How to Make a Living Selling What You Make

Lesson 15 of 41

Live Check In

 

How to Make a Living Selling What You Make

Lesson 15 of 41

Live Check In

 

Lesson Info

Live Check In

Hello, everyone and welcome to our live checkin for how to make a living selling what you make now you guys have made it through session one we did ten lessons on and I know people have been making a ton of progress because I've been seeing it, you know, on instagram on twitter, in our private facebook group, which if you guys have not joined our private facebook group yet, make sure you are a cp for this class that gets you access to that group. It's amazing over eight hundred creative business owners are in there sharing tips, sharing advice such a great place, eh? So now we are heading into session to which is generate revenue quickly, but first we're actually gonna do this really great live checkin, eh? So I'm really excited to kind of hear where you guys are stuck, what information you need on really no help answer some of your questions that we could help you move forward into our next session, which is, of course, about generating revenue quickly. Now, before we do that, I actua...

lly want to bring in a really exciting guest. Who's agreed to join us for this live check in, so you probably seen emily mcdow somewhere over the universe because her newest line of greeting cards has been featured on think good morning america, the today show I can't even name them all, but I'm pretty sure if it's been there she's been on it with this new fantastic line so she is an illustrator, a writer, a designer a really amazing businesswomen on and I am just so excited to have emily join us today for this live chat so emily welcome. Thank you so much, it's so great to be here. Awesome. Well, I just wanna have you first of all tell us where we can find you online on give us a little bit of your background. How did you get started doing what you're doing? Sure, you can find us online at emily mcdowell dot com on dh I got started, I worked in advertising for about ten years. I was a on our director and then I was a copywriter and then a creative director. So I had a lot of experience doing creative, coming up with ideas, writing, illustrating all that on dh. Then in two thousand eleven, I quit my full time advertising job knowing that there was something else that I wanted to do but not having any idea what that same wass on dh I was freelancing and advertising, and I started an etsy shop on the side in two thousand eleven, and I started telling prince that I was just printing myself on epson printer that I bought just like you know illustrated my own stuff selling prints and I really wanted to do cars but I couldn't figure out how to make money because I was stuck in this I was in this model of like well but if I can just print one thing and sell it for twenty four dollars like why should I print things and sell them for four dollars like that doesn't make me feel like I was in this very like I was in a sort of weird place in my head and and then valentine's day so this january twenty thirteen came around and I had an idea for a mountain card that I had never seen before on dh one of the reasons I really wanted to do a card line was because I felt like there was on opportunity to do something different on toe add a new voice to the marketplace of what was available for cards and so I felt like you know, this card I've never they're all kinds of relationships on valentine's day where you're kind of dating someone but not really and it's always really awkward and you give them a normal card and you have to give them a speech like this is not a deal like forget it don't worry like or you just don't give them anything and that it's also weird so I was like what if you just did a car that was that speech and I think that people need this car so I was like, you know, I'm just gonna have one hundred of these printed in the local printer don't really sell five I have I just want this to be in the world and so I did that and I released them on my etsy shop two weeks before valentine's day, which was not good timing it turned out because you're shit things and then they have to send the card and, you know, you kind of wanna release earlier than that, yeah, but as he put it on their facebook page that day and it was turn it and it turned into at sees most shared and like facebook post of twenty thirteen like crazy viral when everywhere buzzfeed read it like all over the place glamour on dh I sold seventeen hundred of that hard in a week ah, a little bit crazy and I had, you know, my at that time I was just I was freely thing and working out of my house and, you know, just had like my mind stepson was six like print cards in an envelope time it was with the understanding that there was a place for me in stationery are feeling like, you know, I could really do this and and so then I looked into what it would take to actually start my own wholesale line of stationery and found out that the stationery show was in may on dh ended up developing I had saved some money from freelancing and so knowing that I wanted to do something with it but not knowing one and decided this is what I wanted to do. And so I took two months off of work and just worked like crazy and developed a line of forty cars that I launched in may at the stationary show trade yeah, that that is amazing. So I want to actually there's a couple things you said in there that I want to come back and ask you a more detailed picture and super fascinating to our audience. So when you made