"I feel like these avatars are pretty tried and true for any type of personality, and we dialed it down to kind of six. People across all industries, product businesses listening to this podcast, this will be relevant to you, so it's going to be awesome. "
Welcome to Thrive-by-Design. The podcast for ambitious, independent jewelry brands looking to profit from their products. Get ready to make more and sell more doing what you love without spending every single waking minute doing it. Hey, and if you're a creative fashion or product-based business, I want to welcome you to the show. I'll be dropping big tips on launching, growing, and scaling your business so you can spend more of your precious time using your creativity to make money. You ready? Alright, let's do this.
Tracy: Welcome to Thrive by Design Episode 202. Well hey there my friends, it's Tracy Matthews, chief visionary officer over at Flourish and Thrive Academy and I'm excited to be here on the Thrive by Design podcast talking to you on my birthday, May 21st is my birthday and the stars aligned us here and it lands on a Tuesday when we release the podcast, so here we hanging out on my birthday. I love hanging with peeps and I'm an extrovert, so why not. Anyway I wanted to, I love birthdays, firs t and foremost, they are like my favorite time of the year, and I love that my birthday is in May, I've always loved it was in May because I felt like I had many times a year that I could celebrate holidays, and one of them being in the spring. I always think of May as like right before summer because I grew up in California, but it is definitely spring, with spring being before summer, and that's besides the point.
Anyway, every year on my birthday I give away an awesome gift. So this year we have two gifts, one of them is something that we're giving away for free, and another thing is something that we do not sell but we turned it into a mini bundle so that you can grab it because it was so popular when we released it as a bonus for one of our programs that we realized that this was something super hot and people want it and we're going to give it to you. So the freebie, here we go, it is my epic framework for creating videos that actually sell, and so in that framework I'm going to share with you just a simple formula that you can use on a repeatable basis to do video content for IGTV, for your Facebook Live, for any sort of video that you're doing anywhere any way, any shape or any form. You can leverage these videos on You Tube as well to start attracting your customers. So that's the freebie download. This framework is really designed to help you write really good hooks or titles for your videos, it's also designed to hook people with a opening sentence that actually connects with your audience so that they stay and don't bounce. It's also going to talk about how to really get people interested in what you're about to deliver to them and how to create concise content in a reasonable format that you can produce quickly and get out of your mouth really fast so that you're not doing these epic long videos for social and other platforms, and then also how to close it with a strong CTA to get them what you want them to do next. I'm excited about this, it's super fun and I'm excited to give it to you. The story selling framework and template is pretty epic. We have organized a bundle and that bundle includes our story selling framework that shows you how to create an epic maker video, it also is going to walk you through the template on how to produce and deliver amazing video sales. So like if you're doing a Facebook Live to how to kind of lead that, like the things that you need to do. How to tell stories, and basically everything that you do to put the customer at the center of your brand, and also how to get insanely awesome video testimonials. Plus, I'm going to be bundling that together with the sample marketing template and video content ideas that you can use to leverage in multiple ways to take one piece of content, i.e. your video, and stories that you tell in those videos and turn it into multiple pieces of content for social media, for your blog, for just about anywhere that you're posting it. And then you can post the videos everywhere, on IGTV, or you can do them on Facebook Live, you can post them separately on Facebook as a separate video, and then you can also post them on your YouTube channel. So it's just a really, really awesome, awesome framework that has gotten a great response and the people who have used it are getting insane results. I wanted to offer it's you, and if you're interested in checking it out head on over to the FlourishThriveAcademy.com/birthdaysurprise to get your free download and to hear more about this awesome story selling framework and marketing and video marketing bundle. It's going to be awesome, so check it out.
Anyway, I'm excited to be here today because today I'm talking about what makes you brilliant as a jewelry designer and how to use your creative brilliance to make more money, to build a better business and to really, instead of fight your natural tendencies, to dive into them and get the right support around it. Sounds good? Okay, awesome. I want to ask you a question, have you taken our jewelry brand brilliance factor quiz yet? The jewelry brand brilliance factor quiz is designed to help you discover that special sparkle that only you have and learn how to use it to your advantage while building the jewelry business of your dreams.
So it's going to take maybe like less than a minute, and we're going to give you a customized guide based on your brilliance factor, and that's what I want to talk about today. We're going to talk about three steps that you can take now to grow and scale your business, I'm going to give you some inspiration and stories relevant to your brilliance factor so you can see how to implement those in your real life and your business, and I'm going to give you some instant access to resources that we curated just for you to help you get to your next level of success. If you want to check that out it's completely free, it's super fun, everyone who's taken it loved the results. Head on over to FlourishThriveAcademy.com/brilliance and you can take the quiz in 45 seconds. If you want to pause this, go take the quiz, find out what your brilliance factor is, and then come back and listen to what I have to say about how your brilliance factor is going to affect your business.
