Folksy Ltd

What else can I do to promote?

(Liz Clark) #1

Was reading on another thread about views, and although I promote on Twitter (#crafthour, #handmadehour) and post in quite a few FB groups and pages it’s not generating any sales. The FB pages I engage in seem to be full of fellow crafters, which is lovely for chatting wise but let’s face it I’m also there to sell. When I have posted my stuff it ranges from quite a few likes to nothing at all. I also find some of the groups/pages post stuff that’s not to my taste (bling and shabby chic) so networking can be a challenge as I believe in genuine interaction rather than sharing/liking for the sake of it. Perhaps promoting on FB is not for me?

Now I know with most of my stuff being over £50 that not many people have that kind of disposable cash, so how else can I reach potential customers? It seems short of paying for adverts in expensive magazines, promoting for free isn’t working for me. Am I missing something?

Anyone else in a similar price bracket in the same boat as me?

(Susannah Ayre) #2

Hi. I find Twitter works really well for me. I also use Instagram where I use the hashtags for full effect- and have a blog- currently in the process of setting up my own website as well.
I also sell through the Country Living Magazine online store- which I don’t really promote to be honest as they promote that through their magazines. That might be a good way to go with what you sell though. I think they’d do well on there- they seem like the sort of thing they’d like.
If you can supply then with high quality cut out photos as well they also consider them for their magazines which would be awesome publicity. :slight_smile:
I tried Google+ but couldn’t warm to it, although I know some people really like it.

Good luck with it all!!

(Liz Clark) #3

Thanks Susannah. Country Living did suggest I open a shop with them but the fact they don’t tell you the fees etc up front put me off plus I though it would just be another shop for me to promote and I’d be stuck again. They did like the ducks as their logo is a duck LOL. Might reinvestigate that one…

Instagram I looked into but in the end went with Pinterest. Also Instagram seemed to be for upload via mobile rather than laptop, and I do most of my stuff via the laptop so I can edit the pictures. Have I got it wrong?

(Susannah Ayre) #4

Ah fair enough. Yeah- I use my phone a lot as I work a totally unrelated full-time job so it comes in handy. I find the art community on there are really great as well. You can use Intagram on a computer though.
I’ve used Pinterest for a long time- well before I started selling my work & I’ve found it quite difficult to use it for both for some reason- no idea why. Just personal preference & what you’re used to I guess.

Country Living is £100 a year & they take 25% commission. Their website from the point of view of a seller isn’t fantastic to use- but they’ve only had the online shop up and running since March I think so I’m sure it will develop.
I can totally imagine seeing a feature of your work in their magazine. It really does look right up their street so I can see why they got in touch.
Like I said- I don’t promote that- they do that. :slight_smile:

I guess it’s just a case of while we need to promote- let’s face it, you don’t want to be spending all your time doing that…and there doesn’t seem to be a right way to do it, or a right thing to use sadly!! Haha

(Eileens Craft Studio) #5

Have you also tried Stumbleupon, craftjuice, and google+? Don’t forget to have business cards to hand out to people.

You need to promote in as many different avenues as possible in order to reach as many people as possible.

I notice you need to work on your titles. You need to use words that a potential customer would use looking for a hare or rabbit or wall art.
Pretend to be a customer tryng to find something to buy what words would you type into the search box.

all the best

(Liz Clark) #6

Thanks Eileen. I tried Stumbleupon for a couple of weeks but really didn’t get it. It all seemed very hit and miss. My stuff is on there but I have no way of knowing if it’s being viewed. Craftjuice again, didn’t get it. I’m not sure how many of my potential customers would be using it, it seemed to be a voting tool for fellow crafters thing? Google+ I haven’t looked at. I’m on FB, Twitter, Pinterest, my own website, and they keep me busy enough, I had to draw the line or I would spend all my time online and none actually making. I need to consolidate if that makes sense? That is, know what my potential customers use rather than knacker myself trying to promote on everything and getting little back. If Google+ is fantastic for my sort of stuff then I don’t mind dropping Pinterest say.

I don’t have business cards as yet since I updated my logo as we are due to move house in the near future. I no longer go to fairs etc having done them and lost money pretty much everytime. The last one I did in May I had a lot of people telling me how wonderful my stuff is but only one purchase. People just don’t want to pay the prices I’m charging at a fair. They want something for under £20, not £50+ in my experience. If they’re going to spend that sort of money then it’s online or, even better, a bricks and mortar shop.

