Navigating the first year of a new handmade business: strategy and mindset decisions with Milena

Navigating the first year of a new handmade business: strategy and mindset decisions with Milena

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well hello and welcome to the second uh video of this short series that for now i think we've called i've called it last week uh members stories i'm still not quite sure about the name so actually if you have the suggestions for how i should call this series comment below and let me know uh but if you are new here or welcome thank you for being here and let me introduce myself real quickly my name is deb i'm the founder of tezico it's a membership community for makers and handmade sellers just like your fabulous self and in the last three years this community has launched three years ago we've had many many members and makers coming through our doors and i thought it would be great to celebrate our three years to bring some of them on camera and actually ask them you know how's it going what's happening with it with you and your business and share those stories um with you and i think uh the most important thing for me was with these interviews is to bring you some real honest talk as to you know what it takes and what really happens when you start and grow a handmade business so we're gonna be of course talking about what's working and the successes that they've had um but also we're going to be opening the conversation to what's difficult and what's not working and what they're still kind of trying to figure out um so that we can have you know an honest conversation about what it is and what it takes to run a business all the interviews that i've selected have different uh you know the the makers obviously sell different things but also at different stages of their journey uh last week we had wendy who's uh more experienced she runs a business full-time um and has been for a few years um and this week we are talking to milena she is more in the you know kind of starting to grow a business and she uh opened it um less than a year ago so it's a completely different conversation you'll see she also markets her products differently so i hope that you enjoyed this conversation and without further ado let me introduce you to milena welcome elena hi deb thanks for having me hello i am so happy you're here uh i'm really enjoying doing these interviews i think this is the funnest thing i've ever done for my youtube channel so i hope people love them because i want to do them every week okay let's see it's my first ever youtube video so uh well thanks for being here um i really appreciate it as you know this is just you know we're just checked chatting i'm trying to interview makers who have kind of different experiences that are at different stages last week we had wendy on you know her from the forum obviously because she's always in there giving great advice she's like the second step if you're not there when this day yeah that's pretty much it um but yeah let's talk about you um all right maybe just you know who are you what do you make where would you leave give us a little bit of an overview so my name is milena i'm originally from switzerland but i live in mexico i've been here for three years now and i'm an architect by education so actually that's how i started making because during my master's thesis i just like felt that i needed something to just like keep a balance of all of the mental work i was doing every day like brain heavy work and computer work all day long and i just needed something to like make with my hands like just something different and that's how i originally started to get into macrame actually just like looked up a few youtube tutorials made a horrible looking wall hanging but i haven't yet yep had fun with it and uh yeah just like enjoyed doing it but never thought about anything more and then before the pandemic started i came back to mexico after being in switzerland just for to finish my master's thesis so i came back and i had a part-time job at the time and i have more free time than i had before during my studies i like i never had any free time whatsoever for years so i was like well okay what do i do in this time and i just like started like i felt a bit um like unsatisfied because i didn't really enjoy the work for the office i was doing and then thinking back to like what do i actually like to do i came back like oh yeah i actually like had really fun doing the macrame i did like some months ago so i started like looking up some other youtube videos started learning not just for fun and then one day i think i stumbled upon one of your videos i was like wait wait like are people doing this for like a business like do people live from stuff they make i was like wait what i was like i'm i i'm interested in thinking yeah like wow okay because i like i've been feeling this way that i've never been like really happy as an employed architect so far maybe it's just because i haven't found like the perfect office for myself but i've like been wanting to have something of my own for a long time but i just never knew what it could be because like having an architecture firm is just such a huge thing i would never be ready for it at my age and when i when i like started realizing that people were selling handmade things for a lady it was like wow that's what i want to do yeah and yeah i think things just started like developing from there i looked up your community i think i was a member of your facebook group for like two days and then just like just kind of go right in signed up for tc that that's where i like started learning and yeah so that's really that's actually really recent so you because you kind of because you're so amazing at what you do i mean i don't know how long you like you taught yourself to do the proper notes in the macrame but your work is so impeccable i mean i've tried microwave myself and it's a lot harder than it seems on youtube videos yeah you know what like i have to admit i know like one not really well and i just like i'm too smart because i just make my designs with a single knot basically and i don't have to like but when i see people making i don't know like hammocks or tops or whatever things out of macrame like i have no idea how to do that but that's not you're trying it out to perfect it yeah that's like it's your signature the signature not for now yeah yeah um and then so you actually when did you so you sell on etsy yeah when did you open that so i signed up for tuesday i believe like mid august 2020 or something like that so that sucks less than a year yeah exactly and i went through the whole um dream stage and start stage and i really like i did take my time to like properly prepare everything i didn't rush into and i opened my shop beginning of november yeah so so that's really recent yeah yeah i forget our recent actually it is because everything looks so it's so clear that you've taken your time in the dream and start stage and you've got like your brand is impeccable everything is so cohesive so it looks like you've worked with a branding agency like you have a really good eye for like graphic design and like photos like your instagram feed is like a pleasure to look at and scroll i'm like this is all so perfect it's really