Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Big benefits from social networking

I know, I know --the phrase "social networking" sets your teeth on edge. But before you dismiss this post, hear me out. I'm a semi-Luddite. I own a little pay-as-you-go cell phone that gets turned on maybe once a week. I'm typing this on a computer that only has a dual 512K processor. I don't embrace technology unless it REALLY does something for me. But over the past two weeks, I've gotten two commissions and made two sales via Facebook. Considering that I don't have an Etsy store (or even an actual business) to advertise yet, I think that's pretty good.

So why am I on Facebook? In my pre-child life, I was a newspaper editor. Journalists tend to move a lot and be friends mostly with other journalists (thanks to weird hours), so I have friends scattered all over the world. We've found that Facebook is the best way to stay in touch -- everyone knows what revolution you've been sent to cover with one quick post. And we share all the other life news there, too. So as I learned metalsmithing last year, I posted pictures there. I'd get positive comments with each picture. But this year, something changed. Maybe it's my skill level, maybe people are feeling more secure financially, but suddenly requests are coming at me. High school friends, former colleagues, old friends of my husband that I've never met -- all have requested or bought jewelry from me this year.

I'm pleased with the advertising my Facebook page has been doing for me. I'm no longer worried that my Etsy store will just sit there, ignored, when I do open it. The one problem I have is that I'm not getting to said store because I'm doing so much request work. Which I'm OK with right now -- at least Facebook isn't charging me for each post and sale. So if you aren't on Facebook -- or Flickr, or Ibibo, or whatever else has cropped up in the last two minutes -- I recommend it. It's one more way to get your work out there. (And feel free to friend me on Facebook, fellow Ladysmiths: I'm Sharon Olson Moores in Woodbridge.)



Sharon said...

The exception to my Luddite ways: I have an iPad. I see a lot of metalsmithing potential there, too. Photos of jewelry look amazing on the HD screen, so it'd be a good portfolio. If you're a vendor at an arts and crafts show, you can use it to take credit-card payments through PayPal (if you have the 3G iPad). And I have two different metalsmithing apps, both of which calculate current metal prices and list metal and gem properties, among other features.

stoneaddict said...

When I first joined Facebook, I posted pics of my work. But the last few years I haven't. This past month I started posting a couple of things and had a few relatives comment "Did you make that?" as well as some friends. One cousin sent me a bunch of her old sterling jewelry to use/melt down. An uncle sent me a sterling silver fork. Score for social networking!

stoneaddict said...

Also if you have an iphone the "Square" can take c.c. payments too- no fees unless you sell. Pretty cool. Google "square credit card sales" and you'll find it.

stoneaddict said...

Great post, Sharon- BTW couldn't find you on Facebook under Sharon Olson Moores, Sharon Olson, or Sharon Moores.

Sharon said...

But I found you! :-) I sent you a friend request.

I think being able to take credit card payments is the bet part of mobile technology. Remember when you had to buy or rent a swiper if you wanted to do a show?

I wish someone would send me metal. Maybe I should hint broadly on FB.

Sharon said...

And by "bet" I mean best.