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When it comes to handmade businesses, Etta + Billie was my first maker crush!

Yep, I was like a tongue-tied, school girl when I first met Alana Rivera. I mean, Etta + Billie has a big following, has a big list of well-known stockists and was doing all the business things far and beyond what I was doing in my product business at the time.

And after hearing Alana talk about her business…I knew she was like the rest of us. Passionate about making product, courageous enough to make it a full time business and as down to earth as you can get when it came to asking for help in her business AND sharing her wisdom with those of us that asked.

A rock-star entrepreneur, Alana talks with me about her early days and her kitchen table epiphany that started Etta + Billie, the marketing things she tried that worked and the one that haven’t…and her soapy marketing secret…email. Email campaigns, referrals, reward and more. And how she uses testing and analytics to optimize her marketing (because her real nature is “let’s just do it.”)

Well, as entrepreneurs, we all have to learn from our mistakes and grow in ways we don’t expect.

So, pull your chair up to the kitchen table with us…and enjoy the show.

Resources:

Etta + Billie

Etta + Billie Instagram

Etta + Billie Facebook

Susan Miller Cavich – soapmaking

California School of Herbal Studies

Etsy 

Indie Business Network

Maker Marketing Mail 

 

Transcript (unedited)

00:00

Alanna, welcome to two hands made this.

00:04

Thank you. I’m

00:05

so excited to be here.

00:07

Oh, I’m so excited for you to be here. I mean, just Alright. So I guess I’m going to start out with, I have been an Atlanta Rivera, and Billy fan girl for years. Because you were that really well put together brand. When I came back to making product again, when things to change, and like everybody was, you know, kind of figuring it out. And you were the one that I looked at, like, Oh, my God, you know, look at her brand. look at photos. She’s so cool. Well, thank you.

00:44

Thank you.

00:45

Thank you.

00:46

I wish I could take all the credit for all of that, but I definitely can’t. But thank you so much.

00:52

Appreciate that.

00:55

Yeah, you know, as you know, it takes it usually takes more than just one person to make that kind of thing.

01:02

Go.

01:05

Yes. Oh, we’re gonna I’m excited to dive into all this with you. Because again, it does take a lot. It does take more than even though a lot of makers, we work by ourselves in many ways. You know, we do need some other people to help us along the way. You know, we’ll talk about that as well. But um, yeah, like, makers, we’re a different breed. I know, we were talking about this before we hit record. How, and I love the way you said it. And you can totally go back into that conversation about how, yes, we’re small businesses, but we’re different small businesses. We’re not like those that most people think of small business is. Yeah, yeah, exactly.

01:45

We’re kind of, I almost call us micro businesses. And I don’t mean that in any sort of derogatory way, it’s just that the needs of what, you know, the SBA considers a small business and the needs of a maker business can be very different. And there just isn’t, hasn’t been a space sort of carved out for our types of business within the broader, you know, both like legislative

02:20

and,

02:23

yes. Both legislatively and, like, from a, like, even just your local government sort of perspective. It’s just, yeah, it’s kind of archaic, actually, at this point, I would say, but, you know, it takes a while, takes a while to make those changes. So

02:39

because it does, and, you know, we’re making headway because, you know, especially as of the last few years, you know, maker businesses you know, handmade products of all sorts, going from hobbyist to small business has really started to explode, not in just the the artists themselves, the body care, but all everything, you know, between candles and art, and Drew, I mean, you name it, you know, the usual you know, craft hobby, things have really taken off, which I love seeing.

03:09

Yeah, same here. Same here. I

03:12

am always like, I actually now, funnily enough, anytime I hear about a store that doesn’t have some sort of maker good as part, you know, they’re just buying whatever sort of things to resell. I’m kind of shocked because I’m like, isn’t there a collective shift to sort of caring about that a little bit more? Don’t you want to make sure you’re part of that? But you know,

03:36

can’t change everybody?

03:37

Yeah, I can’t remember what we’re working on.

03:40

That’s right. We are.

03:43

So let’s dive to because I love Like I said, I love your business. I love that we’re talking about business and small business and makers in this way. And that there are a lot more people that have come into the scene over the past several years. But talk about your kitchen table epiphany, like, how did you come about? I mean, I know I know your story. But let’s tell everybody else the Etta + Billy brand that you’ve created that

04:11

have just grown so much.