like you you have a clear vision i feel sorry yeah my studies have definitely like helped me i mean my education in architecture you also have it's so important the way how you present your project is like come yeah what is it called make or break yeah like a presentation for example like if you have a good project but it just looks ugly and nobody wants to look at it so the other way around if you have like really nice representation and know how to sell your projects and how to talk about it people will be intrigued maybe even though the project is not really that good yeah so that definitely helped yeah and it's perceived value isn't it it's this idea of like that's what you do when you present a project you're kind of like presenting something that doesn't even exist yet as like the value that it could be you know and that forces you to like owning on that concept of perceived value that i keep on like talking about i feel all the time on youtube and inside the community has been so important for me because it's essential because me with my situation like i live in mexico but my target market is rather in the u.s just because of how handcrafts are perceived and you know so i have to fracture in shipping costs pretty high ones into my likes into my prices or apart it's just like a very tricky subject for me and if i didn't pay like the mo utmost attention to perceived value i wouldn't have to a chance to like sell prices that actually are still profitable for me even though i have such high shipping costs shipping yeah so yeah that's like my if i don't have perceived value i i just don't have a business basically yeah and i think there's also an element of the you know time the time that you put into your product as well like they they do take time to make they're not necessarily like i mean you do different sizes and all but it's just not something that you can just kind of go and in one day get done and that time you need to pay yourself for that because that means you can only take so many orders or you just stop you know sleeping and eating which we don't want and so that means you have to have a profit margin that you know can buffer that and allow for you to like actually still pay yourself and you know it's been an interesting uh journey actually like seeing you go through that because i think when and this is true for if like everybody like it's certainly not the only one i think everyone when they start realizing they need to put their price up you know deep down this is what you need to do and on like an intellectual level you're like yeah that makes complete sense but then emotionally you're like no no i can't sell that for them that's that's that's not worth it it's such a horrible feeling like i feel like developing a business has been basically developing my personal you know like personal growth even more than business growth probably yeah you just get confronted with all of your like limiting beliefs and fears and fear that you're not enough and your body is not enough people don't want to pay blah blah blah like that's yeah that's my biggest problem still i think if i could just have like unlimited confidence in myself my business would probably be like but yeah if we could be the chat of this world yeah i know it's you know and like i wish i could say don't worry that goes away you know you too and it just doesn't i'm so sorry it doesn't you just become so much better at managing those thoughts but they keep coming like every new level of business bring its own little like monster thoughts that come at you and just go are you sure this is not good nah nah nah these little nagging voices i have hips in my head when i work and you know you just kind of listen to them and go okay you're here you're annoying go away let me do my thing you just become better at kind of like managing them but yeah the first when you just get started and because like pricing is so important um well with every business but in the maker and handmade world even so like even more because you really can't afford to not have a lot of profit and like low margins you just can't afford it um it really straight on forces you to like let go of impostor syndrome and all those thoughts that your products aren't worth it and i think there's an element i feel like it's you know like you're putting basically the price is what it's worth right so you're putting a worth in a dollar amount on yeah things that you make with your hands and your time and your ideas and your heart and everything so it's like putting a price tag on yourself in a in a way and that's so hard yeah then there's everything like all those yeah imposter syndrome and self-worth issues that you might have because i certainly do yeah hearing and it's just like oh my god like am i worth this much like you're like no no no no i'm not but you also know that well if you're believe it or not then you're just not gonna run away yes so yeah absolutely very tough like still tough yeah and i think there's also an element of um if you're not necessarily your ideal customer or at least you are maybe on most levels but maybe not on how you spend your money and that person that you're trying to sell your products to maybe is like making more and spending more than you are on the things that you sell and because you make them you also would never buy them because you're like i'm not gonna go and get myself a wall hanging out make it for myself so it's hard to think okay is anyone really willing to pay x amount for this when you nest you don't necessarily see yourself ever paying that amount and like it kind of like requires to like get out of your head and essentially and go no there are people who buy you know a thousand dollar shoes and thousand dollar bags and they have really expensive furniture and they have really expensive art on their wall and they're willing to pay more and what your sellers are but i feel like at least in my current marketing strategy which is mostly i'm mostly just using instagram and it's such a in a way personal platform in a way i mean not yeah not always but in my case i've been very lucky to have developed like a lot of personal relationships and friendships with my customers or sometimes they were first friends and then became customers or they were customers and then became friends and i feel like i'm so connected to a lot of people that if i imagine having to sell to someone who's like like very different from myself it's like out of my league to say you know at least financially it's like how do i even talk to these people you know like yeah that's kind of hard if your ideal customer is a lot different from yourself i i feel like it's kind of tough to know how to speak to them or like how to talk to them yeah because you're just not that person whereas if they're similar to yourself you're kind of you just talk to a friend that's easy right yes i think you know you have um you there's always like an overlap like i like to think about it like those you know when you have those two circles that kind of like do what is it called vein diagram or whatever it's called yeah i think so i forgot something diagram diagram you know the one i mean sort of overlap thing it's like you don't need to be the same on all like levels with your ideal customer it's more so like there's