I developed this quiz, and the reason why I wanted to talk about this is because every business should, if they don't, have dream clients and customer avatars and really be clear on like the kinds of people that they serve. This quiz came about for a couple of reasons, number one, we had a quiz and I didn't love it, it was just kind of sort of boring, I wanted something that was fun, that really got people thinking about their creativity. Because if you haven't heard me talking about this, I launched a new platform called Creatives Rule The World several months ago. I'm going to be using that as my platform for speaking moving forward across multiple industries, not just jewelry moving forward. This was really important to me because it was something that I was passionate about. Creativity to me is your number one the most important thing that you have to basically make money in your business, we are so gifted as creative thinkers. And you know, part of being a jeweler or jewelry designer or a maker is that we have this gift of creativity in problem solving, but also oftentimes a use like this technical ability to work with our hands. As I've been like really investigating, there are six types of basically creative types that we dialed in, especially for the Flourish and Thrive community, and if you have another type of business I'm sure that this will resonate for you as well, because I feel like these avatars are pretty tried and true for any type of personality. We dialed it down to kind of six. So if you're a fashion designer or an accessories designer you're selling dog treats because I know that we have people across all industries or product businesses listening to this podcast, this will be relevant to you. So it's going to be awesome.
Anyway, when I was designing this I was really because you know there's this myth about the starving artist syndrome and I don't believe that artists should be starving. I just think that they need to tweak the way they think about their creativity and lean into that to build better businesses. And so that's how this quiz really came about, is my passion for helping creative thinkers, my passion for being a visionary myself with a highly specialized skill set that I am excellent at, then about 90% of the things I suck at, and I'm okay with that, I've embraced it, and I'm frustrated on a daily basis because I am technically challenged, I'm challenged in a lot of ways, but I know that I'm gifted because I have this other, these other qualities that no one else can replicate that are uniquely mine. So we all have that as well. So that was already sort of the emphasis for this quiz, is also to give you permission to know that whatever your brilliance factor is, it's okay, it doesn't make you right or wrong, it's just information to help you understand where you're going to need support in business. What you're naturally good at, and also how we can help you at Flourish and Thrive or how someone else can help you if you work with someone else, another consultant.
So let's save into this because I'm going to talk actually, it's funny because I actually crossed two hybrids in this brilliance factor quiz, because if we're crossing multiple industries, I first and foremost think of myself as a creative force if nature, but I'm also a high class hustler. Because I really am an entrepreneur at heart, I love building things, I love sales, I love helping people do the same thing, and I love seeing the results of the hard work that I put in, but I'm also a designer at heart. Like I love coming up with ideas, I love sitting out in nature or going to museums or looking at structures or traveling or whatever and getting inspired by the shapes and the forms and the smells and the feels and all the things, all the feels, all the things that you see. It's funny because in my jewelry business I'm a creative force in nature, but at Flourish and Thrive Academy and Creatives Rule The World I'm a high class hustler. I'm going to walk you through each of these basically brilliance factors or types so that you can, number one, see what resonates for yo,u but then also I'd love to invite you to take the quiz because this is really where you're going to see what the results of that.
When I think of a creative force of nature, this is someone who loves design. They're someone who, they are naturally gregarious, they're naturally outgoing, they actually don't mind selling their work, they like interacting with their customers, but first and foremost they love designing jewelry. They are different than a maker with the mostest in the fact that they do not, they like making the jewelry, but it's not necessary, they know that in order to grow their business that they're going to have to move themselves out of that. So they're okay handing out process off to someone else when the time is right. Creative force of nature, what they really love the most is engaging with customers, but then also coming up with like ideas and like they're basically their ideas and flows are endless. So they can create tons and tons of collections, they're very prolific often in their design flow. And what they really feel called to do in life is to bring their creative ideas not only to life in a 3D form, but to get them out into the world because this is what they're meant to be doing in life, is to be designing and having people experiencing their art. Their inspirations come from all over the globe, like I said, they're very inspired by multiple things, and they benefit in a lot of ways from that, because their inspiration senses are endless and they're always like downloading information. Sometimes they can get really overwhelmed with the ideas, but when they channel it it's like they come up with the most innovative design concepts, because they're really thinking outside of what maybe their two hands can create, to create something different and innovative.
So their benefits is that they really are able to think outside of the box, their creativity of leans to so many ideas, it's like nonstop, firing at them all the time. They realize that being a perfectionist is going to slow their business down, and so it's all about progress and not perfection for them. Like if there was a typo in their Instagram feed, they're not going to stressed out about it and they realize that the people who are probably commenting on those things are going to be the ones who aren't necessarily going to get the same results. They're always thinking of new ideas new ways to get out there, they're not afraid to ask for what they want and they know that because they're highly creative that they might have some setbacks, so they're willing to just put themselves out there and take the steps it takes to move forward. As a creative force of nature you have this probably like intuitive sense that you knew that this was your calling in life. Maybe it's not always necessarily jewelry design, but when you commit to something you're like, "I'm meant to be doing this. At least for a period of time, and this is my path forward." So there's a lot of passion involved in your commitment to building a business, and that's really the thing that keeps you moving during the ups and downs, knowing that this is what you're meant to be doing and. I feel as though there are struggles for creative forces of nature, because they're doing all the things and they're struggling, but like the one thing that I feel is really important to think about for people who are creative forces of nature is that they have to protect their creativity, and that means making time to be creative. Because when you're running a business it's really easy to get caught up in all the stuff you have to do to run a business, but if you're not taking days out to actually be creative, then you're basically like shooting yourself in the foot and your business will struggle and it will be hard for you to grow. You need to create structure in your daily schedule and take ownership of what it is that you're trying to create, because if you don't do that, if you don't do that like kind of create structure around your vision and get that support, you're going to be really stuck because creative forces of nature oftentimes have so many ideas and are so creative that they're always moving on to the next and they have a tough time following through with any ideas, so they need help implementing that stuff.