04:15

Thank you. So it really you know, it basically started with a job that I hated. I you know, I had gone to college thinking I wanted to be in PR and I got a couple of jobs and they were they were okay. I never really clicked but then I moved to San Francisco and I found this job that had just incredible clients, just the best possible clients one could want if they’re interested in the arts. And I got in there and I just

04:52

hated it.

04:53

I hated not only was the owner a bit of a micromanager. Which that was a challenge in itself. But it just, you know, the whole thing. I just realized, oh my gosh, I actually really don’t like this. I don’t want to do this. But what the heck am I going to do now, like I had spent, you know, obviously went to college, had spent some years that I was in kind of my mid 20s at this point. So it wasn’t like I was, you know, too far gone. But

05:21

still,

05:22

you know, I and I just kind of was freaking out. But I, I have this. I don’t know if you’d call it a work ethic or a weird switch in my brain where I feel like I have to commit to a job for at least a year. I mean, it’s like an old school thing. I don’t know, my parents maybe. And so my mom kind of was like, Well, you know, you can quit and I was like, I can’t I haven’t given it a year yet. She’s like, Okay, well, you need to, you know, put your energy and attention into something else. You can make it prove this, because you’re clearly having a really hard time with doing I would go in the gym, you know, I would, it was so bad that I would go there was like an alley behind our building. And during my breaks, I would go back there and cry. And then I was really bad. And then I come back to work. So she ended up got your Gup she bought me a book on soap making. And I don’t know how she is like, I guess a mother intuition. I have always been into cooking. And I’ve always been I was really into body products when I was a teenager like I had massive collection of products. And like anytime I went shopping, I ended up buying stuff at the mall garden, Botanica Yes. Oh, God, if anyone remembers that? One of my faves. Anywho. Um, so she bought me this book. And, you know, I read through it. And it’s Susan Miller, cabbages the natural soap book. That’s how I learned. And I read it. And I was like, Whoa, this sounds so cool. And so I collected all of the things. And I made my first batch of soap, which I won’t go into, but ended up at first I thought it was going to be a disaster. But then it wasn’t. And I just was like, boom, I love this is so amazing. And while I was also learning how to make soap, I was simultaneously learning a lot about the massive industrial food system that most of us live within. And I was like, shocked and horrified. And I just realized, like, wow, we really rarely know where our things come from, how they are made, how they are raised, how they are treated. And I just sort of really like I just thought to myself, This is ridiculous. And in then I also started reading a lot of labels on on products you would just buy in like Walgreens or CVS or wherever. And I was like, Whoa, there’s just a lot of like filler. Really? Yeah, there’s a ton of filler in this, like, there is very little that is actually active or worthwhile in here. You know, and then, and I just thought,

08:03

well, this is BS.

08:06

This is my PC, I’m going to try and be PC Just so you know, this is my, this is just super BS. And so I thought, No, this is baloney. So I ended up deciding I’m gonna go work in the natural product field, I really, like love the idea of being a part of something that’s really like helping people and educating people and people can feel good about what they’re putting on their bodies and know where it’s coming from. And I went to I got a Western herbalism certificate from the California School of herbal studies, which is in Northern California. And, and that was in 2008. And so when I got out, lo and behold, there were no jobs because we were in a massive recession.

08:55

I was like, oh,

08:57

what am I going to do? And

08:58

you know, while this was happening, I was also still making product and I thought and I had kind of toyed with the idea of, of maybe sort of starting something. But at that point, I thought, you know what, why not? Why not? I’m just I love doing this. You know, I wanted to get into this. There aren’t any jobs. So I’m gonna I’m just going to do something. And my best friend is a very, very, very talented, graphic designer, now creative director. And so she designed my labels and I launched on Etsy. And that’s really how it started. And I just sort of the sense were always inspired by things that I loved, which was food.

09:39

Mm hmm.

