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The Merriweather Council Podcast

Updated 3 days ago

Arts
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Visual Arts
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The Merriweather Council podcast, hosted by Danielle Spurge, is all about celebrating the reality of gainful self employment through craft. This is a podcast for art and design entrepreneurs - makers, etsy sellers and shopify users! Featuring tips, insights, advice and tough love for handmade business owners in concise format. Focused on sharing realistic ideas and personal experiences with the nuances of handmade business in mind. If you are working to turn your crafty tendencies into profits, tune in every Tuesday and Thursday.

Read more

The Merriweather Council podcast, hosted by Danielle Spurge, is all about celebrating the reality of gainful self employment through craft. This is a podcast for art and design entrepreneurs - makers, etsy sellers and shopify users! Featuring tips, insights, advice and tough love for handmade business owners in concise format. Focused on sharing realistic ideas and personal experiences with the nuances of handmade business in mind. If you are working to turn your crafty tendencies into profits, tune in every Tuesday and Thursday.

iTunes Ratings

172 Ratings
Average Ratings
162
2
3
4
1

Going back to listen to every episode again!

By Crashcearns - May 06 2019
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Danielle is an amazing coach that speaks the absolute truth about running a handmade business. I am a part of the Merriweather Council & will always be a proud supporter of her business. This content is priceless & I am sitting here trying to be so patient while Danielle works on the next season of the podcast!

This podcast is GOLD

By fintheweaver - Apr 09 2019
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The podcast I have been looking for! Danielle is incredibly relatable and knowledgeable. She has an easy to listen to voice and way of speaking that feels so genuine. I feel like I am learning so much and have only been listening for that last few days. She covers a spectrum of topics for the small business owner with a focus on etsy businesses. You can tell she has a big heart to see others succeed.

iTunes Ratings

172 Ratings
Average Ratings
162
2
3
4
1

Going back to listen to every episode again!

By Crashcearns - May 06 2019
Read more
Danielle is an amazing coach that speaks the absolute truth about running a handmade business. I am a part of the Merriweather Council & will always be a proud supporter of her business. This content is priceless & I am sitting here trying to be so patient while Danielle works on the next season of the podcast!

This podcast is GOLD

By fintheweaver - Apr 09 2019
Read more
The podcast I have been looking for! Danielle is incredibly relatable and knowledgeable. She has an easy to listen to voice and way of speaking that feels so genuine. I feel like I am learning so much and have only been listening for that last few days. She covers a spectrum of topics for the small business owner with a focus on etsy businesses. You can tell she has a big heart to see others succeed.

Listen to:

Cover image of The Merriweather Council Podcast

The Merriweather Council Podcast

Updated 3 days ago

Read more

The Merriweather Council podcast, hosted by Danielle Spurge, is all about celebrating the reality of gainful self employment through craft. This is a podcast for art and design entrepreneurs - makers, etsy sellers and shopify users! Featuring tips, insights, advice and tough love for handmade business owners in concise format. Focused on sharing realistic ideas and personal experiences with the nuances of handmade business in mind. If you are working to turn your crafty tendencies into profits, tune in every Tuesday and Thursday.

The key to combating underpricing on Etsy or anywhere else

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Ever been scrolling Etsy or Instagram and felt annoyed by the other makers in your niche who are severely underpricing their items and wonder how you could ever stand a chance when people are so willing to sell so low?

It is very likely that you have.

I hear it so often, from so many people that they simply 'can't compete' and feel discouraged about it.

You likely know enough to spot a ridiculously low price in another shop, so even if you aren't completely positive of someone else's costs, or even of your OWN prices, you know enough to know when there is just no possible way that a price THAT low is worth the work.

SO what to do about it? That's exactly what I'm talking about in today's episode.

I think the answer might surprise you!

In this episode: . What to do about underpricing in your niche . Some wisdom from my business fairy godmother, Marie Forleo . What underpricing actually indicates and what it DOES NOT indicate . The surprisingly simple solution to underpricing . The perils of underpricing. price matching too low . Pricing is more than math: what to consider so that you CAN price at the rate your formula tells you to.

If you are struggling with pricing your work, or want more clarity and confidence surrounding raising your prices so that you are actually profitable, be sure to check out The Pricing Workshop [ thepricingworkshop.com ] this is a course specifically for makers in business that Janet from Paper and Spark and I collaborated on and it covers everything from the science of pricing to the art of pricing. Listen to this episode to find out more about the elements you need to consider when pricing your work so that you can charge appropriately and escape the race to the bottom you see happening around you.

Enjoy!

► It is likely that if you’re listening to this episode, you’ve seen or heard between 1 and 40 Etsy rumors this week. WHOA. A lot of the more pervasive rumors that spread in the community can seem factual if you don’t know any better (they don’t have red flags all over them.) We here at MWC do not want you to miss out on the opportunity of Etsy or being successful there because of rumors, platform changes, or lack of resiliency!! Listen to this episode with an open mind and it'll all make sense. Click over here to watch our Etsy Myth Busting video! >> etsywithmerri.com __

► If you enjoyed today's episode, share it with a friend and subscribe in your favorite podcast player.

Oct 24 2019

11mins

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Episode 074: The No-Lose Social Media Strategy That Engages + Converts with Melissa of Woods and Wool

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If you've been around Merriweather council a little while you know I have a serious love/ hate relationship with Instagram.

Whenever I speak to someone who leans more on the love for Instagram side than the hate, I feel a bit newly inspired to give Instagram it's due. And I think you might feel the same way after this interview with Melissa of Woods and Wool.

About a year ago - probably about the same time Instagram rolled out their Collections feature, I added one of Melissa Fischer's posts to a collection called "podcast."

I'm thrilled that finally this little wish of mine to have her on the show has come to fruition. Not just for me, but for you as well.

Melissa is the crochet designer behind Woods and Wool, a super fantastic and brilliant business she has built up over time using multiple tools, primarily Instagram.

The way Melissa uses Instagram to engage her audience and build her business is something I've admired for a long time. You guys, her engagement is through the roof, her feed is gorgeous, she goes live, she does stories ... she's doing it all! And she's doing it so so well.

Melissa caught my attention on Instagram well over a year ago now, and more importantly, she's held on to it! Melissa is such an amazing example of so many different things that I think and know are important to cultivate when it comes to social media, specifically Instagram. I asked her to be a guest on the show because her example is one I think we can all learn from.

In this episode:

. Meet Melissa

. How Melissa came to be using Instagram and why

. Melissa's past experiences that influenced her business and engagement strategy

. The approach Melissa is taking when it comes to Instagram

. Alpacas, whales and the Backstreet Boys*

*Sadly, no alpacas, whales or Backstreet Boys were present or interviewed for this episode but we did talk about them!

Be sure to follow up with Melissa on Instagram @woodsandwool  >> http://www.instagram.com/woodsandwool

and on her blog >> http://www.woodsandwool.com

Enjoy!

P.S. Join us for more maker discussions inside of the free Facebook group for handmade business owners! >> http://clhl.club

Full Show Notes >> http://merriweathercouncilblog.com/74

Jan 03 2019

34mins

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The first three steps to Etsy success (in no particular order)

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If you Google “Etsy success" a bunch of articles about tips, hacks and tricks will likely show up. Some of that is probably helpful (particularly if its from merriweathercouncilblog.com wink) but these things actually are only useful or relevant AFTER the FIRST, TRUE and surprising keys to Etsy success.

It's true that being successful on Etsy DOES include strategy in listings, photos, etc. (We can teach you all of it in our Etsy Training Course merrietsytraining.com ) But that stuff won't get you very far if you haven't gotten on board with these first essential 3 keys to Etsy success.

I'm going to reveal them to you in today's episode in depth but here they are: . Resiliency . Believing in the unique power of Etsy . Not falling for silly Etsy rumors.

Yup. Those are them.

Surprising right? I know! It does seem like that. I didn't mention SEO or having pretty photos or a certain number of listings. Because none of that matters if you are slowed down and not even present on Etsy. So many peoples tart shops that don't get very far. Sometimes it is because the shop owner heard a rumor that scared them off thinking it was true. Or the seller didn't really really see the value in Etsy as a platform, so they didn't exert enough energy there. Sometimes people don't get very far on Etsy because a change to the platform felt like a bigger deal than it actually was.

All the tips, the best strategy in the world won't matter if you hear some crazy Etsy rumor, believe it's true and get discouraged. You have to be present and optimistic in order for those tips and strategies to work.

► We here at MWC do not want you to miss out on the opportunity of Etsy or being successful there because of rumors, platform changes, or lack of resiliency!! Listen to this episode with an open mind and it'll all make sense. Click over here to watch our Etsy Myth Busting video! >> etsywithmerri.com

Enjoy!

