Branding is essential to a successful brand and many times, is the client's/shopper's first impression of your creative, small business!
Determining if you want to hire a creative firm to develop your branding with you or do it on your own is your first step. It can be a big, but very much worthwhile, investment to hire a creative marketing firm or individual to create your brand with you. But you can also do it on your own.
The first step is to determine:
WHAT DO I DO?
WHY DO I DO IT?
WHAT MAKES ME UNIQUE?
Once you have answered those questions, you can dive into the fun stuff, like making a mood board!
WHO IS YOUR CUSTOMER?
Who is your dream customer? Imagine them and what they enjoy. This is your target audience. You need to know who they are so they will connect to your brand. Once you have determined who your dream customer is, you can get started on your Mission Statement.
Why do you do what you do? Your Mission Statement is the entire reason your...
Instagram is a great, FREE way to sell your handmade products online. If you're a beginner or an expert at Instagram, we have some tips for making sales via your profile. With more than 800 MILLION users, Instagram is the third most-used social media platform in the world. So take advantage of it!
A STRONG IMAGE
The very first step is to make sure you have a strong image. After all, Instagram IS all about photos. Read about how to take stellar product photos with your smart phone here. The photo of your product is what is going to draw your buyers and future clients in, so make sure they are good ones. Bright, minimal images with lots of background space and a single color background are shown to capture more likes.
DIRECT LINK IN BIO
Instagram only allows users to have one link on their profile, so make sure you use it wisely. Make things easy for buyers with a direct link to your website, Etsy site, Shopify site, whatever you use for e-commerce. Alternately, you can get a...
As a maker, your revenue is dependent on selling your handmade goods. Your booth at shows, your website, your Etsy site, your instagram site: they are all working toward that one goal. But, there is one thing many makers don't take seriously: their product photos! Photos of your products are one of the most important parts of marketing.
You don't need a fancy, thousand dollar camera to take excellent product photos. You have the tool in the palm of your hand: literally! Your iPhone or other smart device can take some excellent product photos with a little help from natural or artificial lighting, white paper or a solid background and your products!
What you will need:
Use a light or dark grey backdrop. It will give your photos a tidy and consistent look without a lot of noise in the background.
You can make your own backdrop by using a jumbo roll of white paper.
Using natural light is the most affordable (it's FREE!) and easiest source to use when...
It is so easy to let creativity fall to the bottom of our list of priorities. But it is oh so important to nurture your creativity! Even if you are a creative person, it can require a bit of effort and planning to make it happen. Here are some simple ways to add more creativity to your daily routine:
It's much easier now that we constantly have a camera in our pocket! Photos can be a great way to look at things a bit differently and see the beauty around you. It's a simple way to observe beauty and will inspire your creative work in other ways, no matter what creative medium is your favorite.
PLAN CREATIVE TIME
Creative entrepreneurs have so much on their plate. They often wear ALL of the hats in their small business, and creative play time gets pushed aside.
If we wait to "feel inspired", your creative work just might not come to fruition. Instead, work on creative projects every day, even when you don't necessarily...
It's No-Show January. That month between the winter holidays and Valentine's Day and there are NO CRAFT SHOWS! If your business has slowed down this month, DON'T FRET! We have a few tips for how to use this down time to KEEP GOING:
BOOKKEEPING AND NUMBERS
Use January to get your books in order and review the year. Figure out which shows were profitable (see our nifty graphic in our last blog for help in determining your numbers) and which weren't. Get organized for 2020 by sorting your tax documents and creating a profit and loss spreadsheet if you haven't already.
RESEARCH AND PLAN SHOWS
Are you part of any FB groups like Craft Show Success that has other makers in it? Post a question to them or do some research by searching past posts about shows in your city. Look up craft shows and plan your 2020. Mark down when applications close for certain events in your calendar so you don't miss out on applying! Plan for booth fees. Sometimes multiple events will have fees due around the...
It's the BIGGEST shopping week of the year: Black Friday, followed by Small Business Saturday, and then Cyber Monday!
SALE IDEAS FOR CREATIVE BIZ OWNERS:
You can schedule your sales ahead of time and share on your social media. If you have an Etsy account, you can create a sale and change your banner to reflect your sale. Here is a great example from Craft Show CEO co-founder Carly Rae of how she published her sales on her social media:
You can see she mixed in sales both at her in-person events and also online and she encouraged her followers to screenshot the graphic (it was posted to her Instagram stories). This...