can i just tell you guys how excited i was when i found out that not only was i speaking at alt summit but that my panel was going to be all about going from blog to shop. i can literally talk for days on this subject & lately i’ve started to realize that one of the things i love doing most is helping others get their shop up & running – um, win-win!!
but then the schedule came out…our panel was at the same time as “growing your readership” (with no other than jordan from oh happy day, nicole from making it lovely, kelly from design crush & maggie from mighty girl and the panel “how to create great diy tutorials” with one of my fave bloggers ez from creature comforts not to mention megan from not martha. um, what?? great, now our panel is going to be like a ghost town with tumbleweed blowing by!)
but surprise, surprise…people showed up! and not just people…lots of people who have started an online business or store! perfect, that’s exactly who we wanted to talk to!! (okay, so it wasn’t 100′s of people but when you’re going up against “growing your readership” i think even having 5 people at your panel counts as success
amy, susan and i decided that we wanted our panel to be more about the people attending and addressing their questions and concerns. so we left lots of time at the end of our panel for Q&A and boy are we glad we did! the questions kept coming from some pretty amazing and awesome folks who have started their own stores or biz and there was a collaborative feel to answering them - we could all speak from our own experience…including people attending the panel!
so here’s a couple things i wanted to share from our panel…
next week i’ll share with you all some of the questions we got – great discussions over those!!
and if you’re really, really interested in watching the whole panel, i’ll have a link soon!
**you need a vision for your business. start with what you want your life to be like and don’t forget to DREAM BIG! this is the fun, dreaming stage and nothing is off the table!**
**we decided we wanted to share the highs of owning a store…as well as the lows. all of the things you battle with on a daily basis. it’s important to keep it real and know the challenges. i think online especially we’re all putting our best foot forward so it can seem like it’s just easy & fun to own a store and be successful at it. the reality is that it’s a lot of painstaking work AND can be very scary not getting a steady paycheck or knowing if your business will ever turn a profit. we stressed the importance of having a support system and perseverance, perseverance, perseverance!! (did i mention perseverance?)**
**ahhh, getting noticed. it’s something we all want the magic bullet answer to…how do i get noticed? if only there was a magic bullet answer!! we talked about how much we rely on our little support systems. whether it’s family, friends, biz gal groups, bloggy friends – those connections keep you grounded and more importantly sane! and can also lead to helping you or your store get noticed – whether through introductions or friends spreading the word. we also stressed how important it is to figure out how you want to be noticed – if you want to get in a certain magazine, then start by commenting or starting convos with people on that magazine. think about how you can help them…and chances are, it’ll end up helping you!**