► If you enjoyed today's episode, share it with a friend and subscribe in your favorite podcast player

Sep 26 2019

15mins

Play

Bonus Episode 12: The One Image You Should NOT Use in Your Listings

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Hey remember when Etsy went ahead and opened the ability for sellers to upload an extra five additional images to each listing? That made a total of ten images available on any listing! So cool right? Well it was, until people starting getting nutty with themselves.

Let's be sure you didn't get carried away - far away - from what you want to be doing with your listings and the photos within them!

In this episode:
  • the series of events that lead to this episode
  • this is NOT an etsy-specific issue
  • what NOT to do with your listing images
  • the purpose of your listings

Nov 09 2017

15mins

Play

Shifting gears, making big changes and opening a retail storefront feat. Erin from Cotton and Flax

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When I was in college I always felt a little weird around my classmates because most of them were insanely talented fine artists who had already decided they were dedicating their lives to being artists. This was NOT me. I loved being creative, but then what? What do I do with this creativity?

I spoke about that and more in this episode with my friend Erin of Cotton and Flax. I've known her online for YEARS! We only had the opportunity to meet briefly once in NYC at the Etsy Up Conference. But it was magical nonetheless.

Erin has done so many incredible things in her time as a creative entrepreneur and we spoke at least a little bit about all of them and how she got to where she is now: the owner of a small brick and mortar space in San Diego, California. If you've ever dreamed of having a physical retail location or studio, you will love this episode.

Erin told me that she is working toward nurturing more community in her space through trunk shows and workshops and I told her THANK YOU. because it was people like Erin who I was lucky enough to encounter in Boston while I was in college that made all the difference for me.

This episode is full of gems for creatives and makers who feel ambitious about the longevity of their businesses! If you need a mood booster, this is it! Thank you, Erin!! Best of luck with everything in CA.

Be sure to visit Erin in real life if you are ever in her neck of the woods - she's located at 3180 Adams Ave. in San Diego. In the meantime follow along on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/cottonandflax/ and cottonandflax.com

► If you are interested and invested in growing your business beyond your Etsy shop, you will LOVE The Council! The Council is our monthly membership experience for handmade business owner who have big dreams but and no time to waste. Check out all the details on the most affordable way for us to work together here: www.merri.party/councilmember

Enjoy!

-

► If you enjoyed today's episode, share it with a friend and subscribe in your favorite podcast player.

Nov 05 2019

54mins

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Episode 057: Viral Instagram Content with @hopebroidery

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Viral Instagram Content with @hopebroidery

Oh, Instagram! What a tangled web you have got us all wrapped up in!

You have heard me chat about Instagram on Merriweather Council podcast before, and today’s episode is just another stab at trying to make sense of ye olde Instagram!

On today’s episode I’m chatting with Hope Brasfield of @hopebroidery about her experience going viral, creating content, using Instagram stories, social strategy and more!

Hope was using Instagram in its purest form when her account went viral and she gained 10k+ followers overnight (literally.) As an IG purist, Hope was using her account to simply share about her embroidery hobby. But fast forward to now and she’s making solid money leveraging the power of her Instagram account.

I know you will love this episode as both Hope and I share personal experiences with Instagram including being frustrated by it! Even she, with 170k+ followers, has moment of frustration with the platform. Very refreshing to hear actually! Tune in to hear more and be sure to Check out Hope’s feed here!

You may also like...

May 24 2018

40mins

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Episode 044: Commonly Misunderstood Etsy Stuff

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Misunderstood Etsy Policies

I genuinely hope EVERY SINGLE ETSY SELLER listens to this episode. If you are an Etsy seller, and you know other Etsy sellers, please share the link to this episode with them.

(Please note: at the time of recording and publishing, all the information in this episode is accurate.)

There are so so many misunderstood Etsy policies, but I've chosen a few to cover in this episode. I could make several episodes that cover misunderstood Etsy policies, but hopefully one is enough to drive home to point: always fact check.

Reading policies anywhere can be dry and boring, I get that. But if you EVER have a question about a policy, it's usually best to go straight to the source for the answer.

Every single week I see posts in Facebook groups including my own, asking questions that fall into any of the following categories:

  • Clearly against Etsy policy but no one seems to know it
  • Not against Etsy policy but people seem to believe it is
  • A simple lack of understanding on a policy that is known to exist because either it's not well written or no one bothered to actually read it

(Tough love: sometimes reading actually is the answer.)

In this episode...

In this episode I will be reviewing the actual rules Etsy has laid out related to these specific misunderstood policies:

  • Conversation policy
  • Linking policy
  • Fees

Listen for all the details on these and to get the real facts once and for all. Next time you see someone ask about any of these in a group, share a link to this episode with them.

Go on and get empowered now! For your reference, you can always find the Etsy seller policies here and more about fees and how they were here.

You may also like...

Apr 10 2018

17mins

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The reason handmade business owners are most at risk when things are going really well + what you are at risk for

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I hope this episode is more of a motivator than a bummer. Because truly, that's what it is. And those of you who most need to hear it: hopefully you're more likely to feel motivation than anything else!

This episode is for those of you who feel like things are going great! Sales are steady, or business is going smoothly, or you have finally 'arrived' where you wanted to be... generally, this episode is for you if you are feeling really satisfied with your business at present.

First, if you are that person, i want to say a huge congrats! Not only is it challenging to get your business of the ground and to a point where things are really truly working for you (business ain’t always easy!!) its even harder to actually recognize and fell that things are going well! We tend to be our biggest critics. So if you are feeling awesome, AWESOME! Congrats.

Now i want to help you keep it that way. That's what this episode is for: helping you stay UP. And the biggest hurdle to that is actually none of the things you think it is. It's not SEO changes on Etsy or Instagram's algorithm. It's complacency. Complacency will kill you faster than anything else.

Tune in to hear more!

► If you love this episode and understand the importance of being proactive and diversifying your marketing so your business can withstand sudden or drastic changes outside of your control, you will LOVE The Council . The Council is our monthly membership experience for handmade business owners Come over and check out the details at www.merri.party/councilmember

Enjoy!

-

► If you enjoyed today's episode, share it with a friend and subscribe in your favorite podcast player.

Oct 29 2019

6mins

Play

BONUS Episode 2: True Life I Got Sued for Infringement on Etsy (a seller's story)

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Getting flagged for infringement is one thing but actually getting sued for it is a whole other ballgame. Unfortunately, Lisa of Lisa's Little Monsters experienced this firsthand and suffered through the troubles associated with having to actually take listings down and cease business, which at the time was indefinitely. I'm glad Lisa was so willing to share her story so that we may all learn a bit more about this process and the consequences of this reality many sellers have faced - even when they weren't doing anything that they felt was wrong or questionable or using licensed characters.

In this episode:
  • Meet Lisa | Lisa's Etsy shop
  • Lisa tells us about her experience
  • We discuss the reality of being sued, like, actually having to pay money to someone!!
  • Lawyers, royalties and movie deals oh my!

May 03 2017

24mins

Play

Episode 050: Finding Your Voice with Stacie Bloomfield

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In part two of my candid chat with Stacie Bloomfield of Gingiber, we are speaking about finding your own voice and developing it over time in your work. Stacie has so much experience trying new things which gives her a lot of insight to speak with. I'm excited for you to hear this episode on the podcast today.

If you missed the first part of our convo catch up on it here.

Finding your voice as a creative

If you have maker friends who are just starting out or who are struggling with their unique style and voice, please share this episode with them!

In this episode Stacie and I speak about finding your voice as a creative person. We also chat about her struggles with moving into a new product line, creating a brand and sticking it out through the hard times. Of course we also spoke about the struggle of comparison as well! This episode is not to be missed.

Huge thank you to Stacie for sharing so openly! It's wonderful to hear real life stories from a veteran business owner and creative!

If you aren’t already, be sure to follow Stacie on Instagram where she shares about her business ups and downs and see her beautiful new work! You can also find Stacie on Facebook! Go say hi!

Today's episode was sponsored by Wholesale For Creatives!

May 01 2018

27mins

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Bonus Episode 7: Chatting about Instagram with Tyler J. McCall

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Bonus Episode 7: Chatting about Instagram with Tyler J. McCall

Oct 24 2017

42mins

Play

Episode 23: Chatting About Off-Marketplace SEO (aka SEO on your own website)

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The students in my Etsy Training Course tend to have incredible results after taking my course and implementing my strategies. Many of these strategies are related to appealing to Etsy's native search system - so it makes sense that once they get a taste of the insane results getting found can have, they want to replicate this on their own site. My students come to me a lot asking about off-etsy SEO - aka, SEO on their own websites. Today's episode addresses some thoughts I have about this - it may surprise you!

