On welcome to creative lives, my name is chris jennings, and I'm going to be your host today for our special live session here with megan almond. We're so excited to have her this is how to make a living selling what you make now this course is actually on the craft and maker channel here on creative live, but we're going to have a little bit of something for everyone out there. All of you out there who are viewing. We're going to learn a lot from megan. We are so excited we've been working on this for months to bring her here to teach this to you. We have twenty five lessons coming to you from megan and so much to learn, and the goal here is really to help you to quit your day job and start making a living doing what you truly love. So if you are not familiar with megan almond, let me just tell you a little bit about her now. She is a designer, a maker, an educator and an entrepreneur who has built a business around her true passions, which are designed and sustainable business. She i...
s no stranger to creative lives. She has been here and taught a couple of courses before you haven't checked those out, you definitely should. Now her work has been featured in design sponge better homes and gardens just to name a few we are so excited to bring her back onto the creative live stage so without further ado please welcome meghan almond hello is so great to have you back here incredible so excited to be back on this's a fun new format we have so much to learn now I know that you're going to get into a lot of this throughout our lessons here but you're going to give people some specific things that they could do to start making money really right away to build up that confidence but I think a good question before we get going here is I just want to know why is that so important for people to kind of make that money right off the bat to start getting that revenue? How is that important to like the long term sustainability of their business? Yeah it's really important for two reasons and the first one is that in order to make a living selling what you make you have to be making a product that people want to buy so the sooner you can get your product out in the marketplace get some feedback from customers and really see what people are responding to the faster it's going to grow your business and then the second thing is the more revenue you generate, the more money you have to invest in a business and it just creates that momentum so we wantto get people away from that kind of thinking planning maybe in a year maybe in two years, maybe down the road and really get action and money flowing right away yes, no more maybes taking action so that is why we're here today and we are excited tohave megan to teach you this to start taking action so with that I'm gonna let you start getting wait all right? So I want to start off with a question for everybody because I think this is the reason that a lot of you are here and the online audience I'd love for you guys to share a cz well, because you're here, you want to make a living selling what you make, right? So why we're all here and you've probably been frustrated in the past, right? So before we even dive in, I want to talk about what what's frustrated you and your business I want to run down the line. So monica what's frustrating you okay? Just the educational process, explaining how we're different and really getting consumers to understand the benefits and why we deserve the higher price point so awesome just getting my stuff in front of people to see because once they see it, they usually do love it but possums getting out out there to the right audio, yes I never know how much to charge for uh people pay for this e yes I think that's a problem that a lot of people have uh marketing getting our story out there what it is that we dio and why is it so much awesome? Uh definitely the sales between growth and resource is awesome yeah kind of finding that balance of how much cash do you have available and growing the business at the same time yeah for me is finding the right place to market my products yeah minus pricing and actually knowing what I'm kind of multi skilled so knowing which to dio yes I'm talented in a lot of e I think there are so many people in our online audience you have that reservation I hear it all the time right? I'm a maker I'm a created I could do so many thing how do I know what to focus on and that's definitely something that we're gonna be talking about here because that focus piece becomes so much easier when you start listening to the market listening to your customers and generating revenue quickly all that helps make that focus question so much easier I would say finding the right audience as well as finding time outside of my day job so you're one of those people who is balancing that day job piece yeah that's definitely a tricky things we're going to talk about that as we get further on the boot camp as well so we talked about your frustrations and I think the reality is that everybody here has been putting in the effort right? You're trying you're working on things but if you're not quite getting the traction that you want and so that means it's time for something a little different and that's what this boot camp is really about we're not going to give you the same basic formulas that you've heard a million times except for pricing I'm gonna tell you guys that one over and over and over again because it's so important right? But we're not going to be the same basic formulas were really going to try a different approach that's geared to help you start generating revenue more quickly and really get your business out there so you can find what's working and build on that momentum so you were here because you want to make money right let's all be honest about that we all want to make more money that is number one and you are also here because you want your business to support your life and not the other way around I see all the enthusiastic nods from our in studio audience I love it right so you want your business to support your life you want to work hard you all love what you do right that's what you hear you love what you d'oh but he'd like to be able to take a weekend off or take a vacation or quit your day job right? You want to be able to do all of those things, so making a living selling what you make and let's face it that's a long sentence so you're going to see that abbreviated throughout the course so making a living selling what you make takes more than just following someone else's model right? I could tell you exactly what I did and you could try to do it and it's probably not gonna work for you because we make different products we have different ideal customers we have different target markets and so what we're going to do in this class is we're going to put your products out there test evolved and find the model that works for you and hopefully works for you quickly, right? But here's the thing you can't make a living selling what you make if you aren't making