The Information Game

Dissecting Diecast: Surviving The Information Game

Having worn several hats in my illustrious career, I can tell you first hand that operating and maintaining a web site devoted to the sale of diecast collectibles is both rewarding and frustrating in the extreme. Its particularly gratifying when we can promote and deliver goods to our customers on even a semi-routine basis, all aimed at putting a smile on your face until the next piece of memorabilia rumbles into view.

On the downside, some people seem to regularly hold our feet to the fire when an item doesn’t get released on time. “I’ve followed your web site daily and you claimed such-and-such was coming out in February!”, said one recent online missive, when the customer learned the item in question that he ordered a year ago was again being delayed. Folks, we rely upon the manufacturers and distributors for information which we then pass along to our customers as quickly as possible. The problem is that this is still a relatively small industry not governed by any set of guidelines or hard-and-fast rules that seem to make any sense, so information that may be accurate on Monday could very well be inaccurate by Friday. Companies routinely provide us with an estimated date of release for a product not knowing that they may run into all sorts of production issues at their end that they didn’t see coming. And, once the product does get finished, amazing as that might seem, Companies seek to ship out their product in the most expeditions manner possible to reduce their operating expenses as best they could. That oftentimes means they hold items until other items are ready to go out at the same time in order to fill a container that is then bound for the US or parts unknown.

Of course once the ship does hit the high seas, there are still a myriad of obstacles it must overcome, covering everything from unexpected customs inspections to weather-related delays, all just to get the product to market in a somewhat timely fashion.

So, once again we are asking for your patience and, dare I say, forgiveness whenever a product doesn’t make it to market as originally advertised. There are all sorts of reasons why an item doesn’t see the light-of-day as originally forecast, so holding our feet to the fire and demanding immediate answers from everyone in the supply chain doesn’t help or provide any respite in times of turmoil. Its a wonderful hobby but one still racked by issues no one has been able to address with any regularity.

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