PLEASE NOTE THIS DOES NOT APPLY TO ETSY SEO!!!!!!!!!!!!

In this episode:
  • My Etsy Training Course
  • Etsy SEO vs Regular SEO
  • How I approach SEO on my website
  • Effective marketing types for small brands
  • Why an Etsy search is better than a Google search for handmade
  • Why Etsy SEO is critical
  • SO MANY FACTORS that go into Google algorithm like whoa
  • What I prefer to focus on
  • Don't get hung up on this, please
  • Things that can be more effective than SEO
  • You have more flexibility as a small business, did you know that?

Related reading: What is Etsy Relevancy + Why Should You Care

Related reading: Basic Etsy SEO Video Tutorial

Other marketing types for makers:

Influencer marketing

Social Media marketing

Email marketing

Apr 18 2017

11mins

Play

Episode 060: How to Achieve the Ideal December in your Handmade Business

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AHH it's my favorite time of year! The time of year when we get to start strategizing for the holiday season!

In this episode, we are going to chat about your ideal December as a handmade business owner: what does that look and how do you get there?

As you know, December is full of gift-giving holidays. December can be a hugely profitable time for product sellers, and it can be hugely profitable for you as well, if you know how to prepare for it and how to take advantage of it.

Basically, in December, your ideal situation is that you're making several sales a day, you're hitting your goals, you are making the sales you want to make, you are working out orders with customers quickly, closing deals quickly, and once you get those orders you're able to turn them around fast and with ease. You have your workspace very nicely organized, things are streamlined in your process online and offline. You have your social media accounts are working for you, they have content going out daily. You are still able to interact with people as you see fit. You are able to send emails to your customers through your email list without a lot of struggle.

Everything is working rather nicely. Things are streamlined, things are going off without a hitch. Customers are communicating important details about their orders with you without you having to follow-up with them a hundred times. Things are just looking really, really good. Things are feeling really good. Your process is down. Your space is as organized as it could possibly be. Your turnaround times are solid. You're getting orders out in time. Things are arriving as they should be, on schedule.

I believe that that is what your ideal situation looks like as a maker in business in December.

You're making the sales you want to make, you're hitting your sales goals, and you're able to produce those orders and work through that order queue without a lot of struggle. In addition to that, your outbound marketing is trucking along. You know what you're saying. You have all of your accounts pushing out content that is relevant and seasonal, daily, without a lot of struggle day to day, right?

I believe that that is what your ideal situation looks like. That, for me, is what mine would look like, rather than being frazzled and stressed out and at the last minute having to call people in to help me. Unplanned this, unplanned that, missing important dates to send emails to my list, forgetting to update something or whatever. Things happen. My ideal situation looks like those things that happen, happening a lot less. All the things I have control over, I have actual control over. Saying that you have control over something and then actually controlling it are two different things.

That ideal December is what I want for you, is what I want for me, is what I want for you, is what I want for all of us this year, 2018, holiday 2018, whether it's your first holiday season, your third, fourth, fifth holiday season. Whatever the case may be, I want it to be hassle-free, stress-free as much as possible for you as a business owner, but also want you to be able to enjoy your own friends and family, your own life, and the things you personally love about the month of December.

For me, I love to go home to New York and be with my family, visit the Christmas tree in Rockafeller Center and see friends I otherwise don't see very often. Those are things I love to do. In my ideal December, because I have gotten my business situation to such a place that it is ideal, like I described, I am more able to find the time and not only find the time to do those things I love to do in my personal life, but actually enjoy them, to have the presence of mind to be in the moment, doing the things I love, without worrying so much about what's happening with my orders or whatever in my business,  because I've planned for this and I can do both. I can have my ideal business December and my ideal personal December if I plan for it, which is exactly what I want to help you do.

If you are reading this post today you are very likely has a handmade business owner, and likely want that ideal December I described, both personally and professionally. I am going to help you get there.

I talk about this every year: If you can use June, July, August, and September to your advantage, to prep for October, November, December, you can have the ideal personal and professional December, okay?

It's so, so important that you hear this message now, in June. Black Friday is the day that your average American person begins thinking about buying gifts for holiday for their friends and family. Of course, there are some very well-prepared people who start thinking about this much earlier, but for most people, the impetus to begin holiday preparation and shopping for the vast majority of people on their list is at least Black Friday. That's the soonest, okay?

Then, of course, because Thanksgiving is the most traveled for holiday in America, because it's non-religious, it's just an American holiday, ALL americans could be celebrating it. Lots of people travel for it. A lot of people are still out and about traveling and celebrating with their family and friends for Thanksgiving that following Saturday. That whole weekend, while it is traditionally a very high-volume shopping weekend, people might still be traveling, and they're not at their home computer or in their office. They're not in their regular schedule, so they might not be doing their online shopping quite as heavily until that Monday or Tuesday, which is why we have that little thing called Cyber Monday. Of course, people shop from their phones. It doesn't matter where they are geographically, but I'm just saying this is the stuff you want to consider. The average person's not really thinking about it till at least Black Friday. Then they might not even really be thinking about it till the following Monday or Tuesday or even later.

Your very important holiday timeline:

Let's put it this way: the average American buyer does not truly get into purchasing gifts for the vast majority of people on their list until at least Black Friday. This year it is November 23rd.

Add to that then, the average shop owner is probably going to turn off their ordering potential somewhere between the 10th and the 14th of December. You need a couple days, at least, right, to make stuff. Then you have to leave a few days to actually have it going through the mail and arriving probably before the holiday, right? Let's say you want to have all your orders in the mail by the 19th of December. That gives them four-ish, five-ish days to arrive to domestic locations. Let's say, okay, the 18th is the last day we're shipping.

You need four days or five days to actually turn around the orders you received, which puts your processing time, brings us up to the 11th or the 12th of December, depending on if you include weekends in your processing time. I'm sure at that point of time of the year you do. Let's say the 12th is the last day that you'll take orders so that you can turn them around and put them in the mail by the 18th so that they can probably get there to their domestic locations by Christmas. That means you've got 12 days in December and 7 days in November. That's a total of 19 days, total 19 actual days, not business days, actual days. 19 days between when the average American buyer begins thinking about purchasing for Christmas and when you, as a hand-made business owner, likely need to turn off ordering in your shop, in your online shop, in order to turn those orders around, to process them, and then put them in the mail and let the UPS do there job. 19 days. You know how quickly those 19 days are going to go when you're in them? So quickly.

Once those 19 days roll around, you want to be on auto-pilot. Make, ship, make, ship. Those are the only things you should be doing in real-time at that particular juncture of the year. Everything else can be done ahead of time. The only things you should be doing during those 19 days are filling orders and putting them in the mail. That is it. If you're drafting emails on December 9th, you're doing it wrong, okay?

I'm going to help you figure out exactly what to do, when exactly to do it, and get it done ahead of time so that you can be professionally and personally joyful in December, and I am so excited to do that.

That is all going to happen through my unSLUMP guide, my seven-step process for getting you to the holidays through the summer.

The benefits of utilizing the unSLUMP:

  1. Get fully prepped for your best and most profitable holiday season yet. No stone unturned, learn from my wins and losses over the past 7 years.

2. Have positive focus in the summer, because it can be really, really stressful. There can be a lot of negative feelings and emotions for sellers in the summertime, because things do tend to slow down a lot. I know, intimately, how difficult it is, and how stressful it is to feel like your business is just shriveling up in the summertime.

On the flip side, I also know how daunting it is when things do stat to pick up again, and you're not prepared for it. I know how annoying it is to be like, "I had so much time three months ago that I could have used better to prepare for this now, so that I could do more now, when it matters, when there is a profitable opportunity." I know how bad that feels, to be sitting in a space where there are opportunities that you can't take advantage of because you just don't have the capacity, because you didn't prepare for it.

Eventually I figured it out.

I know how awesome it is to have a holiday season that is as stress-free as possible, but also highly, highly profitable, because you were prepared. From all ends of the spectrum, I get this, and I want to help you have that ideal December that we spoke about. That's going to happen. The way that I'm going to help you accomplish it is through my unSLUMP guide, which is going to help you prep and prepare for your most profitable holiday season that's possible for you. It's going to help you avoid a lot of those downfalls that come up for sellers in the summer.

