John W. Golden is a digital artist that has been designing since the 80′s. John joined Etsy in July of 2006, and has sold over 8,000 items. You can also find John’s work in Target! The Breakdown series is a ongoing series that goes behind the scenes of John’s successful Etsy shop. We will be looking at real questions from real sellers, and John is going to break them down and give his straight-up answer. We will be covering a wide range of topics, but all will be geared to the success of your Etsy business.
Today’s Breakdown - John tells his secret for marketing his Etsy shop and shares how he uses social media to promote is business.
Question from: RetroChalet
I guess my question is what is the secret and where do we start to market our Etsy shops. What are a few tips ?
I can start by saying I have tried all those avenues, to varying levels of success. Baby steps are good
The secret for me has been knowing my market, and you may have heard before that your market is you. That is true, but my market tends to be women, some about to have babies, some not. And, you heard it here first, I am not a woman, nor am I about to have a baby. But I have 3 kids, a wife who had those 3 kids, etc. so I have a lot of shared experiences with my market. So, more accurately, your market is people who think like you, enjoy the same things and have similar life experience. You have to find those people and get your work in front of them. I have done so in the now traditional ways of Facebook, Twitter and a blog, but a few less-traditional ways that I hope to go into deeper in another post.
You are right about marketing outside Etsy. There was a time when renewing on Etsy was definitely the most effective way for me to get my items in front of people. Not so much anymore just due to the sheer size of the Etsy marketplace. I used to spend about 10% of what I made from Etsy on renewing. Now it’s more like 15%, so the return is not as good, and it gets expensive. That said, renewing still brings in sales for me and puts me near the front of searches, which for me increases the chance of being found for inclusion in treasuries and blog features.
According to my analytics, Facebook and Twitter are my No. 2 and 3 traffic sources, respectively. I don’t have huge numbers of followers and fans, but the great thing about FB and Twitter is that you have a group of people who want to know what you are up to. I still try to cast a wide net to get my work in front of as many people as possible, but I put most of my focus on Facebook and Twitter.
My blog is an on-again off-again thing for me, so it has never been much of a traffic generator. You really do have to have great content on a consistent basis to generate any kind of following. I found more success in being featured on other people’s blogs that have more traffic. You can submit to blogs if bloggers don’t find you on your own.
Of those three avenues, a Facebook business page was the easiest to get started for me. All 3 take a while to get followers, fans, etc., but a Facebook biz page is the most accessible to the most people, I think.
You can set your Facebook biz page to post to twitter, so that can be gearing up while you build a following on Facebook.
I look at marketing today as being more about connecting with a smaller group of people who are interested in your items than the old way of telling everyone you can (who may or may not be interested) about your work. (You do still need to tell a lot of people about your work to get that small group established) For me, that fits best with a FB biz page because those folks are there solely to hear about your business.
And, if it makes anybody feel better, I feel overwhelmed at least once a day from all this stuff
If you have questions for John stop by the Handmadeology Etsy Team.