Creative force of nature also really need to delegate and get things off their plate. You're not someone who's going to be patient like fiddling around with the tech and all the stuff, or doing a lot of the things that you don't like in your business, and while sometimes you have to do that, over time it's really important to you when you can afford to, move on, and if you're already like have a successful business and you're a creative force in nature now, it's important to make sure that you aren't getting in the weeds of your business, that you're focusing on the things that your creativity is going to help grow the business, and instead start to delegate like times sucking tasks to other people. You also, even though you don't like it, you need to have systems in place. And the reason why the systems are important, especially for creative forces of nature, depending on your personality type, like I'm someone who doesn't really need "systems" and I'm using air quotes right now, but the important part about the systems, especially for creative forces of nature is that they will eventually definitely need to get people in there supporting them, because they're not going to be the makers, they are going to have to hire make people to make the jewelry, outsource to factories, hire contractors. They're probably going to have like marketing people to help them eventually, and then maybe eventually sales people as well, even though they enjoy sales. The systems are the thing that are going to help you train those people, or else you're going to be continually frustrated when people are asking you questions all the time. Total creativity crusher right there are the questions.
Then another thing that you need to really focus on is thinking small, and this can definitely hold you back as you're growing a business is to think, and this reminds me of something. I was at a conference once for Snag and we were asked to participate in a panel, and we were the outspoken, Robin and I were outspoken people because we really came from the designer community instead of the artist community. There was a really older woman who was a collector, and she'd been really involved in the jewelry arts community for a long time, and she was basically designers, and I know that a lot of people who don't necessarily have the strong art jeweler/maker skill set who design might feel insecure about the fact that they maybe don't have a GIA credential or something like that, but at the end of the day don't worry about that stuff because it doesn't matter, you need to be thinking bigger and always be growing beyond your comfort zone.
My general advice to creative forces of nature is to spend time being creative, spend time interfacing with your customers and making sales and spend time on the back end doing the work so that you can really hire amazing people to help support you in your business vision, because this is highly important for you.
The two that most people are in the community of the quiz, people who have taken the quiz so far are creative force of nature and this next one, which is a maker with the mostest. I think of a maker with the mostest is someone who maybe you stumbled across a jewelry class or picked up some YouTube tutorials on Instagram, or even maybe even got their BA in jewelry making. It could range the gamut. People actually have jewelry degrees, border the cross line of either being a maker with the mostest or an artist, and it really depends on your mindset and how you think about it. The thing that I love about the maker with the mostest, and this is like, I feel like the Etsy platform was built for makers with the mostest, is that they love working with their hands, and the reason why they make the jewelry is because of the making part. This is what they love the most. They love getting behind the bench, they love carving wax, they love beading and working with their hands, that tactile experience is the thing that really inspires them, and their inspirations really come from the materials that they're working in, and like getting at the bench and diving in. This is something that I think like a huge portion of our community is. I think of designers like Jennifer Dawes, she's a friend of mine and I've had her on the show before. We were talking, she came to our Intensive in San Francisco, and we were talking and she still makes a lot of jewelry, she loves getting in there and working with her hands. I don't know 100% if she's a maker with the mostest or a creative force of nature, but what I'd say like there are a lot of really established brands where the founder still loves to be making, and oftentimes even though they really scale and grow their businesses, they just may had to adapt to the fact that they, if they want to grow, they aren't going to be the ones who's making every single thing. Typically what happens with makers with the mostest, as opposed to creative forces of nature, where creative force of nature might sketch out their designs, a maker with the mostest will probably make their original sample line and then delegate that out to a model maker or someone else or production staff and have molds made to actually do production if they're selling multiple pieces.
