Tuesday, May 18, 2010

The Advantages of Being A Street Team Member...

In my other blog, I recently blogged about how the sea glass community is a different breed, because we are constantly sharing ideas, information, etc. I compared it to a few instances where jewelry-makers questioned me about who I use for supplies, business cards, banners, etc. In these instances, I either hardly knew the person, or didn't know them at all, and when I asked them who they purchased their components from, they couldn't seem to recall. So basically, they were just picking my brain on the how, when, where, and whys of my little operation...but weren't bringing anything to the table to share. After re-reading that blog entry, I realized that I did have several great relationships with fellow crafters...members of the EtsyNJ street team.

EtsyNJ is simply a large group of crafters from New Jersey that sell their handmade creations on Etsy.com. I have been friends with some of these members for nearly 3 years and the friendships have been invaluable to me in my crafting business.

Much like the sea glass community, the many of the members share information about craft fairs, suppliers, share their experience about consigning (what gift shop is good,which to avoid) etc. We plan to do shows together, so we can watch each others display during the show and in some cases, our children that play with each other during some of the shows. A couple members of the team have even hosted their own shows, and they were very well supported by the EtsyNJ team. One of the team's members opened up her own brick & mortar shop, JerseyMade, which offers handmade goods from over 20 members of the EtsyNJ street team, along with several other area crafters! And we've donated our handmade goods to help raise money for several charitable causes over the years.

There are many more advantages of being a member of this street team than those listed above. EtsyNJ has has group advertising in both the print media, and on the internet, and the power of many working together to benefit the whole team has proven to work time and time again.

Being a member of EtsyNJ has certainly helped my online sea glass jewelry business. Having the opinions and feedback from members has helped to avoid unpleasant situations/shows, find little known suppliers and it has helped me expand my business into gift shops and galleries in and around the area. If you are a member of Etsy, and you haven't joined a street team local to your area yet, you should consider doing so. I'd like to say, that the positives far out-number the negatives...but I really can't think of any negatives when it comes to being a member of the EtsyNJ team.

Being a member of a street team will help you grow your business...it's helped me tremendously with mine.

'til next time...