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Shelf Life

Making the leap from the TV screen to the retail aisles is all about your brand image.

This story appears in the December 2002 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Every entrepreneur's dream is to become an overnight success, but what happens if sales explode before your brand image is sharpened?


In January 2002, Wendy Silver made her debut on QVC with her salad-cutting invention, the Toss & Chop. It sold 13,000 units in six minutes. She has since appeared on QVC 10 more times and sold over 90,000 units. Her company, Silvermark, co-founded with husband Michael, was unprepared for the avalanche of orders, inquiries and press attention. They scurried to ramp up production, create a Web site, develop marketing materials and introduce the product through retail channels. Everything was done piecemeal. In mid-2002, the Silvers realized they needed to create a consistent brand image.

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