Saturday, January 15, 2011

Saturday Strategy Session , Week 2 - defining your business

Last week we looked at how others see your business.  This week, we'll consider how we define ourselves.  An important thing to consider: do you still enjoy creating your art?  I launched Storybeader looking to earn extra cash - I think a lot of us started out that way.  My focus has changed a number of times, but I'm still excited about my artwork.  Hopefully you are energized by what you do. 

Here are three more questions from Worksheet 1 (strengths and dreams) created by April at Blackburg Belle.   

Question #4:   What values make up your creative business? 
I assume this means the worthiness of your business.  My customer service is a top priority.  I enjoy responding quickly to sales and questions, to ship packages in one or two days, and to send my products internationally.  Working with special orders is gratifying.  My first Etsy sale was a beaded rope necklace (above.)  The buyer liked it so much she asked for a matching bracelet; later on, some earrings.  You might try and look at your feedback and see what values others place on your business.  I hadn’t thought of it, but one person commented on the quality of my materials.  That IS important to me.  Someone else said they only buy recycled products.  That got me thinking about my concern for the environment.  I try to use acid-free and recycled materials whenever possible. 

Question #5: If you had to name one quality that defines your brand, what would it be (Get specific)?   
It took me a long time to come up with just one word to define my brand.  And that is  functional.  Not very glamorous, I suppose...  What I did was write down words that describe all my artwork and looked for an underlying theme.  First of all, I had to check the dictionary.  Quality is defined as “to describe; characterize.”  My pieces (hopefully) are beautiful, but one characteristic they all have is that they are useful.  The buyer can wear my jewelry, draw and write in the journals and feel good about buying handmade (recycled) paper.  Everything is unique, and to add a little twist, I write a haiku for all of my necklaces and books.

Question #6: What are you favorite work-related activities?  What ideas make you want to jump out of bed in the morning.  What projects capture your attention, causing you to loose track of time.
This is very personal and should be fun for you to answer.  My absolute favorite part of Storybeader in the design aspect.  And I love to write and edit my blog.  My haikus usually come to me in the process of creating each piece.  Layout is a favorite part of my beadwork, especially with treasure necklaces.  I enjoy the sense of accomplishment with every piece.  And I love looking at all the beautiful Japanese papers when I'm shopping for book covers.  The neat thing about art journaling is that it is meditative!  Maybe others won't know what a design means, but it's usually a personal expression of something in my life. What makes me jump out of bed in the morning?  I usually wake up with a solution to a design in my head, and feel the need to record it before I forget. 

What is it about your artwork that brings you the most joy?


memoriesforlifescrapbooks said...

I love that necklace! I can see why it sold so quickly!
Customer service is a very valuable part of a business!!!

Erika said...

I enjoyed doing these exercises. I felt like I learned a lot about my business and why I even want one in the first place. And it helped me that I wrote and sketched things out in a recycled journal.

I have to tell you again that I really like your new note cards. I hope to get a couple soon.

BeadedTail said...

Another interesting, thought provoking post! I like how you answered all those questions. It shows you've put much thought into your work and your brand. I must admit that seeing all those beads out makes me so nervous! I'm one who can only take out a few beads at a time because too many overwhelm me. Yeah, I know, I'm weird.

Kathleen said...

Great post - I am really enjoying this series. Great question - I think I may just have to blog about what brings me the most joy in my artwork! Thanks =)

storybeader said...

erika - this is just the beginning {:-D
BT - treasure necklaces are messy! lol
sounds like a great post, kathleen!

Ani said...

I love the necklace, too! And I got a kick out of the exchange between you and Sharla. I should take a page out of her book, and limit myself to just a few beads. But I'm afraid I'm much more prone to the messy beads technique, lol.

Again, thought-provoking questions...

Nancy said...

Those are definitely some good questions to consider! It's always important to take the time to reevaluate realistically where you are in your business and where you want to be, and how to get there. That's one of my goals for the new year. Love that necklace too!

roseworksjewelry said...

I should go through and answer all of these - I had fun reading yours!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...