If you really want to be honest about this, the cost of putting off your holiday preparation till September or October, is that you'll miss out on a lot of opportunities that come up in the summer relevant to Christmas, and you put yourself at risk as a business owner for doom and gloom in the summer. That is probably the most costly thing that could happen to us as a business owner. You are the sole proprietor, mostly likely, of your business, and your business relies on you. If you are not in a positive state, then neither can your business be. With the unSLUMP, we're going to have positive focus through the summer and we're going to get to the holiday season as prepared as possible. It's going to be magical and amazing, I really hope you'll gift yourself that opportunity.

I have so many students who love this program. I honestly feel like it's some of my best work, so I'm so excited to share it with you. The updated 2018 version of the unSLUMP is available now for you to download, print out and get working on.

You're going to use this work and guidebook to get through the summer, to and through the holidays with ease and less tension and organization. We're just going to work through the seven steps of my process, which include promotion, merchandising, logistics, updates and upgrades and many other things. Of course, unSLUMP is an acronym. Get all the details on the full program here.

This, I promise you, is going to make a huge difference to your holiday season if you can start ahead of time.

If you start now, you cannot go wrong. I'm so excited to help you get there, and I'm so excited to see what happens this year, holiday 2018. I feel it's going to be a good one. It's going to be a profitable one for all of us. Let's get started!

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The 2018 unSLUMP completely guide + program

Episode 29: Summer is your most valuable season

Summer unSLUMP

Jun 05 2018

22mins

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Episode 049: Creative Burnout with Stacie Bloomfield

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Recording season three of the podcast was a huge treat for me. I got to speak to several brilliant and inspiring people. Hopefully you have had a chance to check out the interview I did with Kara of Kara's Vineyard Wedding and the crazy-helpful episode I recorded with Amy Northard.

Today I'm excited to share yet another jam-packed conversation with you! This very special two part episode features Stacie Bloomfield of Gingiber. It's going to resonate with so so many of you, I just know it.

creative burnout and stagnation

Stacie and I set out to chat about creative burnout and stagnation. And we did! We but also got to speaking about so many other important topics that I had to share it all with you.

In part one you will hear us chatting about what gives her inspiration and how she stays fresh with her work. We also spoke about creative burnout, the tool she's found to be a game changer in branching out creatively and developing new work, and how she is using the headspace app.

There is just SO SO much in this episode, I cannot wait for you to hear it. This is a super candid discussion and I'm so glad we were able to chat.

Stacie has so much experience to speak from. I know many of you will relate to much of what she says in this episode and in the second part of the episode as well!.

Be sure you are subscribed to the podcast so you'll know as soon as part two is released!

Enjoy!

Today's episode was sponsored by Wholesale For Creatives!

Apr 26 2018

30mins

Play

Episode 055: Creating Effective Product Listing Pages

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effective product listing pages

In my time working with handmade business owners and Etsy sellers, I've done hundreds of personalized website and shop critiques. I've noticed something really important that I'm going to share with you today.

As sellers we need to understand that each page of our site is a separate, individually indexed page on the internet. Today's episode is about just that. You'll learn what this means for you as a seller on a marketplace site or your own domain.

By default you have more than three pages in your shop or on your site so you need to give this episode some good attention. I'm going over exactly how the listings in your shop are likely to be interacted with by shoppers.

These individual pages need to be given the same treatment you are likely giving your home page. We know that our home page needs to look amazing, organized, and pretty. It also needs to have clear navigation that highlights what is important to us as vendors and to our customers. We need to apply the same mindset and approach to all of our listings pages as well. I'll explain exactly why in this episode.

Tune in to find out what I'm talking about!

Today's episode was sponsored by Wholesale For Creatives!

May 17 2018

9mins

Play

Episode 075: The Great Free Shipping Meltdown of 2018

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The Great Free Shipping Meltdown of 2018 began precisely at the time that Etsy changed their fee structure. It reached a fever point in the fall of 2018 and it has basically been a hot topic for the past 4 months.

In hindsight, it's actually a bit surprising to me that free shipping was not as hot of a topic all along as it recently became.

The topic of free shipping for handmade business owners and Etsy sellers was such a widely spoken about matter in maker circles that I knew it had to be addressed here in season 4 of The Merriweather Council podcast.

In this episode:

. When and WHY free shipping became a huge concern for makers in 2018

. The Etsy algorithm implications of shipping price

. Some perspective

. Etsy's influence and push for free shipping

. My own experience in offering free shipping standard

. The truth about buyer behavior that's important to remember

. My thoughts and feels on free shipping as a handmade business owner

. My thoughts and feels on free shipping as a consumer of big brands and small brands

. Some of the top concerns surrounding free shipping and commentary on them

I hope this episode helps you make a better decision - or re-evaluate a decision - about offering free shipping in your own store. It's important to get a broad look at this before committing to anything long term, in my humble opinion anyway.

How are you feeling about the push for free shipping on Etsy? Are you offering it?

Why or why not? I'd love to know! Let’s discuss it in the Facebook group! http://clhl.club

Full Show Notes >> http://merriweathercouncilblog.com/75

Jan 08 2019

17mins

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Episode 036: You're Pricing Too Low (and the Rest of us Are Mad at You)

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Listen up, peeps: those bargain prices aren't helping you and they aren't helping anyone else either. In fact they might be hurting you. Today's episode is a tough love tour de force. Please listen and take note. Be honest with yourself here, it could make or break your business!!

In this episode:
  • Tough love
  • More sales vs more profit
  • The problem with low prices
  • How you might actually be paying for sales
  • Some math
  • Tough love
  • Just because you enjoy doing things doesn't mean you shouldn't be paid for them

Related reading: Start charging what you're worth now, not later

Related listening: 6 signs you might be playing business rather than running it

More related listening: Price and value are not as related as you think

Jun 01 2017

9mins

Play

Episode 25: The Super Basics of Wholesale (+ a little bit about consignment)

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Wholesale sounds complicated but to get started, it doesn't take much, honestly. Today I am sharing the most basic over view of wholesale - and a little bit about consignment for comparison - to get you started! The most important thing is understanding the benefits and how it works so you'll know if it is a good fit for you. Take a listen for my basic wholesale brief and find out what you need to get started.

In this episode
  • What is wholesale?
  • What is expected of a seller?
  • The key thing you'll need to have in order to get a wholesale account (most likely)
  • The pros and cons of wholesale
  • What is consignment and how is different from wholesale?

SUPER IMPORTANT: your pricing will need to be correct in order to profit at a wholesale rate!! Be sure you aren't undercharging in retail so that you can afford to do wholesale. If you can't wholesale all of your items, that's okay!

Apr 25 2017

13mins

Play

Episode 048: A Love Letter to Shopify

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Why shopify is the best

If you've been around Merriweather world a little while, you will know that there are a few things I am devoted to passing on to you. One of which is the advice to get your own site up and running. (Don't depend on marketplace sites solely, forever.) The other is that I wholeheartedly recommend you use Shopify to make that happen.

It's been a while since I spoke about Shopify on the podcast. So today's episode is dedicated to singing all the praises of this amazing tool. Okay, not actually ALL of them, but several. There are many, and I encourage you to explore Shopify on your own as well.

In this episode you will hear some backstory on my experiences with building my own site, things I love about Shopify and about my free Shopify trainer.

Oh yes, it's free and it's oh so helpful. It will help you move past some of those hurdles that will come up as you set your Shopify shop up. If you'd like to access this free training simply follow these three easy steps.

3 EASY STEPS YOU MUST TAKE TO GET ACCESS TO MY TRAINING, FOR FREE!

FIRST you must click here to either start a trial or a Shopify account. This is my affiliate link. In exchange for referring you to Shopify, Shopify gives me a small kickback if you start a plan with them. They offer a free trial so there is no risk to try it out! You can either start a free trial or a paid plan using that link, and get access to my training.

NEXT – very important – if you do use this link to start a trial or plan, EMAIL ME at hello@merriweathercouncil.com and let me know that you did! In your email, please include your shop name!

THEN, I will give you access to the training course!

Simple!

So enjoy this episode, and I can't wait to help you get set up with your very own Shopify hosted site.

Today's episode was sponsored by Wholesale For Creatives!

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Apr 24 2018

16mins

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Episode 059: What You Need to Know About Your Etsy Sales-to-Review Ratio

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discouraged about your etsy sales-to-review ratio?

Do you ever feel stressed out about the ratio of your Etsy sales to reviews? If you are a hot-blooded human, you probably have.

Of course, as sellers, we always want to see numbers of nearly any kind increase. This includes feedback! We love to see new, positive feedback from customers. It's a validation of what we are doing, and the way we are doing it. It just plain feels good to hear from people that the work we have done has made them happy. It's super easy to think that lack of a positive review means someone is unhappy, but that's not necessarily the case. Today's episode talks about all of this and more.

