the new 2019 version of the month-by-month list of potential promotional events NAMTA has compiled for you.


Hall of Fame  &  Lifetime Achievement Award

Nominations Due by Friday, December 14, 2018

Each year at Art Materials World, Namta presents two special recognitions - the Hall of Fame, and the Lifetime Achievement Award.

Recipients of both awards will be recognized Saturday, February 23rd at Art Materials World’s Welcome Reception in San Antonio. This reception is free for NAMTA Members.

Do you know someone in the Art Materials Industry whose lifetime of work has demonstrated outstanding leadership and devotion to the Art Materials business and NAMTA?

Select the Award you think your Nominee deserves and submit your nomination.

Welcome New Members

Welcome to Pinehurst Rathskeller, a gallery and supply store for professional artists. Located in Laurel, Mississippi, they two dedicated classrooms for art classes and will be supplying some schools.

Indigo Art & Framing
is a Framing and Retail Art Supply store in the Dallas Fort Worth area that opened in September 2018 and they are loving their new shop. Offering personal attention, expertise & professionalism, from an experienced staff.

Submit Member News

Namta regularly searches the web for articles and stories that may be of interest to members.



Employees Scared to Report Bad Behavior at Work

from, Nov 6, 2018 article by Rieva Lesonsky

A new study shows workers often fail to report co-worker behavior that’s harmful to the company, up to and including fireable offenses that could lead to lawsuits for the employer.

Warble’s 2018 Workplace Experience Study asked employees about eight categories of common workplace “bad behaviors:”

  • Bad attitude
  • Discrimination or targeting
  • Fraud
  • Incompetence
  • Poor management skills
  • Sexual harassment
  • Theft
  • Unethical behavior

Almost two-thirds (63%) of respondents say they’ve witnessed behavior at work that was disruptive to culture, productivity and/or the business itself, but didn’t report it to management.

Why do employees keep quiet about bad behavior? Here are the top reasons:

  • 46% don’t think any action will be taken
  • 39% are worried about being labeled overly emotional, weak or petty
  • 38% remain silent because the offender is their manager
  • 38% fear retaliation
  • 32% don’t trust HR
  • 26% fear losing their job
  • 20% have trouble describing the behaviors

Negative workplace behaviors have far-reaching impacts on both the worker and the business. Some workers quit their job rather than confront or report a co-worker. Women are 30% more likely than men to quit their jobs because of a co-worker or supervisor’s behavior. Women and people with lower household incomes are also more likely than men or those with incomes over $150,000 to fear retaliation or job loss if they report bad behavior.

Overall, the three behaviors that all employees say have the biggest negative influence on the workplace are poor management skills (64%), bad attitudes (58%) and incompetence (56%). Obviously, these behaviors have major ramifications for the success of the business itself. In addition, 69% of employees say sexual harassment has a negative impact on the business, but only 26% are likely to report it.

One reason employees may fail to report negative behavior: It’s often hard to put into words. A whopping 78% of respondents agree with the statement, “The most common disruptive behaviors at work are done in subtle or passive-aggressive ways.” As a result, there’s no real evidence—just one employee’s word against another’s.

If you rely on your managers or executives for insights into what’s going on at your business, you’re only getting only part of the story. Warble’s study found companies that depend too heavily on manager’s perspectives are more likely to be blind to problems, such as poor management, that affect the rest of the employees.

How can you reduce bad behavior at your business - and get employees to be honest when it does happen?

  • Clarify your standards for ethical behavior and educate employees about your expectations. You can use employee handbooks, lunch-and-learn sessions, role-playing, online video trainings or other methods to spell out what you expect in the workplace.
  • Be proactive and convey to employees that if they see misconduct in the workplace, it’s their duty to come forward. At the same time, build trust that employees who come forward will be protected from retaliation.
  • Start at the top. You and your managers must model an environment of ethical behavior, respect and inclusiveness. Put equal weight on meeting these standards as meeting other company goals, like sales quotas or meeting deadlines.
  • Take special care to show lower-level employees that their input and their opinions are as important as those of managers. Change your top-down employee reviews to 360-degree reviews where employees’ anonymous input about each other is taken into consideration as part of the process.
  • Provide an anonymous channel for employees to submit reports. Nearly 75% of Warble’s respondents say they’d be more likely to report bad behavior if they could do it anonymously. This can encourage people who fear retaliation or losing their jobs to speak up.
  • When employees do report bad behavior, use the information to take action and make changes. For example, employees who have a bad attitude or poor management skills may not realize they need to improve. You may also need to provide additional training to improve competence or remind employees what type of behavior is unacceptable at work. Or, you may need to take disciplinary action against an employee. Whatever action you choose to take, it’s imperative you do something. A demoralized or fearful workplace is not a productive one.

Warble’s 2018 Workplace Experience Study

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When a candidate is really good but not the perfect fit right now, you should put a little extra thought into that rejection letter…

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