Saturday, August 10, 2013

How To Improve The Hobby Part 3: Target Hobby's Future

A new 4 Part Series here on Sport Card Collectors is giving our opinion on how to improve the hobby and its weak points.

In a day and age of video games, television, music and movies, the hobby of card collecting seems like a distant idea to most kids not unless they are brought up in the hobby by a parent. Card companies are trying their best efforts to engage the youth into the urge of collecting. But it's not as easy as it once was. 

Some companies like Topps and Panini are attempting to draw kids attentions by doing sticker books hoping that will lead to their interest in cards later on as they grow. This is a great idea and start. I also like what Panini did by adding basketball cards to Taco Bell kid's meals. If only Taco Bell hadn't gotten rid of their kids meals recently. Panini also brought back a very kid friendly, cost friendly product in Triple Play which is both fun and cost efficent.

Upper Deck has also done some attempts at getting kids involved with help from the members of their UDVA members and some fun at The National. And Upper Deck also works with Cards2Kids an organization dedicated on donating cards to kids in which they donate base cards  to.

These are all great starts by companies but here are some other ideas that I have:
  1. Try kids meals more. Why not make more of an attempt at this. Panini started it again, lets keep it going more. Parents like to take their kids out to fast food restaurants, so you know you will be reaching a good crowd. Kids movies and shows are always in these meals for toys. Why not put cards in once in awhile. The best time I think to do this is near the start of each sports season. And get the specific fast food company to do a commercial saying "only at so and so we have your favorite players for the start of the (sport) season! Collect all 12 (company) cards today!"
  2. Cereal Boxes. For me, when I was a child (and a little bit still now), I loved digging through the box of cereal for the treasure. Why not have that "treasure" be a card collectible? Kids love cereal and you know no breakfast is complete without Lucky Charms or Cheerios. And to find a bonus treasure inside, exciting. Or you can also put them on the back of the box again. Make it a bigger set that way. So the cereal company sells more cereal with kids trying to get the set and the card company getting the word out on sports cards.
  3. Video Games. If video games are all the hype, add a couple cards inside the game cover. So when the kids open up the video game, boom, trading cards! And don't make them bland either. Add some pizzazz to the cards. In sports games, add the specific sports cards related to it. If it's non-sport, do the same. Kids love video games and will buy them over pretty much anything. If you can find the balance between game and cards, this would be a great start.
  4. TV Commercials. Remember when Upper Deck did this one: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vO7IaPJeWsA why don't more companies try this again. Target top channels like Nick, Disney and Cartoon Network. Kids watch TV and this could be a great way to spread the word
  5. Do a rewards program. In every pack of cards put in a code where kids can go online (another fun thing kids like to do) and have them play a fun online sports game (again combining cards and games) to earn points to win big prizes. Autograph memorabilia, meeting a player, video games, game machines such as PS3, Xbox,etc, dvd players, Itunes cards, iPod Docs could be some of the prizes. Obviously make the points reasonable for both the companies and for the kids. Cause companies don't want to pay too much on the side, but parents don't want to either.
scc
Loved Finding these in my Post Cereal's back in the early 90's
These are just some ideas at trying to target the future of our hobby. I am sure there are others. And I am sure some of you will agree or disagree with the ones I mentioned. But as always, Sport Card Collector is open to your opinions and comments!

Friday, August 9, 2013

Mail Day From Pastime Card Company

Being a Yankee fan this was nice to see at the post office upon opening it. I don't have an autograph of Hall Of Famer Gaylord Perry so this will make a nice addition to my collection.

Gaylord was a right-handed pitcher who pitched from 1962 to 1983 for eight different teams including the Giants and Yankees. In his career, Perry compiled 314 wins, 3,534 strikeouts, and a 3.11 earned run average.

Thanks again Pastime Card Company for a great prize.

Let me know your thoughts on this mail day.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Topps Unveils 2014 Flagship Baseball Design

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Here is next years Topps base card design for 2014 for their flagship baseball product. I like the fact they brought back Future Stars subset, but it to me appears they used the same base card design year in and year out. I would have liked to seen something differently personally. This is very similar to last years.

Let me know your thoughts on this design.

How To Improve The Hobby Part 2: Target "Ole Fashion Collectors"

A new 4 Part Series here on Sport Card Collectors is giving our opinion on how to improve the hobby and its weak points.

The word products came to mind when thinking of ways to improve the hobby. Every collector is different. But there is a group of collectors that companies don't think about as much anymore. It's a good size group that I somewhat put myself in. A group I like to call "Ole Fashion Collectors."