that initial leap to print those hundred cards and you were thinking, maybe our spell, you know, for what did you have a kind of costs broken down where you knew her? I mean, to make that work? Because printing, I mean, printing cards is really cheap, right? Like, no, so if you print one hundred car, it'll cost you, you know, it depends, I mean, twenty bucks or but it depends on where you're printing them and how, but it's it's really cheap, and so I wasn't even looking at the first card as I want to make a gazillion dollars, it was more just as an experiment like heart is an expensive and that's the nice thing about cards in general that I've learned as I've gotten into the stationery business is that it's a fairly low risk investment on dso even now like we do give products and cards now and it's way easier to have a weird idea and put it on a car and if it doesn't sell then it doesn't sell and that's ok even though we're now printing you know, in our smallest runs were printing for thousand at a time and but we can't really do that with a gift product because then you're stuck with a lot of products that cost you a lot of money out front to make so yeah, yeah, I love that idea thinking about the cards as being a place to really test things and test your ideas so I also want to ask you about your decision too leap into the stationery show so quickly because you were starting on etc and I think that a lot of people who start sort of selling online are maybe a little bit scared of wholesale and certainly scared of jumping into a trade show so quickly, but what we've been talking about in this class is finding your best fit marketplace of how you can grow quickly so what made you realize that you know it was worth the effort it was worth the investment it was worth? Maybe I'm sure a couple of pretty crazy weeks or months to get ready for that stationery show so quickly? Yeah, well, actually it's kind of an interesting story. I I really I felt like if I felt like if I didn't do it now, the time was right to do it, that there was that there was a opportunity for a voice that wasn't and a look that was not really there, and I felt like if I didn't do it, someone was going to do it, and so I should do it on. And I also and I also one of the things that I did in order to test the viability of what I was going to do for wholesale. I did sort of a weird saying, which in hindsight was it was a really smart saying, um, I I looked up who rifle paper sales rap group was in los angeles, which is where I lived, and I sent the principle of that group a cold email with j pegs of the five cars that I designed so far and said, this is me, this is what I do, this is what happened on etsy. This is what I want to dio, um, if you would be willing to meet with me and let me know if you think I have something here, I would love to talk with you that's awesome and she e mailed me back like an hour later and I went in to meet with her the next day on dh she was actually lyn mitchell is the name of the woman and limited group is her is her rep group she was actually the one who said you need to go to the stationery show if you're going to do this you needed to you know do this in a big way and here's how you do it and like here's how you get a booth and here's how it like basically schooled me on like the entire day seeing justin I like it was like a two hour meeting of like just looking few minutes no it's like okay, I need forty cars scrap half of them need to be birthday cool it's like okay like, you know all these things but it was just all the sort of checklist of all the things like the quick and dirty how did how to do this on dh I had, like three months to pull it together and I wasn't sure and I was like, I don't know if I can do this and she was like well tell you what if you manage to get yourself to the stationery show um with forty cars we will refuse wow on dh so that was my incentive teo make it happen because she's got eight sales reps in southern california and arizona it's a really it's a well respected group, they've got a lot of really great, they were, you know, rifle and sugar paper and jonathan adler and all kinds of great lines and artists, and so it was like, okay, this is a challenging, captured like I'm gonna make this happen. Awesome, that's really fantastic. So you are obviously balancing your wholesale business with selling online through your shop. So how do you balance those two? How does that work in your business way had a separate we have separate staff that handle the different branches of the business because they have really different needs on dh. So we have right now I have two people who handle our all of our wholesale on do we have one person who handles retail customer service, sort of all the time on dh, then that grows during busier periods? And then we actually just we had up until this past month, we were shipping all of our retail orders out of our own studio in los angeles, and we're shipping all of our hotel orders out of a fulfillment house, a third party for home and housing that diego on dh, that was an experiment that didn't work very well. We've been doing it for the last year, it was isn't having split inventory was really hard. We never knew where anything woz like the fulfillment house was really expensive and you can't really use the fulfillment house for orders that are under one hundred dollars because of their price structure so it wouldn't work for us too t you know, ship our retail orders through fulfillment house so it was like wholesale only and what happened was