something people want to buy sorry to be the bearer of news on out bad news on that one, right? So we also out because we have products that we love and we have a passion for making and that is essential we have to keep that, but you also have to understand the market you have to design and create products that people want to buy that is essential and then the other piece is that you have to produce it for less than people are willing to pay right? You have to make a profit in there so that's the other piece now the good news is we're gonna learn throughout this boot camp people are probably willing to pay more than you think they are right now right under pricing is a huge problem it's a huge barrier to make a living selling what you make so we're going to work on that as well, but we have to make sure that we're making a profit on the things that we sell but of course how do you know if you're making a product people want to buy right that's a tough question how do you know if there's a market for it so you could make something that looks exactly like something already on the market? You could say that's cool, I can make that I could do that, but then you're stuck right? If you make something that looks exactly like something someone else is making, you are stuck, you're stuck in a race to the bottom for pricing you're stuck trying to take the exact same customers you're just stuck, so what I want to push you guys to do in this boot camp is to make something that's different to find the products, the marketing, the voice that's completely and uniquely you it's riskier right it's riskier because we don't know in the beginning what people are going to buy, but the reality is way more reward when we do it that way, right? We get out of that race to the bottom, we figure out what makes us unique, we have these products that people are clamoring to buy at a good price, the price that makes us money, right, and that's what we want to do in this boot camp. So what? I'm going to get out of this boot camp, we're going to cover so much ground here, it's a little bit insane, and I'm super excited about it because we're gonna go through so much, so we're going to figure out which of your products people want to buy. This is a really key, actually, rachelle asked me this morning before we were chatting. She said, you know, I've got this product, but I have some other products to should we talk about all of them? Yes, I want to talk about everything that you guys make. I don't want you to sell anything short because you don't know until you're out there, which of the products are really going to be the ones that resonate with your audience and which are the ones that are really going to make you money, right? So we want to figure out what those are we want to make sure you're making a profit at the price people are willing to pay, so we want to make sure that your pricing is writes that people buy, but you make money. We want to match your products with the right market places so you could find more of the people who want to buy your products. One of the biggest mistakes I see people making is they're trying to force their products into a market place that's not the right fit, and that stalls your business for years. So if you can align your products and your strengths as a business owner with the right market places that is going to accelerate your growth in a way that you may not have it even realized was possible. So we're going to do this in a couple of ways we're going to get your products into the marketplace quickly. We're going to drop hall of those stall tactics. I've seen them. All my websites not ready. I need a new logo and you better product photography. I have to talk to a graphic designer. Yes, you. You might need all of those things, but none of them should stop you from getting your products into the marketplace, because at the end of the day, that's why people buy right there buying your products and we want to make sure that we're putting products into the marketplace that people want to buy and they were going to gauge audience response right? We're going to see how people react to our products we're going to find the things that are selling well and we're going to do more of that we're going to expand your line strategically so that you're serving that audience and so we're gonna adjust your products, your brand and your marketing as you go along we're not gonna wait for everything to be perfect we're going to put it out there and test it and keep moving forward and there were couple advantages to approaching this boot camp and your business in this way we talked at those at the beginning of this a little bit, so we're going to generate revenue more quickly, making it easier to fund future growth, right? No one really likes to have to go into debt to run their business. We're going to talk about the financing options because sometimes you need a little extra cash flow right? Sometimes that helps but the more money you khun generate with the business, the easier it is to fund the growth of the business you also are way less stressed when your business is making money right everyone's a little happier when they're bringing in the cash yeah and we're also going to leave you with a repeatable system for testing, marketing and selling new designs, new ideas, new products, right? Because we're all creative, we have lots of ideas all the time, so you may have had one thing that worked, and now you're thinking I really have this great idea, I want to bring that to the market two so what you're learning in this boot camp you can use again and again when you have those new ideas and you want to see if there's a place for them in the market, saru, quickly, what we won't be covering in this class, so we're not going to talk about how to start your etsy shop. We're not going to talk about how you said should structure your business, whether you should be an llc or an escort for all those things, those are all important, but there's, a lot of other resource is out there for them and what? I really want to focus with you guys on his revenue generation because it doesn't matter here analyses or an s corp if you're not making any money, right? If you haven't found the right customers, so that's what we're going to focus on in this class? So how does this boot camp work? We have divided this into three distinct sessions that are going to move you through from setting the foundations that's where we're starting we're setting a foundation and we want to do this because it's important but it's also building us towards session too which is generate revenue quickly and that's where it gets really juicy right because we're gonna start to make some money that's what I want that's what I want to see and that's what I want to see what everyone following on home as I want you guys to really put these in the action but by the end of this boot camp cause we're here for five weeks I want you to make some money that's the goal right make money and then in session three