This particular group of collectors aren't ones into today's type of collecting that much. Meaning, they don't care about the glimmer, the shine, the hits. They like collecting when it was simpler times. You know. Products that ranged from $1-$3.99. The big base sets up to 800 cards. Action photography! Innovation like adding holograms or "raised" like Action Packed, The inserts that fell 1:72 packs and not every pack. The fun to chase 1:4 unnumbered base card Sp's that would be in the set making it just challenging enough for you to want to keep busting. And yes, the occasional autograph or memorabilia card that had astronomical odds of 1:500 or more that made it a fun, valuable inclusion.

SCC
Products like 1997 Upper Deck Baseball is what they speak of
This group of collectors who are some of the most die hard ones are either selling off their stuff from the hobby, can't afford the hobby, or have moved onto another hobby. They just aren't into whats being put out. These are the collectors that companies should focus on as well. And of course kids, but that's Part 3.

I actually would like to see one of these type of products back out on the market again. Because, let's be honest, it's not always about the hits. A lot of the time you pull a jersey or autograph card valued at $12 or under. Why not aim for an insert that comes at 1:72 odds worth $30 or more depending on the player like cards used to be. Why not have that desire to put a base card set together instead of tossing them in the recycling bin or trash searching for that "hit". And most importantly, make a few more cost efficient products. Most products out there are $4.99 or more per pack. I know there are products like Topps Flagship and Score. Not that I don't like these brands, but they still don't compare to the ones I speak of above and they don't have those type of inclusions.

As always, we are open for comments. Tomorrow we will post part three of our 4 part series on How To Improve The Hobby by speaking about kids. They are the future of the hobby and companies need to improve in that are.

Mail Day From Ultra Pro/Cardboard Connection

 

Cardboard Connection and Ultra Pro teamed up for a  summer basketball giveaway. There were cards to win from the Panini product Preferred Basketball. Some of the prizes you could win were Toploaders, A Booklet "CENTER", A  Detlef Schremph Preferred 2/5 among other prizes. I was surprised to see my name pop up with one of the cards. I usually don't win the raffle type contests. Especially ones that are random.

This card is numbered 1/74. I really like the design of the card with it being mini, die-cut and the team color scheme with the silver bottom border. Panini put their own twist on a classic that was once called Cramers Choice back in the classic Crown Royale products.

Horace Grant was a player I watched when I was more into watching basketball. This card will make a great home into my PC.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

How To Improve The Hobby Part 1: Redemptions

A new 4 part series here on Sport Card Collectors is giving our opinion on how to improve the hobby and its weak points.

We decided to kick off this conversation with redemption cards. The dreaded pieces of white filler-board that has a lottery scratch off to find a code that will at some point hopefully turn into a card for your collection. As always, there has been much chatter about redemption cards all over Twitter and Facebook. But, it seems this topic has been more talked about recently as fellow hobbyists have been all over companies, especially Topps about it. I have a few ideas that might help with the situation of redemptions.

  

Upper Deck has started to take one of the ideas that I had and is pushing off releases in order to get all of the autograph content for it first. This idea is great because it will guarantee no redemptions, but on the other hand collectors will have to wait longer for a product. I guess you can't win both ways. But this is a start.

Another idea, is to have contract that the companies sign with the athletes state to have the signed cards returned in a decent time frame. None of this two or three year stuff where collectors are calling and stalking companies. 4-6 months is a better time frame. Yes, I understand that athletes are always busy in the off-season working out and so on, but if you are signing on to a company to earn some bonus bucks, you gotta do your work in a decent time frame. You can't just show up for a game on game day, you gotta work through training camps. That's what your paid to do. Just like with redemption cards, you can't sign a contract, get paid and never signing your cards to return to the companies.

A final idea that I have comes from what I do with all of my redemptions. I get them replaced. But instead of having to wait 4-12 months to be able to choose this option let us do it the second we get the redemption. If I get a redemption for player X and I know I don't really care about owning player X's autograph, replace it for me with something of equal value. Why make me wait when I know in 4 months I am going to ask you to replace it anyways? You might as well skip this step. However, if I do want this autograph, I will wait but only up to a certain point. When that point reaches, replace the card BUT with the same players autograph from a different product.

I know that these ideas come at more of a cost for the companies, but if they want to keep collectors happy, which is where their money comes in the first place, they have got to either use these ideas or find other ways to fix the redemption card problems. If not, collectors now and of future might turn away from collecting because of this and the hobby we all love could fizzle out.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Retro Break: 1990 Action Packed All Madden Team

Recently went to my first flea market and found a bunch of deals. This set only cost me $2!!

This is the final Retro Break from the flea market. This one to me was a steal at the time. I see other sets going on eBay about $6 so wasn't as much of a steal as I had hoped. But it still had something in it I wanted and hoped for.