we outgrew our space in los angeles last year where we didn't have enough room to store all of our inventory on real estate here is like three dollars a square foot so it's like are you gonna pay twelve thousand dollars a month warehouse in los angeles like that's insane and unaffordable what we had sort of made this we're doing this thing and that didn't really work and then with this spring what I've been doing on that I finally have it up and running in a work fantastic is we now have our own warehouse in las vegas where with my employees I'm five full time employees there on dwi ship all of our wholesale and all of our retail there but we have them warehoused on separate sides even though it's the same merchandise because the picking is different on dso for efficiency we have them split up on dh we have one person there who sort of in charge of the retail and then one person who's in charge of the wholesale and then everybody else kind of fills in depending on what's busy when yes very cool so I want to come back and ask you about the employees stuff, but it but we're goingto do a couple of questions first, but I know people are curious about that as well, but I want to actually ask you about your ah ah ah that needs forty cards for that first stationery show, but you obviously carry a much broader range of products you've got the tote bag that months you've got the prince at what point did you decide that you needed those other products? Did you bring some of those as well to the stationery show and then you know how just how did you know when it was time to expand those other categories? So it's funny that you ask I well, I brought prints to the stationery show because prince was where I started, so I had all these presents until I brought those andi was really it was prince and cards in the beginning on dh really expanding into other products. If I were to do this over, I would not have done I'm not why would not have made some of the decisions that I made as a creative person I want to make everything and so when we started, I was like, I'm gonna make this take that I want tea, you know, and so we we did all these weeks, we had dish towels that we no longer because they were a disaster. We had way tried all kinds of different things on dh, and the reality is that there are a lot of stationary cos that that don't do things beyond cards because you don't necessarily have teo, there are more companies now that air doing sort of a hybrid gift stationary thing, but you don't know had any other categories if you don't want teo on dh, the other saying, I mean, the cards are the easiest and cheapest thing to make, and they have the best margit everything else, the more complicated it is, the more martin like chances for error, the more expensive it is, the more expensive investment upfront and the margins on gift or just not as good. So it's a sort of this constant, like balance between should we just make more cards but liking making herself? But the other stuff is a pain, so okay, yeah, so how do you you know it's so funny that you say like, I'm a creative person, I want to design all these different things because I hear it from other people, I'm guilty of it myself, so how do you kind of rein yourself in do you have a system for evaluating new product ideas do you say you know what like sometimes I'm just going to give myself creative play and it doesn't matter how do you balance that yeah I think you know what I d'oh now is I have sort of promised myself and my staff that we're not goingto develop any new product categories for at least another year because we've just had the last two years have been insane insane I mean they've been great but they've been really spend it just problem solving twenty four seven on dh everybody's really tired so but what my challenges right now is to create is to innovate within those product categories and math actually more interesting for me coming from a place where I used to thinking with a creative brief being from advertising I would have a lot of parameters haven't put on my ideas and so it was never like just go do whatever and so that actually I actually like thinking with creative perimeters because it helps me figure out what's actually it helps me go to a place that's really interesting and innovative on dh so right now I'm finding myself with having better ideas when I'm really limiting myself to the categories that we already have but yeah, I mean I do you know I do when I think about other categories now I'm just I'm very cautious about I'm very cautious about marjan and I think that that's a thing that I keep hearing from other business owners all the time that I talk to is I wish that I had been more cautious about martin because gift can be really challenging in that way yeah, absolutely and actually that's what I want to ask you about next is is talking a little bit about about your pricing so you're in a very specific kind of product line and price range, you know, when you kind of you mentioned before like for you value based pricing isn't really a thing it's really about looking at them. Maria so how do you set your final retail prices? And then how do you make sure that you have those right margins and that your profitable within those prices when you are limited by what the market is, you know, willing to friend? So what? We are kind of rule that we use is based on what our overhead is based on, well, all kinds of what stuff is I generally don't want teo pursue creating a product that I cannot sell a five times retail five times markup for