Friday, September 24, 2010

Fine-Threadz vs SharonH - My marketing plan

What I've been up to. Mostly I've been filling my orders. Have to stay on top of those. I have new designs coming. I mentioned those earlier in the week when I posted pictures of the new fabrics. I really haven't had time to work on my website and that goes live any day now. I noticed that the programmers have added the shopping cart. Once I get the website done, I'll give details on how I did it and the great company that I used to get me started.

All this time, my marketing plan included branding my company name. Not me the person. Sure there is a real SharonH behind the scenes. Everyone was saying take pictures, put your face and name out there, let everyone see who you are. Yada. Yada. Yada. Do you readers have any idea who Louis Vuitton is? Would you know Calvin Klein if you passed him on the street? How about the owners of Dolce & Gabbana? Probably not! I mentioned these three companies because they have successfully branded their NAME. The most prominent facial branding I can recall is Aunt Jermima and Col. Sanders. Nothing wrong with that type of branding, just not the league I want to be in. When you think about Louis Vuitton, you think of the overlapping initials all over those gorgeous overpriced handbags. When you think of Calvin Klein, you think of his signature on a pair of undies. And when you think of Dolce & Gabbana.... well who know what you think of, they have so many great products.

[caption id="attachment_417" align="alignleft" width="124" caption="Louis Vuitton"][/caption]

On some selling sites they constantly plaster their chosen artist on their front pages and ask them a bunch of questions about their artistic process and "how did you suddenly get into stringing those beads together like that?" LOL! See this is a person. This is an artist. Sure, we're all artist. But if you want to maintain success, you had better become a business person too. And you had better come up with a marketing plan for how you want to sell your ART. Art as a business seems to be a dirty word in some of these places. And god forbid you try to promote you "business". Fine-Threadz is a business who happens to have SharonH as the artist on board.

[caption id="attachment_418" align="alignright" width="150" caption="Calvin Klein"][/caption]

I just started my business Fine-Threadz, which is a subsidiary of Fine-Thangz, that has been in existence for 7 years. (I just love saying that word... subsidiary.)  That's when I started designing leather goods. Pillows, laptop bags and ottomans. Home interior goods. Only once I got to other selling venues did I feel duty bound to add SharonH to the mix. I was told buyers wanted to know me. SharonH. It was only later that I began to question that from a business standpoint. After all I would count myself as a business woman too. So that's part of the reason I created this blog. If a customer really would rather know SharonH instead of Fine-Threadz, here I am!

[caption id="attachment_419" align="alignleft" width="150" caption="Dolce & Gabbana"][/caption]

After 25 years of working in marketing, travel, and oil & gas, it's just the way I think. I don't mind revealing SharonH as the backbone of Fine-Threadz, but I'm not changing my marketing plan to put SharonH before Fine-Threadz. Not gonna happen. Why? I did a Google search on Fine-Threadz! And my company name dominates the first 3 pages. Yes. I have done something right. I have branded my company name. Now it's time to build an association with that name. That mean "When you think of Fine-Threadz, you think of.....!" What? Coming up with the "what" is next. When a customer thinks of Fine-Threadz, I'd like them to think about my product, the quality of my designs and the unique comfortable clothing that I offer. I don't want them to think about some lone woman here in Houston, Texas slaving away over orders! For the personal stuff, they can come here to my blog and listen to me bitch about how much work I've got to do, my design process, and whether or not I've got a frigging hangnail. When a customer visits Fine-Threadz, I want them to see nothing but my professionalism.


KavitaKriti said...

Congrats on making the first 3 pages... That's an achievement! Would you mind giving some insight into your marketing plan?

Thanks and Good Luck!

Fine-Threadz said...

Hi Kavita,

Insight? Okay, the most important thing that I've done to brand my company name is to use the name only. Not my personal name & definitely no Etsy. One day I'd like to be bigger than etsy. It's on my business cards. It's on my Ebay account. I twitter with it. And I Google Analytics with it. Unfortunately, I don't facebook with it because I've had facebook a lot longer than Fine-Threadz and every time I try to create a Fine-Threadz account, it attaches itself to my personal Facebook account. I need to check into changing the personal name to Fine-Threadz and getting rid of my personal name on FB all together. So I guess what I'm saying is you'll have to stop using your personal name. Also open a StumbleUpon account and put it in your company name. You, the person, step back and put your company name in the forefront. Once you do all this, register your company name with Google via Analytics, Google Docs, and your blog.

