Friday FindsSeptember 24th, 2010 | Posted by in Links
I thought we’d have a little more fun around here on Fridays… what do you say?
Until recently, I had never really taken a cold, hard look at my blog. I really do LOVE blogging. I love sharing things with others! And I love talking… LOL!
So, I had to ask myself, “Why is my Sugarplum Blog lacking in content?!” Up until a few weeks ago, all I had been posting here for months were blurbs about my new releases. Sure, this blog is meant to be a way for me to convey info about what’s going on with my designs. But I had even dropped one of my favorite weekly posts, Creative Monday! I was hosting Creative Mondays on my blog for you, my readers, to hopefully bring you some gorgeous inspiration and help you get scrapping. I had forgotten what a blog is all about…
Yeah, I can admit it—I’m a busy girl and I am by no means Superwoman! But I think my minimal posting actually happened more from a lack of focus and not having a plan for what I wanted to do with my blog then from not having enough time to do something about it! Thanks to all the thinking and writing I did for my little series on How to Get Started in Digital Design the other week, I now hear a little voice within saying “Hey, Chickie! Are you going to take your own good advice?!” LOL! So… here we are.
This week I thought I’d share some links to a few great blog posts and articles I’ve recently run across. Just today I discovered a great blog on the topic of running a crafty business! I figured this would be a timely thing to talk about, since I’ve been receiving so many visitors thanks to the Paperclipping Digi Show and my recent articles. The blog is run by Tara Gentile and it’s full of some fantastic advice (and a tip of the hat goes to Jennifer Wilson of Simple Scrapper for re-tweeting about this today).
I thought I’d share with you some great quotes from Tara’s articles, to give you a little taste of what they are all about.
Growing your online network isn’t about tips, tricks, or strategy. It’s about getting real and forgetting the false barriers we put up between our real lives and our online lives. Growing your online network is about being real enough that people want to share you with their friends.
From: Are You Willing to Lead?
This week, I feel like I’ve been spinning my wheels a bit. Not because my success is not real to me, but because others remarkableness is in front of me all day, every day. I want what they have. I want to do great things and start movements. I want to create fresh ideas and share them with the masses.
And then it hit me. I want to be a leader.
Leadership isn’t necessarily marching at the front of the parade. It’s about owning what you do, who you are, and what you’re capable of. It’s also about being clear on where you’re going, building trust with your market so that they’ll come along for the ride. And bring their friends.
Your business might be changing or maybe it was never the way you thought it was from the beginning. You’ve made assumptions about what it takes to turn a profit and how your customers interact with your brand. You’ve decided to push on through, to keep struggling, instead of waking up to the fact that things may not be as they seem.
Wow. This chick is AMAZING. So honest and refreshing! So, if you’re in the business of selling and marketing your crafts, be sure to check it out. She’s like… Seth Godin for chicks! LOL! I know I am going to be super busy digging in to her blog and soaking up her good advice.
She also runs another blog called Scoutie Girl. Here’s an excerpt from her most recent post over there:
From: Want to Play a Game?
What we’re trying to create with this new arts & crafts movement is a powerful network that lifts each of us up towards success instead of a loose community of competitors gasping for air. It’s an economic model that requires that we all support each other for any individual to find success.
I think that she’s mainly talking about sites like Etsy here, but I couldn’t help but also think of our digi community.
Some companies like to be ultra competitive… to the point where they like to pretend (or force their representatives to pretend) that they are the only brand out there! I believe that there are times when this may be appropriate (like when you’re trying to promote one of your items), but for the most part I’m all for cooperation rather than competition. Sometimes layouts made with my designs look better with someone else’s alpha on the page. That’s why I allow my creative team girls that sort of flexibility when they are scrapping. And I like the organic end result… and how good their layouts look! You know—if you feel threatened by what someone else is offering, go improve your own product! Don’t try to stick your head in the sand. The only reason people are spending their dollars somewhere else is because they LIKE what other people are offering! We all have the internet. You can’t keep people from discovering more awesome things for sale. LOL!
But I digress…
I have dozens of friends who are at other shops and I love to cheer them on! If they make something fabulous, I want to tell them so. Maybe my attitude stems from the fact that I didn’t set out from the start to be a shop owner? I am first and foremost a designer, just like them. I just happened to adopt a wonderful shop thanks to someone having trust in my organizational skills. LOL! But I’m happy that I am like this… it just seem right, down deep in my soul.
Okay, I think this is turning into another article for me. Ha! Let’s close with some other great posts and things from this week, shall we?
- The Daily Digi is now giving out freebies in their newsletter! Be sure to check that out in today’s Funtastic Friday post.
- There’s a new Paperclipping Digi Show out this week with guests Vinnie Pearce and Zoe Pern. It was another wonderful show! I learned something and I was rolling on the floor laughing once again. Good stuff!
- Jennifer always has great picks of the week on Simple Scrapper. She posts every Sunday, so it’s a good blog to stalk when you’re looking for something new. I think she has a great eye for what’s hot. Here’s last week’s New Release Highlights.
- Another hat tip to Jennifer for finding this insightful article on 5 Reasons You Need a Muse. (If you are a Christian, I think you’ll find this article especially interesting when view it through the lens of a God who loves to create and loves to be near us!)
- Combine fire and fabric for some good times this week on The Hybrid Chick! Check out this great tutorial on how to make your own fabric flowers: Fabric Flower Gift Box
- Digi Dare #197 is up—and it’s a great one, all about scrapping about what happened the year when you or someone you love was born. Check out the post for some amazing layouts. I was too intimidated by the greatness to make my own layout this week. LOL! Some seriously inspiring stuff!
- The other week my friend Karla linked to the Creativity Boot Camp on her blog. I stopped by to check it out and I was arrested by one word: Ivory. From that one little prompt, an entire kit was born, aptly named Ivory & Alabaster! The inspiration was just sitting there inside me, waiting for a spark. If you also like this sort of creative kick in the bottom, be sure to check it out. I know I need to go back and read Day 2 myself. I’m a little nervous after what it did to me last time. LOL!
And there you go! A ton of good reading and inspiration, just for you. Enjoy!
And as always, happy scrapping!