wholesale so something that cost me two dollars to make I need to sell for a minimum of ten dollars or it's not worth it in terms of the logistics, the amount of work that it actually takes because we're in we're now in about two thousand stores on we do a pretty big business online and it's a lot of work to manage all that stuff and our employees and our overhead. And so for me, I found that having left than that of a margin, just that at the end of the day it doesn't that it doesn't balance out there is not enough profit for it to be worth it if you have less overhead, if you have less smaller operation, you could totally get away with less than that. We do have one product that is more about four times mark up, but that people really love and that we just can't get any cheaper no matter what we've tried to do, and the market won't bear ah, higher price point because we've experimented without you, so we really set her price is based on, you know, looking at looking at for cards, you know, for a for a sort of boutique e type of card, a two dollars and twenty five cents wholesale price is pretty standard for a four fifty two retail. Some people, even in some of the narn new york city stores, sell our hearts for six dollars. But that's the highest they'll go way sell ours for two twenty five that's pretty standard across the industry I also you know, I was very conscious but I always came out this a I don't want to try to compete on price because I feel like especially with gift like you're never ever ever going to win I mean target can get you could get a cheap mug you could get a cute mug a target for six dollars so you know that's so you have to make something that people want badly enough that it prices not as much of an issue and yeah for really for gift we try to stay at a five five times mark up sometimes for but but no lower than that and that is after two years of trial and error yeah figuring things out your gofer yeah, so for you so you're really competitive advantage is in your designs and in your basically the intellectual property that you're creating, right? Yeah, I mean I write everything with the exception of the very, very, very few things like the print behind you is actually quite decent izumi wrote it, but I right ninety nine percent of what we dio I draw everything we dio and that is my livelihood, you know, and those are that's yes so absolutely that's that's that's how I distinguish that's how we distinguish our work is is with our eyes with my words on dh my designs and it's been interesting intellectual property has been one of my one of my most popular bond post actually was about when it's okay to use a popular quote in your work and when it's not and I think I sort of blame pinterest for this in a way because people see something or like I was out of interest so I can use it and, you know, things like song lyrics, quotes from movies things like things other people rode that we don't have permission for, you can't put them on a product and sell them without that person's permission. So yeah, yeah, I think I just I think it's a good point to make two, especially since we have so many I think station are people in our audience and but really I think it it comes down to any business. If you're doing something that's exactly like someone else or that the is someone else's idea of someone else's design, then the only thing you can do is compete on price and that's obviously not only is it illegal it's also obviously a really losing battle when it comes to your right, right? Right, yeah point of differentiation for brand is everything you know? Yeah awesome so I want to ask you now I want to comeback teo you know, kind of talking about your team because you went from a one woman show printing prints on your absence you know, in your studio so now you have a team and a warehouse in vegas and so how did you make that transition? But it's only been a couple of years right that all this has happened it has it was really crazy I came back for well so at the stationary show it was you know what my plan after this the show was to keep working out of my house for a while maybe you know eventually probably get a space, but I figured I'll just work from home I hadn't had this is really common tio I had not I'd only have sample cards printed to go to the stationery show I did not do like a huge offset print run of all my cars before the show because I didn't know what would self on I and I wasn't sure you know much would sell and I really had no idea what to expect from the experience because everybody's experience is so varied a trade shows and so I had only had samples printed on dh then on the last day of the show urbanoutfitters placed an order for fifteen thousand cards on dh they wanted them in two and a half weeks well yeah, and I hadn't had them printed yet, and so I had a print are lined up, and they had all my files and everything, but so I called them, and when I was flying home from new york, all the stuff was being printed on dh I didn't have, but I didn't have a team I didn't have, you know, I didn't have anybody to help may put house, leave fifteen thousand cards and pack them and do their route and guide and, like, do anything. And so it was like a just crazy scramble. A friend of mine, shane a phrase is that who's, an amazing watercolor painter, let me borrow her studio on dh take I found people on instagram to come and help them like, you know, just for like three days, we all just like stuff cars, and it was like an assembly line, and then I ended up it became really clear really