Changes, looking for feedback

bubbaskyjacker

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Feb 24, 2008
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690
Since you asked, purchasing is the biggest point of issue for most. Myself included. Many have issue with not getting in fast enough, particularly on new products. I know that has been improved with capacity increasing. My issue has been getting a spot in the sales, requesting a knife, getting no response, and sending follow up emails with no responses. You have some of the highest quality knives I have ever come across and enjoy using what I have from you but don’t have the time for that. If you care to reference, one was for one of your boot daggers and one was for an FK2. Neither of which I was able to purchase after scoring a spot in your sales. I understand you get a lot of communication during sales in addition to regular communications, but I find that unacceptable. So my feedback is that you need to do something to keep things more organized with your sales. Also, for what it’s worth, this seems to be a somewhat recent change (last year maybe) as I never used to have such issues. If your looking for feedback, I appreciate that your taking a step to improve.
I find it very hard to believe - you got a “spot” and you were ignored.

Sales are confusing at times with they way BF labels posts. In all of the sales there multiple poster per number post - example 4 #3 posts , 5 #12 posts so in this case for example - if you were post 13 - you were actually 20th to post ( I got the second to last blade and the post number was way lower than the amount of knives for sale)
 

Cap’n Smudge

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I find it very hard to believe - you got a “spot” and you were ignored.

Sales are confusing at times with they way BF labels posts. In all of the sales there multiple poster per number post - example 4 #3 posts , 5 #12 posts so in this case for example - if you were post 13 - you were actually 20th to post ( I got the second to last blade and the post number was way lower than the amount of knives for sale)
He had a valid spot. But definitely an anomaly.
 

Jo the Machinist

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Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider
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1,663
Since you asked, purchasing is the biggest point of issue for most. Myself included. Many have issue with not getting in fast enough, particularly on new products. I know that has been improved with capacity increasing. My issue has been getting a spot in the sales, requesting a knife, getting no response, and sending follow up emails with no responses. You have some of the highest quality knives I have ever come across and enjoy using what I have from you but don’t have the time for that. If you care to reference, one was for one of your boot daggers and one was for an FK2. Neither of which I was able to purchase after scoring a spot in your sales. I understand you get a lot of communication during sales in addition to regular communications, but I find that unacceptable. So my feedback is that you need to do something to keep things more organized with your sales. Also, for what it’s worth, this seems to be a somewhat recent change (last year maybe) as I never used to have such issues. If your looking for feedback, I appreciate that your taking a step to improve.
I am very sorry about the mix up Ryan. I tried to contact you and had the wrong email address. When you never contacted me, I thought maybe you had changed your mind. That was my mistake. I cannot find any emails from you.
 

Nathan the Machinist

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Feb 13, 2007
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Since you asked, purchasing is the biggest point of issue for most. Myself included. Many have issue with not getting in fast enough, particularly on new products. I know that has been improved with capacity increasing. My issue has been getting a spot in the sales, requesting a knife, getting no response, and sending follow up emails with no responses. You have some of the highest quality knives I have ever come across and enjoy using what I have from you but don’t have the time for that. If you care to reference, one was for one of your boot daggers and one was for an FK2. Neither of which I was able to purchase after scoring a spot in your sales. I understand you get a lot of communication during sales in addition to regular communications, but I find that unacceptable. So my feedback is that you need to do something to keep things more organized with your sales. Also, for what it’s worth, this seems to be a somewhat recent change (last year maybe) as I never used to have such issues. If your looking for feedback, I appreciate that your taking a step to improve.


This is very good feedback, thank you. We've looked into it an you certainly were on the sales and had a spot. I like to think this kind of situation where emails are crossing each other but not making it to the right person is the exception and not the rule but it perfectly illustrates the need for change as we're growing too big for Jo to keep up with everything and people fall through the cracks. The allure of Amazon (to me) was a basic line where there would be no interaction or emails at all to add to Jo's increasing daily obligations and a route to folks looking on Amazon for a 3V knife that have never even heard of Carothers Performance Knives. While this doesn't address the direct cause of the snafu with your order (missing emails) it would help the underlying root cause (Jo is getting overwhelmed).