 

 

 

 

BOOM! Emmitt Smith Rookie Card!
Action Packed was another one of those product lines I really enjoyed. Because they were action packed. The players, logo's, and borders were "lifted" off from the cardboard. It was kinda like cardboard braille.I hope someday Panini will dig into the past and revive this classic. I think bringing back a product like this would be fun for both young and old ages.

Let me know your thoughts on this break, Action Packed and what bargains you have found at flea markets!

Monday, August 5, 2013

Prizm makes an NFL Return 2013

Panini as expected announced that its popular Prizm brand will make a return in football form for 2013. This years Prizm football already looking like it will outdo last years.

First off, like with the baseball preview, Panini had seemed to add more color to the base cards. Last years had way too much silver for me. That was the biggest difference between Prizm and Chrome in my opinion. Chrome took a Topps base card and "chromed it". So the background behind the players had added color and pictures from the original Topps card background.

Panini didn't have a flagship brand to "prizm" so they created a whole new product. Which would take some tweaking and I believe this years is already much improved.

Panini America 2013 Prizm Football Calvin Base  Panini America 2013 Prizm Football Calvin Black  Panini America 2013 Prizm Football Calvin Camo 
Nice additions to the parallels as well. One of the most popular things about the product was its parallels. And of course they are bringing back die cuts as well.

Panini America 2013 Prizm Football Griffin Base Auto Panini America 2013 Prizm Football Griffin Black 
 I even like the added designs and color schemes to the Prizm inserts. Very well done!I really like the Monday Night Heroes insert. The bright color against the crisp silver of the Prizm border really stands out to me.

Panini America 2013 Prizm Football Kaepernick  Panini America 2013 Prizm Football Irvin 
This years Prizm football packs as follows,  20-pack hobby box will have120 total cards. Among the 120, there will be: Two autographs, 20 Rookie Cards, three Prizm parallels and two each of the Rookie Impact, Decade Dominance, Brilliance and Monday Night Heroes inserts.

Let us know your thoughts on 2013 Prizm Football and your thoughts on Prizm overall.

Retro Break: 1995 Fleer Ultra Football

Recently went to my first flea market and found a bunch of deals. This only cost me $1a pack. I bought two packs because that's all they had. Out of all of the purchases made at the flea market, to me, this one was the most exciting. I love going back to my beginning days of collecting and busting products like this.

Each pack came with a 2 inserts per pack.

 

 

 

 
I tried to post all of the base cards because of the stunning photography. Not many companies do this anymore without a border taking up the card. Take note companies! Also, was nice to pull a rookie card of the Hall Of Famer Sapp.

One Gold Medallion, boy do I miss those, per pack along with another insert. Everything is so well designed and brought back many memories for me. I wished more products were done this way. Another reason why I miss 1990's collecting. The one insert that stood out to me is the Award Winner. Just look at the spectacular design.

Let us hear your thoughts on 1990's products and your thoughts on this one. I truly miss Fleer Ultra and I hope at some point Upper Deck will branch out into individual Fleer products and not just the high priced Fleer Retro.

Winner Of BCW Prize Lot And Cards

First off, we had over 30 entries into this contest which was awesome and a big thanks goes out to all of you that entered. But only one, well, two can be winners. That's right. Two of you (mrblu1976@aol.com, Marissa Fried) will win a prize because two got the answer right and we like to give stuff away. However, only one of you could win the big prize lot.

After a random..the winner is:

mrblu1976@aol.com

Congrats mrblu1976@aol.com!!! You have won the following:

Premium
Premium Album
3
3x4 Toploaders
Pro
Pro 9 Pocket Pages (100 in a box)
TOTAL RETAIL VALUE $45!!

And ....


Marissa Fried You have won this:

 

A prize envelope containing 5-6 Panini cards of basketball, football or baseball inserts and/or rookies.

Both of our winners, please email us to sportcardcollectors@hotmail.com with your addresses and we will get these prizes out to you!!

As for the rest of you, we are always giving stuff away. So stay tuned, follow us on Twitter, Facebook, or by email on the blog so you can know when the contests happen first! There will be more contests coming up soon!

Remember to also thank BCW Supplies for their kindness and to follow them on Twitter and Facebook! Also visit their site for your collecting needs!

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Retro Break: 1994 Pacific Football

Recently went to my first flea market and found a bunch of deals. This only cost me $1a pack. I bought two packs because that's all they had.

 

 
Rodney Hampton was the man for my Giants!

Well it's not Marshall Faulk...its Bucky Brooks...wait..who is that..

Not too much excitement in this break. But I love the action photography. No borders. Barely any writing on it and it made me miss NCAA rookie incorporation into NFL products. Those were the days. No Photoshopping. Pure photography.

Let us know your thoughts on this break!