Selling Jewelry Online: Tips for Marketing and Growing Your Jewelry Business

Welcome Heather Powers, a bead maker, author, and jewelry designer, the new author of the Color Canvas feature in Step-by-Step Wire Jewelry, and host of popular Interweave web seminars. Today Heather is sharing valuable, detailed information on how to find and get bloggers to promote your jewelry to their readers.

 
Heather's Birch and Owl bracelet

Connecting with Bloggers to Promote Your Jewelry
By Heather Powers

Imagine waking up one morning with an inbox full of orders, your jewelry images plastering Pinterest, and stylists emailing you about working with you. Or a big store spots your work on a popular blog and would like to invite you to do a trunk show. Or if you picked up enough custom orders that you had to start a waiting list.

Getting featured on the right blogs can be like getting featured in the pages of your favorite fashion magazine. The tastemaker bloggers influence trends and can launch a designer into internet stardom; they produce a trickle-down effect of images being pinned and reblogged across the web.

Before you get stars in your eyes, creating relationships with bloggers takes time and consistency to see real results. With a little planning and some online smarts, you can incorporate connecting with blogs as part of your overall marketing plan for your jewelry business.

 
Heather's Winter Owl pendant

Who is Your Dream Client? Decide who your dream client is: how old is she, where does she shop, what magazines does she read, what are her hobbies? This will help you find the blogs she might be reading. Think of your favorite customer, your top returning customers, or the person you think would love to buy your jewelry.

What problems does your jewelry solve? Yes, your jewelry solves problems! Maybe it's offering artistic designs that help women feel more creative or inspirational jewelry that helps the wearer remember a message on a daily basis. Write down a list of problems your jewelry solves.

Finding Blogs That Fit Your Brand

You may have a list of blogs you read that are written by your peers. These are not the blogs you are looking for–you are looking for blogs that feature fashion and trends, handcrafted goods, curated shopping adventures, success stories of small businesses, and niche blogs that would love an item you offer. These are blogs that are read by people who aren't making their own jewelry; they are shoppers and collectors of handmade jewelry and artisan crafts.

Every designer is going to have a dream list of blogs that fit their brand, so giving you a list of blogs isn't going to help everyone. But I can give you some guidelines and tools for finding blogs that fit your niche.

Bloglovin.com is a blog feed service. Go to the site, type in a blog, or search through the categories to find a blog. When you find one that looks like a fit (or you may already have one that you think is a great fit for you), use the "Find Similar" button to see related blogs in that category. Look for blogs with at least 5,000 subscribers or more.

 
Heather's Holiday Cheer earrings

The Top 99 Fashion Blogs is a great place to start. Join communities like Independent Fashion Bloggers, Oh My Handmade Goodness, and The Switchboards to connect with bloggers. A few top blogs include Honestly WTF, Refinery 29, Poppy Talk, and Oh Joy.

Create a way to keep track of what blogs you find: include the website URL, contact email, editor's name, and when you last contacted them.

What is your niche? Not every piece you design will fit a niche, but if you do have jewelry that fits a niche, start there. If you have jewelry that appeals to women who love yoga, look for yoga blogs that you feel would be a good fit for your brand. Make owl jewelry? There is a blog that features only owl goods. Make jewelry for new moms? There are tons of mommy blogs out there. Look for blogs in your niche that feature gift guides or new products.

Look for blogs with a large number of subscribers and interactions. Check out their Facebook page to make sure they have a big following.

Get to know the blog and the blogger; read the about page, read through the blogs top posts or the last few weeks of posts. Read through their submission policies. Subscribe to their newsletter and follow them on Instagram, Twitter, and/or Facebook. Leave thoughtful comments and engage with your top sites before contacting them. You wouldn't show up at a party passing out business cards before you said hello; don't do it online either. In a world where everyone leaves a thumbs up, a few thoughtful comments can go a long way on any social media platform.

      
Heather's Periwinkle Branches earrings

Tips for Approaching Bloggers

You've found your list of bloggers, you know they are internet stars, they fit your style, they feature products. Now you are ready to send an email.

  1.  Address them by name and mention what you love about their blog.
  2.  In two or three sentences, introduce yourself, your jewelry, and what problem it can solve for their readers. Stand out and be creative.
  3.  Include a link to your website or shop.
  4.  Include one or two low-resolution images. Do not send big images in an email.
  5.  Offer a discount code or giveaway for their readers.
  6.  Read through the blog's submission policy and follow it to the letter.
  7.  Follow up a week later if you don't hear anything, keeping it light and friendly. If you don't hear back, move on and try again in a few months when you have new offerings.

Your email should be short, witty, and targeted to the blogger and his/her readers. Short email–remember that! The image you send to bloggers should be amazing, pin-worthy, best photo of your jewelry ever. Professional photos can go a long way and can be a smart investment.

Don't giveaway large amounts of jewelry–a small sample of a pendant or earrings is fine. Don't send jewelry to smaller bloggers; you won't see the investment back. If you don't do discounts, offer free shipping for their readers.

 
Heather's website, Humblebeads

Another idea is to find bloggers that have done gift guides. Send them an email telling them how much you loved their guide last year and would love to be considered for an upcoming gift guide. Some of these are paid advertisements; be wary of paying for ads on blogs. Unless they are really big blogs, it won't be worth the investment. Don't pay for sidebar advertising on blogs. If you pay for anything, invest in affordable sponsored posts or very popular gift guides.

If you do get featured on a blog, send a thank you note and a small gift. Remember there are thoughtful, busy people on the other end of the keyboard. Be professional and likeable.

Good luck!
Heather

Learn more about branding your online jewelry business with Heather's on-demand web seminar, How to Visually Brand Your Jewelry Business.

About the author
Heather is the creative force behind Humblebeads. Bead maker, author and jewelry designer, Heather has as much fun promoting her work as she does making it. When she isn't busy making beads, she's blogging and having fun exploring social media. She is a new contributor to Step by Step Wire Jewelry's Color Canvas feature and has created several web seminars for Interweave. Keep up with Heather on Facebook, via
@humblebeads on Instagram and Twitter, and on Pinterest.

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