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The Etsy Marketing System

Lesson 21 from: Turn Your Etsy Shop into a Sales Machine

Lisa Jacobs

The Etsy Marketing System

Lesson 21 from: Turn Your Etsy Shop into a Sales Machine

Lisa Jacobs

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Lesson Info

21. The Etsy Marketing System


Class Trailer

Introduction to Workshop


The Anatomy of a First Impression


The Truth About Online Business


Etsy is a Tool For Your Business


What is Shop Cohesion?


Common Etsy Mistakes to Avoid


Product Photography Overview


Your Product Photography Checklist


Lesson Info

The Etsy Marketing System

We're gonna start with the marketing system. And this is the umbrella definition of what your marketing should be doing for you. I like to follow the formula, I'm gonna show you the system, I'm gonna walk you through the system in a minute, but anytime that I am trying to build and grow my business, I follow a simple formula, and it is to reach potential customers, connect with potential customers, capture their attention, and convert them to actual customers, and that's the underlying movement and the flow of the buying process that I want my customers to come in and follow. So, we're looking at the marketing system, and again, is the umbrella of activities. These are six activities that your marketing should be set up to do automatically. We're gonna run through this, and then, I'm going to bring in life, throughout several examples, for the rest of the day, so you're gonna see it once, and I'm gonna go over the general concepts, and then I'm gonna keep bringing it up with you over t...