quickly that I couldn't work from home because I didn't. The amount of cards that I had to have printed would have completely filled the guest bedroom that I was working out like I like there was not enough like I could have built a sort of garage space and lived in it out of the box of the cards it was because forty cars when you print all right, I was in egypt but this forty thousand mean I ended up printing my first run because of the urban order because of me leg math I ended up doing about ninety eight thousand cards my first run and the printer was like, so where do you want these delivered? And I was like, well, I guess I can't go to my house and he was like, yeah, you live in it, you live in a barn like no, they can't get us so I had to get a space and I was like, well, you know, I have this check coming from urban outfitters and nothing else I have enough money for rent on a space for a year and you know, I can just sit in it and work like, if I have tio and so I ended up getting a space on dh one of the people who, uh, one of the people who had helped with my sort of initial instagram push was a friend of a friend andi was just in between jobs at the time I ended up staying on with me four days a week at first helping just like helping with everything like it was just we were just doing you know, I was drawing I was drawing everything and writing everything and doing all the creative and then she was helping with like because we're also packing and shipping all of our orders and so she was just helping out with all that stuff on dh then um about two months later I want to say I hired another friend of hers he came on full time hey had been another friend from a previous job like my first four employees were all like friends of friends like word of mouth like you I need someone else like someone told out of a job like it was not there was no science behind any of it like it wasn't like I need a head of operations like I need you know, I need a like many ex experience instrument, you know, infrastructure and business no, it was like, you are smart and you you could help me make a company like it was but, you know, and so it was very because it was all, like, immediate like there was no time to really do a job search there was it was just like, yeah, I need help come help me. So my first four employees sort of happened like, organically in that way on dh then we had a ton of people in and out who were, like, ten sort of ten, ninety nine temp people part time coming and helping pack and ship orders for the first a year or so until we kind of got that more under control and started using a temp on actual temp agency for a lot of our um for a lot of are a lot of our health that way and had people who are more felt like it was it was it was all just kind of it was very transitional for a long, long time and in fact it finally just now stopped being yeah it's good to know that that transitional feeling can in fact end so one final thing that I want to ask you about is, you know, this week actually in this course we are talking about a different ways of financing your business and kind of looking for ways to grow. So when you made that initial leap into the station I show and then you had to obviously print what was a crazy amount of cards so there was the outfront cost there now, you know, you have after the show, you know, you have that urban check coming, but how did you finance was all savings was it was all say by whose straps awesome it was yeah, it was about my initial investment was about ten thousand dollars and it was all from savings I had I had saved freelancing knowing that I wanted to do something and I felt like this was it this is, you know, and but, yeah, that was just it was an initial tent between the show and the printing everything and, you know, and I shared a booth at the show. I didn't do my own boo. Wow, yeah, which was that I'm doing my own boost that quickly would have been really, really I I ended up sharing with the one friend of mine from from years ago who was in stationery, glue letter press in ohio. She just happened to have extra space and her boobs and all that without really well, but it was ah, yeah, it was about ten, it was about ten thousand after, you know, with all of the printing and all the in all of the travel on because I'm in l a and the shows in new york and all that stuff, yeah, awesome. Fantastic. Well, thank you so much for joining us today. You everyone I learned a ton and just to kind of reminder, where can everybody find you online? You can find me at emily mcdowell dot com it's very original, you are you're big, you're big instagram user, right? So they have yeah, double on instagram with an underscore at the end, thea other emily mcdowell without an underscore is like a high school girl and if you hate me so yeah, awesome. Perfect. Well, thank you so much for joining us. Emily say we're having way awesome. All right, so I want to kind of go back and just touch on a few things that we've been talking about over the course of the last session and questions that people have on so one of the first places I want to start before we dive into you your questions online is just answering that question of that kind of profit peace so in your I know a lot of people were asking questions in the workbook, you know, how did they calculate that final prophet peace? Is it a percentage? Where does it come from? And the answer is that it's not anything specific. So really the key to setting that final price is that you know, that value based priced or that market