If you want to really benefit as a maker with the mostest, the most important thing for you to do is in your creative time is to really hone in on your skill set because having that up level set of skills is going to be the thing that sets you apart as an innovative designer. There are so many makers out there these days that I feel like there's a lot more that you can do oftentimes just sketching with a pen and paper then working in the materials. So this is your time to up level your skill set to really innovate, and in order to stand out with your product and your design. I also want to remind you that even though maybe you prefer to sit behind the bench, that you really are your best salesperson, and I don't want you to forget that because your ability to interact with your customers and get feedback, even though it might feel personal because you made everything with your hands, is going to be like your bass tool for really innovating who you are as a designer and growing in your business. Then the third, my third tip to you is to really own your inner chief visionary officer and step into that role, because as makers, you know, we think about like really your struggle is going to be focusing on working in the business by doing the making instead of working on it, so you need to start to pivot the way you think about how you're approaching business, so that you're focused on business development and growth instead of just being a maker behind the bench. This is important if you want to grow a business, because unless you're only doing a high end custom work and you're charging thousands of dollars for a piece jewelry, it will be very hard to make significant amount of money with your business. I know there's a lot of private jewelers out there are in the world including myself, I'm actually really more of a designer, but there are a lot of private jewelers out there in the world who have very successful business, they make all their pieces of jewelry but they are playing in the field end field, and that's how they've been able to do it, to continue making all the pieces themselves. You have to remember to spend time acquiring customer, building the relationships, and also stepping into the role to work on your business, instead of just stepping in it.
This leads into my next step, I'm so good at these things that I just know, because of my first next step for you is to make sure that you set aside time to work on your business and not just in it. And what I mean by that is to think strategically about how you want to grow, who do you want to partner with, how are you going to reach new customers, how are you going to develop those deeper relationships with your existing customers so that you can keep moving forward. You want to make sure that you're blocking out time in your calendar so you're not just behind the bench all the time for sales and marketing days, because if you don't do that, you're going to have the stop and start, stop and start, stop and start, and it will be hard, you want to be consistently generating leads. I know that this is something we have to force and really work with many of our designers in our SOS community, in our SOS accelerator program because many of them think about their business and they think of themselves as makers, and they're actually making all the production. And in order to get the business growth they have to be focused on the sales. So we work with really in-depth to help them kind of remove themselves just from being a maker, to focus on the sales and marketing piece. As I mentioned before, really honing in on your skill set is going to be important to help you stand out. The more you can have innovative techniques and stuff like that as a maker, this is going to be really important. Then you want to make sure, because you are someone with a shiny object syndrome problem that you're offloading extra inventory on a regular basis, because a what could end up happening is that you're buying stuff, "I can make something really cool with this and create all these designs." but then you never use it, or you don't know how to design with it and now down the road you're like years later stuck with boxes of inventory collecting dust.
The reason why this is a problem is that it ties up your profitability, and then it also ties up your ability to spend more because if you're financing your business either on cash flow or even credit card debt, you are going to struggle with being able to really get to that next level in your business because you will have low profitability. In fact, I was talking with a designer the other day who will remain nameless because when I share like vulnerable stories I don't like to share their names, who has a decent business, she was doing like high five figures, it's not like rocket science, like crazy business, but she's doing high five figures which is not terrible, she lives in the middle of the country. But she only had like $7000 worth of with a profit last year, I'm like, like I asked all these questions and I was like, "What are you doing, like how are you pricing your jewelry?" Like all these things, like to me only $7000 of profit with that amount of sales, she's like, "I have too much inventory." and you have to be really, really careful because she overspent, and wasn't able to support to spend, that overspent. And then once again, makers with the mostest will also benefit by putting systems in place.
The next brilliance factor is being an artist, artist as I say, artists through and through. And these are people who really think of the world, they view of the world as an artist. The first person I think I have when I think of someone who's an artist in t in our community is a designer that I've been working with privately, and she's also on our SOS accelerator. I first worked with her privately. She somehow convinced me, I don't even take on private clients, but she somehow convinced me, Anastasia Stimes, and she is a Russian artist turned jewelry designer. Check out her website because seriously she has a really... We helped her over these last couple years really nail the design piece of like what she's doing and create a website that is like insanely speaking to the crazy people that she sells to. It's because she's an artist, like she really has a unique view on the world. She's is really inspired by the surroundings around her, and artist, you know they're really always absorbing their environment and creating techniques that will really bring their concepts to life. These are innovators, like they're the ones who are creating the techniques that the makers are learning. You know what I mean? Like they're the ones that, you know, they're either all about the process or they're all about the story behind their piece and like what it's created. It's really a huge... Problem solving is also a huge part of what artists love to do. So if they're stuck with something, they're trying to do something, they will spend hours at the bench trying to figure out how they can make something work instead of just abandoning it, or I think a lot of people will just get frustrated and say like, "Forget this, I'm going to melt it down and start over." Artists are committed to that problem solving piece.