09:40

Yeah. food and beverages. Those are my jam still are my jam. But it you know, and it’s funny. When, when I started I was actually really afraid to tell that side of the story, which is funny to know, but this thing Yeah, right. So like, I didn’t talk about that. I didn’t talk about how it was food inspired, I was just like, aren’t these amazing natural products, and they’re super sustainable. And I use as many organic ingredients as I can. And I made this myself. And when we went through a rebrand in 2010 2011, I really started to realize, like, I needed to own that piece of the story, because it was such an integral part of the brand. Yeah, and, and what inspired me. And so we really made that switch when we rebranded to really owning that part. Anyway, I’m sorry, that was a really long answer to your question.

10:37

No, that is exactly what I want. Not all I love for fun love story. But, you know, this is, this is what we need to talk about. Because, you know, so many people makers included, you know, we start out, we think we have to kind of be, I don’t want to say like everybody else, but kind of the word, the word, meek isn’t the right word. But you know what I mean? Like, we started like, Oh, this is cool. And it’s pretty, and it smells good. And I made us from Yes, I made it with my two hands. And, um, you know, I made it with real natural products, until we almost, like have that shift, where we literally become activists for the, for the, for the products, and for the ingredients. I know, I did. I yeah, getting to the point where I would like literally stand on a soapbox about ingredients and, and all this other stuff. And I mean, that’s but that’s how we start. So I’m glad you have this story, because it is inspiring, it has always inspired me. And why not have been inspired by food and drink? And, you know, that’s kind of what makes it unique is what? I think the term our y has been overused, but you know, that is our y. Yeah. I love that. I love that. So, so you’ve discovered this, I’m going to start talking about how you were inspired with food and drink. And then your brand came about? So you know what I mean? How did that look for you? How did that feel for you? When you’re doing that? Like did it? Did it feel kind of like, Oh, you know, I’ll start small dip my toe in? Or did you go all in?

12:17

Um, you mean with like, kind of shifting to the food?

12:21

Yep. Yeah, I

12:23

will be honest, I think I probably started to dip my toe in, and then I went, hmm, we really got to, like, own this piece. Otherwise, exactly, you kind of end up being back in sort of what you were saying is, and I also can’t think of a better word for this right now. But sort of generic, you know, you know, you, you really have to own the piece about what you’re creating that’s different and special compared to all the other, you know, very beautiful products that are out there. Otherwise, it’s easy to get lost in the in the shuffle. So I think, you know, even with this switch, I, I was probably a little slow to fully embrace that. But then I kind of just was like, let’s do this. Let’s do this and love that

13:15

thing.

13:16

Yeah. So that’s it. That’s how I got, you know, collaborating with more food based makers to create products and getting into restaurants to be a part of their products anyway, it or not products be a part of their offerings. So, you know, yeah, it makes a lot of sense to really embrace what makes your products different and special. Instead of shying away from that

13:49

you know what, and that’s exactly it. That’s like probably, which is I like the main message we try to talk to makers about new makers especially is that what is that thing that makes you so different? Because you know, when you look at it as a whole, all the products that we make are pretty much I mean, across the board, everybody knows what soap is, everybody knows what lotion is everybody you know, and we know most people not from the supermarket drugstore. standpoint, you know, so what is it that sets us apart? And then you know, it’s really cool how when people really connect with that, like you have, you know, that brand voice comes out, and then personality comes out and then marketing becomes easier. Yes, sort of

14:37

gives you a easier. You know, you can kind of start to envision the person that you’re speaking with. And I think that you really need to do that. Like you really need to create like a customer persona or your ideal customer and have as much kind of build a character Basically, and speak to that person the way you believe they would want to be spoken to. Sure. There’s a bigger, eloquent way to say that, but yeah,

15:10

no, but that’s, that’s the plain and simple truth. Because again, you know, if you if you try to talk to everybody and sell everything to everybody, you’re gonna sell nothing. Because Yeah, you know, not everybody is your audience. And so another good point to make, and I’m glad that you reiterated that because it seems, you know, the one common factor that we’ve all come upon when it comes to marketing and our businesses is that yes, we do need our, our avatar or unique person or persona, that ideal customer that we’re talking to, because it, it just is easier to talk to that person, you know, like, you know, about when you’re at an event, we’ve all been at events, we’ve all been whether it’s a farmers market, or trade show or whatever, and you have people coming up to you, you know, when you hit your right person, because you just have those good, rich conversations. Totally. And then of those other people that come up and you know, ask a couple questions, and you just don’t seem to connect with right. Yeah, that’s what this is about. Yeah, it’s really holding on to that person and finding out everything you can and talking to them and make that those rich conversations. So yeah, right.