I thought my titles were fine as they do include what I would personally use to search. What would you change? If you could give me some examples that would be great. :slight_smile:

(Eileens Craft Studio) #7

with Craftjuice you need the votes by fellow crafters then once your item has 5 votes craftjuice will then promote your item on facebook and twitter. So your items will reach others who are not part of your own twitter or facebook circle.

Look into the Showcase part of the forum and see the Monthly craftjuice thread. We all vote for each other’s items to ensure our items get promoted.

I’ve even had my items that are on craftjuice promoted onto google+ for me.

I’ve not seen your in the showcase part of the forum there are weekly and daily listing threads, as well where we post our new items and the others on the thread will promote them for us in return we agree to promote their items.

When we all help each other promote we reach a much larger group of potential customers. As other seller will have followers that we might not have and vice a versa.

Together our promoting reaches further afield then one person working away on their own.

(Christine Shephard) #8

Hi Liz @BigBirdLittleBird , I totally understand your problem, it’s really hard trying to reach that segment of the market unless you know a few of them (which I don’t!) and know where they’re likely to shop. I don’t sell anything via Facebook, although I direct people here so maybe a few do buy from me. I’m really not into twitter et al, so networking is proving hard for me too, and my prices are probably a bit too high for a lot of people. I do a few craft fairs, but have worked out that smaller local ones are a complete waste of time (unless you live in a very wealthy area) so now I just do half a dozen larger weekend ones each year and usually do fairly well. I find the ‘garden show’ or ‘country estate’ type of fairs work best for me - lots of ladies shopping and lunching with their friends and happy to spend lots of cash while they’re about it!

The Country Living online store looks interesting…I might check that one out myself :slight_smile:

(Liz Clark) #9

But does Craftjuice have the customers for my items? I don’t expect you to know that Eileen LOL, but before I invest in another avenue to promote I need to know it has a chance of doing what I’m after. If it’s going to be like other places where I promote then I don’t want to waste my time if I could be doing better elsewhere if you see what I mean? I guess I’m going to be doing some digging around about Craftjuice and who it’s customer base is to see if it’s worth the time investment.

No I haven’t done the showcase thread because one I did click on was to share an item of the person below you. I didn’t want to feel I had to do that unless I actually liked the item. It’s one of the rules of promotion I’d read elsewhere that you only promote what you like, and “like” the FB pages you like otherwise it impacts negatively on reach for that business. I know on some FB groups I belong to they say they don’t want to see other people’s stuff; they click on a FB/Twitter page to see that business, not other peoples. If it’s a thread in the Showcase bit where you can just share what you like on that thraedthen I’m fine with that and might check it out.

Thanks again. :slight_smile:

(Liz Clark) #10

Yes I’ve thought about doing the larger fairs too, although some of them in Kent cost £300 for the weekend and I just can’t afford that at this time (I know this as a friend of mine does them). I was contacted by one fair organiser who asked for £600 for an event for a week leading up to Christmas. I’m just wary of paying that sort of money and not selling. I’d have to fold the business.

I think you’d go down really well on Country Living Christine! :smile:

(Dog As Pony) #11

Hello, just about everything you’ve said re social networking and selling events, losing money etc, I found myself agreeing with.

I have come to the conclusion I’m a bad tweeter… the whole business of spending ages generating ‘interesting’ content only to get no or little response is a big waste of precious time and a bit depressing when really all you want to do is work on your stuff.

One thing I have done this year (it nearly took all year) is tried to get into a big retail store. Can’t pretend it was particularly easy but I’ve recently managed it (so it is possible) and am now just keeping my fingers crossed that it will help, more in terms of exceeding daily viewing figures of over 5…

Your creations look such good quality and unique perhaps that is a possible direction in which to go? You need high end shops, where rich people come and pay for quality. Be prepared for high mark-ups and making sure your IP and Copyright is protected. Pricing is difficult but it’s a give and take thing, where both need to benefit, i.e. being in a posh shop with a nice card, complete with website, attached to your product where many people will see it could be worth a cost price reduction.