It is normal and common to feel a little self conscious about the number of reviews you have on your Etsy shop especially if you have a lot of sales and few reviews or if you are a newer seller wanting to build up more credibility.

in today's episode

In this episode I'm sharing why this is normal but ultimately not worth stressing about. Also going to be really honest about a problem I think Etsy creates for sellers that has caused a lot of additional stress. Plus I'm telling you about an experience I had with an Etsy admin and their comment to me about the ratio of sales to reviews in my shop. Of course I've also shed some light on what actually matters when it comes to reviews, and my own process and thoughts on soliciting reviews (juicy right?!) Hopefully this episode helps you Etsy sellers feel more at ease about your sales to reviews ratio!

Thank you so much for tuning into today's episode!

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May 31 2018

12mins

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Season 5 Finale + 3 things I Learned This Year I want to Share With You

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I cannot believe we are at the season finale of season 5 already! What a magical season this was.

We heard from SO many amazing makers and professionals who shared their wisdom and insights on a variety of topics. I really hope you enjoyed them all and gained a few pointers or felt inspired.

Season 6 will be here before you know it! In the meantime let’s keep in touch! Visit us at merriweathercouncilblog.com for all manner of merriment and join our free facebook group at www.CLHL.club

I have one final surprise!! There is a super-secret bonus episode of Merriweather Council Podcast that you can access right now by visiting http://merri.party/bonuspodcast - this episode outlines 4 powerful marketing strategies and mechanisms you can implement starting today (NOT including email marketing or anything having to do with Instagram! Shocking, right? Check it out!!)

Thank you so much for all of your support for the podcast and for looking forward to every episode in season 5!

Best, Danielle -

► If you enjoyed today's episode, share it with a friend and subscribe in your favorite podcast player.

merripodcast.com

Nov 26 2019

12mins

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The Virtues of Newness

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This episode is a note to new sellers - those of you who are just getting started, those of you who haven’t found your footing in the big picture yet.

In episode 99, I spoke about what makers who get to a steady spot are most at risk for. That episode is worth a listen no matter what stage you are at. So is this one.

But this one is specifically for those of you who are just getting started.

Spoiler alert: you have so many opportunities right now!! Let’s discuss the many virtues of being a “newbie” - and how you can enjoy and embrace this time better!

Thanks so much for listening today!

Enjoy!

-

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merripodcast.com

Nov 21 2019

9mins

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Business and personal inspiration from Kate Spade feat. Kimber Casteel

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Is it possible to overstate how influencer Kate Spade was? I don't think so. So we did not refrain on this episode.

Today we are chatting all about Kate Spade, her legacy and influence and her HUSTLE. I don't really like the word hustle but, she definitely worked super hard to get her business off the ground in the early days.

This was a really interesting discussion, i did not know all that much about the history of Kate Spade or her brand but, Kimber did! You know Kimber as our go-to Taylor Swift expert, but she was able to regale us on the fascinating story of Kate Spade as well.

And we WILL get around to recording an episode about TS7 but today we are talking about Kate.

Covered in today's episode: . Kate Spade the person and the brand - separating the two and understanding the timeline. . The appeal of the Kate Spade brand . some really interesting stats and numerical history . marketing lessons from the current Kate Spade brand . fan-girling...

I would like to also mention that if you are struggling or suffering with anything at all, you do not need to face it alone! There are people who can support and help you. We strongly recommend finding a therapist you like and trust. You can always reach the National Suicide Prevention hotline at 1-800-273-8255 within the USA as well

Follow up with Kimber for mostly embroidery but occasional pop culture content on Instagram instagram.com/kimartdesigns Thanks for listening today! if you enjoyed this episode, share it with a friend!

► If you loved this episode and really get into marketing like I do, and/ or if you simply want to know ore about creating effective and engaging campaigns and growing your business then you will LOVE The Council - our monthly membership experience for handmade business owners. We talk about marketing a lot but we also cover all manner of business from time management to money management and email marketing. Come over and check out the details at www.merri.party/councilmember

Enjoy!

-

► If you enjoyed today's episode, share it with a friend and subscribe in your favorite podcast player.

Nov 19 2019

54mins

Play

How @tlyarncrafts used crochet-a-longs to reach more customers + nurture her community feat. Toni from TL Yarn Crafts

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I know how frustrating it can be to see business advice that doesn’t seem like it relates to YOUR business. (As you hopefully know by now though, almost all business advice is just that: advice about business. And at the end of the day business is business and no matter what you’re selling, you’ve got to market it. So keep an open mind as you hear things! You can listen to an episode I did about that here: https://www.merriweathercouncilblog.com/2019/02/product-sellers-are-marketers/

One thing that often gets a lot of traction in service based businesses is CHALLENGES. You’ve probably seen some of your favorite bloggers run challenges for things like growing your email list, or batching content. And if you’ve ever participated in one you saw how it works and how it does engage the community that blogger is trying to reach. Which of course, is awesome.

So how can something like that translate to a handmade business owner? That’s the question we are answering on today’s episode featuring my friend and fellow maker in business, Toni Lipsey of TL Yarn Crafts.

If you don’t know Toni, you might live under a very large boulder. That ends today though! Toni was just as excited about this subject as I was when I reached out asking her to be a guest on the show! And she so willingly shared her insights and tips and experiences with running challenges in her community. Specifically she has been running CALs — or, Crochet-A-Longs. Similar to a knit-a-long. These are essentially the same idea as a challenge and she explained everything in this episode.

I have been following Toni for some time so I know how hard she works and how present she is in her community. This was a great strategy for her to implement and I’m excited for you to hear about it.

In this episode you’ll learn more about challenges or “whatever-a-longs”, how you might use this idea in your own business, the surprising thing Toni did in hers that is uncommon but worked and what she learned along the way.

You can follow Toni on IG at https://www.instagram.com/tlyarncrafts/ and visit her blog here: https://tlyarncrafts.com

Enjoy!

► If you loved this episode and really get into marketing like I do, and/ or if you simply want to know ore about creating effective and engaging campaigns and growing your business then you will LOVE The Council - our monthly membership experience for handmade business owners. We talk about marketing a lot but we also cover all manner of business from time management to money management and email marketing. Come over and check out the details at www.merri.party/councilmember

Enjoy!

-

► If you enjoyed today's episode, share it with a friend and subscribe in your favorite podcast player.

Nov 14 2019

40mins

Play

The surprising strategy @stitchingsabattical is using to engage her audience feat. Michelle from Stitching Sabbatical

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As an embroidery person myself, I am naturally attracted to other fiber artists - and Michelle Staub of Stitching Sabbatical creates such incredible work, it's hard to ignore. But also it totally catches my eye and I love it so much every time I see it. Michelle has an insane talent - she stitches photo realistic pet portraits. YES, STITCHES THEM. With thread. It's insane.

So it's easy to see why people would love following her to begin with, but Michelle wasn't going to rest on her laurels when it came to Instagram. She went about approaching her account in a very specific and intentional way (it might surprise you!) and she created an atmosphere where people could EXPECT something from her. She made herself a reliable party and people kept showing up!

What Michelle has done with Instagram might surprise you in a lot of ways. A lot of it was really refreshing to me and served as a good reminder that what we see and what we infer about what we see isn't already ... well, correct.

After chatting with Kim of Daisy Faye Designs about her IG debacle, and having this discussion with Michelle about her Instagram experience, I have firmed up my conclusion that Instagram is useful for connecting with an audience, and it's fun to use... but it's not the be all end all. (Personally i actually find it is NOT fun sometime haha.)

Both Kim and Michelle shared with us that while Instagram assists their business - and they are both using it in completely different ways - their businesses are reliant primarily on their talents. IG helps them share that talent and that's awesome.

I hope this episode was helpful and refreshing to you the same way it was for me! Follow Michelle for more stitched goodness and excellent content marketing strategy inspiration. Michelle's work: http://www.stitchingsabbatical.com Michelle on IG: https://www.instagram.com/stitchingsabbatical

►If you loved this episode and really get into marketing like I do, and/ or if you simply want to know ore about creating effective and engaging campaigns and growing your business with or without social media then you will LOVE The Council - our monthly membership experience for handmade business owners. We talk about marketing a lot but we also cover all manner of business from time management to money management and email marketing. Come over and check out the details at www.merri.party/councilmember

-

► If you enjoyed today's episode, share it with a friend and subscribe in your favorite podcast player.

Nov 12 2019

34mins

Play

Instagram account shutdown: what to do, how to recover + other lessons feat. Kim from Daisy Faye Designs

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Imagine going through the motions of checking your instagram and suddenly realizing there is a problem. Imagine your instagram account simply isn't there ... and there is no indication of why and no one really at all to ask.

