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Handmade Jewelry Marketing Tips

I'm going to help you market your handmade jewelry more effectively. Learn how to sell and make a generous living making and selling jewelry.

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I love to help other people be successful on their own terms. If I can help someone start a successful business they ENJOY, plus show them how to market it, I will have done my job.

BeadStyle Magazine

Friday, January 05, 2007

Using Home Parties to Market Your Handmade Jewelry

I want to spend some time talking about home parties as a way to sell your jewelry. There's actually quite a bit to discuss here. If you're interested in this particular area, you may want to be sure to follow along over the next few days.

Home parties are big business these days! Did you know that the home party business was almost a 30 billion dollar business in 2004? Even some of the larger, more traditional retailers have jumped on the home party bandwagon.

Home parties can be the perfect medium for selling handmade jewelry. Why is this so? A home party gives your potential customer the chance to touch and try on your pieces. No other form of marketing will gives such a direct, tactile encounter with the product. Plus, a home party is selling in a fun and relaxed environment among friends. Your potential customers feel comfortable buying in such an setting. They also avoid the traffic and hassles of making the trip to their local mall to shop. It's the ultimate combination of shopping, socializing, and entertainment!

When I was in college, I earned extra money in a home jewelry party business for a jewelry line called Lady Remington. I'm sure this line is now defunct but at the time it was quite lucrative. Although the jewelry was a bit overpriced for costume jewelry, it had a ready market. Once party participants tried on the jewelry pieces, they were often sold. Plus, many wanted to host a party themselves once they found out they could earn free jewelry that way. Those jewelry parties paid for alot of textbooks!

A friend of mine who hosts jewelry parties for her own handmade jewelry has been extremely successful with this marketing method. Her sales average around $800 per show. She is well established but it shows the potential for this market. Her holiday boutique shows are particularly well attended at which time her sales often triple. We'll talk about holiday boutique shows in more detail at a later date.

There's also the potential for making money through hosting custom jewelry parties. You would bring your beads and findings to the party and allow your customers to design their own pieces. You would then put them together while they wait. Be prepared for lots of jewelry making! It might be a good idea to bring along an extra person who can help with the jewelry assembly in case you're overwhelmed. People love the idea of having a custom jewelry piece designed just for them.

To make your home party business a success, you're going to want to recruit other people to host parties for your handmade jewelry. Once your participants see how fun the parties can be, they'll be enthusiastic about potentially hosting their own. Plus, they're going to want some of your jewelry either free or at a discount.

How might you best compensate your party coordinators? You could use one of the following methods:

1. Free handmade jewelry of their choosing
2. A special designated piece of jewelry that you've picked out.
3. A percentage of sales
4. Merchandise credits

I really like the merchandise credit option the best. This allows your hostess the flexibility to choose her own pieces which makes her happy and you're not having to give up a percentage of your profits.

Here's a general outline of the steps you might go through to host a home jewelry party:

1. Select a friend or acquaintance to host your jewelry party. Have her compose a list of potential party attendees along with addresses and phone numbers.

2. Send out invitations to your the list about 2 weeks ahead of time. Make sure the invitation emphasizes that the party is being hosted by the above acquaintance and that there will be friends, food, and fun. Make the invitation festive and compelling.

3. Have your hostess follow up with a phone call to the list 7 days ahead of time for confirmation. You should have at least 10 people at a party to make it worth your time as well as the time of your hostess.

4. Have a small portable display prepared to show off your jewelry. I would recommend having a display that allows the pieces to be elevated. You don't want to display jewelry items flat on a table. (We'll talk more about this later). Get to the party 1 hour early to set up your display and handmade jewelry pieces.

5. As the guests start arriving greet each one warmly and sincerely.

6. As the party opens, present your hostess with a piece of jewelry to thank her for hosting the party. Let the other participants know that they too can host a party and get free handmade jewelry of their own.

7. Start the party off with an icebreaker. When I was with Lady Remington we would play a brief game at the opening of the party with the prize being a piece of jewelry. This is a great way to get people in a buying mood.

8. Introduce people to your handmade jewelry by telling them a little bit about yourself and your jewelry. Show them your display and allow them to pick up and try on the jewelry. Have lots of mirrors available!

9. As people explore your jewelry, circulate around and make suggestions on how to wear your pieces.

10. Stop for a refreshment break.

11. Wrap up the party by writing up orders and packaging people's purchases.

12. Include one of your cards and brochures with each person that shows how the customer can host their own handmade jewelry party. Let them know verbally as they checkout that they can get free jewelry of their own by hosting their own.

13. Have a book available for participants to fill in their name, address, and phone number. You need this information to potentially contact people in the future who may want to host a party. Try to get one of the guests to commit to a future party. (without being pushy, of course)

14. Always thank your party participants and the hostess for sponsoring the party.

14. Stay around and help the hostess tidy up a bit. Tell her you'll be glad to host another party with her in the future.

Now we have a basic outline of how to start out in the home party business. We'll go into more detail tomorrow. In the meantime, I want to recommend to you an excellent resource on running a home party business by someone who's been there and has been successful at it. This book will show you:

1. Little known secrets for getting new customers to book parties
2. New jewelry party format ideas
3. Unique ideas for growing your jewelry party business
4. How to design effective party invitations
5. How to create marketing materials
6. Plus much, much more.

She also gives you a variety of bonuses including ebay marketing tips and a logo pack for help in designing a logo for your handmade jewelry business.

Here's a link to more information:

I hope you have a fantastic weekend. :-)



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