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It’s Time for My Business

Crafters who are starting out on new business using your creative talents- sit up and take note of April of Blacksburg Belle!

If you work full time (like me) and if you feel that you never have enough time for your creative business – you need to watch this video and this video by April.
April shared some great ideas – these are things I’ve always kind of known but never quite made the connection between theory and practice. Here are the points that I like and what I’m going to do for each:

Wake up early to work on my creative business

April talks about getting up early and tackling creative business tasks in the morning while we’re still fresh. Most often, I plan to make products or list items at night on weekdays but this never ever happens cos I’m either too tired or I’ve reached home very late due to traffic. This point appeals to me as I’m usually up by 6.15 every morning and I have about an hour of time (that I usually dwindle on non-business tasks like reading the paper) before I have to get ready for work.An hour a weekday will give me 5 hours of productive “studio” time or blog time for my business and I am sure that I will be at my freshest at that time.

Go easy on the heavy-duty marketing

I was also struck by what she said about marketing for a new business. Without spending time to make more products that will lead to sales – there IS no business! I keep forgetting this point and I have been busy thinking up business cards, brochures and blog parties to market my business – which technically hasn’t taken off by leaps and bounds yet!Of course, one has to market the business and let people know it is there but for a new business to take off well, it is more important to have products to sell! (Got a nice rhyme to it, aint it?)

Concentrate on high-leverage tasks

In one of my previous posts, I was rambling about trying to finish off this and that in April. Though making products figured right at the top of that list – I have since then realized that I was giving too much importance to other tasks like socializing and networking without actual contact with others (read wasting time on Facebook and lurking around craft blogs without commenting!) Thankfully, I have been creating new pieces consistently during the past month, so my business is not in such a bad shape – but I haven’t made enough items to reach my full potential yet.

As April says, I’m going to concentrate on high-leverage tasks from now on:

    • Make more products – I will try to create products at least 2 to 3 days a week.I’ve joined the Bead Table Wednesdays group on Flickr to jump start my creativity.
    • Write better product descriptions-Geez, I’m a professional writer and that makes me pretty cocksure that I’ve got this down pat…but reading my item descriptions later always makes me cringe! So I’ve got to spend more time writing smart descriptions!
    • Scheduling blog posts – starting today, I’m going to try and write 3 or 4 blog posts before hand so that I’m not running in circles trying to find topics to blog about.
    • Improving my products– I don’t want to keep making the same thing or keep using the same materials. This is why, I’ve started deviating from my usual style and comfort zone while making my recent batch of earrings.

Go offline during creative time and use commuting time to read mails/posts/listen to podcasts

I’ve been reading blogs about improving productivity, I’ve signed up for a lot of emails on creative businesses but reading all that content has left me with no time to make anything. From now on, I’m going to go offline during creative time (mornings) and instead I will use my 45 minute commute to stay up-to-date with the helpful stuff in my inbox. I’m not having any more of this information overload business happening!

The tasks that are not on my high priority list for now are:

  • worrying about my branding and marketing strategies
  • looking for constant inspiration by lurking on blogs
  • subscribing to email courses and services that do not help me create and only contribute to clutter in my inbox.
  • learning new techniques – I will limit my learning time to 1 or days per month so that I don’t waste the time I can spend in creating things in ways that I already know.

How will you make time for your business this month?

What is your creative biz schedule like?

4 comments to It’s Time for My Business

  • I’m so glad you found my videos helpful :)

    I love all the things you’ve outlined here. What stands out to me is that you realize that working a full-time job and running a creative business is REALLY hard work–but you’re finding ways to make it work for you. You found 5 hours every week you can take and turn into productive time. That’s Ah-Mazing! And, if you take your extra hours and use them for high-leverage tasks, you’ll definitely see an increase in your creative biz success.

    Get it!

    • April, I found your videos super super helpful!! They make so much sense to me!
      I realize how much hard work a creative biz is and I hope to use my time wisely. It’s so easy to dawdle in the name of being creative :)
      Thank you so much for stopping by at my blog. It means a lot to me.

  • Abhinaya

    Hello ,
    I found your blog very interesting when i came across it. Im not a blogger but i occasionally read blogs fer “inspiration” ! Basically im a crafts person too. Engineer by profession , but i’ve always wanted to spend time “creating” things . The things i admire in your blog :
    1)The jewelry that u make.
    2)Details are to-the-point and crisp (esp, i like it when important points are jotted down).
    3) The way you compose your bog, coz i can see my thot process being reflected here in a much better way .
    4) The Links which are all over ur blog .
    I make jeweleries too. Started with beaded ones followed by paper jewelery. I’ve always wanted to start a small business with the handmade stuff , but i realise theyre are very less in number to be actually sold . Jewelery , greeting cards , dress designing and few more handmade stuff are the primary focus, coz mostly i make them fer myself and fer friends :) Havent thot about business seriously, but blogs like urs , inspire .
    G’luck :)

    Regards,
    Abhinaya. S

    • Hi Abhinaya, I am thrilled that you like my blog :) You made my day because you said so many nice things about it!
      I think you have the talent and drive to start a small business – friends and family is just enough -I only sell to friends and their friends at the moment. Please email me at craftzy@gmail.com if you are interested in knowing more about starting a creative business – maybe we can discuss options for you to start off!

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