a few things that you can connect on and that's the thing that you communicate because you then therefore you can be genuine and then they connect to that and you don't feel like you have to be something or someone you're not um but you've done a really nice job at building a personal brand as well i guess we'll talk about that so i definitely want to talk about instagram too because i think you're doing a great job there um just to wrap up the pricing thing you did end up putting your price up do you remember the like how that went because i remember you weren't sure if you were to announce it and how yeah and then you ended up making sales from putting your prices up and i was like yes yes so what i did like i watched a video of yours actually you had one i think it was on youtube yeah on youtube where it's about like okay you decided you were gonna put up your prices but now how are you gonna communicate it right yeah and you brought up this idea of like putting your items on say like putting the price up and then putting it on sale so that it matches your prices again which is like a way to kind of give people a chance to still buy at your current prices but at the same time like realize oh it's actually worth more so i'm getting a good deal out of it yeah it's like a soft announcement that kind of sounds good and also like a plus point of this was that whoever had favorited my etsy shop got a notification of that sale right so i ended up sending an email to my list to my email list that was like i don't know maybe 40 people at the time or something but still you know and i think i i talked like about the values behind my business and like trying to uh send civilized is that a word i don't know but i understand making people aware of yeah everything that is like behind my business and that i how i choose for example my suppliers and the material blah blah blah so and at the end i was like by the way i'm putting up my prices soon but you still have two weeks i think i get two weeks to shop at current prices here just scented i was like oh my god oh my god everybody's gonna unsubscribe and this email had the highest opening rates i've ever had you had like 75 percent opening all right whoa so people really like to read about like the values and stuff behind my bases i i realized that and i got i think i got yeah like two or three orders in these two it's amazing but i mean it was it was not at the new price it wasn't the old price it was the sale you know but the sale really helped so yeah yeah actually i think after that i didn't really sell too many wall hangings anymore at least not big ones but i also felt like i didn't really enjoy making them as much anymore so i also didn't focus my marketing on them as much because also it was like i feel like wall hangings are much easier to sell like when it's cold outside and you want it want it to be cozy and blah blah blah like in the whole winter period it was like easier for me to market them and then when spring came around and i did raise my prices i was like planning to launch plant hangers anyway so i just focus my marketing on them and i work on these and so yeah i don't really know if maybe now people think my wall hanging prices are too high or if i'm just not marketing them enough i don't know but at least it has helped me to like establish just like a higher price level in general because if i didn't have this price level and if i didn't use these um you know profit multipliers that i uh established a second time when i raised prices then i my plant tanks wouldn't be profitable at all yeah so that's the bottom line isn't it yeah exactly because prices back then now i have like this price level that i established and there are people who pay for it so yeah i think it's more think yeah it is and also i think this is why i i was really i wanted to bring you on as well because i love that you're you're more so in the first year ish now i guess it's been oh it's not even been a year it's been a year since you decided but it's been a few months only so you're kind of really at the beginning and i think there's this beautiful natural kind of like journey of what am i going to sell exactly because you might start with an idea that's like okay i'm going to do wall hangings and then you're like am i maybe i'm going to do blend hangers and then i think now you're also thinking about doing something else maybe you can explain just what that is and i think this is so natural and i think that often you can question yourself and go oh my god i have no idea what i'm doing here like i keep changing my mind this is a hot mess and it's not it's like the natural eat yeah you're exactly there i'm sure you're waking up sometimes going what am i doing like i don't know what i want to say even like it like you need to have the answer already that and you don't you really don't like you need to start and then do some things to realize how that goes for you how you like it can you see yourself doing this for a few more years only this type of product do you want to bring something new in and it's just like a normal evolution and i think we need to like speak about this because i think there's a lot of people out there who go through this thinking i don't know what i'm doing so i must not be good so i'm just gonna stop because i i can't decide what exactly to sell and it's like it's not gonna be perfect year one like you're probably still going to change your mind year 10. it's actually so good like to hear you saying this because that's exactly how i've been feeling like i feel like i mean some somehow like in a trial year or something you know whereas at the beginning i felt like i've always been this type of person i would love to have everything perfect the first time i just don't want to do it twice once a good and that's it but it just doesn't work that way so as i said before like i really took my time to prepare everything and like really thought it thought it through god english um and it i did i guess pretty well you know like it worked yeah and now that i'm feeling wait wait a second maybe like i want to tweak some things maybe i want to like slightly pivot or sell something else and but that's not my signature style anymore that i you know tried to come up with for so long i'm like wait what am i doing i feel like really stuck and i feel like somehow i failed in a way which is stupid because i know it's so stupid please don't feel this way yeah it's so annoying but i feel like it just feels like i'm stuck i'm not really sure what i'm doing anymore it's so funny because all of a sudden you know it's like bam bam bam and i had your was working with the road map and this really really was such a blessing for me to just be able to follow steps and know what to do but since i moved into the uh grow into the growth stage i've been like okay well and now what yeah then you have to accept a little bit more of like moving parts and yeah experiment pretty hard in a way it's just not linear anymore you know yeah this is you always say like or you have this uh image i think you also show it probably in a lot of videos where people think like success is this line yeah but actually it's like up and down and then there's a lot maybe and yeah in the end it's still going up but it's yeah a wild journey and i