In order to use your creativity to your benefit, I think the most important thing for artist, just because I've seen this from many of them, is to really focus on your mindset and your confidence, because in art school you're likely told that it needs to be all about the art or the process or whatever it is, and you're not really taught like how to build a business. In fact, there was a designer we worked with for many years and she had the most, like honestly the most innovative designs. I've never seen anything like this, they were sculptureal, it was like she was an engineer. It was like really interesting to see that the cross-section of engineering sort of intersecting with design, and literally there's no reason why she shouldn't have had like a 1000 collectors because her stuff was so cool. She lacked confidence so badly she didn't believe in herself. The most important thing that you can ever, ever do as an artist is to work on your mindset on a daily basis, believe that you're good enough, and not in an arrogant way, but like good enough in not like "my art's so good people should just find me" kind of way. Have the confidence to really put yourself out there and ask for the sale, because that lack of confidence shows up in many different ways, because I know that there is, no offence to artists, but there are a lot of artists who will sit back and just create, create, create without making any sales because they're like, "It's not about the sales, it's about the work." And they're kind of arrogant because they know, and I say that with a kind heart, because they know they're like amazing artists, but they're not really creating things that are saleable, and then they lose, there's this momentum that's lost in their ability to actually sell. I really do think that there is a difference between creating those pieces that are going to be landed in the Smithsonian for years to come or on jewelry exhibits versus the many parts of your collection that actually people want to buy. So having the confidence not only to put yourself out there, but creating the elements, the pieces that people actually want to buy. I feel like when you do that your like level of confidence in sales and marketing will elevate you to put yourself out there.
You need to change your mind about how you approach sales and marketing, because this is something that you have to do as a business owner. You can't outsource it until you start building some momentum in your business. I would say of many of the types of the brilliance factors that we've identified here, the artists probably have the hardest time selling the work of all people. It's because they really just believe in the art and what they're creating, and that's fine, and you can do that if you want to have a very expensive hobby and never sell your work, but if you want to make a living as a designer you have to make the sales and marketing piece a joy and learn to embrace it and learn to create systems around it so that you can eventually outsource it to someone else.
I think the third factor for artist is that you're naturally a problem solver, so you want to really dive in to problem solving when it comes to business. I know that a lot of people who are artistic mindset and creative, instead of like leaning into problems, they lean away from problems and get paranoid by it, like they don't want to deal with the financials or they don't want to look at the books or they don't want to handle the admin and all the things, but like when you can kind of lean in to for instance let's say you're having a cash flow issue, you can lean into it and think strategically, "Okay, well how can I solve this problem? How many pieces do I need to sell at what margin and who can I outreach?" Like if you start thinking more strategically in problem solving with your business, it will be of great benefit to you.
Here's some tips to actually help you move forward. Spend your time like being in that businessy mode as an artist. If you make it all about the art or the process or the technique or whatever it is, the business often gets pushed to the side, and so you have to find that balance between the two. And so make building your business like more of a game, don't be afraid of it, just kind of dive in the same level that you do your art. You have to learn to become a sales and marketing ninja, I don't care what people tell you, you are your best sales person, and until you can get that critical mass of momentum going in your business, because I think of all of the avatars the artist and one of the other one's I'm going to share will have the hardest time really ramping up momentum, and that's not to discourage you from trying, but you know, when I look back to you like many of the artists that I've known along my path including my first jewelry teacher and stuff like that, they're still doing the same thing. Their jewelry never took off the ground, they like had to keep their educational job because that's what paid the bills, because they weren't willing to kind of become the sales and marketing ninja with their work.
The next thing that I want to do is to go for the big S, because especially if you have, if you're nervous or you don't feel backed or you're comparing yourself to other people, you might not submit yourself to a museum show or a gallery or all these things, because you don't feel like you're good enough. I just want you to go for the big S, even before you feel like you're ready and keep moving forward. Once again, artist will really benefit with having systems in place, so eventually once your business grows they can hire people, and also creates more space in your brain for creativity. So if you're doing something that's challenging to you, you can just follow your proven system and get it done. And then I would say that you need to focus on your confidence and your mindset every single day. Pick up a meditation practice, listen to affirmations, join a community like ours, get the support that you need because that is what is really going to help you.
Our next brilliance factor is the tinkering talent. The tinkering talent loves their craft, they're very crafty and there's no limit to what they can create. Tinkering talents typically like to dabble in a bunch of different things. So when I see tinkering talents come into our community, these are typically starting up, people who are in start ups and just starting out in business, they're not the ones with the million dollar companies yet. These are the ones who have, like they say things like, "My collection is one of a kind, I don't want to make reproducible work." You look at their collection and there's like one thing that's beaded, one thing's made out of copper, one things that's made out of silver, another thing is made out of gold. Like it's like all across the board and you can't really like even find the connection between the work, because they just love trying out new things. That's the epitome of tinkering talnet. While some tinkering talents might not be a hobbyist, this is typically someone who... A lot of people who out as tinkering talent end up moving into another phase. I would say this more than pretty much any of the other archetypes or avatars that we've created for this, just primarily because tinkering talents, I would say in most cases, not always, but in most cases are more in the starting out phase of their journey. So if you are tinkering talent, then that's awesome. At the end of the day you might want to take, once you start to establish your business a little bit more, you might want to take the quiz again and see if you have a different outcome, once you kind of hone in on your skills. Your inspiration kind of comes from you, you're just like playing around to see like what's going to happen. Some advice for tinkering talent is make sure that like literally like nothing can really stop your ideas and you want to like kind of go all over the place, try to find a central theme when you're developing the pieces that you do, because if you're doing cross shows or selling at flea markets or anything like that, and you're actually trying to sell your jewelry, the more that you can create connections in between the pieces, the more it will help you actually sell more products.
