You know you need to start ‘marketing your handmade products’, but what on earth does that really mean?
At A Handcrafted Business we know marketing is your whole business.
So ‘marketing your handmade products’ is really about everything your customer sees and knows about you.
It is the essence of everything you do.
Marketing raises you above ‘hobbyist’ and you become the ‘professional crafter’.
Marketing your handmade business is everything from your pricing, where you position yourself with your competitors, it is knowing your customers, your product photographs, how you describe your products, as well as the promotions you run and where you sell and well, everything.
Lets take a closer look.
Get this wrong and you don’t make any money. Instead of a business you have an expensive and time consuming hobby. You need to know your numbers!
That is everything it costs you to make each item.
‘Direct Costs’ – the materials and supplies you need to make an item.
‘Indirect Costs’ or expenses – everything from travel costs to get to post office or a craft fair, to insurances, to electricity, broadband and advertising.
You also need to know how much you will earn off each piece, and be able to cover any other potential costs. And a profit would be nice too.
Profit isn’t and shouldn’t be a dirty word. So don’t think you can’t or shouldn’t make a profit. Click here to discover the A Handcrafted Business Pricing Formula which has helped hundreds of crafters in business make a living from selling their handmade products.
This is how you are viewed by your ideal customer. You create this image through your branding, PR and pricing.
Are you a high end luxury product? OR do you compete with mass produced, cheap disposable items?
How do your customers see you?
What is it you do that means this is how they see you?
How should your customers see you?
Handmade is a luxury, so I know where I think you should be positioned! You need to position yourself in front of your own ideal customer – get out there and find them!
Who are they? Do you know?
You need to know so you are being seen in the right places.
You need to know so you are sending out the right messages.
You need to know because you need to understand them. You need to know what makes them tick, what concerns and worries they have.
And most importantly you need to know so you can make sure that everything you are saying makes them go ‘WOW!’ You can read more about ideal customers here.
When you sell online you customer can’t pick up or touch your makes. So, if you don’t employ a professional photographer, you need to learn a few tips and tricks to be able to get the most out of your camera.
You need to show multiple photographs – close ups, wide shots, lifestyle shots.
You need to make sure your photos are pin sharp.
You only get a split second to make a first impression. If your photos aren’t spot on you won’t get a second chance.
Practice and test and refine.
For lighting use daylight bulbs, mirrors and white sheets to bounce back light. If you are using a window as your main light source avoid a day where the sun is bright and there isn’t a cloud in the sky. You’ll get hard shadows. A soft natural light is best.
You can use a smart phone to get amazing quality photographs. If you are using an iPhone you can tell your camera where to focus by touching the screen. If you want advanced controls on your iPhone camera, take a look at some of the camera apps available.
Click here to read more about the mistakes to avoid when taking handmade product photos.
Once your photograph has hooked your potential customer, they want to read your description.
Bring your own flair and personality to this, it will help you stand out from the crowd.
Use colourful language to bring the make to life. Focus on the benefits to your customer not the features of your handmade product .
Your description needs to inspire your audience and instill them with confidence in you and your handmade business.
Don’t bamboozle them with words they won’t understand – you know those technical terms which only others who understand your craft really know the meaning of.
Promotions are often thought of as being marketing.
This is everything from selling, to blogging, to hosting giveaways, to PR, to social media, to advertising, to… well every form of communication you have with your customers and potential customers.
This is the fun side of marketing. (In Nicola’s opinion!)
You get to talk and listen to your customers.
You get to engage with them, and learn even more about them, and you get to let your business personality shine through.
All this and we have barely scratched the surface about how you need to market your handmade business. The good news is it doesn’t all have to happen over night. you take one step at a time and build your business.
It also needs your hard work, dedication and persistence and a confidence and self belief to keep you going! I’ve never said it is easy or quick – but it is achievable.
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