he day so that you'll really see it come to life. I think that it's easier to identify these when you see them in already working models. I think that's always the easiest way to pick them out. So, marketing again, is a broad concept, and it's thrown around as this big, general term in our industry, which I feel confuses and overwhelms a lot of makers. So, that's my specialty and the thing that I love most I really enjoy taking apart a marketing strategy or building a marketing strategy, and taking it for the systems and teaching people how to create one that they can repeat and grow on. And your marketing system can be, simple and effective, and automated, and that's my goal for the class. That's what I'm gonna help you build by the end of the day today. So, these six tasks or activities, fall underneath the marketing umbrella. And it eases confusions if you can understand these tasks, and understand that this is marketing's job. This is your marketing's job. When you say, "I'm marketing today," or "I'm working on marketing this hour," it should fall with one of these six activities. This is marketing's job to do, and marketing, as the broad term means always doing these six things. So, a good marketing system covers everything under this umbrella all the time, and the number one thing that you need to do and that you need to have, is to identify, who your potential customers are. As we talked about, there is as much to know about your potential customers, as there is your best friend or your spouse. This is also a personal exercise, and until I created this workbook, and until I delve into it for Copywriting for Crafters, I always just issued the prompts, because I believe the everybody needs to build the idea customer for themselves. Everbody needs to go through that own exercise that not only helps to know your ideal customer, it helps you know your business better, and it's all very important. So, the question to ask, to help yourself identify that perfect customer is, "Who is the perfect customer for my product?" That was a little redundant I know, but, it is really saying, who's the perfect match for my style, who's the perfect, who's the person wanting to bring home this product, who's the perfect match for my brand, what is their life like? And that person's style, and taste, and budget will match everything about what you're offering. So, getting to know your ideal customer is vital, and something that you really, definitely wanna spend the time on. It's the oil, to the well oiled marketing, or well-running marketing system. The number two activity is the actual act of reaching those customers. And this is the most often overlooked in creative business. Because, as creatives, who are makers, and doers, and creators, we make a product, and we really enjoy that process of making the product, we build a business, and there's also a lot of creativity involved in that, in learning about how to list it online, and how to put it online, and we forget that it's also job to reach our potential customers, to go out and actively pursue potential customers for the product. So, if I were to ask you, where are you reaching for your potential customers right now, I would assume that you would say the same thing that most creatives that would say, that I would've said for a years, and that is, "Well, I'm on Facebook and Twitter "and Instagram, and I have a LinkedIn profile. "I don't use LinkedIn that often, but I have one, "and I'm on--" And you go on and on and on, and basically, we just rattle off all the social media accounts that we've signed up for. However, this path of reaching your potential customers, is not complete until you have not only reached for them but successfully connected, where you feel engaged, where you feel they're commenting, where you feel them liking and boosting, and helping your business grow, by being interested in it. So, the question to ask to help you reach more potential customers is, "How do people typically find products like mine?" That gives you a great starting point, for where they start, and moreover, you usually get very, you usually get well-immersed in your own industry. You become so in tuned with it, you know the language so well, you forget where you started when you were first looking for these products, when you were first looking to grow this business. So you go all the way back to the beginging, you meet your customer, where they're starting, and you ask, "How do people typically find products like mine? "Where do they start?" 'Cause that's where you wanna meet them. So, there's different ways to reach your customers throughout the different stages. From the time that they find you, to the time that they become a repeat customer, those are things, the way that you typically reach is direct contact. And for us, that means, email. Email, everybody needs an email list. It's the referrals and shares, so word of mouth, and being on social media, that's another way to reach them, as long as you're connecting wherever you're putting your efforts in. A blog is a great way to reach out. Your customers sharing your product on social media is a great way to reach more customers. And doing industry shows, and events, I've tried that route for a while. I tried craft shows, and things like that, wasn't my forte but it works really well for some. And paid advertising is another one. And paid advertising is something we're going to explore in Advertise Your Creative Business. So, I was teaching this subject privately. I have a membership program, it's called the Lumineers Club, and I was teaching a class on this specific subject. And as I was talking about reaching the customers, I'd said to myself, well, 'cause I've been doing it for so many years, my comfort zone is constantly stretching that comfort zone, and so, I said to myself, "Well, lemme just give everybody an example, "let me think of all the different ways that "I've reached my customers." I only had 10 minutes to complete the workbook and I was gonna, my timers was counting down on me, so, within 10 minutes, I rattled off 42 ways, 42 ways that are, not like share it on Facebook, 42 things that I've tried, in order to reach potential customers over the year. And there, they're like crazy things like, I once rented an actual physical list, and set postcards to people like randomly throughout the United States, with a coupon code, to see if it worked. I've tried everything so I'll go really above and beyond to reach my customers. What I realized from that, is that if I had more time, if I'd given it more time, I could've come up with a hundred and one ways that I've done, and different things that I've tried. I'm gonna keep talking about it throughout the day because, not only because it might give you some ideas but 'cause some of the things I've tried are kinda crazy. But, what I realized is the question that I should be asking is, not, "What have I tried?" But "What haven't I tried yet?" Because I'm gonna go try it. I guarantee you, I'll try it to see if I like it, and see if it helps me reach more of the right customers, and if it does, I'll keep doing it. So, again, I'm gonna say it again, email should be implemented in your marketing plan immediately, if it's not already. It's gonna be the best, most effective, most profitable way to reach your customers. And number three, the number three activity is engage your potential customers. And the best way to engage your potential customers, is to share your brand message consistently. So, creatives are a jack of all trades, this is something we talked about in Build your Etsy, Build an Etsy Storefront that Sells, and we're often good at several things. And so, yesterday in Build the Etsy Storefront, we said, "Don't try to sell "all the things that we're good at, next to each