The other cool thing about tinkering talents is that the jewelry, like industry is basically an oyster, so really working on finding a lane. I really encourage you to test different things until you figure out the one thing that you're really, really good at, and then start to go deep into that. The other thing about tinkering talents is that as you're starting out remember that you have a gift of your personal network. I remind people of this no matter what kind of business there is, that their personal network is the planting in the seeds of their expansive audience of true fans down the road. What I mean by that is that designers, when you're just starting out, when you've been in business for a while, your personal network, until you're really scaling to millions of dollars can be an invaluable resource for you to lean into for sales and referrals. So I always encourage people. As I'm recording this, we're about to launch, start a 12 week intensive Train Your Customers to Buy from You Online, and the first exercise we're doing is to lean into your personal network. The reason why you want to do that is because like your personal network oftentimes are your first customers. They're your best sources of referrals, they also are people who buy from you. So you need to remember that you have that personal network and they're out there and they want to campaign for you. So leverage that network.
Here are some steps for tinkering talents that is a good place to start if you're trying to really build a business. The first place is to develop cohesive collections. You really need to find the one thing that you're going to be known for, so whether it's like a type of material, a technique, a process, find the common threads that thread through and through. Make sure that you're pricing your jewelry the right way. Tinkering talents typically in most cases end up way underpricing their jewelry, they don't understand why they're broke and they never make money, and this is highly important for you to learn proper pricing formulas. We teach that in our Laying the Foundation course, hit me up if you want to hear more about that course. It's really about pricing your jewelry the right way so that you're setting yourself up for proper margins and you're making a good retail margin as well as have the capability to sell wholesale if a gallery or a store approaches you about selling to their store.
You want to spend enough time actually growing your business, not just making stuff. This is really important. So once you kind of develop the collection, I want you to really think about how you're strategically getting that work out there. Are you going to be walking into local stores to try to get an appointment, are you building an audience outside of your Etsy shop, are you building like am email list that's connected to your website so that you can consistently send out emails. The next thing is really develop sales confidence, this to you is going to be probably hard in most cases. I know Kwai, I love Kwai, she's our customers happiness person, she's was a member of our community before she started working for Flourish and Thrive, and she's pretty of phenomenal woman, I have to say. She is like the breadwinner for her family, she has a jewelry business and she also is working with us here at Flourish and Thrive and is fostering several children along with her own. It's pretty incredible to see what she's doing. This was something I know that she worked on, and she asked if she could give us a testimonial for one of our programs last year because she's like, I had her go through this quiz and she's like, "Well now I'm maker with the mostst, but I used to be a tinkering talent." and she's like, "Just learning from you Tracy, like what I needed to know, especially after taking Laying the Foundation, and just listening you talk nonstop, I realized that I was not very confident in sales and I wasn't making any money." She started doing what we told her to do and her business tripled last year. I was shocked. I mean she was making a few sales here and there, she did a couple shows. She has like a decent business now, and she just had a few personal things happened this year some, so I'm pulling for her that she still makes her sales goal this year. I know that she has this really strong foundation because she's developed conversational and relationship building skills that Robin and I teach here at Flourish and Thrive Academy.
I think the next step is to learn how to market the right way. Digital marketing on your own platform is really important. You don't want to be building a business on something like Etsy or Amazon Handmade. Yes, you're going to get sales from those places and it's great, set up a shop or whatever. Build your business on your website, on your own personal platform. Collect customers, build email addresses. When you make a sale at Etsy, deliver some sort of offer or something to them so that they have an incentive to sign up for your email list. Because algorithms change all the time. I was talking with a designer that we're working with, and it saddens my heart. She's like, "I've drained my savings, like all the stuff..." And I was like, "What is going on, why haven't you asked for help?" She was telling us the story about her Etsy sales are 75% down, and so are her Amazon sales. She was building her business, like that's where most of her revenues is coming in from right now. I'm like, "What have you been doing to build email list?" She's like, "Nothing." She does in person shows all the time and she hasn't done anything to build her email list. She finally gets it, her head's in the right place and I know she's going to crush it. If you know what I'm talking about, I'm not going to shut you out, like I just I believe in you girl, you got this. I just want to remind you that when you get in that place of putting all your eggs in other people's baskets, there's nothing left for you. If some algorithm or something changes. I really don't believe in building your business on second party platforms and I'm very outspoken in this, I really, truly believe that second party platforms are another source, they shouldn't be the main source. Even if most of your money is coming from that for now, you have to consistently build your direct to consumer platform on your own.
The final thing that I want to remind you of is that it's super important for you to be looking at the numbers on a regular basis. You need to understand how businesses work, you need to understand profit margins, profitability, break even points, all those things in your business so that you can make informed decisions when you're spending, when you're investing in marketing, when you're investing in education and all those things, because you need to be thinking strategically as a business owner if you're serious about turning your sort of like tinkering talent into a real business. So that's my advice for you, party peeps.