feel like i'm like in a loop right now like go the backwards yeah just be before like going up again that's where i feel like i'm at yeah yeah but yeah and it's such a normal process and i think that you know um it's also very internal those feelings like because us outside of your business when like us inside of the community that know you but also people that know you maybe even less i'll just you know finding you on instagram or whatever they don't see all of that they see a wonderful brand with wonderful product you know they don't when you when you brought in the plan hanger that worked really well and whatever comes next i'm sure you're not going to be able to help yourself it will fit in with your brand like i just trust that because it's you and it's like that's something that you actually do really well it's just that you think about it a lot before you do it and that's fine that's your way of like processing something too much you know yeah instead of just start that's that's exactly what i feel is my problem again now like just making the first step i feel like i'm at this point again where i just have to like push myself already at you just start something i don't have to have it all figured out which i would like to but it's just not possible but i'm just missing this push somehow so just push me what's the next um what's the next idea then what do you think what's the loop that you're in at the moment well yeah i don't fully know yet it's just like a couple ideas in my head and i'm just like trying to give them time to develop and you know but what i would really like to do is somehow take my brand to have an impact that goes beyond myself like i would like to somehow make a positive impact not only on my customers lives but also maybe on traditional artisans craft craft women and craftsmen here in mexico because there is so much really beautiful really incredible like craftsmanship around here in mexico you know very traditional they have developed their skills over so many years they do amazing works with a lot of beautiful natural materials and i've always been super fascinated by this actually in mexico i've always really loved all sorts of like mexican handcrafts and i really feel like i would love to somehow collaborate with some artisans in a way also because a lot of times they just live like in a small village making their things just like trying to sell it to whoever happens to come by which is not a lot of people and if they do they don't want to pay a lot so a lot of artisan seller things were really cheap which is a hard like a harsh reality but it is like that and i feel like it would be really nice to somehow integrate their skills and their products into my brand and i'm not sure like if i maybe would enjoy deciding um you know items that i know fit the taste of my like ideal customers and then have to make it and sell it to a market that is able to pay a lot more so i would be able to pay them much better wage yeah than they normally get or another option that i'm also playing around with like i still want to make something myself i don't want to i feel like i don't want to spend all my time just making making making making because then it kind of loses them like the relaxing creative side but i still want to use my hand that's like where i started in the first place so another option would be to like take something they make as a base and then like intervene it somehow maybe with rope or yeah or maybe i mix up the two things i don't really know i haven't really figured it out yeah you could definitely do those two things you could definitely do those two things i think it's actually really interesting because it sounds like it's something that ties in really nicely with your values and your vision and that's really exciting there's really great benefits for them as well that's that's wonderful to be able to say hey there's a market over there that can give us a better profit margin and therefore you would get paid a lot more that's sort of more scalable for you to because you if all you sell other products are already made and that you curate you're not creating making you know doing knots all the time i don't know how your hands wouldn't get sore as well i have to waste hand like i'm imagining i don't get that many orders yet that i have problems with this but still like i feel like after an hour of just doing it i would just anyway that's completely irrelevant and yeah yeah no but you're right like that's another another part just like business aspect basically that i just realized hey if i do these wall hangings there's just like a limit you know that the problem is i think i feel like people who don't know anything about how this is made which is like obviously most of the people and most of the ideal customers because if they didn't know they would just make it i don't want to do i don't want that so they usually just see oh i like the pattern i like colors and they see the size you know yeah but for me something this big takes me five hours to make yeah but it doesn't look like five hours of work because they just don't have a they use size as a as an indicator for price that's what i'm trying to say basically so yeah bigger the more they're willing to pay for it because it makes like a big visual impact in your home right but yeah at least with the technique i'm using now it's like so dense with nuts not so nuts there's just a limit on that like yeah something that is not even that big is like 10 hours of work for me and to be profitable i have to sell it for like at least 300 but for people it's like oh no it's just you know it's kind of small still yeah not worth 300 whereas if i used only a different technique with much more like loose chords without knots for example i would be able to make something much bigger but that would maybe take me the same amount of time but they like people would be willing to pay more just because it's bigger yeah so the scalability is a thing that i realized like oh that's like not not the smartest way to do it right now yeah but see that's also something that i see a fair bit with big time consuming uh work so big wall hanging would be one big piece of r1s2 because people are like oh that's a painting like it took me 20 hours to like you know actually make this piece of art thank you very much or like you know people who sell um furniture or like woodwork that's kind of intricate and things like that that stuff that's really time consuming um it can work for a little while but there's another problem that i feel people often run into which is you get an order and you're not stocking up on those big items because there's a lot of materials involved and so much time to even stockpile them so you kind of make them when you receive an order suddenly you get an order ah surprise in the next week or so or two or three or however your processing time is you suddenly have to make room for those if you get three orders that week you suddenly you know so if you had plans to well leave something personal as planned you have to push it away and push it aside if you had marketing things to do you're suddenly working at night and so there's this kind of time issue where you have to make room for making those items when you get an order which can be great because you need less