16:20

Yes, I think and you’re you’re making such a good point, too. It’s a conversation. Right? It’s a conversation. You’re not just telling, you’re listening, and you’re trying to learn and engage just like if you’re having a regular conversation with someone that you I don’t know, a friend, basically, right is like, it’s hard. I think. I don’t know if it’s traditional marketing. But I think sometimes it’s easy for maker businesses to get caught up in this idea that we need to look bigger than we are, you know, and act the way a big business would act. And that’s just not the case, because we are not those businesses, and we connect with customers in a much different way. And that’s actually part of what makes us so much more special than those bigger businesses. And why customers love, you know, us versus those bigger businesses is because you’re speaking with your customers, like they’re human, because they are. And you’re up

17:34

and he knows. And we didn’t know, right? When we, when we start, we don’t know these things, right? The only thing we see our ads is bigger businesses. So we all think, well, that’s helped marketing. And that’s how we have to do it. Yeah. Um, but again, you know, and, again, the reason for this show is to help makers understand that that’s not who we like you said, it’s not who we are, you know, we make products for humans, and we have conversations with humans. And we are not these these these corporations that sell in mass. You know, the reason we have our businesses is because we, we love people, you know, we love our people. And we love that, you know, we can do this for people, like you said, almost like from an from an activist standpoint to help people feel good. Yeah, yes. Totally. Oh. So in this whole thing that you’ve been doing with edit, and Billy, there’s been some marketing things that you’ve done over the years. So can you talk about that? I mean, yes. Still, the ugly cries talk about those sweet moments of success, because we’ve all had them. Yeah, ugly cries suck. But we get through them. Totally, totally moments of, we really want to hold on to. But sometimes we kind of forget, what did I do? So we want to make sure that we’re, yeah, we’re putting it out there. So you remember.

18:59

Yes. Thank you. That is excellent. Excellent point. So um, let’s, let’s start with maybe a low

19:08

and then we’ll move to the high.

19:12

Low.

19:14

My memory has been foggy. I’m sure there have been many, but I think some of the more troublesome ones are. So when I, I mentioned, right, I started doing collaborations. And, you know, at least my first few that were not products that were a part of my, like, continuous product line, right? These were just like one offs and limited editions. The first few collaborations, I made the terrible, terrible mistake and error, that all I needed to do to sell those things was to just say, hey, look, here are these things and then that’s it.

19:57

There was everybody would come running

20:00

Yeah, everyone would just buy them, I wouldn’t have to do anything else. And looking back at that, now I go, oh, man, oh, that was a bit naive of me. Because really, you know, one, it takes a lot of planning, obviously, to create anything, and then it takes planning to put it out there in the world and catch people’s attention, let your audience know and have the other collaborator be a part of that process. And there’s so many ways to tell the story of how you created the thing and why you created the thing and showing, you know, behind the scenes, anyway, I just there was so many pieces that I didn’t know. And then I was stuck with, you know, hundreds of bars of soap that I had to sell somehow, you know, and so, you know, and that’s just money sitting on the shelf. That guy in the bank account. And so those are the times that I just go, Oh, I kind of cringe. But you know, that’s the whole thing is you do have to try things, and you have to learn from your mistakes. Otherwise, you’re never going to figure out really what works for you and your audience. And so, on the other side of that coin, I am just elated with how a campaign we ran last year went so

21:22

we,

21:23

I decided, you know, with the pandemic, that I wanted to create a soap that just was very, like cozy and warming and happy. And so I had no idea what to call it, though. But I it was oatmeal, and I had pumpkin seeds, and it had some almonds and orange and like vanilla notes and a little bit of cinnamon in it. So it’s just really sweet and lovely and cozy. And so we made this soap and I thought, you know, we really need to get customers sort of engaged and interested because obviously, that’s the best way to go. And so we designed a whole campaign where we on social and through our email newsletter, reached out and asked customers told them what was in the soap, kind of a little bit of what our inspiration was, and ask them to suggest names for this product. And it was just people just went Gaga and sent us all these really great and wonderful and hilarious names. And we started all these conversations through that. And then we took the kind of the top four names that my my team liked the best. And we then put those up on social media to vote, asked our email newsletter folks to vote as well. And then chose the winner, but kind of told, told people that if they wanted to find out what that name was before other people, they’d have to sign up for our newsletter for early access to it. And the call

