Tuesday , 21 November 2017
I'm here to tell you that my tip works. I gave up watching reality television a couple years ago. I currently spend an average of one hour each and every day on just promotion and marketing. And with close to 1100 sales to date in my Etsy Shop, not to mention throngs of blog readers and oodles of fabulous and fascinating new friends on my Facebook page, I'd say my strategy is working.

The Reality About Reality TV

The Reality About Reality TV

You know who you are.  You’ve watched every season of Survivor and you are quite certain that with your own creative resourcefulness and plucky determination, you would easily triumph over Boston Rob on the remotest of desert islands.  And you just KNOW that The Donald would pick you as the ultimate apprentice, if only you had the chance to show off your unique brand of entrepreneurial ingenuity and people skills.

And yet, as you shift uneasily in your easy chair,  you wonder aloud why your superb survival skills and business savvy have not yet led to wild success and blockbuster sales in your Etsy shop.

Okay, you DID read the Etsy Success email last week about the importance of marketing and promotion.  Yes, you know that you are in a marketplace with 300,000 other sellers, making for some very stiff competition.  And yes, you realize that you’ll need to be responsible for driving traffic to your own shop and making your brand stand out in a crowd.   “But I don’t have time for marketing,” you whine from your comfort zone, as one more Housewife from Somewhere records her new music video and doesn’t invite her best friend to the Gala of The Year. “I barely have time to create my art (or to hunt down and list my vintage items),” you wail with dramatic flair.

What I’m about to propose may be as shocking as the season finale to The Bachelorette, but it is one of my best tips:
Turn off reality television for one hour each day.  You heard what I said.  Do it.

Hear me out.  The folks over at Nielsen recently reported that the average American adult watches 35.6 hours of TV each week. That’s just a few hours short of a full-time job!

Just think what you might do if you turned off Reality TV for one hour each day.  You could:

  • read tutorials or how-tos
  • participate in the Etsy Forums
  • tweet
  • write a blog post or a tutorial to share
  • visit other blogs and interact by leaving comments
  • design a business card or thank you note to include with your orders.
  • re-organize your Etsy shop
  • network on Facebook (I said “network”, which BTW does not include surfing, playing Scrabble, or gossiping)
  • organize a giveaway on your own blog or on someone else’s
  • participate in blog hops, or  weekly challenges (I enjoy Illustration Friday, for example).
  • learn the basics of HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language– useful if you have a blog)
  • read your Etsy Success Newsletter
  • learn how to use the crop, contrast, and color adjust features on your photo editing tool

You get the idea.  Now answer this final question for all the marbles, the whole enchilada, the pot of gold:

Which of these scenarios would you choose if you could only experience just one?
1. You are sitting passively in your armchair watching OTHERS enjoy adventure, wealth, success, and new friendships; OR
2. With just one hour of marketing and promotion each day, You have become the star of your very own reality show, as a wildly successful artisan or vintage-treasure-purveyor enjoying fame and fortune and fabulous new friendships.

I thought so.

And I’m here to tell you that my tip works.  I gave up watching reality television a couple years ago. I currently spend an average of one hour each and every day on just promotion and marketing.  And with close to 1100 sales to date in my Etsy Shop, not to mention throngs of blog readers and oodles of fabulous and fascinating new friends on my Facebook page, I’d say my strategy is working.  And don’t be overwhelmed by lists like the one above.  Just pick one task at a time and focus on it for one hour.  Do that every day and see what happens. Now I’m off to star in my own reality show which I call “The Real Crazy Cat Ladies of Cyberspace and Beyond”, right after I watch Dancing With the Stars.  Hey, it’s my one indulgence.  I’m only human.

Do you have any ideas for carving out an extra hour in each day for your very own Reality Show?  Share them in the comments section below.

 

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13 comments

  1. Interesting article. I do a lot of the things that you mentioned but my focus certainly wanes and sometimes I end up trying to “network” when actually i’m just posting shop links etc. I really need to sit down and get back on track. Great read, thanks.

