Store Owner Takes Different Approach To Getting Customers

NEW YORK (CBS 2) — She loves to design greeting cards and she loves to pole dance.

One female entrepreneur in lower Manhattan is combining two passions to entice new customers.

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Greeting cards are not the only items on display at Jill-Anne’s store on the Lower East Side.

“I always swore to myself I would always have fun at work. I have a wonderful time with my company, but I also need mini breaks and since I don’t have a water cooler or the Starbucks around the corner, I have my pole,” Jill-Anne told CBS 2’s Magee Hickey.

This pole-dancing, greeting card designer is trying a novel way to lure customers into her Allen Street store. Her store’s been in business for only two months now and during the daylight hours it’s actually tough to see what’s going on inside.

“Seventy-five percent of the people, when I’m poling, in my store who walk by are women who smile and clap, so it’s not a male lust thing. It’s empowering women thing as well,” Jill-Anne said.

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Jill-Anne’s clearly a creative force from top to bottom as she spends her time hand-painting and printing her cards in the back of the store and sometimes playing bass guitar out front. While she’s quite an individual, so are her cards. They are not the standard commercial variety, but more quirky and cutting edge – with some featuring gay marriage or couples breaking up or pole dancing.

Since Jill-Anne is a serious greeting card designer with a thriving business for the last 10 years, doesn’t she worry that she won’t be taken seriously if she’s a pole dancer?

“Not at all. Everyone embraces my art in any form I do it,” Jill-Anne said.

From the to encourage sales and not gawking at her store customers who buy $50 worth of merchandise, get their own personal pole dance.

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Jill-Anne said in these tough economic times female entrepreneurs must be creative and combine their passions to get ahead.