order when they're higher priced over a month you know to reach your goals but it can become a problem and i've seen it for people who for example um didn't have a family when they got started and then did and then suddenly like i just can't i can't find like for eight hours suddenly to make my product so i have to have a stock of little things that i can ship when i get an order and so you see them like bringing in some smaller item or smaller isn't necessarily the word as you said it's more like less time consuming yeah differently it's just natural for us to be like small cheap big yeah it's just so bad so problematic that i said but i no no but it just proves that it's the shortcut in the brain yeah yeah exactly but yeah it's quite a normal process i was like well um you know i put my processing times i don't even remember i think like four to seven business days or something for a people and i can if i don't have anything in this time i can make it because it takes me like 10 hours uh distributed in two days or something so usually if i have two full days to work then that's fine but yeah if you don't what if like i worked monday tuesday wednesday i was at work so i just couldn't start a little bit at night maybe so if i got an order let's say sunday night then i would have like monday tuesday wednesday already no time no chance to work so i have to work on it thursday friday and friday shipping because that's already no i it's so yeah i did i had like less i had this really short processing time yeah but then it was like consider lowering your processing times of course yes and consider it yes of course if i just have one order at a time i can still you know organize myself i can still do it and eve yeah even more in a global pandemic where nobody's going out anyway so yeah i didn't have even plans to do something else so that was fine but then yeah i think it was that week when i raised my prices and i had the same on i suddenly got like two orders for a big wall hanging on the same day it's like ah what am i gonna do now so that was like a problem i was like okay yeah so i was lucky that i actually what i did then i usually do everything yeah like made to order as you said but i have i did do i did make one of each um what is it called designs of my collection of my first collection to take photos right so i still had one already made and it was so i was like you know what i'm just going to send this one and make one because otherwise i couldn't have done it in in that yeah so yeah that's another problem which is depends this is one of the circumstances i guess but yeah and i'm so fascinated by that i think it's such an important part of like the kind of dream stage but then you kind of look back into it once you've actually implemented it and you are practicing and selling and seeing how it works within your life you'll find you find yourself going i need to adjust here because it's not really fitting in with my life and i think you know it's pretty normal like when you get started you're like i'm gonna do this or you see all the makers and all the sellers with their own business model and like i think i could do this too and then you don't really quite realize how it's going to fit within your life and it's so normal that then you just um so you've then uh maybe let's talk about the next you had the wall hangings then you went and added the plant hangers [Music] um how did that go you used instagram to launch that didn't you yeah so i wanted to just like make a different product a different type of product after like having all these learnings from selling a few wall hangings noticing how long it takes and everything also spring was coming and i was just like looking for something that was quicker to make a lower price point like the lowest price point that would still allow me to be profitable even though i have to cover a lot of shipping because you know i shipping there's like a base uh tariff is that what it's called price costs yeah yeah like half a kilo dimensional or real weight there's no stock on it going any lower so that that already costs me with all my discounts i have with because i signed up for a professional account blah blah still cost me 20 the cheapest option ever so i have to be able to somehow cover 20 bucks plus make a produ a profit and uh yeah like have it i was looking for the cheapest possible product considering these circumstances does that make sense yeah so essentially like something that was cheap cheaper to make so that it was a profit margin but the value perceived of that was still high enough that you could just exactly yeah and i also saw that a lot of my like people who i had gotten to know through this journey and was like feeling like oh these are like my ideal customers probably like i i could tell like oh yeah that could be a customer actually like i had some customers and i saw that a lot of them are really interested in plants and you know home decor plant care everything just like yeah plant hangers are probably a good option for me to make yeah but i still didn't want to just sell like the standard plant thing you can buy everywhere on etsy for fifteen dollars because i cannot sell i just can't sell for fifteen dollars if my shipping costs twenty just not possible so i tried to come up with a like an aesthetic or like a design that went with my brand and was like minimalist but still um yeah like had a high perceived value in a way and so i was preparing like i came up with these designs and when i was preparing the launch i was like okay how do i launch something like that i had like no idea how to do it so i just like invented a strategy for myself basically and what i ended up doing i had like three models like three different designs that i launched and i i had like a launch week on instagram and during this week i would introduce with a real one new design every day so i had like design one monday design two tuesday design uh three on wednesday and then i had like an add-on item like extenders to make the plant hangers uh like longer or shorter and stuff so this was the other day and then i don't even remember what the last one was i think it was just like the final launch video like hey now they're they're here you can go here yeah and somehow that really worked really well somehow yeah i mean i had no idea what i was doing i just tried and i hadn't been making so many reels and i like i used i don't even have a personal instagram account you know like i've been so camera shy and i hate to have my picture taken i hate to see myself or hear myself on videos i'm not gonna watch this video ever i i trust me i hate it too i it's funny because i am on video every week all the time that's all i do but i actually really don't like it either so i'm with you i understand so yeah let's confront something i never i had never really done before i didn't have any idea if that was going to go well but somehow a lot of these reels like gained a lot of traction and people were like really invested in this lunch week to see like hey tomorrow i'm gonna see the next design and they were really engaged and it was really fun actually it was a lot of work but it was a lot of fun as well yeah and then on the launch day i sent out like i had teased on my instagram that i my email list would get a