Things have been looking really good these days for my small and blossoming business. Sales have been doing fairly well, especially with the holidays coming up. There are so many opportunities to market and sell my beads, and of course I would love to do them all.
I’m even hosting a trunk party at my house. I’m partnering up with a friend of a friend who is a Monet (formerly Maddison) bag dealer. Together we will sell bags and jewelry at my house while hosting a party that is about women, fashion, fun and local artists. I’m very, very excited about this.
There are even other opportunities that I really want to consider, especially after the holidays have settled down. For example, I would really love to participate at Craft Shows. I even found someone that is interested in partnering up with me, so we can share the booth costs, etc. I have a friend who’s mom owns her own tailoring business that does really well. He told me that his mother could sell my bracelets at her shop. I’m even considering joining a co-op of other artist and have a presence in a store which happens to be in one of the most popular malls in the area. Can you imagine? My own presence in a boutique!
If you count my jewelry business, I have three jobs. That’s right – three. I work full time in government, part time (4 nights and 1 weekend) at my local YMCA and now this. I have all these great assets – support, creativity, drive and so many jewelry supplies to the point where I am thinking about adding them on to the homeowner’s insurance.
Needless to say, the one asset that I do not have is time. I really enjoy and finding time for my beads and making jewelry. Because time is so precious, I find that I get frustrated when a project has failed. Instead, I should be appreciating the learning experience, but my first impulse is “wow what a waste of time that was”. That’s bad.
I recently attended a paid Webinar on how to handle your jewelry business during the holidays. This was especially helpful for people with a strong and established customer base. Or for folks who’s businesses are blowing up so much that they do it full time. One of the things that was mentioned during this Webinar is the consideration to hire help. Wow. I couldn’t imagine.
I thought about it. How can someone help me? Would I even fathom the thought of taking MY hard earned dollars and throwing them at someone else to play with MY beads?
And then I started noticing some other things. I’m having troubles keep track of my inventory. I’m spending left and right and I have no idea how much I have invested in this business so far. Well over four figures probably. I’m also having problems finding the time to display my jewelry nicely so that it can be photographed. Then cleaned up in Photoshop. Then listing these items on my ETSY site. All that stuff is not hard…it just takes time. It took me 1.5 hours last night photographing and Photoshop’ing 8 new jewelry pieces. Some of them not new, I just haven’t gotten around to PG and PS them. I haven’t even listed all of them on my ETSY site yet.
Another big thing that really bugs me that I’m struggling to keep up with is this social media thing. I have this WordPress blog that I paid money for a domain name. I have a nice FB page, a Google+ presence, a Twitter account and something with Instagram. How often do I post on these? Hardly once a week. And it’s a bummer, because these resources could really be strong points in driving my marketing. It could really totally change the game. Again – not hard…just very time consuming. I know I am making a name for myself. However, it’s slow. I think if I were on top of the social media more, that progress would be more progressive.
So, I actually reconsidered the thought of hiring people some more. If I could, I would hire TWO people:
The first person I would absolutely hire is someone to assist me with my social media. Writing blog entries, posting on all the Social Media platforms, tracking down people to like me, friend me, follow me…anything. This is someone that can do this at home. They don’t need to be at my house to do this. However, I would expect results every day. I would want to see some kind of activity with the social stuff daily.
The next person that I would hire would be a professional cataloguer. They would handle my inventory and finished products. Photograph my inventory and my jewelry. Digitally organize what I actually have in finished jewelry. Organize all this stuff in a database somehow. Post my finished work on ETSY for me. Handle my online orders and requests.
I wonder how much I would pay someone to do these kinds of tasks. Well, off to google for that one. Again, something that I don’t have a lot of time for…research.