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Sunday, May 24, 2015

The Business Chat - Stalking for answers

“How often should I blog?” “Which social media platforms should I use?” “Should I do any of the Thanksgiving craft shows?” “How can I double my sales this summer?”

Here is my answer.

I have no idea.

You are unique. Your work is unique. Your goals are yours alone. This is your business that you are running. Your situation is unique and special and only you can decide what you should be doing.
I can help you with how to set up a blog. I cannot tell you if you should be blogging. No one can. What if you hate writing? Or know that you can’t/won’t spare the time for it on a consistent basis? Or don’t feel comfortable with sharing your process? Only you know these answers and only you can make that decision.  

There is no formula for running your micro crafty business. If you are looking for a business with a formula and guaranteed success, find a lot of money and buy a McFranchise. Someone will tell you how to say “Would you like fries with that?”

You must make your own map to success.

While there is no formula for you to follow, a really interesting exercise is to look at other people’s maps. There is a reason that biographies are so popular, we all want to know how someone else made it.

If you want to know how someone succeeds it’s really easy these days.

Stalk them.

(not literally, that would be illegal).

Study their business. See where they sell. Read their blog, follow them on facebook, follow their tweets. Check how often they post on Instagram, see what groups they belong to on Flickr, study their Pinterest boards. Do they post free tutorials on any craft blogs? Do they guest post? How often do they update their online shop? And what online shop platform do they use?

Whenever I am making a decision about joining a new social media platform, or contemplating a major step, I check to see what the people I follow do. I currently follow 14 people closely. These are people in all different businesses, not just jewelry. I follow people in different industries because sometimes you have to think outside the box.   

As you do your research, think a lot about what you are learning and ask yourself what you want to do. Just because someone you admire blogs twice a day doesn’t mean that you have to in order to succeed. If you hate blogging then don’t blog. You’ll find another road to success.

It’s interesting to see someone else’s path to success. Do remember that this is their path, not yours. Trying to duplicate someone else’s road will not work. Because they are not you. You must find your own path.  

Voyeuristic peeking into the lives of businesses that are bigger than yours can be a lot of fun, but remember this: what really counts is what you’re doing, not what they’re doing. 

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