based price depending on the industry you're on us, we just learned from emily but that's going to set your final price and then you're going to get your profit working backwards from there and you want to make sure that it's enough of a margin as emily mentioned to make it worthwhile for you s oh, it's never just about marking up because that always leaves money on the table it's about kind of moving from there okay, so let me dive in and answer a few of your questions now so one of the questions that was asked is, would you recommend selling the same type of product to two different sets of clientele or choosing one to run with? This person says my jewelry business has been quickly becoming divided between fashion jewelry and wedding jewelry custom designs. The latter is more lucrative, but I am hesitant to completely abandon the fashion market because I am still making some sales. So I think that's such a good question, especially as you guys are honing in on your target market. My advice is always, always, always to pick one and focus on that, because it's just too difficult to try to grow two distinctly separate businesses at once on. The other thing is that I want to remind everyone not to equate sales with profit. So in the case of this person, if your bridal custom businesses more lucrative, stay with that, you might give up a few sales initially by ditching that other part of your business, but ultimately it's about profit, not just about, you know, the amount of sales. So focus on the part of your business that's doing really well and netting you that big profit, you know, go ahead and let the other one slide, okay, um, so I want to also know, answer a question, um that people have been asking both in our facebook group and someone asked here is well which is about things like limited edition and one of a kind so and particular people working in need of the photography or the fine our market. So first of all, if you are working in limited edition whether that's, prince or photography whatever you're doing at the end of the day you know you want to again make sure that your profitable but it really becomes about looking at the market so go out do your market research find those coms and that's really going to set your final price and then you can work backwards looking at your material costs your labour your overhead to figure out you know if you are profitable at that price point of what the market will bear now if you're not profitable that price point you can either a lower cost or be you can just drop the product from your line so that's something to keep in mind she was that some things just aren't profitable and if they are it's okay to take them out of your line now as far as one of a kind ghost. So someone asked in our ask feature here I'm a fine artist selling one of a kind art and it seems everything is directed towards production artists so how do your methods apply to one of a kind aren't selling so that's a great question it, and first of all, all of this can absolutely apply. So if you're making one of a kind that's where it's a really, really key to pay attention to those, I'm calling them production hours, right? But it's the time spent creating your art so that's really where your time and where the kind of value is coming in. So making sure that you are covering your materials, you're covering the time, a team, and then looking at the market to find kind of the upper level. So the whole process is the same, but keeping in mind that if you're selling one of a kind pieces, it needs to be higher price, because everything that you d'oh is going to take longer. So if you're selling something that's production and you have an online store, you have a wholesale business, no one image, you put it up there, and you can sell the same thing over and over again, right? But if you're selling something that's, one of a kind, then you're stuck in this, ok, everything is, you know, a new listing in my online shop, or I have to communicate those pieces with my stores or my gallery's on dso there's just more time inherent and selling one of a kind pieces. So you want to make sure that you're really accounting for that when you figure out your production price on your production ours, because you're just going to have more time into making each sale on dso by that standard, one of a kind pieces should always cost more, but all the same things that we're doing here, all of the kind of business structure taking a look at your overheads as we move forward and we start to talk about test market events, which we're going to do in session, too, on all of those things can still apply. You just want to make sure that you're really priced to make that to make the money that you need to make. All right, another question that we got and again keep those questions coming as you can go ahead and put them in the ask button there is, you know, someone says I am on the verge of changing my artistic style and products to appeal to a specific market. What do I do with the audience that knows me for my past are that I'm not working in any more that's a great question as you're thinking about transitioning as if you already built in audience. The first thing that you can do is try to bring them with you, it's not always gonna work, but you can try to bring them along in the journey, you know, show behind the scenes show the process, let people see that you're making this transition and try to bring as many of of them along as possible if you can't it's ok, sometimes to let an audience go. This is really, really