launch discount so i also got up quite a few signups actually from this and then i sent out this code to my list and i was like okay if i make one sale on the l on the weekend like saturday sunday was like this if i make one sale i'm gonna be so happy and i got like four on this on the first day it's like oh my god that was like this is that's a lot for me you know like for yeah either my business that was a lot so it went really well and since then i've gotten yeah like quite a few orders for the plant hangers and people have been liking them and now i've yeah i've also started to offer like a set of uh of three because that's that helps me with this to distribute the shipping first because as i said it's the same class but i'm actually selling three items so that makes more sense and yeah just been like adjusting a few things but that's been a pretty good see so you totally know what you're doing it seems you do it's funny because um it's almost like you sound like you you feel like i don't know how but it's like it's because you've done all the work like it's not magic like it's not the instagram gods were like hey this chick there we should maybe send some people her way it's because like you worked on your brand you work on your image you have a really good instagram strategy to start with and then that was kind of like the kick you know that gave some momentum reels are pretty hot at the moment too yours were wonderful so yeah it's not magic it's because you did the work and it's paying off i guess but also i also want to add because now for example i'm in a phase where i feel like i'm putting stuff out and nobody's seeing it yeah whatever but i feel like a lot of people are feeling this way just because the algorithm is changing again and whatever so i also don't want to like i don't want if you say that like yeah you know you've done the work i don't want anyone who doesn't see this kind of traction to feel like oh i haven't been doing enough work because that's also not always the case like sometimes yes there's just things out of our control and it's i know it's super frustrating i also i hate it but absolutely you also just can't do anything about it just you just have to like kind of sit it out then better times you know and some reels will gain a lot of traction like the the reels that you thought was were gonna be the shittiest ones suddenly start picking up or sometimes you know i sometimes what happens is that for the first few days you see like you know a couple of views maybe a thousand two thousand views then it stays like that for weeks and then all of a sudden sometimes an old rail just starts picking up again it goes like five thousand save seven thousand ten thousand twenty thousand we were like whoa wait what's happening like that can also happen you just you don't really you don't really have to control over these things yeah you control the input you don't control the output and i think that's very it's a difficult lesson to learn in business because we work hard and we put a lot of you know effort not only like the products but also then into the marketing and so it's almost like there's this little part of us that's always kind of like expecting that it's going to be balanced with the results like you're like i'm working hard so i will get really good results it's not always true and that's a very good point because i think there's two that's not highlighted enough just anywhere online because these aren't the sexy stories the one where you're like i spent so much time with this video it's so good such my likes my best content and then no one watches it and you're like oh man this video is so good what's happening and then there's this odd video there that you're like i don't really like this at all i would love it if it wasn't on youtube and everyone's watching it all the time it just happens you can't you can control input you have to detach yourself from the results and then you know it's like big picture as well like if you focus on like the one person that didn't do well the one campaign that didn't do well the one you know promote your organizer didn't do well it's not helpful it's like overall are things improving yes therefore progress is being made you know a little bit like investing in the stock market i mean that's such a weird example right now but i just think about this because also there your best strategy is to like usually you know if you don't really know what you're doing like if you don't want to do data trading and stuff then you just put in your money you just wait and it'll be down and you'll be like at a loss on paper but if you just wait long enough it's going to go up again because the market in general is rising it's rising like our economy is growing all the time so you just have to sit out the bad times and not sell at this point because that's when you lose right so basically you could say the same thing like just don't yeah quit when you're yeah on a bad day exactly yeah because yeah that's only when you lose but if you just keep going just like sit it out just yeah you know then it will go up so true this reminded me on the on the podcast um i've got a podcast called the business of making and mikayla on the podcast has two keys and i think she was saying um i loved it when she said i was like that's such a good thing i think i think it was a son wanted to stop soccer or something i can't remember the full story but essentially because like the game didn't go well or something and she was like well no problem you can absolutely stop soccer i'm all for it i don't want to force you doing something you don't enjoy but you also had a bad day on the field today so you're not allowed to quit on a bad day if tomorrow you go and have a good day and you still want to quit then cool you know and i was like that's such good parenting and also so applicable to anything in life because that's when we that's often when you're like oh i'm just giving up this thing didn't work and it actually is you need to push that extra to go to the extra step yeah that's an important thing yeah also i wanted to add maybe you know if we're keeping it real here like this strategy of like going like full in with one real a day it did work well to sell my stuff but it did not work well for my mental health like after that i was really exhausted i have to stay yeah and i have been feeling that i like needed a break which is like needed some time off from social media in general for a while already but i was like no but i'm like gonna launch these plant tankers now i have to like keep going and then i'm just gonna like try to give everything for this this lunch and then after i'm gonna take a break okay just keep going and i did it and then after that i was like no but now like you can't just like launch something and then disappear i mean yeah right so i was like okay just keep going a little bit more and then i ended up you know agreeing to uh actually like a social project like i helped organize a charity auction so i was in decent that was again like a reason why not to take a break right now so i was like just just kept going for way too long without a break and then yeah at some point i was like okay i cannot take it anymore i completely like fell off the back and i i used to be so good at like preparing