other." Because they probably don't match, and they probably don't make sense. But we often use our marketing platforms, like our business accounts, to share all the things we're working on, and talk about all the different things and all the interests that we have. And sometimes, when a customer comes to you because you have a strong brand, and because you're consistently sharing a message, it is jarring to hear you talk about something else, when I've signed up to always know you for this category. In our personal lives, of course, we have a lot of layers to our personalities, a lot of different interests, but if a brand has a consistent message, it is like showing up to an Italian restaurant, expecting to order pasta, and they say, "Hey, we're having Japanese night tonight." It's so not what you signed up for, it's not what you came looking for, and it's not what you've come to expect. It is fun to add personal tidbits, it is fun to show a knitting project, if you're a jeweler and say, trying this out. But if then you go on that tangent, and then everything is about knitting all the time, you really start to confuse the people that signed up for the jewelry. So you have to be careful about the consistency of that message to really start that engagement and keep that engagement going. To engage well, your business needs to be one face, one brand, and one source of expertise. It can, and should evolve with your business overtime, but it needs a clear purpose. It needs consistency to it. In order to have the potential customers and the visitors sick. So, you wanna hone in on what you have to offer. Do one thing, and do one thing very well, especially when it comes to your Etsy storefront, and your creative business. The question to ask, to help you better engage with your potential customers, is, "What's in it for them?" Wherever possible, with whatever you're sharing, or whatever you're talking about, or whatever platform you use, always be wondering, what's in it for them, when I share this, or I post this, or I request this from them. Present the benefits that the potential customer can expect to receive and help them, show them the value of it as a solution. As a solution, when you get this watch, it's gonna be the perfect accessory to your outfit. It's bringing it home, it's making sure that something's completed. We have emotions attached to solutions. We like those details, and we like finished business, so, if you can provide me, or you can figure out how your product can provide me that relief, a comfort, or convenience, or somehow improve my quality of life, and help me finish business, help me wrap things up, then you're really presenting a powerful offer, you're really making a strong suggestion with your product. The number four activity in your marketing umbrella, is to establish trust. So, just like in any other relationship in life, trust happens overtime, as you continue to engage with potential customers, you continue to appeal to their interests, and you continue to treat them like a friend, like you're concerned about them, you care about them, and you talk from a place that obviously cares for them. So, as your comfort level begins to grow, it doesn't start out with a comfort level between you and your customer. As you first start talking to your customer, it's kind of awkward. And you're kind of always wondering, "What am I gonna say?" Or "What does it sound like on the other end?" Or "How do I start?" But as you keep the practicing, just like with everything else that evolves with creative business, so will your comfort level. You'll begin to speak more intimately with your customers, you'll begin, you'll begin to think more like a friendship is growing, and it'll be more natural for you to communicate, and that communication definitely evolves over time. To establish this trust, you're gonna be using your blog, if you have one, you social media accounts, and your email contacts, to answer any questions that that potential customer might be having, to continuously provide value, to continuously show that you care, to keep showing up in their lives, in a meaningful, thoughtful way. Your business relationships need to be nurtured and developed, like any other relationships in life would. The question to ask to help you establish trust is "What makes me the best person for the job? "Why am I the best person to fulfill this order? "Why am I the best person to provide this information? "Why am I the best person for this product? "For this job?" Social proof comes into play here. And social proof means, that where is a psychological phenomenon, it means that we're automatically attracted to what we perceive as popular, and skeptical of everything else. We're automatically attracted to what we perceive as popular, and skeptical of everything else. In other words, the best way to get people to see your work is having a lot of people already looking at it. And it's a conundrum for sure. So, this leaves many makers at the bottom of the totem pole trying to get seen and trying to get found. Social proof is hard to get, and easy to grow, because numbers breed numbers, momentum breeds momentum. So if you don't have social proof, you can hack it, and the way that you hack it is there's different groups. And so on social media platforms, there are Pinterest group boards, that will help you boost each other's post on social media. And there's Facebook groups, that can help you boost your efforts online, so these systems are designed to help you start showing numbers, before the numbers actually show up. And then the number five activity, is, to convert the potential customers to actual customers. And an effect of the marketing system, always includes ways and opportunities to convert a customer, from a visitor, from a potential customer to an actual customer. The question to ask yourself here, to help get your customer there, is "What makes my customer want to buy? "What makes my customer want to buy?" In Build an Etsy Storefront that sells, we really looked at the buying process, and what makes the customer wanna buy, you wanna sure you're always giving the customer time to consider the offer, they need time to consider the offer, 'cause they're not always gonna buy the first time they see it, but you don't want them to forget that the offer exists. So, there's a delicate balance. We're gonna be talking a lot about that, about how to offer, and request something, and then remind the customer that that offer exists. So, think about yourself as a buyer, and think about your potential customers, while an offer might tempt them the first time they see it, while an offer might tempt you the first time you see it, you don't immediately convert, you don't always buy the first time you see it. In fact, the first time you feel very tempted and you think, "I'm gonna buy that, I think I'll buy that." But you don't buy it at that moment. You can't, you decide to come back to it at a later date. So, a truth about online business is that we're always thinking about our customers, way more than they're thinking about us. We wake up everyday, thinking about them, and thinking about how we're serving them, and thinking about the last time we contacted them, and thinking about what we're gonna do next for them, and they're not thinking about us. So, it's not like a friendship in that form, because they're not thinking about us, until we show up in their lives. So, when you are contacting your customers, or when you're requesting something, or when you're looking to make them convert, or ask them to convert, remember that they, when you send an email, three days later to bump them on the sale, you think, "Oh my gosh, I'm pestering them." They think, "Oh my gosh, thank goodness she reminded me, "I meant to buy that the first time