All of this is a start and you'll begin to see your company name come up more and more on Google. Especially if you stick to it and don't use your personal name so much. Feel free to ask me anything. But start here and let me know how it goes.


KavitaKriti said...

That's a really good suggestion. I think I have done some of those things such as created blog, stumbleupon accounts etc with my company name. I don't have a Facebook fan page either, nor do I have anything on Ebay or Twitter. I think my biggest toughie right now is to show up higher in rankings and getting indexed by Google. You know how when you start typing in the Google search box it automatically shows you a list of possible keyword phrases you might be searching for... that's what I would like my phrase tag to show up in.

Right now you can type "hand painted silk scarves" in Google and it will automatically suggest a few choices but there is no option for "hand painted silk scarves with indian motifs". I want to figure out how I can get that to happen?? I think it has something to do with Google indexing your pages and currently my indexing is N/A.

Also not sure what you mean by "no Etsy" in
>>... Okay, the most important thing that I’ve done to brand my company name is to use the name only. Not my personal name & definitely no Etsy.

And to register with Google analytics you will have to provide the link to your Etsy shop right? I have that already but do not know how to register with Google docs.


Fine-Threadz said...

Hi Kavita,

Do you have a website. Or just thru Etsy right now? The reason I ask is from what I heard those drop downs in Google are for websites, not sub sellers on a website like etsy. Meaning in order to reach that level of Google indexing you would have to have your very own website and then that's where you would do all of your SEO optimazing for Google. If you try to do it for your own shop, it will just show up through Etsy.

Also, I did a search through Google and this was the website I found. (If this is your website, you can add google analytics to it and that will be just another way you'll end up all over google)

With your name on it right? You were the very first one found in a google sear
"hand painted silk scarves"

So if you want to be found
"hand painted silk scarves with indian motif" all you have to do is change the title on all of your listing because the reason it's coming up
the first search is because google crawls over the first 5 or 6 words in your listing.

I have been reading a great thread on etsy for increasing my SEO and my hits are up over 20% and sales too.

I'm on page 20. I read a little at a time and follow the advise. And the changes were almost immediate. So start at the beginning and do a little at a time. Maybe this
thread will help you step it up a level.

For Google everything it's your email address and I use my business email address. When I say Google everything, I mean Analytic, Doc, Blog.... so everything I have going
on with Google is through my business. I don't have anything with Google on a personal level. It's all business. So when they began crawling thru my websites, blogs and Etsy listing only my business name comes up.

To sign up for Google Doc

You'll just end up using the same account login as the one you use for Google Analytics so it'll be super easy to sign up. And you have to have google docs (free). It
works like Excel without all the drama you get from using Microsoft (expensive as hell).

When I said "no Etsy" I meant that I don't say Fine-Threadz at etsy like some people do. Instead I add etsy only as one of the ways to see my items. Once my website is
finished, I won't do that anymore because sending someone to etsy is just an invitation for your customers to go see your competition. How frigging dumb is that? Right now
I don't have a choice, but one day I'd really like to be bigger than Etsy.


KavitaKriti said...

Hmm, you make a very valid point about directing people to your competition if you simply direct them to Etsy. Also I like your suggestion about only having business email etc. Currently mine is all mixed up.

Thank you very much for your suggestions Sharon!

Oh that silknbeauty website is not mine, that's another Kavita. I don't have my own website yet. My shop does come up first if you type "Hand painted silk scarves with indian motifs" in google but I feel that no one will type exactly that into their search box. Instead I want to up my rankings in search results for "hand painted silk scarves". Currently my squidoo lens shows up on page 5 (I think that's helping me a bit since my Etsy shop does not even feature in the first 10 pages).

I will browse through the SEO thread on Etsy that you recommended and try it out. Thanks very much!!!!

Fine-Threadz said...

Well I still haven't gotten my website completed, but right now my focus is elsewhere. This is always my busiest time of the year.

For hand painted silk scarves you have a long way to go to beat out the Kavita with her own website.

That thread had been a big help with me getting more hits... but now that I've joined an etsy treasury team my hits, hearts and sales have really gone up. You should maybe
think about joining a team. Every time I heard someone, including Etsy, tell me that, I just brushed it off. Ha! That's one bit of advise I wish I had taken a lot sooner.