Showing posts with label running your etsy business. Show all posts
Showing posts with label running your etsy business. Show all posts

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

How to Write Calls to Action

You're posting to Twitter. You're posting to Facebook. You're writing a blog. You're doing everything, it seems, except making your product, your true love. And while doing everything, you're getting no feedback or response.

What's wrong? Your tweets are informative and not terribly full of hashtags. Your Facebook posts are not "salesy," they're about you and your love of the product you make. Your blog contains articles relevant to your business; they aren't just filling space with articles about your dog. It just isn't making any sense.

The problem could be that you aren't including a Call To Action (CTA) in your tweet, your status updates, or your posts. (Something else? I hear you groan.) Yes, something else.

A Call To Action is a persuasive argument you are making with your followers to do something. Think of it as subliminal messaging. You're not screaming "BUY MY PRODUCT NOW!!!" like a used care salesman; instead, you're nudging your followers step by step. Here are some examples of Calls To Actions:

Join me .....

     Click here.....

          Try this.....

               Download now...

                    I invite you....

                         While supplies last....

                              Get it now!

                                   In a hurry? Call me ....

                                        Act quickly!

                                             Limited quantities available!

                                                  Add to cart

                                                       Reserve your spot now!

                                                            Today only!

How many times have you responded to such language? Personally, I'm a sucker for "Click here" or "Download Now," with my thought being I can always click out of the webpage or delete the download. But I still respond to the ask, which is what the marketers want me to do. 

So, do you feel the pattern? No where in this list do you find the words "BUY MY PRODUCT NOW!!!!" rather, you change your vocabulary to suggestive language, but keep the tone of immediacy. 

Ok. Now you get the idea. But then what? Now you need to implement these Calls to Action in your tweets, in your status updates, and in your posts. 

So your tweet of "#glamorous #red #statement #necklace #sale three left!" becomes "Inventory Reduction Sale! Statement Necklaces 50% off - limited quantities available!"

Your Facebook status update of "Tested new spice samples" becomes "We fell in love with the taste of ____ at this local Thai restaurant and spent all weekend making samples. Share with us your favorite foods and restaurants!"

Your blog post ends with a direction. What was "Until the next time I decide to post" becomes "Don't miss my next post! Add me to your RSS feed today!" or "What are your thoughts about .....?"

So take some time to review what you've written, and turn it into words that make You Do Something!

Don't miss out on more tips to help with your business! Follow me by email today!

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Your Blog: Connecting Your Marketing Content

Like most bloggers, I work to find ideas for content. Like most bloggers, I work to find ways to bring additional readers to my blog. And like most business owners, I work to find ways to connect all my marketing content.

So I had a V-8 moment last week when I came across an idea on how to combine all three.

Add your electronic newsletters to your blog.

Like I said - a V-8 moment.  You know, the way you slap yourself on the forehead when you realize the obvious is right in front of you.

Last fall I wrote a series of posts about how to develop your newsletter content, how to create your electronic newsletter, and how to market your newsletter and yourself. I truly don't know why it did not occur to me to add my newsletter to my blog.

I wish I could find the article I had read which gave me the idea. Prior to writing this post, I spent an hour looking in the usual places where I store similar gems I find. But alas, it's nowhere to be found. So, without that article as my resource, I'll give you a few reasons why I think adding your newsletter to your blog is such a great idea:

  • Most newsletters are written with customer-friendly content. Most blogs (this one included) struggle with writing content that is customer-specific. Adding your newsletters to your blog enables your customers to search your "archives" in an easier format to learn more about your and your product. 
  • As your customers spend more time "in" your blog, the more they learn about your.  Think about it - your newsletter represents how your product and your brand have evolved. The more your customers learn about you, the more making a purchase from you is a personal decision, rather than a business decision.
  • Past newsletters give your customers a glimpse into your future. For example, I have featured Strawberry scents as the Fragrance of the Month for the past two years in June. What are the odds I'll over it again this year? This can help your customers plan their future purchases.
  • Your newsletters and your blogs can support each other, driving content from one to the other. In addition to linking your products in your newsletter back to your shop, your newsletter can link to your blog for more information. Again, try to keep your customers' attention as long as possible.
  • Adding newsletters together with the appropriate tags can help optimize your search engine results. Aren't we always looking for ways to do that?
So, in the spirit of transparency, click here to view my April newsletter! Seriously, you'll soon see my blog updated with a link to all my past electronic newsletters. I challenge you to do the same!

Happy sales!


P.S. - I'll add the link to the article I read with more information....just as soon as I find it!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Developing a Line Sheet

You're ready to enter the wholesale market. You've categorized your products and developed an inventory system. Now it's time to develop your line sheet.

What's that? A line sheet is a one or two page document which conveys information about your company, your products, as well as your payment, delivery and return policies.

Following are the key items you'll need to include:

  1. Your contact information - As with your stationery and all your marketing materials, include your contact information, especially email address and telephone number.  This is not the place for your Facebook or Twitter addresses! They goal is to make it simple for the buyer to contact you, not for them to be impressed with each and every one of your social media efforts. If you are working with a sales representative, consider replacing your contact information with theirs.  Your rep will thank you for this simple gesture!
  2. Basic information on your products - Wholesale pricing, colors, and sizes available are key elements here. If you have developed your inventory and have a unique identifier for each item, include it here.
  3. Minimum quantities - What is your minimum order? Make it realistic yet encourage your buyer. Remember, the goal in wholesale selling is to sell a larger quantity of items - in doing so, you can lower your supply costs and increase economies of scale and time! For example, I have a minimum order of $100, which is fairly easy to achieve.  Using easy numbers, selling a case (12) of candles for $10 each is $120.  the quantity makes sense and it achieves the minimum order I require.
  4. General information about your product - What are your materials? Do you have a unique assembly method? Are your supplies eco-friendly? This is the spot to turn your features into benefits.
  5. Payment terms - Here's an area you may need to beef up your accounting terminology. Are your terms net 30 (payment due 30 days after receipt of product), upon delivery, or up front? I offer a combination - I just don't have time to do a credit analysis, so first time orders require a credit card payment, and following orders are net 30. 
  6. Turn around time - How long can the buyer expect between date of order and date of receipt of product? If your turn around time is four weeks or more, you really need to be thinking in advance regarding the seasonality of your product. If you're able to have product inventory on hand, consider a two week or less turn around time.
  7. Shipment - Answer questions such as who pays? Which carrier do you use? Think creatively as to whether you can offer a discount on shipping for larger orders.
  8. Damages and returns - This was the hardest part for me. If you're going to play with the big guys, you need to be prepared to offer refunds and returns like the big guys. Know what your competition is doing, even if you're reaching for the stars. But make sure your return or refund is something you're willing or able to lose. You may be able to write in a restocking fee here, but always be prepared to accommodate a 100% refund!
As I've mentioned before, I use Stitchlabs for my inventory management system. One of the reasons I chose it was because it could take the information I developed on each product family, the inventory and stock photos and create a .pdf file for me. While I'm not endorsing nor encouraging use of this product, I do recommend you research whether the inventory system you're considering can do this for you as well.

So those are your key elements. If you foresee selling wholesale in your future, I highly recommend you begin working on these elements now! In future posts, we'll discuss how to take this technical information and turn it into a marketing piece.

As always, I welcome your feedback and questions.  Until then, happy sales!


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