Thanksgiving has past and Black Friday is here! This has brought a lot of chat about sales, no sales, marketing, coupon codes, etc to our campfire. We all want sales but they are frequently not forthcoming as often as we would like.
1 Egg Man posted a great idea. Frequently, we are too shy or modest to call attention to ourselves. Ron declares this to be a big mistake and he makes a great point.
Lets take jewelry as an example. This morning on Etsy, there were 1,931,932 items that came up on a search for “jewelry.” How do you get your pieces noticed in a sea of almost two million pieces on Etsy along?
For those not doing jewelry, do a search of your own category to get a better idea of what you are up against.
Know that if you don’t ring your own bell, it is unlikely that anyone will do it for you.
Here is what Ron had to say about belling ringing:
When I took my early retirement and started doing shows and trying to make a living selling my eggs. I was determined to get publicity and recognition.
About three weeks before every show I did, I would send out Press Releases to every newspaper in the show area, telling about me and my eggs. I would then resend it about 2 weeks before, just as a reminder. You would be surprised at the number of times a paper would print that release. You’d also be surprised by how many folks would come in to see me from that release. In order to sell, you need a following and recognition. It will never hurt you to be the one to ring your own bell.
Sit down and write up a Press Release on yourself and make sure to include a BIO and some really nice pictures of your work. Send it to every newspaper around you. Try to get known in your local area and a story just might get picked up by another newspaper.
I always checked to see if a newspaper was syndicated or not, If it wasn’t, any other paper could reprint the story and a lot of papers do just that. When I had my Gallery, I had the local paper do an article on me and my grand opening. Results were fairly decent but really not much. Another newspaper asked if they could do an article and that reporter told me the paper wasn’t syndicated. That article resulted in that article making it to many other locales, including as far away as Texas, and also my doing a live talk show with a radio station in Chicago.
My web site hits were outstanding and I couldn’t tell you the number of sales it generated. Web sites are nice, I’ve had mine for over 20 years now, but the majority of hits come from folks I’ve met at shows or who have heard about me from someone else. Too many folks believe they will just bring all these sales your way but unfortunately, there are thousands more like you out there, all thinking the same thing. Don’t count on them until you become recognized. Ring your own bell, spend some time making up Press Releases and getting known.
If you can, see if you could give classes or talks to students. I do about a dozen every year. Every time you do something like that, just look for one satisfied customer. They will tell about 10 friends and you should get one from that. The cycle continues. Ring your own bell. Sitting moaning and groaning won’t help one bit.
Write those Press Releases and mail them out. Then keep doing it. Don’t give up because the paper doesn’t print it the first time, there are a lot of different employees. Be persistent and heck, they might do it just to get you off their back. No matter why or how, if it gets you a customer and recognition, that’s what counts. Did I say Ring Your Own Bell. It works if you are persistent.
Thanks Ron for these wise words!