Saturday, June 20, 2009

Crafting Friendships

In August of 2008 I started my first online business on Etsy. I had no idea what I was getting myself into or what it would take to make it work! My thinking was "If I like what I make other people will too so this should be easy!" Since then I have learned it is not easy!

Online selling has opened up a whole new world that I did not know existed! I had no clue how many artists and craft people were in the virtual world creating all these communities. There are ning sites, fan pages, forums, and even a radio station committed to indie artists of all kinds!

Every site offers something different for it's sellers and buyers, but for me the most important thing is community. I want to know that I am an important part of the system that is in place that I call my online home. If I don't get that, there is no need for me to stay.

I'm happy to say I have found that place at The Administration there has set a respectful tone for us as sellers there. That same tone can be found in the forums and this allows us to get to know each other not only as artists but allows an atmosphere where friendships are born.

Friendship has been the key to my success at ArtFire. Just like in our own communities where we live, to be successful and have good word of mouth spread about you, you have to build relationships and trust before people will buy from you. You get to know them as people and not just other sellers or buyers. While this may only be one aspect of online selling it has been the one that has worked best for me!


Beverly said...

I love my online crafting friends. I live in a small, rural town in the Maine woods, but the internet connects me to people with common interests from around the world. I have learned so much from them, honing my crafts and expanding my crafting interests. Thank goodness for the crafting communities!

Suzbax said...

Great article La. And I agree with Beverly. I have met some really awesome people on the forums and just love the online community there. I don't know what I am going to do if I can't get online everyday while I am traveling.

She's Batty Designs said...

me either! being online connects us all and helps us update each other about what's going on - not just with our business but also our personal life. we become more than just people to "network with", we all be come friends how look out for each other :)

Skeleton In My Closet said...

I could never do what I do without having my online friends. I have been on for years and have some real close friendships. Its amazing if you look back just a few years ago how much now there is for social networks, and the ability to keep up with your friends and fellow artist

I think this is just a wonderful write up, an Thank you for mentioning BHR Truly appreciate it BHR is what it is because of the awesome friends that have become apart of the BHR family

Shell said...

what a great thing, I so love Artfire and everyone I have met there and on Blookheadradio!

Brandy said...

I was just like you when I started out - I thought it would be easy. It is tough! But the friendships I've made along the way are the best part of selling online. I love all the people I've come across - you included! Great blog post.

Beadlady5 said...

I agree with you--online selling is really quite a challenge--however, at Artfire the atmosphere is so seller friendly that it makes the challege a tad less painful!


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