This is exactly what happened to Kim Chapman of Daisy Faye Designs in January 2019. And as you can imagine, this created a real sense of worry and concern.

This episode is going to make you SO uncomfortable but it's also going to help you so much. If you can get past the discomfort, you're going to learn that being proactive in your business is one hundred percent essential.

I asked Kim if she would be willing to share more about her experience with her Instagram account being shut down with us and she graciously agreed. Kim experienced this first hand and was able to shed some light on the mysterious world of instagram, the process of trying to recover her lost account and what to do if your account is closed without reason.

In this episode you'll hear from Kim about her experience with instagram before and after this incident, what caused this problem for her and what she learned in the process - plus of course she is sharing what she did in the aftermath of the loss of her account.

Kim handled this whole debacle with so much grace and she shared about how the community assisted her in making a comeback. This episode is an absolute MUST listen for any small business that utilizes Instagram as part of their marketing.

Thank you Kim, for sharing all of this with us. Please visit Kim at daisyfayedesigns.com and on her brand new IG @daisyfayedesignsig

► If you loved this episode and understand the importance of being proactive and diversifying your marketing so your business can withstand sudden or drastic changes outside of your control, you will LOVE The Council . The Council is our monthly membership experience for handmade business owners Come over and check out the details at www.merri.party/councilmember

Enjoy!

-

► If you enjoyed today's episode, share it with a friend and subscribe in your favorite podcast player.

Nov 07 2019

54mins

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Shifting gears, making big changes and opening a retail storefront feat. Erin from Cotton and Flax

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When I was in college I always felt a little weird around my classmates because most of them were insanely talented fine artists who had already decided they were dedicating their lives to being artists. This was NOT me. I loved being creative, but then what? What do I do with this creativity?

I spoke about that and more in this episode with my friend Erin of Cotton and Flax. I've known her online for YEARS! We only had the opportunity to meet briefly once in NYC at the Etsy Up Conference. But it was magical nonetheless.

Erin has done so many incredible things in her time as a creative entrepreneur and we spoke at least a little bit about all of them and how she got to where she is now: the owner of a small brick and mortar space in San Diego, California. If you've ever dreamed of having a physical retail location or studio, you will love this episode.

Erin told me that she is working toward nurturing more community in her space through trunk shows and workshops and I told her THANK YOU. because it was people like Erin who I was lucky enough to encounter in Boston while I was in college that made all the difference for me.

This episode is full of gems for creatives and makers who feel ambitious about the longevity of their businesses! If you need a mood booster, this is it! Thank you, Erin!! Best of luck with everything in CA.

Be sure to visit Erin in real life if you are ever in her neck of the woods - she's located at 3180 Adams Ave. in San Diego. In the meantime follow along on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/cottonandflax/ and cottonandflax.com

► If you are interested and invested in growing your business beyond your Etsy shop, you will LOVE The Council! The Council is our monthly membership experience for handmade business owner who have big dreams but and no time to waste. Check out all the details on the most affordable way for us to work together here: www.merri.party/councilmember

Enjoy!

-

► If you enjoyed today's episode, share it with a friend and subscribe in your favorite podcast player.

Nov 05 2019

54mins

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How to avoid self sabotage this holiday season

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One cool thing about the ridiculous amount of time it took to get season 5 of the merriweather council podcast out the door is that we are publishing episodes a bit later in the year. And that means it's timely and relevant for me to share holiday related dialogue with you! And you know that discussing the many things that are involved for handmade business owners at holiday time is one of my most favorite things.

If you've spent any time around here, you know that I regularly remind makers throughout the holiday season to refrain from getting too caught up in the comparison game when other makers start posting about how many orders they've got going out. You can actually hear that pep talk here // https://www.merriweathercouncilblog.com/2018/12/holiday-pep-talk/

Just as important as not going around the internet comparing yourself to others is being really honest with yourself about how much is realistic to YOU. This is a metric that can only come from you.

That's what today's episode is about and I genuinely hope it helps many of you make better decisions not only for your business but for yourself this holiday season!

Enjoy!

► ATTN Etsy sellers (newbie and veteran!) : Register to attend an upcoming session of our Free Etsy Masterclass: the 4 step process to unlocking the unique power of Etsy at WWW.YOURETSYMASTERCLASS.COM so you can learn how to leverage the power of Etsy for your own benefit to have a more visible, profitable and enjoyable Etsy experience!

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► If you enjoyed today's episode, share it with a friend and subscribe in your favorite podcast player.

Oct 31 2019

10mins

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The reason handmade business owners are most at risk when things are going really well + what you are at risk for

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I hope this episode is more of a motivator than a bummer. Because truly, that's what it is. And those of you who most need to hear it: hopefully you're more likely to feel motivation than anything else!

This episode is for those of you who feel like things are going great! Sales are steady, or business is going smoothly, or you have finally 'arrived' where you wanted to be... generally, this episode is for you if you are feeling really satisfied with your business at present.

First, if you are that person, i want to say a huge congrats! Not only is it challenging to get your business of the ground and to a point where things are really truly working for you (business ain’t always easy!!) its even harder to actually recognize and fell that things are going well! We tend to be our biggest critics. So if you are feeling awesome, AWESOME! Congrats.

Now i want to help you keep it that way. That's what this episode is for: helping you stay UP. And the biggest hurdle to that is actually none of the things you think it is. It's not SEO changes on Etsy or Instagram's algorithm. It's complacency. Complacency will kill you faster than anything else.

Tune in to hear more!

► If you love this episode and understand the importance of being proactive and diversifying your marketing so your business can withstand sudden or drastic changes outside of your control, you will LOVE The Council . The Council is our monthly membership experience for handmade business owners Come over and check out the details at www.merri.party/councilmember

Enjoy!

-

► If you enjoyed today's episode, share it with a friend and subscribe in your favorite podcast player.

Oct 29 2019

6mins

Play

The key to combating underpricing on Etsy or anywhere else

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Ever been scrolling Etsy or Instagram and felt annoyed by the other makers in your niche who are severely underpricing their items and wonder how you could ever stand a chance when people are so willing to sell so low?

It is very likely that you have.

I hear it so often, from so many people that they simply 'can't compete' and feel discouraged about it.

You likely know enough to spot a ridiculously low price in another shop, so even if you aren't completely positive of someone else's costs, or even of your OWN prices, you know enough to know when there is just no possible way that a price THAT low is worth the work.

SO what to do about it? That's exactly what I'm talking about in today's episode.

I think the answer might surprise you!

In this episode: . What to do about underpricing in your niche . Some wisdom from my business fairy godmother, Marie Forleo . What underpricing actually indicates and what it DOES NOT indicate . The surprisingly simple solution to underpricing . The perils of underpricing. price matching too low . Pricing is more than math: what to consider so that you CAN price at the rate your formula tells you to.

If you are struggling with pricing your work, or want more clarity and confidence surrounding raising your prices so that you are actually profitable, be sure to check out The Pricing Workshop [ thepricingworkshop.com ] this is a course specifically for makers in business that Janet from Paper and Spark and I collaborated on and it covers everything from the science of pricing to the art of pricing. Listen to this episode to find out more about the elements you need to consider when pricing your work so that you can charge appropriately and escape the race to the bottom you see happening around you.

Enjoy!

► It is likely that if you’re listening to this episode, you’ve seen or heard between 1 and 40 Etsy rumors this week. WHOA. A lot of the more pervasive rumors that spread in the community can seem factual if you don’t know any better (they don’t have red flags all over them.) We here at MWC do not want you to miss out on the opportunity of Etsy or being successful there because of rumors, platform changes, or lack of resiliency!! Listen to this episode with an open mind and it'll all make sense. Click over here to watch our Etsy Myth Busting video! >> etsywithmerri.com __

► If you enjoyed today's episode, share it with a friend and subscribe in your favorite podcast player.

Oct 24 2019

11mins

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Being a military spouse, parenting + running a business from abroad feat. Ruthie Covert

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This season i had the great pleasure of speaking with so many amazing people. Many of them are people i have followed on the internet in one way or another for quite some time. Ruthie is one of those people!

Ruthie and I go way back. I'm not sure how far back exactly but, trust me, it's pretty far.

When I invited her to be a guest I told her I wanted to cover a few things: being a mom in business (something I can't speak on but that I know is so valuable and interesting for other moms and parents in business, particularly parents who work from home) and being a military spouse in business AND living abroad while running your business.

Amazingly enough Ruthie can speak on all of those things. I know there are quite a few moms/ parents who are also small business owners who listen to this podcast, and also quite a few military spouses!

I, too, am a military spouse! It doesn't come up a lot, but i figured let's give this topic some love while we have the opportunity! I would love to hear from you if you are also a military spouse running your own handmade business.

