Author Topic: Need some advice  (Read 2115 times)

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Offline creativemama

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Need some advice
« on: September 26, 2011, 06:34:01 PM »
I need some advice about running a business.  Now I don't have one yet but would like to have one in the future.  I love creating and selling jewelry and if I could do that as a job, well, that would just be awesome!!  The problem is, is that I have no idea how to start a business or even generate a monthly income off of it.  I have so many ideas that I could put to work but don't because not enough people buy my stuff even though people say it's pretty.  I don't know if it's this crappy economy or what.  My prices are reasonable.  I don't have anything listed over $50 and I never have.  I attended 1 craft show last year and made $135 from it.  I have another one I am attending this weekend and hope I do just as well or better.  Any advice you got about running a business is really appreciated.  Thank you :)

Offline Nárrína

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Re: Need some advice
« Reply #1 on: September 27, 2011, 10:18:27 AM »
There are a lot of books out there are just this topic that you might want to take a look at. here are just a few of them:

"Handmade for Profit" by Barbara Barbec

"Jewelry Making for Fun & Profit: Make Money Doing What You Love!" by Lynda S. Musante, Maria Nerius

"The craft business answer book: starting, managing, and marketing a home-based art, crafts, design business" by Barbara Barbec

"Sell Your Crafts Online" by James Dillehay

"How to Start a Home-based Craft Business" by Kenn Oberrecht, Patrice Lewis

"The Handmade Marketplace" by Kari Chapin

"Start Your Own Arts and Crafts Business: Retail, Carts and Kiosks, Craft Shows, Street Fairs" by Entrepreneur Press, J. S. McDougall

"Creative Girl: The Ultimate Guide for Turning Talent and Creativity Into a Real Career" by Katharine Sise

"Sell Your Jewelry: How to Start a Jewelry Business and Make Money Selling Jewelry at Boutiques, Fairs, Trunk Shows, and Etsy" by Stacie Vander Pol

"Profiting by design: a jewelry maker's guide to business success " by Marlene Richey

And this is just a very,very small sampling of books on this subject.   You may also want to look at small business books to get a better understanding of some of the legal stuff of actually forming a business and what it requires. 

Also, sometimes having low prices can be a bad thing.   There is a very tricky issue called "perceived value."  Perceived value is highly subjective and quite difficult to figure out but it has to do with the fact that potential buyers tend to assign various values to pieces based on their own perception of the materials, techniques, etc.  Meaning sometimes they see a piece and to them the materials seem high value, or the piece may appear highly complex and they get an idea in their head about it's value.  The problem can be that sometimes, if your price is below what they perceive the value to be at they don't always think "oh what a great deal" but get suspicious about the quality thinking that for it to be priced that low something has to be wrong with it.

Sometimes this means you need to experiment with your prices a bit to find at what price they seem to sell the best.  Other times, it may just be that you're not going to the right shows for your type of work.

Hope this helps! Good luck!

Offline trusk4u

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Re: Need some advice
« Reply #2 on: September 29, 2011, 04:02:04 PM »
How long have you been pursuing this? Are you just trying to establish yourself online? In any case, it takes time, lots of time.
Reading at least some of the books suggested is a good idea. Borrow them from a library or do some online research. You do need to promote your self a lot to get found. That includes getting a facebook business page , maybe a website, twitter, etc. Take a lot of pictures and share them on those places.  You just need to be persistent.

Offline lisianblue

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Re: Need some advice
« Reply #3 on: October 05, 2011, 01:55:38 AM »
and keep posting in the forum!  I've had a bunch of hits lately from the forum -
"Art is not a handicraft, it is the transmission of feeling the artist has experienced."  Leo Tolstoy