Saturday, August 12, 2006

Crafter's Buzz- A Great New Mode of Advertising for Craft/Artists

While I was on the Etsy messageboard a few weeks ago I saw a post about a new site for artists to post their wares. Some people were quibbling about how they got notification of it, whether or not it was proper, etc. when I decided to take a closer look for myself, as I'm never one to just dismiss things out of hand. An opportunity is an opportunity, I say, so what did I have to lose? We artists cannot afford to look a gift horse in the mouth, especially in this economy. Times have been lean over the past month and a half, and there seemed to be a sense of heaviness on the forum which descended like a cloud.

Given the current mood of the posters on that particular Etsy thread that night, it seemed as though they'd missed the forest for the trees, and cynicism had overshadowed the prospect that this might be a real opportunity; not merely some shaky deal which was too good to be true. Whether or not there was an agenda I figured it was worth seriously considering because that's not always a bad thing. Sometimes in business the other party's agenda can line up nicely with yours, and when that happens, well then it's cake and ice cream for everybody.

Two of us on that thread went off to investigate what this new site was about and we both saw nothing that could do us any harm, in fact, on the contrary, it seemed as though there really was no down side. As it turned out the listing software was similar to Etsy's in many ways, the thumbnails were even bigger (something that Etsy has maintained would be too much of a hassle to change on their site), and we could link directly so that traffic could go from there to our Etsy sites in order for customers to buy. All this was completely free! But there was still more good stuff in addition to those great features.

As I continued to read their tutorials and operations, I found out that they had a great rewards program as a means to build up the site. This is how it works;

* You get 5 Points every time somebody new clicks on your website or an outside forum.

* 10 Points for any minimum 50-word post in their forum.

* 20 Points to submit each new craft show not already listed on their show calendar.

* 100 Points for adding the first 20 items to your gallery on their site.

* 100 Points for writing a how-to article or craft show review. This article must have at least 2 images and be over 500 words.

* 1000 Points for referring a new website hosting customer. (By the way, their full e-commerce package price is very good; just $9.95)!

What you can redeem those points for are things like;

* Gas cards
* Home Depot, Lowes, Bed, Bath, and Beyond, Barnes and Noble gift cards
* An Ipod
* Camera
* Toaster
* Craft supplies
* TV
* Roaster
These are redeemable at their bumbleBee online stores. They are continuing to add new items and are open to suggestions.

Pretty Cool, huh!

To the right on my sidebar is a link where you can sign up if you're interested. All in all it's a pretty sweet deal for everyone.

The staff person I spoke with initially was Tania; very nice and helpful, and customer service oriented.

If you'd like to see what my set-up there looks like click here;

If you'd like to check into the $9.95 e-commerce webhosting they provide, then click here;

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