My husband bought Gary Vaynerchuk’s book Crush It probably 3-4 years ago when I was beginning Words and Watercolors. At the time, he encouraged me to get involved in social media. I was not comfortable with social media and couldn’t see myself doing all that the book suggested. I choose to continue doing my business the way I had started, focusing on being a wholesale company that sold to independent retailers around the country. My husband would ask me, from time to time, what I was doing with twitter or Facebook or how many hits my website had. I couldn’t answer him. He would get frustrated, shake his head and then leave me alone. I kept my head down, worked hard at finding reps, going to shows, creating new product and my business did grow slowly but surely.
It’s now 5 years into the business and things are at a critical point as I see that continual growth means continual investment. I’ve come to realize that the gift industry is not high tech. It’s not glamorous. There’s not money flowing into it. It’s old school for sure. Young people don’t even go into stores it seems but do most of their shopping online. I’m beginning to see, hopefully not too late, the wisdom of my husband who encouraged me way back then to get familiar with social media and exploit all that it could do for me.
Just because I prefer to have one on one conversations with people face to face or over the phone doesn’t mean the rest of the world prefers that form of communication, I’m beginning to realize. Just because I think that sending greeting cards to loved ones is one of the best ways to “reach out and touch” doesn’t mean the rest of the world sees it that way. I do know we live in this twitter 140 character world and have scaled down my “greetings” on cards. I’m often complimented for the “succinct sentiments” that my cards express. They don’t have the “blah blah blah blah blah” form of writing that some more traditional card lines still advocate. But still I’m not running to the bank because of all the eyeballs that have found me (most don’t) and purchased.
Just before I started writing this, I took a link from a magazine that had reviewed my book and shortened it in bit.ly (that in and of itself through me for awhile) so I could post a note on twitter about the link. I also had communicated on my fb page about the book. I’m learning that I need to feed fb, twitter, instagram daily or at least most days. I’m learning that I’m going to need to upgrade my website. It’s on a wordpress platform but I’ve been told that shopify is the way to go now. Who knows? I pray for the wisdom to sort through all this, to dive in and learn it and somehow do what my husband so wisely suggested all those years ago. Exploit social media and drive eyeballs to my content! God help me.
By the way, Happy Easter….it’s Good Friday and I’m looking forward to the Resurrection and New Beginnings that this Season heralds. It’s spring time. New life is sprouting up. I look forward to the new life in me pushing through my own hard earth (self imposed limitations). Blessings to all who read this!