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Kingdom Vinyls Defies Odds to Become Do-It-All Print Shop

Fueled by faith, the husband-and-wife startup has rapidly grown into a team of 12 with thousands of clients.




LESS THAN TWO years after founding their printing company, Kingdom Vinyls, Savanna and Mark Potter are finally realizing one of their original ambitions: wrapping vehicles. They’ve hired a specialist to help, bringing the total number of employees to 10 (perhaps more by the time this article is published). In November, the business moved into a 6000-square-foot facility divided into two floors.

Kingdom Vinyls expanded rapidly from a husband-and-wife team to a staff of 12, who provide services ranging from DTF and embroidery to vehicle wraps.

Kingdom Vinyls expanded rapidly from a husband-and-wife team to a staff of 12, who provide services ranging from DTF and embroidery to vehicle wraps.

The shop is on the upper level, while the lower serves as a retail space for embroidery and direct-to-film (DTF) transfers.

It all began with the Potters’ faith that they could succeed with a particular kind of work for a particular kind of customer: stickers for nutrition clubs’ disposable drinkware. However, a few minutes of conversation is enough to reveal the true nature of their faith. Kingdom Vinyls serves a nationwide customer base, but the kingdom that interests them most is not an earthly one. “God gets all the glory for our success,” says Mark, from the well-timed opportunity to purchase a print shop in mid-2021 to the more recent unveiling of two new divisions: Kingdom Vehicle Wraps and Kingdom Krafters (DTF and embroidery).

Whatever God’s role, the Potters have been anything but idle in Kingdom’s expansion. Establishing this Muscle Shoals, Alabama company required spending long hours not just doing the work, but also learning how to do it in the first place. Technology – particularly a fleet of wide-format printers with integrated cutting capability — has played a key role, as well. The Potters’ own business acumen also underlies every move.

And yet, for all the arguments against divine providence as a reason for their success, the role of divine inspiration is undeniable. This is the source of the couples’ fortitude – their resolve to put in those long hours and to make those risky investments, beginning with the purchase of their first wide-format printing equipment.



The Potters had zero industry experience when they decided to purchase a print shop from an owner seeking to retire in May 2021. They certainly didn’t know how to run the wide-format printer (a Roland VersaCamm VS-540i) that attracted them to this opportunity in the first place. However, they were confident – particularly with a promise of training from the departing owner – wrapping vehicles (and perhaps other services like window-tinting) would yield steadier income than their automotive detailing business, which tended to fluctuate with the weather and seasons.

The training never materialized, but that didn’t stop the Potters. “I just tried a bunch of buttons,” Savanna says about learning the VersaWorks software that runs the shop’s growing fleet of Roland wide-format inkjet printers. “If I couldn’t figure it out, I’d search the manual, and if that didn’t work, I’d YouTube it.” Taking responsibility for designs, she took a similar approach to learning Canva and Adobe Illustrator software. Even today, “Whenever we need to figure anything out that involves the printers or a computer, she does that,” Mark adds.

While Savanna learned the software, Mark focused on finding the work, starting with something that would pay the bills while they built toward broader ambitions. An early Facebook post paid off when a patron of their former detailing business, who also happened to sell shakes, teas, and other nutrition products from the global, multi-level marketing corporation Herbalife, asked about Kingdom’s rates for vinyl stickers. The Potters jumped at the opportunity, pouring hours of research into inks and materials before settling on a combination that would support a competitive two to four cents per sticker.

They also recognized the value of their new printer for bulk sticker orders. Onboard cutting capability eliminates the need to babysit production by not only separating out individual stickers, but also cutting across the sheet between jobs without a separate machine.

However, the Potters would need a lot of sticker orders – and a lot more printers – to match the potential revenue of even a single vehicle wrap, much less pay off their initial investments. “We had to make money fast and hope and pray that nothing tore up so bad we couldn’t fix it,” Mark says, noting that replacement printheads can cost three figures. “We were broke.”

He recalls driving one day with the windows down, pressed by the weight of an uncertain future and praying for guidance, when the notebook on the passenger seat beside him swept open. Instinctively grasping at the wind-scattered paper, his hand closed on a page where he’d outlined what it would take to double down on stickers. Against the advice of virtually everyone they asked, the couple did just that, investing in seven more new printers from Roland in about as many months. “Nobody buys a print shop going ‘I’m gonna do stickers’ – we didn’t have a definite direction,” he says. “Now, we sell to thousands of customers in 47 states.”


Originally planning to focus on vehicle wraps, Mark and Savanna Potter found a niche in printing stickers. Originally planning to focus on vehicle wraps, Mark and Savanna Potter found a niche in printing stickers.


After his revelation on the road, Mark began a relentless pursuit of prospects just like that first nutrition club: distributors of Herbalife nutrition products that tend to purchase their stickers from large, online storefronts that make the ordering process easy. His vision was relatively simple: “We were trying to target something no one else was really targeting. People drink out of these cups and then throw them away, and then [customers] need more stickers.”

In what must have been some very persuasive cold calls – “I must’ve rang five or six hundred of them across the country,” he says – he sold Kingdom Vinyls on what he saw as a key competitive edge. “Part of my pitch was selling [the idea of] small business helping small business.”