Okay, the next line is high class hustler, you want to watch that bling sling. So we have a lot of people in our community who are actually high class hustler. These are people who really want to scale their business. They would be more aligned with the creative force of nature, they're not necessarily totally into making, like they would prefer to set it and forget it once and have that process scale. These are people who want to sell millions of dollars in jewelry. Their inspiration really comes from sales and what's trending right now in the industry. So when I think of high class hustlers I think of brands that are designing costume jewelry that scale or fine jewelry and they're like really committed on business development and growth, and the founder maybe started as a maker or designer but they've shifted their perspective because they're really in it to kind of scale their business. High class hustlers, I really think of them as CEO's or CVO's, visionaries, and I call them the lucky ones because they're the people who just get it. They get business, it's easy for them, they aren't attached to the results, they use failure and setbacks and all that stuff just as information, they don't take it personally, and they use that to grow.
This bangs on the next point, is that high class hustlers love to learn. They're always diving in. They're the ones you have like the messenger bot set up with the automated responses that are sending people to their website and selling them based on like systemized sales funnels before like everyone else is doing that. These people are like super ahead of the curve, they're focused on partnering with bigger retailers and all those things. High class hustlers are just a natural at many things, they have a tendency to be able to be great at business development, they're great at sales, they are great at trending, they're great at product development, and they just kind of know what's up. They love building relationships, it's something that really lights them up. This is why I'm sort of like a hybrid between the two. Like in my jewelry business I'm more of a creative force of nature, and in Flourish and Thrive I'm more of a high class hustler, because building a business is exciting to me, and high class hustlers love to build a business. They love to develop the relationships that actually help form those strong bonds.
For high class hustlers, the one thing that I want to remind them if they ever get, like have a hiccup, is that their resourcefulness, because they're highly resourceful, is going to serve them really well. If they're ever stuck or need help, join a mastermind group, be involved in a high level community, invest in your business because this is that sometimes being able to get outside of your own way and be resourceful is going to be the thing that helps you. And if you're interested in learning more about the mastermind group I'm curating with visionaries you can head on over to CreativesRuleTheWorld.com/VC, download the visionary code and then get on the wait list for the visionary circle, because we got a group of people for you over there.
You want to make sure that you're investing in yourself in your business, this is really important. I mentioned this before, investing in a mastermind group, business mentors, consultants, all those things are important, but you also want to invest in your team and your business. So this might mean like investing money in advertising spend and the things that are actually going to scale. Maybe it's a marketing person who's going to be able to handle digital marketing for you, all those things. You can't build your empire alone, so this is going to really require you to get strategic and good at hiring A players, because those are the people that are going to take you to that next level. It's not just about hiring someone, it's about hiring the right people and A players that are going to buy into your vision of what you're building and be committed to the values that you're building your brand on. Embrace the setbacks, because these are really things that are going to help you learn in business and help you move forward.
I think the biggest trouble that a high class hustler can get to is if they get into a mode of arrogance where they're not paying attention when something doesn't go the right way. They like either brush it under the rug or they're not watching the trends or they get... They're like on a boat like drinking champagne or Dom Perignon. While I highly believe that that's important, you want to make sure that you're paying attention to what's going on, embrace the setbacks and use them as learning experiences to propel yourself forward.
Then also I think this is really important, because high class hustlers have an opportunity to really build a business that can scale and create an exit plan, so as you're starting you want to think about what the end result is. Maybe you never sell your business, but maybe that's something that you actually want to do some day. So if that's something that you're interested in, think about it and think about how you can use that opportunity of thinking with the end in mind before you start as you're building your business to move forward. Then spend your most productive time obviously on revenue generating activities. I think that we all have productive times during the day. Mine is typically in the morning, and so I've been changing my schedule a little bit so I can focus on the things that are creatively going to build my business, but anything that's going to generate revenue in your business I would slot that into your most productive times that you work during the day.
Our final outcome is the mad skills behind the bench. This is someone who really just loves making jewelry, and it's different than a maker because they are someone who maybe is not, doesn't have the creative ideas that a maker does, they just like are technically good at making jewelry. I would think of this have a person as someone who's a jeweler or behind the bench. They are really technically good. They can see something like a design or something, and this might be a jeweler or someone who's really good at CAD, and they can look just at a flat drawing and figure out how to technically make that idea, turn into something 3D. They're excellent bench workers, they can do just about anything behind the bench or on a computer. Their hands are really their gifts, so these are like really the benefits that you have. Your ability to kind of shape, mold, sculpt, like all those things, computer design, all that stuff with your talent is the thing that is going to make you money in your business. It's important for you to learn new techniques, take classes at GIA, or wherever, or your local jewelry program, or even not local jewelry program. Revere Academy is no longer around, I took many classes there over time. You want to always be like educating yourself about business, but also educating yourself about how to design better products. By nature you just naturally want to solve problems at the bench, and so if you happen to be someone who's actually working for other people, because typically a lot of people of mad skills people work for other people, you want to be working back and forth with them to help them figure out how to solve the problem and make it not a problem. So this is really important for you, because you light up at the challenge of trying to figure out something, and so keep those problem solving abilities sharp.
