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Topic: pearls of wisdom: what do you know now...  (Read 71667 times)
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« on: March 17, 2004 06:04:47 PM »

...that you wish someone had told you earlier about starting your own business?  

please share your pearls (buttons, swarovski crystals, etc.) of wisdom!



handmade goodies for humankind
« Reply #1 on: March 17, 2004 09:51:25 PM »

i'm very much still learning. but the things i'm in the process of learning are :
-advertise! link link link and get the word out about your site as much as you can. no matter how good your stuff is it'll never sell if noone knows about it.
- having paypal and a shopping cart might increase your sales. i don't know yet though, so far it hasn't helped me all that much.. but it makes it easier for people to purcahse things and makes for more impulse sales i think.
- don't lose faith when nothing sells. thats a hard one to learn. but i'm trying my hardest : ) the fact i don't advertise might be part of that problem. hah.
good luck! and have fun!

« Reply #2 on: March 17, 2004 09:57:52 PM »

that's great advice, toast.   thanks!

i checked out your site... you have really cute stuff!!  those skirts are adorable.  i wish you much luck with your biz.  

handmade goodies for humankind
« Reply #3 on: March 18, 2004 08:25:59 AM »

I love your graphic, birdinaskirt!

My main advice is to be as professional as possible from day one.  I know some people on the boards may disagree with that, but word of mouth about your professionalism will move much faster than you realize, giving people a great first impression of you and your business.  It will encourage people to  buy from you and work with you early on.
« Last Edit: March 18, 2004 08:26:30 AM by plainmabel » THIS ROCKS   Logged

Plain Mabel :: Extraordinary Gifts and Accessories
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sewing stars
« Reply #4 on: March 18, 2004 11:23:11 AM »

I agree with that advice. Being professional makes such a great impression.

As far as getting your stuff out there you can look into local crafting fares too.

This site, http://www.artandcraftshows.net/  just lists the faires and where, but after looking them up for your area, then try to contact the place it will be at directly for more information.

Oh and I have had some good luck getting my stuff out there through consignment sites like PlainMabel's!
« Last Edit: March 18, 2004 11:24:14 AM by sewing stars » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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« Reply #5 on: March 18, 2004 12:36:37 PM »

it's really important to enjoy what you're doing!  that's why most of us go into business for ourselves, but it's easy to get overwhelmed with production.  you need to set your own limits so what you make doesn't become a chore...  if you are your own boss then you get to say no!

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« Reply #6 on: March 18, 2004 01:33:58 PM »

thanks for all the good advice!  it's much appreciated.  

please keep them coming... i'm taking notes!

i guess my main problem is my self-doubt.  i'm always asking myself, "is this handbag good enough that people would want to spend their hard-earned cash on it?"

handmade goodies for humankind
« Reply #7 on: March 18, 2004 04:38:39 PM »

"i guess my main problem is my self-doubt.  i'm always asking myself, "is this handbag good enough that people would want to spend their hard-earned cash on it?"

that's my problem exactly. i guess thats part of the reason i don't do much advertising. i'm too scared one day someone will tell me that my stuff is crappy.

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« Reply #8 on: March 18, 2004 05:06:52 PM »

self doubt can be so crippling!  every thing i've sent out--things to people i like and people i don't even know--i tend to throw in a bunch of other stuff with it, like, so they'll think "well, this is crap, but she put all this other stuff in there, so maybe it's okay."  i mean, SHEESH!  i did this even for the totally uncommunicative person who bought my first pbn on ebay...
i don't know what to do to get over that one and it makes it hard for me to set prices and things when i think other people could do it just as well as me or better.  but i'm pretending that isn't the case!  and having such a supportive envirnment here for feedback is helping to give me more confidence in the "product".

porn-by-numbers, the wave of the future!
« Reply #9 on: March 18, 2004 07:51:29 PM »

Let me add that I agree that you must have a professional attitude when it comes to business. You are only as good as your reputation. Word of mouth is the best advertising that there is.

Also, keep really thorough records for your business. You will need them for tax purposes and for financing, (if you want a loan). Become an educated business person by taking classes at your local SBA (Small Business Administration) or community college. Once you understand how businesses are run, you are empowered to speak with confidence about your own venture.

Remember that no one can read your mind. Project a confident attitude, no one will know about your insecurities. A great product and a good attitude will help you to go far.

Good Luck!
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