By Kerri Tutton
The idea of starting your own creative business in the handmade industry can be incredibly attractive.
I mean seriously think about it oh creative one, imagine it? Making a living out of creating stuff you love? Doesn’t creating your own business suddenly sound amazing?
However, it does for lots of people and starting a creative business these days is not new. With the age of Etsy and easy to set up websites, you are not alone in wanting to create your own dream business. There are hundreds of handmade artists out there doing what you do, so how do you stand out from the crowd and attract your ideal customer?
Just as importantly, how do you develop a deeper connection with your business, so that when the tough days come, your sense of ‘Why am I doing this?’ is supported by a foundation strong enough that its future won’t be quickly questioned?
You need to start with your purpose and ask yourself; ‘What Is Your Why?’
What is the purpose of your business?
Who are you trying to help?
What problem are you attempting to solve?
What is the impact of the work that you do?
What value are you offering?
Why #1 & Why#2
When it comes to considering your ‘Why’, many offer advice that focus’s straight towards the customer. However, from experience I believe that as a newbie starting up a business it is super beneficial to spend time on two clearly defined and focused ‘Why’ lists.
The first list is about you and what you want, why do you want to embark on such a challenging project of starting a new business?
State clearly to yourself all the reasons, why you think it will be a great idea to make your craft to sell, why you (think) you will get up in the morning to work on your biz everyday, and include the results you are aiming for as it is part of the whole.
Some examples of a Why#1:
I want to be my own boss
Freedom to work where ever I want
I want to earn an income from a business I created
I want to share my creations with other people
I want to make earrings for a living.
Connect with solid, sustainable, clearly defined, actionable reasons ‘Why’ this is your choice, because I promise you, there will be challenges and hurdles that will shake you.
You need to have a clear set of reasons why you want to do this and if you have not spent time on connecting with this version of ‘Why’ - you may struggle to continue with this massive project.
The second ‘Why’ list, is where you step outside of your bubble and think about what problem you are going to solve, what value you are going to add to the world, how you can make a positive impact doing what you do.
Ask yourself, what do you believe in and how are you adding value to this belief?
What is your Why - the reason for your business, the purpose of your product. What is the result when you make your product, or when your customer purchases your wares?
The Benefits Of Knowing Your ‘Why’
Create your Business to be Unique
By developing clarity about why you want to be in business and why your business exists, you can create a strong story to share with your future customers and differentiate yourself from the rest of the pack. This will be your conversation starter and your unique selling point.
Focus & Motivation
When you have a deeper connection to why you are getting up in the morning you can use this added motivation to get you through the tough days as you have a bigger picture in mind.
Attract your Ideal Customer
Actively communicating the purpose of your business will help turn a light on to enable your ideal customers to see you, those that believe what you believe will naturally be attracted to you and will want to engage with you.
Contribute to Society
If your ‘why’ effects your local community, your country or even the world, here in is your opportunity to contribute to society. This is your avenue to add value to the world and make it a better place.
Here are some amazing examples of business owners connecting with their ‘Why’ and creating products with purpose:
Creatives with purpose
One Happy Leaf
Cuddle + Kind
Have you found your Why #1 and Why#2? If you did, what prompted it? What material / trigger did you experience that helped you question what you were doing to make a change going forward in your life?
Before I go, here is a link to a video presentation by Simon Sinek that helped me to change the way I thought about my 'Why' some years ago, a great listen.