all my instagram content for a whole month in advance yeah and then i'm just like can't do it anymore don't have the energy it took off like yeah three weeks and ever since like i have been having a heart a hard time like to get back getting back into it rhythm and like prepare in advance and have like a healthy balance i just it was just too much and i yeah that's a very very good point i think it's this is real talk and it's so important and i think i've i see it a lot with people um who use instagram as their number one platform in in marketing which is not everyone some people just don't use it at all and they're more on pinterest or whatever um wendy last week was actually saying i tried instagram i think i wasn't bad at it but i just couldn't enjoy it so i stopped so you know different makers different marketing models but i find that this is really common with people on instagram who are giving instagram will always take more like it will never stop saying hey you've given me enough right now it will give mo like you can give it your whole and they'll still be like i want more and so you have to like force boundaries on it because it is demanding and it is draining um if you don't put those healthy limits and especially after a lounge like i think that's like a really good lesson learned because i think you have to in business it's like it's about the consistency and if it if you're gonna be consistent with something it has to be sustainable because the moment it isn't sustainable then suddenly you need a six weeks break because you're like burnt out and i mean i've done this myself too where i'm like no i'm just pushing through this i'm just pushing through this and then then i'll take a break but then the break is not even a break it's like a like you're you need it to just get back to normal it's not a break to enjoy like a holiday it's just like you need it because you're so tired and that's not healthy and that's not you know the way to run a business so i think this is so important that you mention that because you have to do things that are sustainable if you're going to do a lounge like it can be every two weeks like which would be weird anyway but you know if it's like once a quarter once every six months even just once a year if you're just getting started um like having like thinking about this ahead of time and going this is going to take some time and energy like mental energy as well i'm going to be tired after that what's the exit plan after the lunch so i can take some time off yeah yeah even as i said like you shouldn't be all right that's what i learned from that like you shouldn't be running like on your last resort of energy for the launch because you don't want to disappear right after the launch because what's the point of marketing like leading up to something and then just be like okay bye closing my shop now because i'm tired yeah right yeah yeah it's almost like put the break before like it's almost like you need to like have some nice holiday time before you get into a busy season so that you're completely resourced and you're like oh maybe or just like yeah somehow try to plan ahead and like have some resources for a few weeks after the launch somehow yeah but yeah that's tough to to know beforehand because the launch is probably really draining anyway yeah i don't know yeah but yeah that's tough like just to not be like okay i can't do anything anymore right after the launch because that's like wasted energy somehow so you just disappear yeah but yeah well i mean not entirely but if it can feel this way it's not entirely you know like if i disappear i will never come back strong but it feels what i mean if you're like no not not about this just like immediately after launching something if you're like hey you know this is going to be available in my shop soon and blah blah blah and then you like make people really excited and then you're like okay so you had two days of a chance to order this but now i have to take a break so i have to close the shop like what right that doesn't make too much sense though yeah like it is if you're if we're talking about launching a new collection as well like yeah it's like you're you're hoping for orders new connection or not actually you're hoping for orders so it's like the launch is this marketing section at first but then there's a section of like hey it worked therefore now i have work you need to like have this reserve of energy if you have like if you're successful then you need energy to fulfill all of this so yeah yeah you can so take a break before i think yeah probably like that's a good thing yeah like a holiday before and that requires planning too because it comes quickly like it requires knowing like a few months in advance when this will happen so that you can squeeze in a break because we all know that if you don't think about it in advance you'll be like oh the lunches in two weeks and i didn't take the time to rest you know it doesn't necessarily mean as well like a full holiday like three weeks off like it just means like maybe doing less of what you'll need to do more like you know so that you can ramp up on social media after that without feeling already drained because you're doing it too much every day before that yeah that's a really good point i appreciate that you brought that up because i think um i also think this is something that's not discussed and that we see a lot of people doing really well on instagram and it's like how do they do it like how do people do it i think a lot of people think it takes a lot less time that it actually does um and especially if you want to do it well like it does take time like it's time consuming you need to genuinely interact like if it works you need to interact more because people are commenting people are sending you dms and you're not just going to let them hang you know like i'm not going to reply so it's like the more successful you are the more energy actually demands um and it's it's just how the platform work and i think that's why you see people doing going full fully like on instagram and then slowly adding more platforms people who try to do it all at once it's too much there's not enough parts in the day yeah i definitely noticed that as well because when i when i started out i had like obviously not a lot of followers and i had time to like actually go like whoever gave me a like i went to their profile and also gave them a few likes you know like i really engaged back yeah all everyone who like engaged with me and now i mean i'm still not a huge account at all but still it's just like nah yeah i'm not gonna do that anymore because it takes way too much time so yeah but that's what probably got you there too you know it definitely helped to like start like start off well probably and now i mean my growth has slowed a lot i guess but also because i have been taking breaks i was off for like three weeks instagram algorithm didn't like that so yeah but that's just how it is like you have to accept there's gonna be like seasons of growth and everything seems to be like flowing and then it there's a season where it just feels like hard and tough and yeah put stuff out there and nobody sees it's just like oh why did i even do this but who knows that's just like trying to not take it so serious