key when the audience won't support your new pricing, sometimes you just have to let them go. Your joys have the option to think about designing for the new audience, but especially if you're thinking about a big art to cic break, it was a dragons many of them along, as you can but be prepared for maybe some unsubscribe summon follows and just know that it's okay to let those people go in so that you can then search out and seek you're kind of new audience. Andi, I also want to add teo question that came up in our facebook group that I think a lot of people are probably thinking about as they make the transition is what do you do with old inventory? So if you are thinking, you know, I've been in this direction, and now I want to move on to this other direction. You know what do I do with maybe old inventory that I have and this is a great way to maybe generate some sales or just kind of clean things out, so if you're old inventory is varied drastically different from the new brand don't try to push it into the new shop we're into the new brand or into the new wholesale line instead think about ways that you could do sort of little one ofthe pop of events maybe it's a sample sale, maybe you're selling through a facebook page maybe you organize an in person pop up event, you know think about all those things that you can do to sort of get that new work out into the world in a way that doesn't dilute the old brand. The other thing is you may just decide to cut your losses you know what? This isn't the right thing for me I'm going to take these old pieces and they're going to be everybody's christmas gift this year, right? Eso there's certainly ways to do it to where you just said, you know, I'm going to cut my losses I'm going to move on from the old line, but sometimes you know look at how much money you've got invested in it because sometimes that amount of money it may not be worth it to try to push it forward if its going to dilute the new brand okay, let me take a look. Um, so I want to answer, um, a question two more questions and then and then we'll go ahead and get you on to today's lesson because it's really good when I'm really excited teo share with you guys kind of how are moving forward? So someone recently raised their prices, which is awesome. I love hearing that I think that's happening a lot to a lot of people on, but they've been working with a nonprofit, and they've actually been giving them a discount on their prices to begin with, and now they've up to them even more. So the question is, how do I handle new orders from them? So anytime that you're doing a price increase and you're dealing with new stores, the best thing is just to be honest, so be out front with them and let them know I just raise my prices and give them an end date, so I just raise my prices. I'll go ahead and honor the old prices until ex state, but then I'll go ahead and bring them up, and you may decide, since you've already been giving them a dollar just count off. This person is making body, butters says you are you've been giving them a dollar discount off, you might do that for them, as well as the new wholesale price, but don't keep honoring the old one forever and ever just because you don't wantto kind of offend them, let them know that the prices have gone up and see if there's a way that you can work with them and continue to do so. No it's the one final question, which is actually really great one because we're going to start to talk about this in this next session, which is, do you think doing a trade show is the best way to launch product to a large audience of potato and potential wholesalers? So the answer is, maybe it depends on a lot of factors depends on your product depends on how prepared you are on wholesale show can be a great launchpad, but it can also be a huge waste of money if you're not prepared and you're not doing it right and it's also not the best way to test the market if you're very, very new. So coming up in session to as we get into lessons fifteen and beyond were talking about something called the test market of that on, so the test market event is a way to get your products out into the marketplace, generate some revenue and see if there's even a market for your products on and while you could certainly use a wholesale show was a test market event if you are very very new I recommend testing your products out in some other ways whether that's um trunk shows at a store whether that's you know starting online whether it's doing a retail show I'm working on testing in some other places first eh so that you know there's a good response you know emily talked about jumping in very quickly to a trade show but she knew that there was a market for her product because she had that huge immediate response so if you're unsure to you a couple of other test market type events first and then decided if a trade show is right for you but I would never dive into a trade show is your very very first thing if you have no idea if the market has any interest for your products all right so that is going to be it for this live check in but stay here because we're going to go into today's lesson lesson eleven which is all about shifting your money mindset now our indiscretion to which is generate revenue quickly which I'm so excited about because we've got some great lessons on financing your business on using crowdfunding and then getting into that test market event so that you could go ahead and start testing your product's eso stick around stay tuned watch today's lesson and I will see everybody later

