So you think you can go pro ? :) #6: If you buld it they will come :)

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Blog entry by sawblade1 posted 02-14-2011 02:59 AM 1184 reads 0 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 5: MVP'S, VIP'S, And Logo's Part 6 of So you think you can go pro ? :) series Part 7: Do what you love ( but please don't kill yourself to get there) »

Good evening LJ’s,

Earlier this evening I was reading Jim Hamilton’s blog #25 and it touched a subject that causes a lot of woodworkers to fail (getting business). As woodworkers some of us dream getting up in the morning and grabbing a cup of Joe and working in our shops all day to get paid for it :) Well as good as a dream it seems to be if you don’t take it serious you will never be!! In this blog I am talking from personal experiences and what I really feel it takes. One thing is if you want to succeed is separate yourself from the rest, Yes Leave em alone, Leave who alone? Flea-bay, low quality flea markets and consignment shops. After doing several of these before I Started my business I learned one thing people attend these things to save a buck. The same for e-bay, How can you seriously be professional, building high quality furniture, and a craftsman and the guy down the row from you is selling cheap Knock-offs of what you work so hard to do :) I remember one such show I was doing a plaques out of wood, Scroll sawn Scriptures and pictures only charging $35 per piece which I thought to be a fair price but Low and Behold a knuckle head down the row in his booth had found cheap Chinese made plaques at Family Dollar, bought them for a dollar closeout price, brought them in marked them up to 8.00 and was making a killing!!!! 800% profit. This my friends is why I stay away from low end flea markets. E-bay is the same way only worse is people sell A&E any and everything and cheap to boot. I did a little research around me and found out people are sensual sight, feel, and smell. Just look around you would you buy from lee valley if they never produced of all things a catalog!! People need to see what you do Just not being told what you do People don’t care about you ( sorry for the abrasiveness) they want to see Product. I always have done traditional marketing Fliers, postcards etc. Only to get no work but recently I did some work for my church Pro-bono after this people began asking if I could build them things!! Why? they saw what I did Higher end Flea markets are a great thing to due to the fact the keep out ones like my friend earlier (well not really my friend) but you get my drift. Go to where your customer is build it and they will come. Build model samples of your work or if it don’t cost to much full size versions. But show off Being in business is about being a show off!!!! Other things are take quality Photos of your work A co- worker showed me how to do it with a cardboard box, a white bed-sheet and natural sunlight without costing a fortune Only cost is a camera and 35mm throw away types aren’t that expensive However you must present yourself in a better manner. Another thing that works is brochures featuring your products They can be simple as a 8.5”x11.00” sheet of paper printed both sides and folded in half But once again they show the customer things he or she might be interested in. Before you say Show me the Money you gotta show the goods and that my friends was my biggest mistake, One case study before I go was using my chairs for example. almost for a year I have told people I build outdoor furniture, have I got a sale NO!! I took one of the chairs to a community event in October in a park where most people were selling food, Avon, and other hand made Knick-nacks. After sitting along the busiest street within an hour folks were dropping by to see chairs that they told me their grandparents had, after getting them to sit in them they fell in love with them and I had to pass out over 100 Brochures that day plus a sore throat to boot. I brought business to the show Why didn’t I make a profit well I am in OHIO and people don’t buy outdoor furniture when it is not the season for it. Point plain and simple Build it and they will Come, and show you the money:)

-- Proverbs Ch:3 vs 5,6,7 Trust in the lord with all thine heart and lean not unto your own understanding but in all your ways aknowledge him and he shall direct your path

5 comments so far

View DrSawdust's profile


322 posts in 3522 days

#1 posted 02-14-2011 03:52 AM

Great post “Sawblade”. Your wisdom is very much appreciated. I hope that your business continues to grow.

-- Making sawdust is what I do best

View Dave's profile


11394 posts in 2264 days

#2 posted 02-14-2011 04:44 AM

Good information and insight thanks

-- Superdav "No matter where you go - there you are."

View jack1's profile


2055 posts in 3451 days

#3 posted 02-14-2011 05:59 AM

Good information from one that knows… Good post. Hang in and prosper!


-- jack -- ...measure once, curse twice!

View childress's profile


841 posts in 2965 days

#4 posted 02-14-2011 07:38 AM

Actually, just wanted to point out that if you buy something for $1 and sell for $8 then it’s 87.5% gross profit….

Interesting blog nonetheless

-- Childress Woodworks

View nate22's profile


453 posts in 2299 days

#5 posted 02-14-2011 06:54 PM

good information sawblade1. Thanks for sharing it with us. And your business will grow it all takes time and patience.

-- Gracie's wooden signs. Middlebury, In.

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