Please send her an email to jocarothers at gmail dought com and we will attempt to make this right. I think we have a Boot Dagger blem that I couldn't possibly sell but I could give it to you.
 

gunslinger387

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Joined
Aug 31, 2010
Messages
570
This is very good feedback, thank you. We've looked into it an you certainly were on the sales and had a spot. I like to think this kind of situation where emails are crossing each other but not making it to the right person is the exception and not the rule but it perfectly illustrates the need for change as we're growing too big for Jo to keep up with everything and people fall through the cracks. The allure of Amazon (to me) was a basic line where there would be no interaction or emails at all to add to Jo's increasing daily obligations and a route to folks looking on Amazon for a 3V knife that have never even heard of Carothers Performance Knives. While this doesn't address the direct cause of the snafu with your order (missing emails) it would help the underlying root cause (Jo is getting overwhelmed).

Please send her an email to jocarothers at gmail dought com and we will attempt to make this right. I think we have a Boot Dagger blem that I couldn't possibly sell but I could give it to you.
I think I might have some missed emails too….😉

Definitely missed one about a Boot Dagger.
 

mb>

Gold Member
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Sep 24, 2014
Messages
2,969
^ Dang!

I wasn’t going to say anything…but I’ve really struggled to untie the plastic bags in shipments. Jo ties the knot really, really tight. Please add me to your disgruntled customer list.

Attempt at a humor to say, again, you guys rock!
 

000Robert

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Mar 28, 2020
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I am very sorry about the mix up Ryan. I tried to contact you and had the wrong email address. When you never contacted me, I thought maybe you had changed your mind. That was my mistake. I cannot find any emails from you.

While I commend you for saying it was your mistake, Jo, I don't believe that it was. Had it happened to me, I would have assumed that there was a mix-up somewhere and would have sent you another email.
 
Joined
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We are making some changes to our current processes here and I thought I might get some feedback on some of the things that we will be doing or are thinking about doing. I am sure we won't be able to incorporate everything, but I wanted to get a feel for what you folks would like to see.

1) YouTube- Changing the name of the YouTube Channel to "Carothers Performance Knives". NateAIM is not a good way to find it...

More frequent videos. 1 or 2 a month

2) Purchasing- Forget Amazon! (I finally convinced him) I plan to offer these models that were intended for Amazon directly on our website as they are ready.

Our Friday sales and preorders should not be affected.

3) Mailing List? I am told that folks are interested in a mailing list. True?

I am sure there are some other things I am missing. We have been discussing a lot of things to keep CPK moving forward.

Please let me know what you think. We will see how it goes...

1) Agreed, but I too agree not to cancel the NateAIM channel, but to have it focus on something else(personal interest, blade sport, behind the scene etc)

2) Good idea. It comes down to how to market the brand and how you want folks to perceive the brand. I tend to think many knife products on Amazon is very 'generic', unless it is a world known major brand, many are just OEM products.

3) Sure! So as long it helps business, by not making the purchasing experience more confusing. If new products are announced, it is always good to know where/when/how to get them.

I have a feeling CPK wants to grow the business(marketing on youtube/instagram, make better use of website, continue the engagement on BF, etc), but it would be great to have clear communication and how will products be delivered. For example, is the website ready to take on the traffic like the Friday sales? Maybe only sale of the 'basic' line (with high availability) would be sold directly from website? Meanwhile, keeping the BF subforum 'organic' and continue the growth here?
 

ferider

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Jun 20, 2018
Messages
3,433
Morning, Jo:

my bottom-line from this thread is that you guys are growing. Congratulations, and really exciting to watch from the side-lines; obviously you guys have a great product, quality and service,

Roland.

PS: Waiting for my CPK #2 and #3 to arrive :) My first one (UF2) absolutely rocks.
 

