10 Best Tips for Using Social-Media to Your Advantage

Kristal Wick

I've tried it all at least once: blogging, Facebook, Etsy, YouTube, Twitter, website, group blog. Hmmmm, I think that's all. Oops, left out Flickr, which I haven't tried yet. So I guess I haven't really tried them all. By now, most folks are at least slightly familiar with some social-media terms.

Social media: a selling essential for jewelry makers

I am commonly asked, "How do I use social media to sell my work?" A great question with a variety of answers. One size does not fit all feet (as in Cinderella's slipper). So far I've not found any of the methods to be a get-rich-quick-make-a-million-overnight type of solution-although some artists with accounts in the early phase of Etsy's launch did mighty fine in the ka-ching department.


Here's my 2 cents on how to make the most of social media

  • No matter which social-media avenues you dive into, your #1 requirement is FABULOUS images. If your pictures are cluttered, fuzzy, or too dark, you've lost your audience and perhaps credibility. When someone is interested in purchasing your creations, they want to know you are professional and nothing says this quicker than stunning images. If you have a limited budget, spend most of it on professional photos. The payoff is priceless and forever.
  • Don't sign up for everything haphazardly and forget to maintain your sites. It's easy to jump in and go crazy, but remember, you need to take care of these sites like a garden. Water regularly. If I don't blog enough, my readers/customers tell me about it! So it's wise to bite off only what you can chew and utilize that medium as much as possible before adding a new one.
  • Keep messages simple and relevant. Nobody wants to know what you had for lunch (except maybe your mom). If your intent is to sell your products online, stay focused on your products and their stories. Share images and info on what inspired you in creating a particular piece of jewelry. Everyone loves a good story and how it relates to their purchase.
  • Which leads me to this important point. Just because the Web is open 24/7 doesn't mean you should be selling 24/7. If you post every hour, buymystuffbuymystuffbuymystuff, no one will. Post new images, stories, product lines when they launch, but be sure not to inundate your potential buyers by sounding like a used car salesman (sorry, Dad).
  • Study other successful formats. Never, never, never copy (did I say NEVER enough?). However, it's great to break down elements you like on someone else's website or storefront and apply them to yours. What's going on in their banner? How much text-to-image ratio is on their front page? What's inviting about the colors? Make a list of elements you like and dislike. That will help you develop your own flavor and style.
Bling tweeting with her peeps on Twitter.
  • Don't list any personal info such as your home address or phone number. Millions of people have access to this public information so just be a little cautious.
  • Keep it clean.Treat your site as though your Grandmother will read it. Don't swear or rant.
  • Do swap links with other craft-related sites. Be sure to ask first.
  • Have contests. Everyone loves to participate in contests to win FREE stuff. Build excitement and followers with giveaways. 
  • You still have to drive folks to you! Just because you posted some images with prices on your group blog or Etsy store doesn't mean they'll sell. You still have to get them to your site/page. That's where you have to do a lot of background work has to build your audience of fans. Tell everyone: your neighbors, coworkers, Grandma, etc. You never know when your hairdresser needs a birthday gift! Keeping yourself front and center in their minds = sales.
for more ideas from jewelry artists Lorelei Eurto, Heather Powers, and Ronna Sarvas Weltman, read their takes on social media and selling in "How to Show and Sell Online" in Creative Jewelry 2010.

Come bead with me,

Creatively,

 

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