So for you the important next steps are really to be new school instead of old school, and I know traditionally in an industry, and it depends on your upbringing background and how you got into the jewelry industry, you have to adopt the new school of thought. Things are changing and I think that a lot of jewelry manufacturing is dying because of this, and it's a sad... There is plenty of business, we've got 40,000 people on the Flourish and Thrive Academy email list who need people to help them actually develop their product. I say that because if you're someone who's not necessarily building a brand around yourself and you're someone who just prefers to make for other people, it's important for you to adopt what's going on now. That means up-leveling your techniques, but also being available. Like having a website, sharing your services, networking, being involved, and that's going to be how you're going to attract consistent flow of customers.
I think another thing that's really important, especially if you're working for other people is to set timelines and stick to them. The biggest frustration a lot of designers have when they're working jewelers or people with mad skills is that they over promise and under deliver. Nothing's ever done on time, they make excuses about why it's not done, they're not giving heads up. I remember working with this jeweler a while back and he is so skilled and his team of artisans were so skilled, they were the bast jewelers I've ever worked with. In fact, I got to keep one of the pieces because it got lost in UPS and then returned to me later, so I had another jeweler redo it, but it was really... He was so disorganized. I went in there at least 10 times to pick up a piece of jewelry that he said would be complete, and it was never completed. I eventually just took the pieces from him and had another jeweler assemble them because I was just like... They can't wait any longer, they're going to get married like next week. I think that sticking to your timelines is really important for your ability to build a business and make money if you're going to be working up behind the bench all the time.
You just set up bench flows and systems to move more quickly so anything you can do to increase your productivity and bench time is going to be really helpful to you at the end of the day. Set up systems for administration, so as you start to grow, you might need to get an assistant or someone else to help you with admin work. Be legit, be new school with this, have a computer program instead of those little paper invoicy things that people use and use something like Quick Books or Zero to integrate with your business so that you're properly billing people. Make sure you make enough time for your own creativity, especially if you're working for other people because this is how if you ever want to elevate from a mad skills person to become a designer or a maker who has their own brand, you need to start thinking about not just being able, being good with your hands but thinking about how you can creatively make your own designs.
Then stick behind the quality of your work because I know that this is really important, make sure that you're making, that you're making quality products that people actually want to continue to work with you with, because that's how you will build your business. Is if you can create things that last. I know it's jewelry and it breaks and things happen, but at the end of the day what we're trying to do is to build something that will last.
That is my brilliance factor, so I'd love to invite you once again to go take the quiz if you haven't done it, find out what your brilliance factor is. I think you might be surprised as to how this relates to you, and you might have a different outcome than you think. I'm excited to have you kind of check this out, so head on over to FlourishThriveAcademy.com/brilliance, I will also have this over at the show notes. If you are anywhere near a social platforms you can find a link to the quiz like in the links somewhere and take the quiz and let me know what's your outcome, shoot me a direct message on Instagram or comment on one of our posts. I love hearing about it and tell me what you thought of the quiz.
Anyway, thank you so much for listening today. It's my birthday, make sure you go download my birthday surprise over at FlourishThriveAcademy.com/birthdaysurprise so you can get my freebie and then also jump in on a story selling framework, it's only available today so if you're listening to this after May 21st, you've missed the boat, but we've given you about a week notice to get on the wait list and to actually grab this. I am excited for you, let's do this.
Because it's my birthday can you do me a favor and that is to give us a rating and review for the show if you haven't done so yet? Of course, I would love for you to give us a five star rating, but I really want to know what you think, so your feedback is really important. So tell me what you love about the show on your favorite podcast platform and help us make the show better. Like at any given time, like message me directly on Instagram and tell me what you'd like to hear about. This episode was actually inspired by someone telling me what they wanted to hear on the podcast and I posted it this morning, they told me I happen to be batching episodes today, so I moved something around because this is totally in alignment with what I wanted to do for my birthday. I'd love to inspire you to just like share with me what you want.
I have another designer, Mary Geraldine of Garden of the Sun, she was in our mastermind program years ago and she's crushing it. She gave me like four or five suggestions of different show content and introduced me to a bunch of people that she thought would be interesting to interview. I would love suggestions, because it helps really curate the content. I mean we'll be having a lot more interview series coming up and a lot more guests on the show. So definitely join me, I am excited to support you with your business regardless of your brilliance factor, let's do this. Alright, Tracy Matthews signing off, happy birthday to me, and hope you guys all have an awesome day.
Thank you so much for listening to today's episode. It's my mission to help thousands of creative businesses, inside and outside the jewelry space, use their creativity to make money. Make sure that you're subscribed to Thrive-by-Design on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher and wherever podcasts are played. We would love to hear what you think, please rate and review the show. If you're inspired, please share this with your friends. Here's to seeing you flourish and thrive.