Monday, October 6, 2008

Mary Jane's Attic (An Article on Etsy's Storque)

See MARY JANES ATTIC Here on etsy.
Today, I found an inspiring article on etsy about a couple who "quit their day jobs" as the title indicates, and began a brick and mortar shop after great success on etsy. It really does help to have a team member/s to help with some of your work load too.
Here are some excerpts from the article which you can find HERE.
"What are the most effective ways you have promoted and marketed your Etsy business? What's you're best marketing tip?
I think some of the best ways to promote our Etsy store was to start a customer newsletter, start a blog (or two or three!), submit your products for review by other popular blogs and magazines, participate in Etsy Street Teams (we belong to the SF Etsy Team, Etsy FAST and The Needlefelters Team) and vend at local craft fairs. It is the combination of all these things that make up our promotional strategy, and we believe it gives us a chance to get higher visibility among a wide variety of customers.

Our best marketing tip? Encourage feedback and word of mouth! We believe each of our customers is valuable and we tell them that each time they purchase from us. We acknowledge the value of their opinions and ask that they continue to keep us and other handmade artists in mind when shopping for products. We believe when your friend tells you about that “cool indie shop around the corner,” it’s worth loads more than any newspaper ad could communicate. A customer’s satisfaction is important, so always see that as your #1 marketing strategy.

What have you found to be unsuccessful promotion or something that's just not working for your shop?

We have found that print coupons and ads don’t always come back to us. We attached discount codes and vary rarely did they get used. We also found that doing regular sales in the Etsy shop were not very effective. Instead we price our items at what we believe to be fair price points and stick to them. Our customers have been loyal to us because of our affordability and consistency, not because of any fly by night sales.

If you could go back in time before you took the plunge, what advice would you give yourself knowing what you know now?

Prepare your press materials sooner. Make more efforts to promote your products and your business on a regular basis. Systematically collect and record customer suggestions and comments about products. Inventory! Inventory! Inventory! If you don’t know what sold and how many, you’ll never know exactly what the moneymakers are.

What advice would you give someone else thinking about taking the plunge to sell full time on Etsy?
Take it slowly, in stages. Don’t give up. You will make mistakes. We all make mistakes, and the best we can do is grow from them. Surround yourself (online and in person) with friends and colleagues who support what you do and share common goals. It’s important to have a support system. We would never have gotten this far if we did not have the support from lots of fellow crafters and business people.


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