As a small business owner (with limited business knowledge!) I do a lot of research into ways of making my business more successful or efficient.

After stumbling across a marketing guru who also happened to be a crafter http://richmombusiness.com , I decided to take her advice and Launch A Product Range.

Until I launched this first complete range of bags, I was just creating individual bags that did not have any similarities except for that they were all made from pop culture themed fabrics.

Launching An Individual Product 

Here is how I would previously create and launch a bag:

  • Choose fabric for an individual bag – many hours searching through my fabric stash!
  • Create bag
  • Photograph bag
  • Post photo to social media
  • Add product to the website and my Etsy store
  • Try and direct traffic to website and Etsy product.
  • Start the process all over again for the next bag

While there was nothing wrong with this way of working, I knew that I could work more efficiently.

So this time I decided to create a collection of bags that I would market as a range rather than individually.

I chose a theme for this collection which was Vintage Disney and that meant that all the bags in the selection had to be created from 4 fabrics which all fell under this theme. It is so much easier to work with a set palette of fabrics and colours.

 I then created 10 bags (2 large, 4 medium sized and 4 small bags).  Once complete, I moved into the photography room and took 6 product shots of each bag.  Nice and easy as all backdrops and props related to all the bags.  After that it was the usual bit of photo shop editing and the images were ready to go.

Before I launched the range, I wanted to create a bit of excitement on social media – No problem, all the bags were sewn so I could finally focus on other important areas of the business.  I decided upon a launch date and time and for 2 weeks I posted various images and articles across twitter, Instagram and Facebook – all promoting the launch of a new range.

 

Then there was nothing left to do but to wait for the launch date to arrive!!!

How to Create A Product Range

  • Decide upon the collection you want to create – For me it was a range of bags in Vintage Disney fabrics. Your range should be complimenting or have a theme.
  • Create a range of complimenting or matching products – I created 10 products but you could create more.
  • Decide upon a launch date – allowing at least 2 weeks of marketing prior to launch
  • Market the product launch – create as much online hype as you can around your exciting new products – I used Instagram, Twitter and Facebook to help with this.
  • Email your client list – don’t forget that not everyone is on social media, so go old school and either send an email or letter telling your existing clients about your exciting new range!
  • Launch Your Products!  I set my products to go live at a set time and sat back and waited!

So….. I guess you want to know if it worked?  YES IT DID!!!  Phew I am so glad that I can say that, nothing worse than spending hours and hours on something and then it flops.  Well my first sale was within 30 minutes and by the end of the weekend (I launched on Friday) I had sold ⅓ of my stock.

Why Create A Product Range?

  • Streamlines production process – much easier to work with limited choice of materials.
  • Gives you time to focus entirely upon marketing once the range is complete
  • Allows you to create online hype around your new products
  • Photography of products becomes simpler and less time consuming
  • All product images across social media are cohesive and complimenting
  • One email to your client email list covers 10 products rather having to send 10 individual emails.

I will definitely be following this business model for the next few months and my next collection will be a range of Harry Potter fabric bags.  I just have one warning if you are planning on going down this route, do not launch your products on a busy weekend of markets – it causes a lot of stress! 

Oh and I guess I should let you have the link to the product range!