Jun 10, 2005, 8:26 AM
Post #1 of 2
We've all gotten those "Full time income, Part time work" emails, and after seeing a few more, I started thinking about beading.
Beading - A Work-From-Home opportunity.
Beading *is* a work from home sort of job. It also has pretty much unlimited potential, depending on how far you want to take it.
If you are statisfied with making a few dollars selling to friends, that's all you have to do.
If you want to go to shows and make a bit more money you can do that also.
You can set up a website, sell to businesses, develop a whole designer or low-end line depending on your interests.
The supply of people who'll bead for coffee is almost unlimited. We actually get people who offer to "work" in the store just to play with the beads. Unfortunately, we can't really do that :)
But the gist is, if you want to start a business, work from home, and determine just how much you want to make, you have the power in your hands -- literally.
It's not a get-rich-quick scheme. You have to put in the work, define a business plan and target market for your product, then go out to target it.
You can do it all yourself, or you can get "partners" to help you. If you have friends with good contacts, get them to help. If you have a friend who likes doing marketing, or writing copy, tap their talents. They might work for beads ;)
That's just to start out. As you grow, you will need help, and it's great to work in a business you like, and with friends and people who share your interests.
Jewelry is a "sell-itself" item. Just by wearing it you can make sales.
Get as many people as possible to wear your items to as many places as possible. Work is always good. Social gathers are great. Give them cards to hand out if someone asks about their jewelry. Give them credits towards more jewelry if anyone they refer mentions their name or gives you their card. Put an "offer" on the card so people will be more likely to turn it in.
What more could you want? Having fun, a product that sells itself, and the ability to make your own hours.
The key to success in jewelry sales for the small designer, is targeting your market. If you like making trendy dangle earrings that appeal to a younger crowd, "boutiques" may not be as good an outlet as places frequented by the college kids.
Canvassing the local flea markets is a good advertising as well as marketing opportunity. If you don't spend a fortune to be there, use your business cards or a small flier as marketing. People will pick it up, many will be thrown away, but one flier that ends up on a bulletin board, or in an employee lounge can make up for *all* the others.
Make your fliers *sell*. They need to interest people to look at your website. Even if you don't have a website you sell through, getting a nice domain name, and putting up some pictures of your items, basic costs, and where' you'll be showing your stuff will reap big rewards. Even for your regular customers (people who have bought from you before) they will go to the shows, flea markets, or wherever you are "set up" to see your new stuff.
Summer is a great opportunity for this. Outdoor time is greater than any time of the year. People are walking around and doing things in larger numbers, and for longer times.
Sitting in the park _making_ jewelry is a great way to advertise. Don't _sell_. You might run afoul of local laws, but hand out your fliers with an explanation that it's not legal to sell in the park (unless you have a venders permit or other local license -- a sales tax or business license is *not* enough in most areas).
Sitting in the park making earrings, or wirewrapping stones, is a great way to pull people over to talk. It's a magnet for kids of all ages. You can find new customers, make new contacts, and do a lot of good PR this way. Maybe get invited to teach jewelry making at parties. That is even more contacts, and pretty soon you'll be so busy you'll wish for the timesyou could sit in the park and make earrings <G>
Just a few thoughts.
It's mostly *planning* and not viewing your jewelry sales as hit or miss targets. Work at it, methodically (not obsessively) and you'll succeed.
PUGDOG's Rock & Bead Shop
Pittsburgh, PA 15217