Saturday, July 23, 2011

Biz Buzz - Fond Farewell and Marketing Tips?

I wanted to dedicate this Bizz Buzz to saying a fond farewell to the Clown that Ran Etsy But You can read about it at the Inc article or the Great Farewell that Etsy Bitch wrote HERE

I would also like to note that with what has happened in Norway, everything we do here seems so small. So many children lost at the hands of a Madman.

I decided instead, to write about something that came to mind after a few events this week. It has to do with your audience. Who are you selling to? I was trying to come up with search terms for my jewelry. Because it was unique, I wanted to come up with some terms that the average person would use to search. I was thinking about my product and I was thinking of all the other handmade product. I'm not including vintage here, because they have a greater chance of people searching for their items than handmade sellers do.

I thought about all the lovely handmade products and artwork, I and I thought about all the nice things that people had said about my flowers. I thought about how we are pushed by ourselves and our sites to create something so unique that it stands out against our competition. And I thought that if it is so unique, how will people find it. If you designed handkerchiefs for Elephants, that would be unique. Maybe useful (they would have to be pretty big) But who would search for it.

It popped into my head, that the people who are looking at my work, or your lovely work, are mostly artists, or people involved with or admirers of the arts. Is that my target audience? Wouldn't it be nice if the average person, or at least a percentage of the overall population would like my work?

I pass QVC sometimes and see things that are not as lovely as our handmade craft, but mass produced, sell by the thousands. I used to work for a company that sold to QVC and it was not our usual lovely inventory. But that's another story.

And then there was something that Poppy said this week. She was listing a biker T-shirt that had previously sold for $250, and she was debating weather to list it auction, or buy it now on eBay. She was discussing how much to list it for and I said was it too much in this economy. She said people with money have money and they don't really care, they buy what they want. She's right you know. We struggle to sell our beautifully hand crafted wares for under minimum wage and someone pays $1800 for a Lego Millennium Falcon still in the box. (I'd rather have it built for that price).

We work our tails off at the craft we love and yet we could take a $1 t-shirt we found a the thrift store and turn a $200 plus profit on it.

My point isn't despair. It is, how the heck do we get the guy spending $250 on a T-shirt to spend a few bucks on our handmade? How do we inspire the "want monster" (I hate that term and wish it would go away and die forever) to absolutely love handmade. What we really need is not a clown but a Marketing Genius to help us out. Barry Manilow will you write us a handmade product jingle for the new millennium? There is more to marketing than just good SEO. SEO does not inspire desire. How about "I'm wearing Handmade Today" "I just hung Handmade on my walls, did you?" "I'm cooking in handmade."


Pili said...

Very good post Cinders!

And that's what my Wearing Handmade Wednesday posts are all about, sharing my love for handmade goods with others!

Anonymous said...

I feel like buying and using handmade, or locally made or grown, adds value to an item. I enjoy it more knowing the creativity, time, and skill that went into it and that I'm helping support independent, small businesses that are taking a chance on their product and enriching our lives because of it. Too corny? Too bad! That's how I see it.

vintage eye said...

This relates perfectly to my journey into vintage selling! I began my business as a maker & seller of art in my very own brick & mortar shop. I rented space from some lovely people who ran an antique store. I really enjoyed myself creating paintings, 3D assemblage pieces & taking photographs. I went to a number of fairs & shows as well. I received compliments on my work by the boat load but sold very little. Seeing as I was located in an antique shop, I began to dabble in vintage & antiques. Well, they sold so I transitioned into that business instead. Don't get me wrong, I love the vintage trade but it sure is a long way from what I envisioned for myself. I get the feeling my story is not unique either. Great post, as always, Crusty!

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