Friday, August 03, 1990


From a scan.

Mark Rauterkus
Sports Support Syndicate
1555 Sherman Ave. Suite 1650
Evanston, IL 60201
August 3, 1990
Memo to Our Important Suppliers & Authors
Inside Strokes Newsletter
Dear Friends,

This summer has been a busy time, and it is getting worse before it can get
better. To begin, I'm moving the office to a new address on August 20. Here is
our new location:
Sports Support Syndicate
1739 East Carson Street
Suite 1650
Pittsburgh, PA 15203
Local Number is 412-481-2497
The 1-800 number will remain the same. I don't have many other details as to
the business location until we sign a commercial lease. I do have a good
location in mind and we've got a new apartment.
The reason I'm writing now is to put the finishing touches on our first big
event for the fall, the American Swim Coaches Association World Clinic to
be held in Washington D.C. In some ways, I’m not prepared with a ton of
products. Presently many things are still on the drawing boards. However, we
do have plenty to offer at this juncture. And, we must go forward, even with
pending projects as this is the only time of the year where we can all get
together and visit while concentrating on swimming sales.
Last year was a big year for our young company. Next year will be even bigger
as we put more follow-through behind our ideas and direction we have
already started. Last year at this time I was finishing our first book, and we
needed to send 4 cases to the show via Greyhound to arrive in time for our
autograph session. We were a one-product display last year. This year we will
easil9 fill the 2 and a third booths. We have plenty of irons in the fire, and we
like that challenge.

I'm exhibiting at the clinic with a double-sized booth, and we are next to
another company, Competitive Aquatic Supply, in a single booth. We are
joining forces for the show to make a combined presence.
We would like to have you join us at the ASCA clinic in our booth for sales
activities. We will have the room to have an island table for special guests in
the booth to show their products, sign-books, visit with customers, etc.
This is an open invitation to you for your participation. I'd love to have you
there. Your presence will be important. While there, we will have the time to
get familiar with the products, the sales mission, the customer demand and
issues. For the new people, I’m looking at this as a time to get together for a
long'-term relationship.
You are invited to join us in the booth without charge. I'm paying for the
booth. However, this is a sales opportunity as well as a show and education
opportunity. We can sell right on the floor, and I encourage you to do so.
Bring products. If we sell out of the stock that your are able to bring, we can
right orders and make deliveries after the show.
While selling at the show, all the sales will go through our cash box. We will
have the customers write their checks, purchase orders and take the credit
card info to be payable to us. Then at the end of each day, or after the show
closes, we will settle the cash box situation.
With you visiting our booth, bringing your own product, paying for your
own transportation, etc. I’d like to retain only 20% of the gross sales from the
sales of your products. This also includes follow-up sales that we deliver as a
direct result of the show. You'll keep 80% of the gross.
with our new splash at this clinic, I do not feel much pressure to offer huge
show discounts on products. Small extras are good, but I don't want to hold a
fire sale on any merchandise. We can talk about price specials at the show.
Before the show, we should discuss quantities.
At this time, this same invitation is headed to these people:
Keith Bell, book author
David Salo, book author
George Grippo, Polar USA
Don Gambril, book author
Jonty Skinner, book and software author and presenter at mini-school
Paul Pallisso, Video producer
Force Fins of Bob Evans Design - pending author (other booth)
Bob Gillette, inventor, pending author
Skip Bird, author (not expected as recovering from surgery)
Larry Newell, American Red Cross, pending author/supplier (not expected)

Dennis Fosdick, Water Polo, author (other booth)
David Berkoff, pending author, (not expected)
Hobie Billingsley, pending author (not expected)
Fred Crusiger, author (not expected)
Donald Chu, author (not expected)
Jerry Colletto, author (not expected)
Dr. Jane Katz, (pending author)
Leader Sports Products (supplier)
Rob Sleamaker, (author & other exhibitor possible)
Any author from Human Kinetics Publishers
Dr. Ernie Maglischo, (author for autograph visit)
Brent Rutemiller (author)
Dennis Pursley (author)
Pete Leighton, Athletes' Outlet (sales source)
Dr. Jan Pans, (author)
Lou Sharp, (Software author) Swim Logic
Dr. Leon Revien, Visual Skills Inc. (video producer/author)
Mary T. Meagher, author
Zoomers, pending author
Randall Eli Radic, author
Delphis Foundation, (other booth) video producers
High Peaks from Lake Placid (sales agent & catalog distribution site)
Melissa Rinker, Circle City Swimwear (sales agent in other booth)
The above list is long and includes plenty of people who are working on
plenty of different "intelligent products." However, I'm not expecting a
majority of the people to attend the clinic. You might find yourself on that list
and know that there is no way that you are going to possibly be there. That is
ok with me, but I wanted to let everyone know that you are most welcome.
Those with pending project, this will be a time where we can do some
investigation, research, testing of our ideas. You might want to come for a
discovery session. However, you might want to come only after the product is
completed. Also, those with their own agenda, I invite you to stop by the
booth, and we can establish a schedule, for a short visit. We would like you to
autograph copies of your books for our customers. That would be a great
reason to make a quite appearance.
Another major campaign is about to be finalized in the next few months
concerning our literacy project. We are about to publish a literacy/comic book
that will be a givea-way item. We are working with Cartoonist Across
America and a few advertisers that have expressed an interest. We have also
made connections with Barbara Bush, but at this time, the details are still
pending. We might have more exact news at the clinic.

With the literacy project, we will publish 50,000 books that explain swimming
at a baselevel interest with a character called Patrick Rabbit, the Greatest
Athlete in the Universe. Our slogan is "Read! Exercise Your Mind." We hope
to deliver 50 free copies of the book to each coach at the ASCA Clinic for
distribution to people in the coach's home community. Coaches should be
able to sign-up for delivery at our booth.
There is a series of definite campaigns that will be available by the ASCA
clinic, and this is our co-op catalog publishing project with swim specific
merchants. (."ompetitive Aquatic Supply of Huntington Beach and Ohio and
High Peaks of Lake Placid, New York will be distributing 15,000 copies of a 16
page book catalog to their customers this fall. Having merchants take such a
special interest in a dedicated book catalog is a first in our industry. I am very
excited about the sales potential of this type of marketing tool We are going
to be selling books like never before.
This co-publishing of a 16-page book catalog is the largest of our progressive
marketing activities, but other smaller advances have been realized
throughout the year. This includes: products available for evaluation and
display for company catalogs and trade shows from T.J.'s, World Wide
Aquatics, Kast-a-way, ISHOF, Swimmers Edge, ASC A, Swimming World,
At}aetes' Outlet, The Victor, Triathlon Today Magazine, and many other
sports shops from London to Japan and Australia. It has been a busy year, and
the energy level is still growing.
I'm open to all of your ideas, new product plans, and involvement. I'll try to
work with everyone by assisting them get access to the ASC A trade exhibit
hall with the Swimming Support Syndicate if you call in advance and let me
know you'll be attending.
The show details:
Sincerely yours,
Mark Rauterkus