23:04

to action. Yeah, thank you, thank

23:06

you. So we released it to our early access list and then released it out. And it was such a hit. And people absolutely loved it. And it was and it was really fun. It was just it was like a really fun process to do as well. And I think that was one of the better campaigns that we’ve run that I’ve just felt so great about just also because again, like connecting with customers, that’s such an important piece of the puzzle and can get lost sometimes when you’re bogged down with all the other bits and pieces. And it really was energizing, honestly, for me. So.

23:43

Yeah, I love that you involve your audience in that. And I think a lot of times people are afraid to do that at first, because they’re like, Oh, I have to I have to know what I’m talking about. And I will I you know, people will think I don’t know my business if I ask these questions. But one of the things I found over time is Oh, people love getting involved like that, especially like our businesses, you know, a major business where they’re, I mean, they could have you know, their name on yourself because they thought, you know, that’s a cool thing for people. They just yeah, love that. So I love that you did that with this campaign. And you’ve got involved in it is amazing to me. How many people respond? It was to me,

24:28

and the names I was cracking up. Some of them were deeply inappropriate, but like, I still thought I mean, I thought they were hilarious, but they would have been potentially deeply inappropriate at first.

24:41

It was just

24:42

and that was funny. It was so great to like see, the other thing too is I know for me, you know, I, you know, it’s hard to tap into your creativity all the time and like coming up for names with our products and ingredients and things can be really exhausting. If you’re, you know, again Doing all these other things. And that’s the other really nice part is like, you get these fresh perspectives from your customers, which is exactly what you’re doing. And so it’s also really nice to, you know, take some cues from them, and use that to create things rather than you create things thinking they’re gonna like the thing, you know.

25:24

So,

25:24

because sometimes you know, what we think our customers want, or have nothing to do with our customers totally, you know, and hearing. And that’s one of the big things I talk about too, when it comes to writing messages and copy is that you’re listening to your customers, the best way to get messages and is the best way to write to them, because you’re really just reflecting how they think, how they feel what’s going on for them. And so even just asking for their input on campaigns, like this gives you so much good data for writing so many other things, whether it’s okay, I mean, you could totally write a great blog post about all the inappropriate names that came across, when we ask people to name ourselves, you know. So there’s a lot of things that you can use to talk about that so. So I’m excited to do that. That’s that campaign was so successful. Yeah, it was, again, wasn’t what you expected, or was it? Like, was it? I don’t I’m not wording this right. Probably, what you were expecting was far greater than, you know, what the turnout was, is far greater than you expected?

26:31

Yes, I think that’s the case, and especially just with how excited I just didn’t expect people to be that excited, I guess, you know, and I think that’s another kind of jumping back to what I was saying before, because you’re so in your business, sometimes. You forget, forget about these things. And so having people get super jazzed up about, it also got me more jazzed up about it. So it was, again, it was just, it was wonderful. I highly recommend it.

27:06

Well, we’re gonna highlight this one, that’s for sure. So, so in some of your other marketing activities, so Okay, you’re doing campaigns? And your, your platforms, mostly social and email? Yes.

27:19

Yeah, I do do some advertising, as well. And I’ve like dipped my toe in PR. And, I mean, I’ve dipped my toes into a lot of things. Over the years, but yeah, yeah, yeah. Exactly. Exactly. So like email and social. I was super on this social, social marketing, you know, for the last few years, and we still do it. But now my focus is really email owned marketing, like that is where I put almost all of my attention and effort.

27:56

So that’s all Yeah. Yeah. using social to get people on your list, or now now that you’re really focusing on email, you know, how are you growing that through asking, like your other email, friends to recommend friends? or How are you working that?

