This week on our continuing series for the Multi-Needle Monday blog we will focus on the last but not least step in our new product introduction: promotion.
Again, our focus is on the small embroidery business owner who is now ready to market a new product. How will you get the word out to your current customers? Will you take the photographs yourself or hire a professional photographer?
There are so many quick and free ways to market a new product today that you really cannot go wrong unless you do nothing. For instance Facebook is the perfect platform to launch your business and “test” new items. Use it to tease your customers to see what colors, lettering styles, embroidery designs or accessories they prefer. When you have narrowed down your choices, add these products to your main website or Esty store. It’s a good idea to feature or “post” a new photo weekly on your Facebook page to keep your customers tuned and interested.
Take great photographs and make great samples! Stitch colorful samples with coordinating and crisp embroidery designs or lettering. Position the embroidery as the main focal point. Use a larger scale design, monogram or appliqué to pop in the photograph. Remember, time is money and high stitch count designs are not necessary. Trim the thread tails, press the hoop marks out of the sample item and make sure all water soluble stabilizer is completely removed. The majority of cameras have a high pixel number and the resolution is very clear- water soluble fragments can easily show up in a photograph.
I have learned to use a tri-pod for my camera (tri-pods are available for cell phones too) and foam board from a craft store to easily reposition as a table when desired. Take photographs outside if you have a nice backdrop such as potted flowers or tall grass. Always try to take a handful of photographs, not just one or two. Learn out to use the photography software that is included in most operating systems; such as crop, brightness and resize.
The photos of the back to school accessories for college were taken around a beautiful pool at dusk; which is a perfect time for photography.
I recently read about a few business owners who “barter” for different tasks of trade in their town. Do you have a close friend or acquaintance who is a photographer and in need of some embroidered polo shirts? Is there a “techy” neighborhood college student who can help you set up your Facebook or Etsy shop business page? The student might appreciate a few personalized items in exchange for their expertise. I will tell you that the marketing chore never ends when you own a business but it has to be done. Try to learn as much as you can and take control of the obstacles ahead.
Here are a few marketing platforms to use: Instagram, Pinterest, Blog, Twitter, and Facebook. I think all of the platforms are helpful and virtually free but you need to decide where your customers are and what the most popular outlet for your demographic is.
*Remember not to list an item that is out of stock or on back order. You should have checked the inventory before you selected the new product to introduce.
Join me in my Craftsy class titled”How to Start a Machine Embroidery Business” save $10 with this coupon link.