Oh this episode Ruthie and I covered the things we set out and so much more! This was such a fun conversation about traveling, planning, enjoying the freedom and flexibility your own business can give you (and working toward making that happen more often!), motherhood and so much more. I am nearly positive you will love this episode as much as we loved recording it!

Follow Ruthie on Instagram http://instagram.com/ruthiecovertart Or visit her Etsy shop at ruthercovertart.etsy.com

One thing Ruthie spoke about a bit was her Etsy shop! Ruthie is maintaining her Etsy shop with the help of a friend in the USA while she is living abroad in Germany. Ruthie has figured out a way to make Etsy work for her and it's really inspiring. If you are on Etsy (or want to be!) and want our help making it work harder for you, join us for one of the upcoming sessions of our free Etsy Masterclass: the 4 step process to unlocking the unique power of Etsy! This class will help you leverage the power of Etsy so you can enjoy more visibility, profit and joy from your Etsy experience without tweaking your shop 24/7! Click here to RSVP for one of our upcoming sessions at www.youretsymasterclass.com

Enjoy!

► ATTN Etsy sellers (newbie and veteran!) : Register to attend an upcoming session of our Free Etsy Masterclass: the 4 step process to unlocking the unique power of Etsy at WWW.YOURETSYMASTERCLASS.COM so you can learn how to leverage the power of Etsy for your own benefit to have a more visible, profitable and enjoyable Etsy experience!

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► If you enjoyed today's episode, share it with a friend and subscribe in your favorite podcast player.

Oct 22 2019

44mins

Play

How the Jonas Brother used storytelling to create PR magic + how you can, too. feat. Brittney Lynn

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Since we are on a boyband kick recently, i figured let's just top it off with this fabulous episode in which i spoke with PR professional Brittney Lynn about the magic that is the Jonas Brothers' recent documentary "Chasing Happiness."

What is so magical about it? Why is a PR professional THE one to speak on it? Gather round, kiddies, these and many other questions are about to be answered. Here's how this episode became a thing...

I am one of those people who only used Amazon Prime for the free shipping benefit until like, three months ago. And around the time I started watching Amazon Prime Video, the Jonas Brothers released this documentary.

Being the pop music super fan that I am, i checked it out. And I actually loved it and started down a bit of a Jonas Brothers black hole. The next day, I saw Brittney on Instagram talking about how awesome their documentary was from a PR perspective and, well, here we are.

Brittney shares some key insights in this episode about how and why Chasing Happiness was a brilliant business and PR move for the Jonas Brothers and how storytelling was at the heart of it. Of course, she did not leave us hanging and also explained how small business owners can follow the example the JoBros have set. Similar to the situation we spoke about on the episodes about BSB DNA, the Jonas Brothers really needed this return to the spotlight to go well. Thanks to great marketing (among other things) it seems like it definitely did! They have been crushing it this year.

For more PR tips for small business owners (and occasional JoBro content) be sure to follow Brittney on instagram instagram.com/brittneyllynn and check out her incredible resources including pitch templates at brittneyllynn.com

►If you loved this episode and really get into marketing like I do, and/ or if you simply want to know ore about creating effective and engaging campaigns and growing your business then you will LOVE The Council - our monthly membership experience for handmade business owners. We talk about marketing a lot but we also cover all manner of business from time management to money management and email marketing. Come over and check out the details at www.merri.party/councilmember

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Oct 17 2019

1hr 3mins

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#BSBDNA marketing lessons continued with Brianne from Brianne2k

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This might surprise some of you but i actually did NOT plan on having two episodes about the backstreet boys and how they marketed their latest album release: DNA. I swear!

I recorded my solo episode on the matter and was satisfied with it.

But then something magical happened and the powers that be (Facebook) showed me some highly targeted content (JK... i saw it because I am in a BSB related fan group.)

Picture it: i'm scrolling casually through on the BSB fan groups I’m a member of on Facebook and all of a sudden I see Brianne's post...

OMG?! Is this real life?! I emailed her immediately and we both squealed like the fangirls that we are and promptly scheduled a time to record this episode.

In this episode, Brianne and I spoke about a lot of the things she covered in her original article. We spoke about the Millennium era and how the Backstreet Boys were able to tap back into that magical time in their careers. This was also a magical time for fans, so we discussed how important and brilliant it was that they approached their new release the way they did. We spoke about their grassroots marketing (mural anyone?!) their flashier marketing (hello, Super Bowl commercial), their classic marketing (That NYC morning show circuit is expected, really) and their nostalgia driven marketing (you MUST remember the magic of TRL?!)

We also spoke about their content marketing strategy and I know that if you are open to it, you'll hear so many ways this can relate to your business as well!

Here's that super fun Chromosomes series we mentioned: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLFQKtIEANTnKxJnJz7Jd1Tv1CqZfRvvoa

and the video for No Place: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0OTZmyheI9k

Brianne's blog is full of pop culture marketing references so it is basically my new favorite things. Be sure to check her out there and read her original article about BSB: https://vivid99.com/backstreet-boys-dna/

► If you loved this episode and really get into marketing like I do, and/ or if you simply want to know ore about creating effective and engaging campaigns and growing your business then you will LOVE The Council - our monthly membership experience for handmade business owners. We talk about marketing a lot but we also cover all manner of business from time management to money management and email marketing. Come over and check out the details at www.merri.party/councilmember

Enjoy!

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► If you enjoyed today's episode, share it with a friend and subscribe in your favorite podcast player.

Oct 15 2019

55mins

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What makers can learn from the modern marketing strategy that got the Backstreet Boys back on top in 2019

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Is there a subject I enjoy speaking about more than the Backstreet Boys? Honestly, no.

Will I take any opportunity to discuss them at length? Absolutely, yes.

And that is what I'm doing on this episode- but for a very good reason: there is so much to learn from the launch of their most recent album.

You've heard me talk about Taylor Swift and her marketing genius, and you've heard me talk about Gilmore Girls and the business lessons they illustrate perfectly. Now we can add BSB to the list of pop culture entities we can learn business lessons from.

For their tenth studio album, DNA, the Backstreet Boys pulled out a lot of marketing strategies that not only created widespread buzz but also triggered deep emotional connections in their existing fan base. And as we know, that is a recipe for success.

So what did they do? Why did it work? What specific things did they do to activate their existing fan base's emotional response? Listen to this episode to learn all about it. It was FASCINATING. Certainly, yes, I am a fan and I would have showed up either way - BUT because of the lead up to this release, I definitely showed up in a much bigger way than I have in the past for other releases.

The strategies that were used in the release of DNA can all absolutely be translated to your own business. Don't miss this episode.

► If you loved this episode and really get into marketing like I do, and/ or if you simply want to know ore about creating effective and engaging campaigns and growing your business then you will LOVE The Council - our monthly membership experience for handmade business owners. We talk about marketing a lot but we also cover all manner of business from time management to money management and email marketing. Come over and check out the details at www.merri.party/councilmember

Enjoy!

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► If you enjoyed today's episode, share it with a friend and subscribe in your favorite podcast player.

merripodcast.com

Oct 10 2019

21mins

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Top considerations for handmade business owners before paying to advertise (including with Etsy promoted listings or new ads!)

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Paid advertising seems like a really good option and it is likely you have considered it. You've probably seen it work really well for others. You have also probably seen or heard of experience that others had with paid advertising that were not profitable at all.

Today's episode includes several things. It actually could have been two separate episodes but the ideas really piggy back on each other so I kept them together!

In this episode: . a summary of paid traffic types . why i think you should NOT run paid ads to an Etsy shop . the key factor in determining if you should run paid traffic at all . Etsy optimization . Etsy promoted listings + a realist that Etsy sellers need to acknowledge about search . When paid advertising is a good option . WHEN paid advertising is a good option . MORE

This episode is chock full, y'all.

I'm going into depth on explaining why you don't want to send paid traffic to and Etsy shop and I'll explain why in this episode. You also don't want to send paid traffic to any site at all if that site is not organically converting already. If you get organic (warm) traffic to your site and it doesn't convert, there is a very good likelihood that your colder traffic that would come from paid ads also will not convert. What i mean by that is: do not pay to promote something that hasn't proven itself yet.

But of course i would be remiss if I didn't mention that paid advertising IS a good option, it just has to be implemented at the right time to the right place. (That's a huge part of the reason why sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't!)

If you are going to spend money on any kind of ad that ad should direct people to a place where its all about you - where you are the star of the show. if you need help optimizing etsy that's what we do in the Merriweather Council Etsy Training Course // merrietsytraining.com

Your shop needs to be optimized for whatever action you want people to take while they are there.for most of you that means sales. if you are getting any traffic and none of it converts, DO NOT try to increase traffic with a paid ad. that traffic is even less likely to convert.

