You’ve decided to take the plunge and launch your creative business online. Maybe it’s selling pottery, baby quilts, or photography. No matter what your product or service there are 3 things you want for your creative business. These help ensure business longevity by creating a strong foundation that makes every part of your marketing more productive.
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Marking Your Creative Business Online
Have a Website
When I said have a website, I’m not talking about a free site or online store hosted by someone online. Why not use these? Because you are not in control. Imagine you marketed your business diligently for two years and included the website on your business cards, in posts on Facebook, and shared with all your customers. Now what happens when that company hosting your website decided to close up shop. You just lost your website and all the traffic that was coming from that two of blood, sweat and tears you put into your business! By purchasing a domain name and hosting, you are able to build a business website where you in control. You own it. Secondly, it looks more professional. You worked hard to learn the skills you use to offer your products and services. Your website should reflect your commitment to your business and to your audience.
Have a Mailing List
Once you have a website, get a mailing list setup. By having a mailing list you are able to capture all those visitors to your website, send them relevant information to their inbox. This helps them get to know about you and that you have someone of value to them. They then continue to come back to your website and eventually become a customer. It also allows customers to become repeat customers. Have a new line of services or products you’re launching, you can include in your newsletter! A great way to get them to sign-up for your mailing list is offering a freebie of some sort: a tutorial, pattern, printable, eBook, report, tip sheet, etc…there are many possibilities!
Have a Blog
Some of you may be cringing at the thought of having to manage a blog. Some of you may be nervous – you doubt your abilities and creativity to post to the world. There are so, so many great resources online to help you learn how to write and manage a blog. A blog has too many benefits to NOT to do it. A blog gives you content to share on your social media. Your website will have content for visitors to come to your site and read. It can be shared with your mailing list. It gets seen more often through search engines by having quality content and keyword phrases on your website. You may not realize this but you can have a website set up using WordPress making it both your website and your blog.
Once you have these three things set up, you are able to plan your marketing around them. You create posts, you share about those posts along with other content on social media, people come to your website/blog, they enjoy your site and join the mailing list, you now have opportunity to keep yourself visible to them, and you turn them into fans and faithful customers. From fan and faithful customers you have people referring their friends and colleagues.
For more information on growing your own handmade business check out these great books. I’ve read all of these and personally recommend them!
Grow Your Handmade Business: How to Envision, Develop, and Sustain a Successful Creative BusinessThe Handmade Marketplace, 2nd Edition: How to Sell Your Crafts Locally, Globally, and OnlineThe Handmade Entrepreneur—How to Sell on Etsy, or Anywhere Else: Easy Steps for Building a Real Business Around Your CraftsThe Craft Business Handbook: The Essential Guide To Making Money from Your Crafts and Handmade Products