Joan Lefkowitz,President ~ Accessory Brainstorms, Inc.
Tell us about your business.
An original marketer of TopsyTail tm, ACCESSORY BRAINSTORMS, Inc, is a licensing and sales representation agency and consultancy for Fashion/Beauty/Intimate Apparel Accessory and Lifestyle Inventions. From its’ showroom in New York’s ‘Accessories District’, it licenses inventors’ products to major corporations and markets to Mail Order Catalogues, TV Shopping programs and retail.  Some very successful products it has launched have been TOPSY TAIL (which sold over $100m at retail), Ted Gibson’s HAIRDOSTICK, HAIRDINI, HOLLYWOOD FASHION TAPES, WHIRL-A-STYLE, and MISS OOPS and, most recently, BOSOM BUTTON, LUMBARWEAR, WINKEE, REM SPRING (facial hair removal tool), MOSHI (voice-activated alarm clock), OVERBRA, DIVADO, KUSH and TAG TAMERS…Specializing in representing unique products and inventions since 1984, Accessory Brainstorms is always interested in seeing new products in these categories, and offers one-on-one consulting for inventors who need guidance.  ACCESSORIES Magazine awarded them for the “Most Inventive Products” and also cited Joan Lefkowitz, the President and Founder, as one of the 100 most important accessories industry “Movers and Shakers”.
Please tell us what being a business owner means to you and why you became an entrepreneur in the first place?
Complete freedom to express myself creatively, help inventors benefit from my years of experience and see how far I can push the limits of accomplishment.
What or who has been your greatest influence in business and why?
Tomima Edmark, the inventor of TopsyTail™. She took an idea and some pipe cleaners and created a multi million dollar worldwide business by believing in herself, her product and standing her ground.
What would you say is your greatest professional accomplishment to date?
Beinghonored by the accessories industry as offering the ‘Most Inventive’ products in my field.
What’s the best advice you have received in business that you wish to pass on to our readers?
Push yourself beyond the stops. There are guaranteed to be setbacks. Take a deep breath and plow forward.
What has been the most effective marketing initiatives or programs you have used to promote your business?
Mailers, mailers, mailers. Telephone, telephone, telephone. Email, email, email. Website, website, website.
Social networking sites such as linkedin, facebook, and twitter.
What one thing have you learned as a small business owner that has served you well over the years?
You must retain good relationships and honest communication with all of your vendors and customers.
Are there any resources or tools you’d like to share with other small business owners that have helped you run your business?
Leave  no stone unturned.    Follow up on leads ,research the internet, the business library ,join networking groups. Tell people what you do. Create an awesome website, business card and promotional materials.
What do you do for fun/relaxation?
Give seminars to budding inventors. Attend fine craft shows and go to galleries and museums.
What is Number One Business Goal you plan to accomplish over the next year?
Increase business by 50%
Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers?
There are many distractions, administrative obligations and roadblocks in running a business or reaching your goal. Continually refocus your mindset on the goals and delegate the other stuff (even if it means engaging part time help.)
In addition to your website, how else can our readers connect with you online?