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How to refine & elevate your craft business

How to refine & elevate your craft business

You’ve invested a lot of time and energy into learning and refining your craft skills. Your dedication and commitment are starting to pay off, and you are now ready to take things to the next level by presenting your work in a way that reflects its high-quality and sophistication. In order to draw your desired customers towards your work, how you present and share what you do needs to reflect the standards you are striving for and the high standards expected by your market. When you refine your craft business you work on making the changes needed to improve it and in doing so raise it up to a higher level in your market. If this is where you are, here are the key areas to focus on to refine & elevate your craft business:

1. Capture and share your vision.

Your mission, values, and purpose set the foundations on which your craft business will develop. They provide clarity on what you need to do, where to focus your efforts, and how to share your work. When you share what informs your vision you…

Cultivate genuine connections, by crafting a community of people who willingly support what you do by purchasing your work and telling others about it. You also attract those who want to collaborate with you. Seek to connect to your audiences by…

Crafting compelling & meaningful stories, using storytelling through words, images, video, and audio to give your customers an insight into the inspirations, motivations, skills, history & heritage behind your creations.

2. Align your work to market expectations.

Understanding the market that you are positioning your business in is essential to successfully promoting and selling your work. The global standard for excellence in fine craftsmanship & design is high. To meet that standard allocate time to observing the market, the trends, the different levels of businesses operating within it, and the people buying it. The higher you seek to elevate your business the more you need to…

Be selective about where you show and sell your work. Keep in mind that the company you align your business with reflects on the value of your work. By ‘company‘ this could be businesses similar to yours, your stockists and others representing your work. Identify your fellow crafters whose work is at the level you want it to be, then work towards raising your work until you meet their level. Working towards positioning your business with other businesses at the level you want to reach can act as a motivator by encouraging you to keep raising your standards.

3. Take care of your customers.

Your customers are essential to the survival of your business, and, as seen in point 1. happy customer can turn into your champions. Keep your customers happy by…

Delivering exceptional customer service. Exceptional customer service is a hallmark of luxury and high-end brands. And the higher you position your business the higher quality of service your customer will expect. Customer service is about taking care of your customers needs at every stage of their interaction with your brand from potential to customer, becoming a customer, then keeping the relationship going after a sale. To do this requires…

Being attuned to your customer’s needs. Taking care of your customer means knowing who they are and what they want from you. Spend time getting to know them by talking to them in-person or engaging with them on your channels. Ask for their feedback and use the responses to get better at meeting and surpassing their expectations.

4. Nurture your creativity and craft skills.

Maintaining a level of high-quality craftsmanship requires you to keep investing in improving your work. Commit to artisanal excellence by…

Embracing good design. Combining craftsmanship with innovative design aesthetics can improve your products, by taking your handcraft work from kitchen table/informal studio/workshop to gallery-level collectible creations. As your work develops you will find yourself…

Cultivating a signature look and feel. Bringing your unique viewpoint to your work is what helps it stand out in a market place crowded with similar products. And the more your work becomes increasingly recognisable as being your handiwork the more valuable it can become and therefore collectible.

5. Take your time.

Refining & elevating your craft business are activities that happen over time. There’s no need to rush, instead, pace yourself by taking things one collection or product at a time. The nature of making things by hand often means work is produced in small batches or limited edition collections, increasing the value of your work. Taking your time means paying attention to the small details. A practice that can be incorporated into elevating other areas of your business by seeing what works, then improving on it. And however you choose to up-level your business be sure to keep true to you by doing what feels right.

These are just a few ways in which to raise the standards of your artisan craft brand. If you are interested in delving into a more guided process, I invite you to discover Refine & Elevate, my thoughtfully crafted course designed to get your craft and business to where you want it to be.

– Tapiwa Matsinde

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How to refine & elevate your craft business

[Image credits: Photo by WARION Taipei on Unsplash]

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