“Hi, we’re a husband-and-wife start-up in Alabama, and we want your sticker business,” he’d begin. Some prospects “didn’t know if we were a scam or what,” he recalls. However, offering to defer payment until orders were received helped overcome the trust barrier. “The biggest peach we had was, if you get at least 2000 [stickers], we’d do three designs and split them however you want.”

Nutrition club owners used to larger thresholds set by larger providers appreciated having more options. Along with their friends and family members, customers also have been approaching the shop for banners, feather flags, and other products for entrepreneurial ventures that have little to do with nutrition.

Beginning with stickers sold nationwide, the Potters waited to build capacity and expertise before competing for wraps, banners, and other work closer to home.Beginning with stickers sold nationwide (right), the Potters waited to build capacity and expertise before competing for wraps, banners, and other work closer to home.

However, the more orders Mark won, the greater the burden on Savanna, who by that point was spending most of her time on design. Even as the design bottleneck tightened, the Potters became increasingly cognizant of the risk inherent in relying too much on the same group of customers. They cite the following elements as essential to not just scaling into higher sticker volumes, but also diversifying their capabilities and customer base:

  • Online sales. In hindsight, investing in a website was as important as expanding the fleet of printers. Now accounting for more than 80 percent of the company’s orders (and due for its third upgrade), the website is important for more than just attracting customers. It also has helped streamline the design process by offering a choice of templates and showcasing design samples. This eliminates the need to “try to read their minds” with a mock-up for review that’s often rejected in favor of a completely different design (and just as tight of a deadline). “People don’t know what they want until they see it,” Mark says.
  • A local pivot. In keeping with the Potters’ incremental approach to growth, the first DTF work involved printing transfers on equipment purchased with stickers in mind. When their confidence (and sticker income) had sufficiently grown, they hired a dedicated salesperson to pursue work from local businesses and organizations. Growing confidence in their ability to both attract and provide such services recently led them to buy out another print shop, largely for its wide-format printer (an HP Latex 360 with capability to “laminate right then” rather than “waiting for the ink to gas out,” Mark says).
  • Planting seeds. The Potters prefer to plant seeds and watch them grow before diving headlong into any new endeavor. Vehicle wrapping was their original ambition, but they knew differentiating themselves would be challenging. So, they waited until they felt stable enough in their core business, then hired someone with the skill and experience to help with this complex, hands-on work. Another “planted seed” was purchasing a printer with orange and green ink (a Roland TrueVIS VG3) in anticipation of wrapping. They resolved to start with just a few jobs to build confidence, but momentum built quickly. “We’ve wrapped 15 or 16 (vehicles) so far, and we have close to 20 in the pipeline,” Mark says.
  • Division of labor. Although the ground-floor retail store for DTF and embroidery walk-ins is rarely busy, Potter sees no reason not to open their shop to the local public, even if the clerk spends more time on the phone helping with customer service than tending to the register. Most other roles are well-defined, reflecting a church-and-state approach to workflows associated with Kingdom Vinyls and Kingdom Krafters, respectively. Each of the two divisions has three dedicated employees: one to process orders, one to run the equipment, and one for other work, such as cutting sheets of raw material prior to printing.
  • Attention to process. Kingdom evolved quickly beyond pen-and-paper order tracking to a cloud-based workflow management tool (Airtable). The system is configured to generate paper “travelers” that hang on clipboards from the sides of rolling, A-frame racks pre-configured with the materials required for the job identified in the documentation (which includes images of graphics for easy reference). This helps avoid mix-ups – say, mistaking two designs for one customer for two separate orders – when the shop gets busy.
  • A personal touch. The retail clerk spends so much time on the phone not just because the store isn’t busy (yet), but also because growth has not damped the Potter’s drive to maintain the kind of service that originally set their business apart. This takes work. After receiving an order, customers can expect to receive hand-written thank you cards and perhaps even a follow-up call for a free sticker pack. “We are in the people-serving business – we just do it through stickers and signs,” Mark says. “Our vision is to have big-company capabilities with small-company customer service.”


Kingdom Vinyls has had a successful takeoff by any measure. As for sticking a landing and finding their long-term footing, the Potters plan to continue trusting in their core values. This begins with The Golden Rule: to treat others as you want to be treated. One plan in the works is a bonus system to incentivize and reward hard work. Weekly lunch-and-learns provide opportunities for training on topics ranging from leadership skills to more personal matters like mental health or managing finances. “Take care of your team members, and they’ll take care of your customers,” Mark says. “You can’t put your customers first if you treat your team badly.”

Wrapping services aren't limited to cars and trucks. Sticker business also continues to expand. Wrapping services aren’t limited to cars and trucks. Sticker business also continues to expand.

Other plans include wrapping more vehicles and continuing to focus on regional sales. By the time this article is published, Kingdom will likely have further alleviated design bottlenecks by enlisting an online subscription service that essentially provides design-on-demand. Whatever their next investments, the Potters aim to find resolve and wisdom in the same place they always have. “Big decisions, small decisions – we pray about them all,” Savanna says.





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