  2. Ah, the good ol’ “hellavision” lol. Our home is much, much better without one. Our family actually spends time talking and being together and having sit down family meals where we talk some more instead of sit mindlessly in front of the boob tube telling each other to “Shut up! I can’t hear!” or “Move! I can’t see!”, which is the way it was in the house I grew up in.

    Awesome article! Even if you start by cutting back one hour of television a day to do something productive, it’s still a start.

    You know how to eat an elephant, right?

    One bite at a time.

  3. So true!!! I gave up TV altogether (I do watch shows from my computer, though, but I get to dictate when and what I watch…I can never go back to regular programming now!).
    It’s amazing how much “free time” we can manage to scrounge up when we eliminate time-wasters like reality TV…like you said, an hour of marketing and doing something productive can make ALL the difference.

  4. I like Melissa’s elephant metaphor–yes, just committing one hour a day to marketing can make all the difference–just one bite at a time!

  5. I loved this article! Putting time management into perspective in a very clever and very true way! And let me tell you an industry secret, having once worked on a reality-style TV show a few years ago; I call these shows “unscripted scripted” shows. While producers allow the action to evolve naturally, they will stop the filming to manipulate and direct what should happen next. So not all you see is actually ‘real’. “Reality-TV-based-on-what-the-producers-think-will-make-good-TV” TV. But I digress…
    I completely agree with what is outlined in this article; I’m finding that by writting down a schedule/To Do List for every single day is helpful, including adding in the promotions aspect. Somedays I feel that’s all I do, but keeping it to an hour can encourage me to spend that hour more wisely and constructively. Thank you!!

  6. this is really true. i cut down my tv hours really short, and starting listening to some radio programs! you can still be in touch with news and work at the same time! hope my sales start to show in my etsy shop!

  7. Stick with it Paulacelaya–the results seem slow at first but with time you’ll see your persistence pay off. Rachel–you’ve confirmed what I long suspected. “Reality” TV has always seemed pretty orchestrated and “dramatized” to me!

  8. Love the list of what one can do rather than watch TV…I NEVER watch TV…I think of it as a noise box ! I appreciate you saying to take the one hour…I find when I go beyond one hour it all becomes blah blah blah….I need to add one hour of exercise to my daily routine…and I need to remember to breathe ! I also need to become more involved with Blogs…just started one.

    Thanks :)

  9. I probably have the opposite problem. It’s been about 5 years (maybe more) since I’ve watched TV. I spend most of my time on the internet, and am now doing everything involved with my shops. In fact, I’m so into it that I have to force myself to leave the house every chance I get!

  10. You are so right Jenny–it’s good to have balance. For me, no TV means more time for gardening, hiking, and bird-watching too. But I’m like you– I have to tell myself “Drop the mouse, and back away from the computer before anyone gets hurt.” :-)

  11. I don’t have a television, but I do need to specify a given period of time to do some of the things you listed! lol

  12. Not to mention, cutting the cable saves a lot of money!

    My husband and I decided to ditch the DVR when we realized that we could catch most of our shows either through our (cheaper) Netflix account or for free at the network websites. So we stopped paying for cable.

    Silly me, I forgot to start looking up my shows online after that! It’s effectively cut my TV watching down to 1/4 or less of what it was, simply because I can’t tape my shows and watch them comfortably from the couch.

  13. This is a great article and so, so true. Procrastination can take many forms, but when you put your mind to something and just take that first step so much can change. I used to just blog occasionally and hope that someone would read what I wrote. Now I try and blog at least twice a week and have linked my blog up to my twitter account and facebook so that it automatically lets my networks know when I have blogged and I also let everyone know on the etsy threads. My daily blog views have shot through the roof. I am now working this strategy for my etsy shop and though sales have yet to increase, my views have soared and I have been included in so many treasuries the past few weeks . . . very exciting stuff!!

    Thanks for the extra motivation and confirmation that this promotional “stuff” does make things happen. :)

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