28:15

Great question. So I’ll be honest, I, we only started using social to ask people to join the email list like the end of last year, which sometimes I’m just like, kicking myself, like, what was I thinking, but anyway, that, you know, that’s how it goes. So we do that I have, we have a pop up on our site to collect emails. We are asking we do within our email, we kind of have a referral, we have a rewards program. And there’s a referral as part of that. So that’s another way to get people to come to the site, engage with the brand and hopefully sign up for the newsletter. And then recently, I started to focus most of our giveaway efforts, like we’re running a giveaway right now. Where, rather than a social, like, I need people to join my email list. If you if you want to win the thing. I need your email address. And so we’ll see how we’ll see how that goes. Because this is the first time I’m doing that. And running lead generation ads in conjunction with the giveaway. So we’ll see how many actual solid good leads come through that effort. Because I just you know, you just don’t know eat and a giveaway is not necessarily the best way to get a good lead. But we’re gonna test you know, we’ve got to test it. So yeah, that’s what I’m working on. Yeah.

29:47

So yes, I’m glad you said that word test because you have to test all our campaigns which you know, we don’t. We use that term a lot in marketing and copywriting. you test the copy test. See works. But you do have to test it. Because, again, you’re not going to know what works. And maybe it just needs a little tweak. Maybe it’s not a full on, you know, hey, we got to we got to bail on this, maybe it just needs a couple little, you know, something different, like you said, maybe it’s not coming from an ad, maybe it’s all referral or Yeah, you know, however you work that, but I’m glad you said, because we never know unless we test it. It’s so true. And I,

30:26

and I know, for me, that’s not in my nature. I’m like, let’s just

30:31

do it, oh, me either

30:33

throw it out, too. So it’s a very learned skill. And I also because also, the other thing I know, for example, I’ll give an actual example for this is I am testing a couple of different types of changes to our welcome email series, when people sign up for email, they get their put into our welcome email series, and they, you know, received, I think it’s like somewhere between four and six emails. Anyway, um, you know, before, what I would do is, I’d be like, Oh, this isn’t performing well, I go read a bunch of articles or ask, you know, some of my other business colleagues, and I make all this all these changes at once, and I just throw it up there. And now I am making a very concerted effort to make one change to the email at a time tested against the original email, decide which one goes better, then move forward with the next thing I want to test. And so so far, that is going quite well. I just yeah, it’s super easy for me to just, I’m gonna make all the changes. And but then I’ll never know what the thing that actually made the difference. Right. And, and then I can’t necessarily take that lesson and use it for any other

31:55

things. So yeah, it’s, it is a learned. It’s a learned skill for me. Natural.

32:05

I am giving us such a huge virtual hug right now. You know, I mean, again, yes, these are things that we learn over time, you know, because that’s the thing, if you have this campaign, and you change everything, you never know what’s going to work. That’s why you test seriously. I am like, hugging you and be like, high fiving you because that’s exactly what we need to do. And the message that we need to get across for people, because it is so easy to think, Oh, this sucks. And it doesn’t work. I’m changing.

32:36

Yeah,

32:36

you know, again, that’s something that we want to make sure. You know, we’re teaching you we’re looking, you know, we’re helping all our rising stars do these things and live by our mistakes. Yeah. So that they can, you know, yeah, they’ll have enough mistakes to make of their own. But you know, things like this, are we’re not taught this, you know, we’re not, like you said, we find out in articles we find out, because we do have a copywriter friend that knows about this, or we do have, you know, a PR person that can lead us in the right direction. So yeah, that’s why we need to just really dive in like this and talk about these things.

33:14

Yeah, yeah. Because you just assume that someone just like happens to just have all this knowledge. And that is so not the case. I’d say 90%. It’s not as they’ve had to figure it out, somehow or other. They didn’t just like miraculously know what the right thing to do was?

33:35

Yeah, yeah. And then of course, we you know, fall on our faces curl up in a corner. You know, so yes. And get back out there again. So

33:46

that’s right.

33:49

Love that, again, that you’re using your email. So well. And I think that’s a big thing. You know, that’s, that’s something everybody needs to do. And really be vigilant minute because it is you own the list. It’s not like you’re relying on social or any other thing to build your business. And making another note to congratulations on the call to action. I will go over and do this. The only way you’re going to find out the winner is to join our email. We’re too afraid to ask people to do something and that’s why it’s such a nice way that doesn’t feel gross or sleazy. Um, you know, so yeah, so that’s awesome that you did that too.