also yeah yeah like making it more than it actually does because there's so many uh factors that i can't control in this game so yeah you know and letting go of that feels good too it removes a lot of stress and anxiety to let go of like trying to control things you can't because that's just like that's i'm stressed thinking about that it's just letting go of that feels good you're like you know what not in my zone of control i'm not going to worry about this yeah but it's definitely a learning curve like oh yes i had like a a phase where i was suddenly like checking my insights all the time like asking myself wait why is like why is this not performing as well i you know i really put in the work it should be performing well why is nobody seeing it why do i have why don't i get hashtag views or stuff like that okay what are you doing like you're wasting way too much time this is so natural too it's so natural i i think this is really something that you do at the beginnings uh a lot and then you realize this is not helping me whatsoever and like the over over analyzing insights or analytics or etsy stats or whatever pinterest analytics whatever you're using google analytics you know you go in there like almost daily or weekly and you're just like obsessing over like those tiny little um you know plus three percent minus six percent and you're just kind of like oh my god mine is six percent from yesterday that's crazy and i don't look at your stats daily like that makes it's not even you know it's not a statistic listing this significance sorry it needs to be a trend so you can look at are things like you know you need to remove yourself from like the day-to-day and also you don't have when you look at things day-to-day it's not like you will do anything from it so if you can't look at an insight and turn it into an action that you can actually implement it's a waste of time so like you know it's like what look at your stats when you can actually do something from what you learn in your stats and that's not going to be daily you're not going to change your strategy every day because it's minus two percent or you know it like oh someone favorite yeah that's actually really true i never thought it was exactly but yeah so it's just a mental weight you know what i'm what we're looking or what i'm probably looking for if i'm checking my insights after half an hour that i posted you know which is so dumb but it's just like you we're always looking for it it's like instant gratification or yes yeah like appreciation like confirmation now what is it called you know like you you need them to like feel good about yourself or what you've just put yeah it's like a confirmation yeah like people are liking it okay good good but yeah whatever you know just obsessing over these things way too much sometimes yeah yeah this is why it's almost like looking back at the very beginning of this conversation which is like when you run start build a business it's really about growing as a person like it will push you to like realize like the thoughts they're having the emotions you're having how they're like interfering with like the actions you're taking and like learning to like grow from it and i think like this is one of my favorite part of growing my business also my least favorite part most days like everyone but it's yeah it's a journey it's definitely a journey but it's fun and it's creative yeah um okay so i'm not going to keep you much longer but i wanted to ask you two questions that i ask everyone the first is what's the thing you like the most about your business so along with what you just said basically really know that's so interesting like i love learning about myself in the process and like understanding where i have like some roadblocks in myself you know not necessarily the business sometimes i feel like oh my business has this problem but then i'm like oh no actually i have this problem you know like that's something internal that i have to get over it's just like a thought stuck in my head it's not actually my business my business is not the problem it's my yeah myself sometimes so that's very interesting and i it's tough but it's really a lot of learning involved so i like that and i also really enjoy that it's so versatile because i'm always a person i hate doing the same thing all day long every day the same you know like that's so boring for me yeah and running a business just involves so many different things and so many things that i have no clue about or have never done before in my life so i'm it's just like a constant learning progress basically and so many different things you have to like get into or keep track of and you know do marketing but also designing collections and then making and then selling and then shipping and some parts are more enjoyable than others obviously but i just really like to have it all somehow you know to have to do it all and have to learn it all like it's never boring for sure yeah it definitely gives it interesting sure for sure yeah all right so the last question is what is success to you um well probably being able to do what i really like to do and enjoy doing and having like being rewarded for it you know being appreciated for it being able to make a positive impact in other people's lives and also being paid for it that's basically yeah like i want to be paid for something that i enjoy doing basically that's that's the point and yeah yeah and along like having making myself a happier person by being able to do something i enjoy being paid for it and also ideally taking this beyond myself as i said before like making this positive impact on maybe other like suppliers collaborators and your customers that's just a nice a really nice part being like feeling connected i feel much more connected to people like in general with my business it gives me an opportunity to connect on like a deeper level to many other like automakers my customers and yeah it's just such a nice way to make something with my hands and then improve someone else's life with this thing that i made that's just yeah it's magic it's pure magic yeah i think you're way on your way i think um you're so hard on yourself i know you're doing so well but you're like yeah you're letting all these little thoughts go it's not as good as i want it to be yet and it's like you you've done so much in such a short time i'll put all the links to your uh products and accounts and all of that because people can check out what you're doing um but you should be very proud and you're just getting started too so remember that you know this is not in year 10.

yeah i just have to like not be so serious about it sometimes just like see it with a little bit more like playfulness i think yeah just like trying stuff out and some things don't work and that's okay that's me that's okay that's great no they don't work it's okay if it doesn't work out just give it totally it needs some stuff needs to not work out so that you know that and you learn from it yeah that's that's tough to accept but it's true missteps are important they're part of the journey all right well thank you so much i'll see you probably in the community or on instagram somewhere sure thanks so much it was a lot of fun you

2021-09-08 13:11

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