What marketing really is (and how to stop avoiding it)

What Marketing Really Is (& how to stop avoiding it) Tara Swiger, Oh My! Handmade


Dear sweet makers,

From your comments about marketing, on the blog and in the Twitter chat, it sounds like the biggest thing keeping you from sharing your own handmade goodness with the world is the you are terrified by “marketing.”

So let’s clear this right up!

Marketing = all communication with the people who will (and do) love your work.

(For another take on this definition, read this.)

This means 3 things:

  1. Marketing can be as simple as talking to people who love what you make.
  2. Everything that communicates is marketing; including your labels, your photographs, every word on your website, some of your tweets, and of course, your product descriptions.
  3. Your job with your marketing is not to convince people to like you or what you do. It is not to convert a non-believer. It is not to put your work in front of people who won’t buy it (either because they can’t afford it or don’t like it.)

Isn’t that better?

So what are we talking about when we talk about marketing?

Getting really clear in your message. Your message includes who you are, what is special about what you make, and how it benefits the buyer. (Chapter 1 of my book helps you define each of these pieces).

Sharing that message so that the people who will love your work know it exists.

Identifying who those people are and where they hang out, so you can speak to them.

Now, instead of despairing at what you haven’t done yet, can you celebrate the bits of this list that you are already doing? (Hint: if you have a website – you’re already sharing your message! If you’ve made even one sale, then you’ve identified at least something about your people.)

What is the marketing (ie, communicating) you’re already doing with the people who will love your work?

PS. If you have a hard time talking about yourself and your work (and what makes it special), Diane + I are teaching a class to help you. Sign up here to be notified when it opens on May 28th +  watch for part 2 of this post on the 4P’s of Marketing next Thursday, May 30!