I saw it, "but I forgot." So, that's a big difference, because they're not thinking, "She just emailed me three days ago, is she serious?" And that's how I think we feel a lot of times when we're generating email, and we're building a marketing campaign, it's not like that. We're always thinking about them, way more than they're thinking about us. So, number five, converting potential customers to actual customers is going to deserve a lot of time and attention in our marketing strategy today, obviously, it's the bottom line, it's the thing that is actually gonna make us sales and build our incomes online. It is the most important and the most under utilized aspect of creative marketing campaigns. Because there's an ask there, and it's sometimes hard to get comfortable asking. But remember that when you deliver a product to a customer, you're serving both of you. You're serving them, and you're serving your business. And they're helping you grow at the same time. So, finally, number six, is following up with the customer, because email marketing, and repeat business, is the key to a thriving online presence. It's the key to a thriving Etsy shop, it's the key to a thriving blog, it's the key to anything that you do online. Email marketing and having customers repeatedly buy and build that relationship, and creating raving fans for your product, is the key to a very successful online business. Sales are never a one off deal, they're never just one and done, as we sometimes think of them. And that's why I don't like to talk about Etsy searches, or what you're gonna find with somebody coming through on a product listing and buying one product, because that's a one off sale strategy. I always see marketing as the beginning of a beautiful relationship. I always see it as the start of a relationship. I see a sale, as pretty much the middle of my campaign, and it had a long beginning, and it's gonna continue on for a long time as well. It has a long follow up. The question to ask yourself when you are following up with customers is, "How can I wow them? "What can I do on their first sale, "that will make them wanna come back for more?" So, for example, you can offer welcome back coupon, and invite the customer to opt in to the email list. When I was first starting out, I ordered from a potter on Etsy, I loved her work, absolutely loved it, and the packaging came, and it was all colored, like she'd marketed it all up, and it was so adorable. And then inside that package, she had given a hand, she'd given me a business card, and she'd handwritten a note, with a 10% off coupon anytime I wanted to come back and shop. Anytime, that coupon never expired. So, I took that business card, and I put it right by my computer, so that if I ever shop there again, I would make sure I remember that coupon. What a brilliant marketing strategy. I took her business, and I put it front and center where I would shop online, and I looked at it everyday, for about six months. It was about six months before I cleared my desk and threw it away. But everyday, I thought about her business, and I was tempted to shop with her again. So, it's a brilliant strategy to make sure that you always consider that one off sale, as the start of repeat business. This is your six step plan to an effective marketing system. And so, I'm gonna use my Etsy shop, Energy shop, as an example for how I employ this, with a product based business, I've identified by customers, I know their interests, and I know their hobbies, and I know the solutions that they want, I know them very well, and especially after this long, I feel like, I mean, I love getting to know them everyday. Getting to know them better. Then I reach for them on Facebook, there's a lot of different places you can reach for a customer, but I know, that I've connected with them on Facebook, so I put all my efforts there. They're on Facebook and that's what I know they're using most. You know, I reach with my blog on online business to Pinterest and I use Instagram and things like that, but that's really more our world, that's people that are very familiar with online. We're the ones spending a lot of time on Pinterest, we're the ones spending a lot of time on Instagram. But the everybody internet user, is gonna be most likely on Facebook, they have the Facebook profile. And we know that for sure, we can guarantee everybody has Facebook, and I'm reach them there because I know I can connect. So, after a while, I started to employ Facebook advertisements, paid advertisements, into my marking campaign. And I'm gonna show you what to look for in a marketing campaign, that you know it's successful enough that you wanna invest a little bit, and boost your reach a little bit, and then we are going to really dive into that and advertise your creative business. Then I engage with them, I engage with them constantly, and I engage with them on Facebook by showing them gem stones that I might be working with, by sharing testimonials of the products and the results people are getting with them. By giving them information, just like the attributes of gemstones, things they might not know otherwise, to get them thinking about the product and sharing the brand message. And then I simultaneously establish trust, and I'm establishing trust with that engagement by showcasing my expertise, I really know what I'm talking about when it comes to this product, and I really know what's in it for them, for the customer, when I'm talking about that product. So, engagement and establishing trust, go hand in hand in your marketing system. Those are two, they're happening simultaneously. So at this point, I'm looking to convert customers, so I'm sharing links to my, I'm trying to entice customers to sign up, I'm gonna show you great ways to entice customers to sign up off social media platforms, onto your list, I'm sharing offers, I'm sharing products direct links to product buys, direct links to the storefronts, with coupon codes, and I'm using those techniques to convert customers and follow up. So that's a bird's eye perspective, and we're going to use the day to explore these strategies that work, and help you find winning marketing strategies you can employ in your technique. Now, this is complex material but we're gonna break it down into different components. So Lisa, the chatroom is getting really excited about your six steps, and really engaged with what those six steps are in the marketing system. So we asked people what they struggle with the most, and I wanted to read a few of your responses from the online audience. So, DaisyChainAudity says, "All of them?" Question mark. And HumsFunCountry says that her struggle is just having enough time to do them all. LittleGirlsP says, "Convert is my big struggle, "but it's getting better." And DaisyChainAudity also says, coming up with contact, and finally, the RecycledLibrary says, "Follow up is my biggest struggle." I think a vibrant email list will help for sure. Now, does anyone here in the studio audience have any comments on, if you'd like to share on what your biggest struggle is you think in this six steps? I feel like for me, it's definitely convert. Like I feel like I engage with people, and kind of like talk to them, and find like the types of people that would buy my product but it always seems like, there's a little disconnect with the actual sale. So I'm looking forward to that part. For me it's the identify. 'Cause I think I'm not actually my customer. You know, my customer's somebody who's different than me, and I like her, but identifying is what I'm looking forward to hearing. That's interesting, good, okay great, thank you. So again, this is a complex system, a lot of working parts, a lotta activities going on.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials

How To Beat The Overcrowded Market Guide

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Build a Storefront That Sells by Lisa Jacobs
Ideal Customer Workbook by Lisa Jacobs
Your Best Year Wall Planner
Market Your Etsy® Shop by Lisa Jacobs

Ratings and Reviews


The course was really practical and organized very well. Each day built on the previous day and had solid, actionable recommendations. I am just starting my Etsy shop and feel like I have a plan for moving forward with some confidence. Lisa is charming and very real and her enthusiasm for supporting businesses is engaging and very encouraging. She wants us to be part of the tribe and I appreciate that! Thanks Lisa and everyone at Creative Live for more great "Mini B-school" lessons that I can use for my online business.


Thank you thank you thank you! I have been going about the "daily scramble" for years - with ups and downs along the way and this course has been a true eye opener for me. The message of consistency and brand cohesion as well as deep respect for my customers will surely stay with me and help my business continue to grow. No matter what stage you are at in your creative business, Lisa has something great to teach! Highly recommended!

Kaitlynd B Zimmer

Lisa has so much personal energy and friendly personality its hard not to fall in love with her! Her extensive experience in the industry from ground up growth was a pleasure to relive through her hilarious trial and error comments. Overall what I came away with was taking action is the only way to grow and learn what works for each individual Etsy shop. And to make those actions pay off get your self out of your comfort zone! The section on SEOs was a huge eye opener! Thank you Tim for shining the light on areas I has not even aware existed before. I feel I now have the tools to build the strong and engaging Etsy shop that can become the success I dream of. Thank you! Kaitlynd B Zimmer

Student Work