Good luck, Em.

(Liz Clark) #12

Thanks Em. That sounds fantastic for your business! Congratulations!

As of yesterday three of my items are for sale in an arts gallery for 3 months in Rochester, Kent (Nucleus Arts is the name if anyone is near there?). I love Rochester, it has tourists what with Dickens, the Catherdral, the Castle, and what with Christmas on its way and events in Rochester to celebrate, felt it was a good route to take. It’ll be interesting how things go there in a bricks and mortar shop as I agree that may be the way to go.

I’m going to try drafting a Press Release for this and see if that helps with promoting too.

(Lowri of Twinkle and Gloom Art) #13

I find promoting really hard too.
I try Facebook and Twitter etc, I get lots of “If you make this I’ll buy it”, “I want prints of this” etc and then when I make it available, those people are not to be seen.

I sell fairly well at fairs, and I sell something every week at the shop I stock, I don’t make loads but I tick over. Pricing is so hard. I don’t know if it’s the climate or just the sleepy area of North Wales I’m in but people want cheap. I make cheaper options for people (My prices start at £4 for jewellery), but I also try and have higher prices because some people turn their noses at cheap. It’s so hard to get a happy medium. My work is quirky and isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, I know that, but I truly believe there is a market for what I make, in fact, I know there is. I get loads of genuine comments and interest- but it’s just hard to push sales.

(Christine Shephard) #14

Liz @BigBirdLittleBird, I think your work would go down really well at an Arts Festival or maybe at a Guild event. Is there a Kent Guild of Craftsmen? We have one in Sussex and I could certainly see your work fitting in there - they organise regular fairs too and, while not cheap, they are very well attended and nowhere near the £600 some organisers charge. They also have an outlet in Lewes for guild members to sell their work. Maybe there is something similar in your area.
The fairs I do are in the £100-£200 price range, for 2 or 3 days usually, so not cheap but they do attract more of my target market, so it’s usually worth the cost, and I get to hand out business cards directly to the people who are likely to order something later (and have done on occasions!).

(Eileens Craft Studio) #15


Always get the monies up front for a custom piece. You’ll always get those ‘Please make me this then I’ll pay you’ crowd who are never around when the items is ready for them to buy.

The only way to stop falling into that trap is to at least take a non returnable deposit for the cost of your materials before you start work. Then if their circumstances change when the item is made and they can’t or will not pay the reminder of the invoice you will not be out of pocket for the price of the materials of course you’ll still be out of pocket for your time and profit margin.

(Liz Clark) #16

I took the plunge last night and posted an item to Craftjuice.

The only thing I’m confused about is who the “promoted by Craftjuice” items reach. On Facebook there is hardly any interaction at all to the promoted posts - an odd like here or there but that’s it? So how is it getting in people’s news feeds if no-one is interacting - I thought that’s how FB pages worked? It’s the same on their Twitter page, hardly any interaction in the way of retweets or favourites. So I’m still none the wiser with how it actually reaches customers. :confused:

(Liz Clark) #17

No Guild no. :frowning: I have joined a local Arts Consortium but they suffer the same thing as me on the whole.

(Minerva) #18

I have visited Rochester a few times and it is indeed a cute town that attracts visitors, especially around Xmas. I can’t remember the gallery. I think this might be a good route for the kind of things you are making. Best of luck!

(Eileens Craft Studio) #19

I know my views increased once I started using craftjuice.

I’ve done a few tests where I’ve not added certain items to craftjuce straight after listing. I kept an eye on my stop stats

Then I’ve added the items to craftjuice and suddenly my views for that item shoot up.

(Minerva) #20

I find the whole social media idea rather exhausting and not just for work. I opened an account with FB long after my friends did. At first, I thought it was interesting and fun. But when I realised that people stopped calling or emailing or arranging to meet, I narrowed it down to a handful of friends who live abroad and some carefully selected relatives :slight_smile:

As for work, it’s constant effort to maintain your page / account regularly and if you don’t, people forget about you. Then it’s the expectation to connect and interact and reach out to others. And if you don’t, they delete you or they don’t want to interact with you. Tit for tat.

Sorry, I can’t meet these expectations and have looked at many other ways to promote instead. The most important thing for me is to keep my hands rested and healthy.