As for my fellow Etsy sellers: there is no downside to optimizing listings at all! Your promoted listings will perform better if they are listings that are optimized to begin with. And the optimization strategies you can implement in your shop will ONLY help you out, day after day, across the board. (You can get a significant head start on learning what all goes into optimizing your shop and why it's so important during my Free Etsy Masterclass - and we have some sessions coming up soon! Optimization goes so far beyond search results, my friends, make no mistake!

► Register to attend an upcoming session of our Free Etsy Masterclass: the 4 step process to unlocking the unique power of Etsy at WWW.YOURETSYMASTERCLASS.COM

I hope you love this episode!

Enjoy

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Oct 08 2019

16mins

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Setting the example + expectation for your customers (and why you need to stop leading with discounts)

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Ohhh, snap. Some of you are not going to like this. How do i know? I speak about this quite a bit and every time I do, a handful of people reach out to say they disagree. I'm cool with that. I'm perfectly fine with disagreement. I just still really believe in this message. It's my truth... but it doesn't have to be yours.

My job is not to twist your arm about something you're not into. I don't find any joy in convincing people to do things they really do not want to do. My job is to share insights that i believe you could learn or benefit from. If you happen to find something I say valuable and worth trying then i've done my job. So listen to this episode with an open mind, and decide for yourself based on DATA.

The subject of this episode is discounting. The conceptual summary of this episode though is to stop setting expectations you do not want people to have of you and your business. Everyone will be happier in that scenario: you AND your customers. Probably also your family because if you're unhappy, they probably aren't as pleased with that. So really, this is just a trickle down feel good strategy.

I'm sharing my experience with you, and that includes as a seller, as a consumer and as someone who has heard from and worked with hundreds of other handmade business owners - and I hope that you can learn from it!

Enjoy!

► ATTN Etsy sellers: We here at MWC do not want you to miss out on the opportunity of Etsy or being successful there because of rumors, platform changes, or lack of resiliency!! Listen to this episode with an open mind and it'll all make sense. Click over here to watch our Etsy Myth Busting video! >> etsywithmerri.com __

► If you enjoyed today's episode, share it with a friend and subscribe in your favorite podcast player

Oct 03 2019

7mins

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The power of Etsy, creative careers + big opportunities for makers feat. Dani Barbe

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Ever been scrolling Etsy or Instagram and felt annoyed by the other makers in your It's always a thrill for me to be able to chat with my students about their businesses and how they have grown and changed since working with me. When I reached out to Dani, I told her I wanted to have her on season 5 of the merriweather council podcast to chat about how she has turned her two creative passions into businesses and overall, her creative business trajectory. What we ended up speaking about did cover that, but also included so much more!

Proud teacher moment: Dani took, completed and implemented our Etsy Training Course (she will tell you about it in the episode!) Visit merrietsytraining.com to get more info on this course!

I can't wait for you to hear from Dani about her music career, her thriving jewelry business and the incredible power of Etsy.

Dani is a PRIME example of how the power of Etsy can be leveraged for your benefit. She truly has made Etsy a part of her business and it works so well for her thanks to strategy and dedication. You are going to love her story.

I hope you feel inspired and motivated after this episode whether it is in your studio work or your Etsy shop!

If you are on track to have Etsy be part of your business too, or if it already is but you want to learn how to use it better like Dani has, then I want to invite you to one of the upcoming sessions of my Free Etsy Masterclass: the 4 step process to unlocking the unique power of Etsy so that you can learn the same framework i teach inside of the Etsy Training Course! Click over to www.youretsymasterclass.com register for class!

Be sure to visit Dani’s jewelry shops: https://danibarbe.com https://www.etsy.com/shop/

Enjoy! __ ► Register to attend an upcoming session of our Free Etsy Masterclass: the 4 step process to unlocking the unique power of Etsy at WWW.YOURETSYMASTERCLASS.COM

► If you enjoyed today's episode, share it with a friend and subscribe in your favorite podcast player.

Oct 01 2019

49mins

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The first three steps to Etsy success (in no particular order)

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If you Google “Etsy success" a bunch of articles about tips, hacks and tricks will likely show up. Some of that is probably helpful (particularly if its from merriweathercouncilblog.com wink) but these things actually are only useful or relevant AFTER the FIRST, TRUE and surprising keys to Etsy success.

It's true that being successful on Etsy DOES include strategy in listings, photos, etc. (We can teach you all of it in our Etsy Training Course merrietsytraining.com ) But that stuff won't get you very far if you haven't gotten on board with these first essential 3 keys to Etsy success.

I'm going to reveal them to you in today's episode in depth but here they are: . Resiliency . Believing in the unique power of Etsy . Not falling for silly Etsy rumors.

Yup. Those are them.

Surprising right? I know! It does seem like that. I didn't mention SEO or having pretty photos or a certain number of listings. Because none of that matters if you are slowed down and not even present on Etsy. So many peoples tart shops that don't get very far. Sometimes it is because the shop owner heard a rumor that scared them off thinking it was true. Or the seller didn't really really see the value in Etsy as a platform, so they didn't exert enough energy there. Sometimes people don't get very far on Etsy because a change to the platform felt like a bigger deal than it actually was.

All the tips, the best strategy in the world won't matter if you hear some crazy Etsy rumor, believe it's true and get discouraged. You have to be present and optimistic in order for those tips and strategies to work.

► We here at MWC do not want you to miss out on the opportunity of Etsy or being successful there because of rumors, platform changes, or lack of resiliency!! Listen to this episode with an open mind and it'll all make sense. Click over here to watch our Etsy Myth Busting video! >> etsywithmerri.com

Enjoy!

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Sep 26 2019

15mins

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Overcoming fears + investing in your business feat. Grace from Maker Mountain Fabrics

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It was so wonderful to chat with Grace of Maker Mountain Fabrics about hew sewing shed. What is a sewing shed you ask? Well, for Grace, it is her workspace - a separate structure she built on her property to run her business from. But it is also a symbol of all the things she hopes and works hard for in her business. The shed is literally a physical representation to the dedication Grace has to her business and her commitment to the work she does - also to the confident decision she made to invest in herself.

For Grace the decision to build the shed was a "now or never" moment. I spoke with her about how she felt facing this large investment, what her motivation was, how she overcame the fear and what's happened since she has had the shed!

This episode addresses something all business owners will face at one point or another: having to decide to go all in or stay status quo.

In Grace's case, building her sewing shed meant saying yes to her business and its future. I'm excited for you to hear from Grace about how this investment of time, effort and money was a family affair and a true commitment to her business.

Grace can be found in all the usual places! Follow her for beautiful fabrics and sewing inspiration. Grace on IG: Instagram.com/makermountainfabrics Grace's Facebook group for fabric lovers + sewists: Facebook.com/groups/makermountainfabrics Grace's fabric shop: www.makermountainfabrics.com

► For more information about my Etsy Training Course that Grace mentioned visit us at merrietsytraining.com

► RSVP for our free Etsy Masterclass: the 4 part process to unlocking the unique power of Etsy to learn about the same framework we teach inside of the Etsy Training Course + to get started on making your shop work harder for you! Register at YOURETSYMASTERCLASS.COM

Enjoy!

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Sep 24 2019

38mins

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Creative business highs + lows feat. Sarah K Benning

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What an honor to have the incredible Sarah K Benning as a guest on season 5 of the Merriweather Council Podcast! I have admired her work as an embroidery artist and small business owner for years now and she is so inspiring.

On this episode we are chatting about so many things. I loved hearing her journey from art student to business owner and now, co-author! And you will hear all about it as well.

If you have spent any time on Instagram or in maker communities you are likely familiar with Sarah's hand embroidery work. It is details and intricate and whimsical. Of course, we spoke all about her work, her inspiration, process and struggles not only with her work but with social media and running a small business. We also spoke about her incredibly successful pattern program and why she's decided to end it (for now!) There is so much to learn from in this episode.

Sarah's book has just recently been released and it is the most perfect companion for snuggling up with a cup of coffee on a sunday afternoon this October. What a dreamy, beautiful book it is!

Get your copy here: https://amzn.to/2MOpBwP *affiliate link you are in for a real treat with this.

Be sure to follow Sarah on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/sarahkbenning/ and visit her website: https://sarahkbenning.com to see more of her work for sale.

Enjoy!

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► If you enjoyed today's episode, share it with a friend and subscribe in your favorite podcast player. ► Join us inside of our free facebook group for makers in business at: www.CLHL.club

Sep 19 2019

55mins

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