Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Presentation Makes All the Difference

I've been working on my Kirigami presentation this year and its been paying off. Yesterday the gift shop at Dartmouth Hitchcock Hospital ordered two dozen hanging kirigami mandalas. The buyers said that my presentation and packaging made a big difference in their decision to buy.

Better photos: I recently bought a tripod for my camera. Now my old digital takes noticeably better shots because it doesn't have to put up with my shaky hands. Nice clear photos for Etsy and the blog. Improved lighting is next.

Better packaging: This year I greatly improved the packaging I use. Each hanging mandala is now packaged in a clear plastic sleeve with a black cardstock backing to show off the papercut. In addition I have now added an explanation of what kirigami is and how to display it -- all in pretty fonts, naturally.

Marketing materials: In my packet for retailers (still being developed) I now include a little bio of the artist, an explanation of kirigami, and a page on how to display the snowflakes. Eventually, I will get all this together in a nice brochure.

Target Customers: I would prefer to sell all my kirigami to individuals, either on Etsy or in my studio. Since I live in the boonies, however, this strategy is only mildly succcessful. Marketing this work to retailers is a mixed bag. Because kirigami is a handicraft and each item is unique, I don't cut that many in a season. I want to sell what I make, but not promote it so much that I am overwhelmed. My goal: continue Etsy and my own tiny home display. Then sell in local shops: Hospital gift shop, League of NH Craftsmen, Frog Hollow, Shelburn Farms, and Billings Farm & Museum gift shop. Assuming two dozen for each location, that would be enough. I like to cut about 200 kirigami pieces per year, winter season only. So far this year I'm right on track.

Peace dudes.

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