By Jerri Stroud, BBB Editor
First things first: There really is a white dog at White Dog Promotions. Currently it’s a white miniature Schnauzer named Addy, the successor to Doc, a now-deceased family pet.
If you stop by the store, you’re likely to meet Addy, who sleeps in the office but pricks up her ears and barks when someone comes in the front door.
Kammie Teter, owner of White Dog Promotions, said she was looking for a memorable name when she started her business in 2005. Doc, the family’s beloved pet, provided the inspiration. The company’s logo features a white dog, and the company gives plush white dogs away to hospitals and ambulance companies to comfort children in their care.
Teter spent five and a half years at Hallmark Cards in Kansas City before deciding to stay home with her kids and do freelance graphics, which kept her busy for more than a decade before she got interested in starting her own business.
Teter had been producing graphics used in promotional items for a while, but she decided she wanted to do some of the printing herself. She started the business in 2005 but ran it from home until 2009, when she rented a storefront in Columbia, Mo., with adjacent office space.
The business works with companies to get high-quality vector graphics of their artwork to use on any of 700,000 items that can be used in promotions ranging from trade shows to golf tournaments. White Dog does its own screen printing and embroidery, but also works closely with other companies to produce what customers want at the highest quality possible.
“We set ourselves apart by knowing the industry really well and making sure we are delivering a high quality product,” Teter said. “We help customers truly advertise their business.”
Teter believes that promotions work better than some other forms of advertising because they stay in front of people for a long time, unlike fleeting glimpses on television or online. Many of her customers, including local universities, are from Mid-Missouri, but customers who find the business online account for about 20 percent of sales.
“From the beginning, customer service has been extremely important,” Teter said. “All of my employees know that I always have their back. In the rare case that something goes wrong for a customer, we will make it right.”
She looks for employees with honesty and integrity, she said. They have to be willing to jump from one task to another without getting rattled.
In its effort to make customers feel good about White Dog Promotions, Teter and her staff keep them apprised of every step of the process, from initial consultation and choice of items to approval of graphics by the customer and tracking packages for final delivery. They make sure customers know when to expect their products and how many packages they will receive.
Many products are related to an event, she said. And if the product doesn’t arrive in time, the customer might not want it at all. “We have to stay on top of it 24/7.”
“What’s made White Dog successful is giving the customer the good experience and doing it with ethics,” she said. “It comes down to how I would like to be treated as a customer.”
White Dog Promotions, 3901 S. Providence Road, Suite A, Columbia, MO 65203
Owner: Kammie Teter
Mission Statement: White Dog Promotions’ mission is to make clients happy by providing exceptional service, strong product selection and competitive pricing for custom printed advertising products.
BBB prepares profiles of BBB Accredited Businesses and BBB Accredited Charities as part of its TORCH Awards process. White Dog Promotions is a winner of the 2016 Columbia TORCH Awards. To sign up for the event, click here.