Blues

hovering overhead
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26,932
...looking for feedback...
Yesterday I simply affirmed that I thought all the proposed changes you are suggesting made sense to me, (as a newb to this sub-forum, but an original member and moderator / supermod on bladeforums from prior to day one).

I thought I might flesh that out a bit this morning.

The youtube change makes perfect sense. People should have the easiest route to finding CPK via the company name, your names, and any other terms associated with your products.

More videos is always good...Sharpening, testing, field reports etc. Information is great. Those who don't care won't bother.

The only thing I've noticed regarding the Friday sales, (again, as an FNG on the sub-forum), is that sometimes they can be a little confusing and need to be edited or pared down to make clear what is being offered, in what configuration, and how many of each. Judging by the last go round, it seemed that there was some confusion...sometimes the fault of the reader, sometimes the editing.

Mailing list sounds good to me. People can opt out if they aren't interested.

I'm glad that amazon is being dropped for a couple of reasons. It is associated with lesser quality production pieces, generally speaking...and...there is fear afoot that counterfeit knives are commingled in their inventory, true or not. Unless the amazon sale was being fulfilled directly by CPK, I wouldn't feel comfortable buying from another 3rd party vendor...unless it was one I was well familiar with.

It remains to be seen what you will have time and ability to handle through direct sales via your website without becoming overwhelmed.

Now just a few personal comments:

I've got a pretty big collection of knives, from high end custom folders and fixed blades...to production. (Not the biggest, certainly, but large enough to buy at least a nice vehicle with the amount invested over the years.)

I needed another fixed blade I like I needed a hole in the head, (some may think I do), but...your customers are absolutely your greatest sales tool.

I can't tell you how much the evangelism spread by your highly satisfied customers has gotten my attention in various discussion and image threads around the site. To see such devotion based upon quality and performance is something that certainly got my attention over the past few years...but until recently, I hadn't bothered to find out just who this "Nathan the Machinist" guy actually was.

(My grandfather was a master machinist at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, and I had some apprentice training myself during summer stints at a factory in Brooklyn.)

Being that I'm a 3V fan...and the fact that your customers and supporters wholeheartedly, even wildly endorsed the heat treat and resultant blades you produce, I finally succumbed to temptation and am sure I will be glad I did in the next week or so.

My point being that nothing sells like satisfied customers and yours speak extremely loudly and intelligently. Not like a cult of personality...but like a group of intelligent users and investors. That gets one's attention. It did mine.

Oh, and the knives aren't too bad looking either.

Sorry if I was a bit long winded.
 

bluemax_1

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Joined
Jan 17, 2014
Messages
2,019
While I commend you for saying it was your mistake, Jo, I don't believe that it was. Had it happened to me, I would have assumed that there was a mix-up somewhere and would have sent you another email.
Another possibility is the email provider. Depending on the sending/receiving email providers, it could potentially wind up in the SPAM/Trash.

I don't know about anyone else, but aside from email accounts that I rarely use except for contact with a very select few, most other email accounts that I've had for a while get a ton of spam every single day. Not always practical to doublecheck every one before emptying the spam/trash folders.
 

Brian77

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Nov 27, 2014
Messages
1,620
1. Yes, that's a good move and there may be some advantage to creating that new channel and transferring relevant videos as some already said. With a link to the new channel?

2. I believe that will save a lot of stress for both of you, as the Amazon structure is a beast

3. A email update letter that is concise and gives product flow updates, new model info, and fun little insights is a good way to build and maintain customer trust and satisfaction.
 
Joined
Nov 12, 2005
Messages
176
All three proposals are sound, especially ditching the Amazon idea. I’d much prefer any profit made on a knife sale to me go directly towards the maintenance of Nate’s shop and machinery (and nice things for Jo) as opposed to joy rides into space for Bezos. As mentioned previously, Amazon is becoming more and more associated with counterfeit goods from overseas. Almost as much as ebay.
 
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