13 hours ago
Does anyone else get overwhelmed by all the different methods of promotion and on-line communication? I remember a time when we didn't even have personal computers and I'm not that old. Now my husband and I have at any given time between 3-5 computers of some kind in the house. Only one of them is mine but he has a personal laptop, a work laptop, a personal computer, and a Mac in the basement of a band mate that they use for recording. (The above card is from Simply Sentimental on Etsy).
I have been slowly incorporating different sites into my daily life and I'm beginning to feel overload. I don't want my promotion and networking to take over my life so that I end up spending less time knitting and have nothing to promote. Initially when I started my shop I would spend some time each day promoting on the etsy forums. This seems to be where most people start and it can be a useful tool to get hearts and meet people in the community. I am pretty over it to be honest and I go there less and less as time goes by. I poke in for a few minutes here and there and post a few thoughts, do a little promotion if I have an item that isn't getting much love.
My next venture was Flickr which is just for downloading pictures. It is free but you pay to set up a premium account and get more room and categories. I posted a ton of product pictures and a few personal and band pictures. I joined some crafting and etsy related groups and posted pictures to their pages. I still go in periodically but I don't think I've ever gotten a sale from it and I don't find it too satisfying at this point.
I started my blog around 6 months ago. I started out with low expectations but it has been a very fulfilling adventure so far. I'm approaching my 100th post and I average between 150-200 hits a day according to google stats. I know a lot of them are entrecard drops but I try to keep up with a lot of crafting and creative blogs on there and I feel that is generally reciprocated. I really don't know how that compares with other blogs but I honestly don't care. I like the connection I feel to other bloggers. I'm an introvert by nature and I think that blogging has been good for me. I've also gotten several custom orders and sales from readers so it has been the most productive on-line promotional tool for me so far.
Joining Entrecard has brought a lot of new bloggers into my sphere and I like the dropping process. It is a soothing and meditative activity for me usually. I can do it on my lunch hour and since my work computer is so fast I can get most of my daily 300 in during that time. I can usually find a few minutes here and there when I'm not with students to write a post and leave comments on other blogs during the work week also. I've decided that since my home computer takes so much longer to bring up pages and do my drops I'm going to keep it to a minimum on the weekends and focus on knitting time. This will hurt my entrecard rating but that is not as important as having the inventory I need for my business.
I recently added Facebook and Twitter to my daily doings. I really like that Facebook has reconnected me with people from my past that I've lost track of through the years. I started a shop business page to let people that already know me know what I'm doing with my knitting. Many of them had no idea about my business and I've gotten a lot of hits and compliments on my work. I see facebook as more about connecting and less about promotion, although a little promotion is definitely involved.
Twitter is much more of a promotional thing for me. To be honest I feel a bit like I'm yelling into the wind with Twitter. I have over a hundred followers after only a week of active tweeting but I don't think any of them are really listening. I decided I needed to give it a chance before I decided whether I wanted to really do it. People are always saying how many sales they have gotten from it and how wonderful it is so I'm trying to keep an open mind. I sometimes feel silly saying what I'm doing in 140 words or less. I feel with my blog I am actually reaching and expressing at least part of the real me. Tweeting seems more superficial and fake somehow to me. I have gotten a number of views when I've posted my new listings and what not so I think I'm going to keep it up for awhile and see if it grows on me.
I have a page on Etsy love, Myspace, and a few other networking sites but I've not added any content or spent much of any time there. What promotional tools have you found to be the best use of your valuable time?