we're going to create your plan for business success so we're gonna take what we learned by putting our products out in the marketplace and we're gonna figure out that strategy for growth for future revenue streams for sustainability we're going to answer that question of like what am I supposed to do every day or every month week or every month right? We're going to deal with all those once we've got all those other pieces of your business into place so this is what it looks like here we've got ten lessons in session one another nine in session two and last six in session three so we've got a lot of great content I'm really excited I'm also really excited because we're going to be joined by some amazing guest instruct there's over the five weeks of course so we're gonna be joined by tara gentili who is a creative live rock star I'm sure you guys have checked out her classes uh mini crary is gonna be joining us to talk about finance and she's got a really great approachable strategy that is going to make it so much less scary bridget lyons is another creative live instructor is going to be on and we're going to talking about how to run a successful kickstarter campaign which I know is something a lot of people are really interested in and then tracy matthews who is the chief visionary officer of flourishing thrive is going to come on towards the end to talk about your big business division we've also got a couple of great makers joining us so you may recognize from the former in studio audience tiffany webs and anna manzano they're both could be coming on to talk about how they have built businesses where they make a living selling what they make so tiffany is going to talk to us about her success on etc and how she balances that with other marketplaces and anna's going to talk about that hiring help in production piece because I know that's a big stumbling block for a lot of people and we're also going to be joined by shannon girl who company caravan pacific they make gorgeous mid century modern lamps you should all look up they raised fifty thousand dollars on kickstarter with their first campaign so she's gonna be joining us in that same segment is bridget so if that's something you guys are thinking about that's gonna be a great segment for you all right? So who is this boot camp for it's really? For anyone with a product to sell makers designers, artists maybe you're making one hundred percent of everything you do at home may be on your kitchen table maybe you've got a studio space maybe you're designing a product and having someone else make it totally for you and maybe you're an artist who's trying to figure out how your art pieces fit into the marketplace absolutely this costing me for you too so you might be at the beginning stages of your business you have a craft or a product and you want to start selling this class is going to be great for you we're going to make sure that you've got that foundation before you dive into the marketplace class is also going to be great for you if you're already in business but you want to make more money right? Who wants to make more money everybody at all right so this is going to be great for you too because we could maybe go back and fix some of those foundational things that I haven't quite worked you know you sort of started to business by accident and then you got stuck I think it happens to a lot of people, so we're gonna work on that as well to be anyone else joining us online yeah, I want to get a few more shot out sample who are coming in? We have divinity chan are who says hello everyone I'm joining from vancouver, canada excited to be part of this boot camp so welcome to divinity angie's is joining from chicago land t fallen says hello from arkansas and we have people joining in well oh, just cape town, south africa lisa is joining us and simi, another person from the uk lots people from the uk joining us thank you so much. All of you out there who have been joining in and people are are sharing what they make and they're different businesses so this is a good opportunity you have all these people from around the world in this chat room so it's a huge opportunity to get to know one another share links to your work and also we want to know what is it that you're making? If you have pictures of the products that you're looking to sell, we encourage you to upload them to our gallery so you'll see this on the course page there's a link there on the right hand side you can upload your work, so any photos that you have of things that you're working on we'd love to see them and everybody else who's watching this course will be able to check it out so it's a huge opportunity for you if you have any these photos go ahead and upload those if you have any questions on how to do that jumping in the chat room click on that chat icon and vanessa will show you exactly where to upload them but we want to see as much as we can from you guys be open and share your products and we love to see them so get in there and do that right now yeah I love seeing what everybody is working on so definitely upload those pictures online so great to see and it's also a great platform to share right you really can't be the exposure creative life has that amazing global audience all right so let's talk about what we're gonna do in session once we kind of we talked about where we're going right now you guys are really anxious to dive in so let's get going so we're gonna start off with session in one and in session one we're going to build the foundation for your sustainable business so I like to use the word sustainable not in the environmentally friendly way that is also awesome but I like to use it in the a business that does not burn you out because you're working a million hours not making money never taking a vacation and something that can last for a long time. So when I talk about sustainable business that's what I mean, I want you to be able to do this for years and years and years, or if you don't really want to do it for years and years, years, I want you to be able to make enough money that you can retire and relaxed you that's fine, jeffrey, whichever way you want to go, there is no judgment here, but I wanted to not burn you out and not drive you crazy, so we're gonna do this by getting to know your numbers right really, really important? How many people know how much money they're business spent and made last year? Not enough of you, right? But we're gonna work on that. We're also going to find your ideal customer. I know a lot of you talked about that is a big frustration point, figuring out who is buying your product and where you can connect with them. Well, to make sure that you price your products for profit and we're going to identify your strengths and weaknesses both in your brand, your products and you ok that's three not both were gonna identify those strengths and weaknesses to determine where you should be selling your products now because it might not actually be where you're selling your products