Class Description

"The Course is RICH in content and full of VALUE. I strongly believe this course is BETTER than 99% of the course out there." - Tajul Ghani (CreativeLive Student)


It's common for a crafter to get inspired and pour time and money into launching a creative business idea that they “just know” will be a hit only to discover that there isn’t much of a market for the business they envisioned. But it doesn’t have to be that way – there are specific actions you can take to ensure even the most creative endeavor makes money right away and doesn’t flop.

How to Make a Living Selling What You Make is your complete guide to building a thriving handmade business. Megan Auman is a maker and educator who has built a multi-faceted business around her passion for great design. Her jewelry line is sold in stores across the US and in this bootcamp she’ll teach you the recipe to her success. You'll learn how to:

  • Generate revenue from the beginning while balancing longer term growth 
  • Find the best and worst revenue streams for your products 
  • Set targets, create profitable pricing, and evaluate market demand 
  • Deepen your product line and build your brand 
  • Grow your email list and use social media for long-term growth 
  • Develop production strategies as you start creating more product 
This course includes a comprehensive workbook with exercises and activities designed to propel you through the lessons and position your business for sustainable success.

Megan will help you develop your business idea so you don’t waste time and money on projects that don’t pencil. She’ll also share insights on what to do once your business is up and running. She’ll coach you through best practices for hiring, outsourcing, and planning for the long haul. You’ll walk away confident that you can develop and stick with a business plan that won’t have you tied to a day job or pouring money into a project that doesn’t pay. How to Make a Living Selling What You Make will set you up to earn a serious income by doing what you love.

Lessons

  1. Class Introduction
  2. Define Your Big Goals: What Gets You Out of Bed?

    Find out what motivates you, so when things get tough you know what you are working towards. (And why!)

  3. Finding YOUR Ideal Number
  4. How Much Should You Pay Yourself an Hour?
  5. Who is the Ideal Customer for Your Products?
  6. What is Your Customer Willing to Pay?
  7. Pricing Your Products for Profit
  8. Where Does Your Brand Need Work?
  9. What Are The Strengths and Weaknesses of Your Products?
  10. What Makes You a Great Business Owner?
  11. What Should Your Product Be Now?
  12. Bonuses w/ Purchase
  13. Bonus w/ Purchase: Your MAL # (ideal #) in Detail

    Are you scared to move forward with your business because you are embarrassed by certain aspects of your brand?

  14. Bonus with Purchase: Testing Customer Profiles using Facebook ads
  1. Live Check In
  2. Shift Your Money Mindset
  3. How To Finance Your Business
  4. Are You Ready to Crowdfund?
  5. Analyze Business Opportunities
  6. Test the Market by Entering with a BANG
  7. Plan Your First Big Sales Event
  8. Market and Promote Your Event: How to Build Buzz
  9. Make Your Event a Success
  10. Analyze and Move Forward
  11. Bonus with Purchase: Calculating ROI
  1. Evolve Your Product Line

    Gaps in your product line mean you are leaving money on the table. Identify those missed opportunities and fill them.

  2. Create a Production Strategy
  3. Plan for Growth and Future Revenue Streams
  4. Your Big Business Vision
  5. Draft Your Daily and Monthly Action Plan
  6. Keep the Momentum Going
  7. Live Check-in - Finale
  8. Bonus with Purchase: Adjusting your MAL # with employees and contractors
  9. Free Bonus: Student Interviews - Catherine Utschig
  10. Free Bonus: Student Interviews - Christine Herrin
  11. Free Bonus: Student Interviews - Holly Tanner Straus
  12. Free Bonus: Student Interviews - Joy Jenkins
  13. Free Bonus: Student Interviews - Leah Drapkin
  14. Free Bonus: Student Interviews - Lisa Jones
  15. Free Bonus: Student Interviews - Monica Jacquay
  16. Free Bonus: Student Interviews - Richelle

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