34:37

Thank you. I you know, I think a lot of it is like, you kind of just have to get over yourself. Which is, is my Believe me, I have to get over myself a lot. Because, you know, I think we get too in our heads about stuff. And I was like this for years like I slowly slowly have ramped up to emailing my list one to two times a week. And now it is like, I email them one to two times a week, every week. And before it’d be like, Oh, I got to do it once a month. But the thing is, is one, we think people care more than they do.

35:18

And to

35:21

they can

35:22

unsubscribe if they don’t and, and that may feel super scary. But the thing is, is if someone is unsubscribing, one, that doesn’t mean that they’re not necessarily ever going to buy from you again, it just means that they don’t want to get your email, which is okay, or they’re just self selecting themselves out. So you don’t have to worry about, you know, trying to reach someone that doesn’t want to be reached. And so, you know, it’s, I think that that’s a fear, because this is what I always used as an example is that I am signed up for, as we all are a variety of newsletters from

35:55

people,

35:56

I rarely unsubscribe, and these people are emailing me every day, sometimes twice a day. Right? I don’t know that. So I just go delete, like, if I don’t want to read it, I don’t want it. And then every once in a while, I’ll open it. And that’s kind of the same. I’ve tried to really think of it from that perspective, like, I’m just here to remind you, customer that I am here. And that I care about you.

36:21

Yeah. So that it is that’s all Yes. And you know, you’re sending things that are not, you know, you’re not selling them every single time you need interesting information, you’ve got you know, something new on the newsletter or whatever. And that’s okay, that you know, and that’s what I try to tell people too, if you’re selling every single time, people are going to leave anyway. So give them something to hold on to, you know, create something in your community that just makes them feel a part of it, give them info give whatever, don’t just always sell because, yes, they want subscribe. But that’s not in a way you’re gonna grow your list anyway. So you know, you give such good information. So as we kind of wind up here, because this is such good stuff. And the again, this is stuff that I think I need to put banners up all over when we have these conversations, because like this point is good. And that point is good. So as we as we kind of wind down here, what would you say that you are the top three tips that you can give our rising stars when it comes to their marketing, their messaging their brand?

37:31

Hmm, um, I think one is be really clear about who you’re speaking to. And make sure you’re speaking to that person, every time you write an email, every time you write a social post, you know, you go on Tick tock, whatever it is that you’re doing. Make sure that you’re really speaking to that person, to email, email, email, email, email, email, I actually should make that these are the two top like, you need to be building an email list. I will say that, it took me a long time to accept that that was really true. But it really is, you know, now being in business for this long, you know, I’ve seen all the social platforms come and go, I’ve seen you know, algorithms change, there’s so much you cannot rely on. Yeah, your list is yours. That is you that is you know, and it’s such an important asset for you to build for your business and a way for you to directly connect to your customer without having to go through someone else. I think that’s super important. And three, gosh, um, I think try stuff. Super, it’s like a generic thing. But really, it’s, you do have to try things. I mean, it can be super overwhelming. It can be overwhelming. And I’m not saying like, you have to be on all the platforms. But like, if you set a goal for yourself to at least be utilizing, you know, 123 ways to reach your customers, you know, figure out what those are. And the only way to figure out what those are? Well, you have to do email. Sorry. So I guess you’ve got one figured out. So two and three.

39:24

You should test?

39:26

Yes, you have no choice email, email, email, or sticker. Yeah,

39:30

I should. Um, you know, just test them. Because, you know, one, you may find that you actually prefer working on a certain platform over another and then also your customers might prefer one and trying to do all the things like I have tried to do all the things before and it just doesn’t work. So I think you know, you really have to find the things that both work for you and work for your customers. But you will have to test and figure out what those are.

39:57

Yes. Oh absolutely. Absolutely. And, you know, again, yet another good point. Because you do have to, you know, look at what your customers are doing. I know so many times people like well, you know, the, the the experts say I have to be on Tick Tock an example. Well, if your customers aren’t on Tick tock, then you’re gonna waste a whole lot of time on Tick Tock and not get anywhere. So

40:22

totally, totally platforms. Right. Exactly. Like I was on Snapchat for law for a while for more than a hot minute. And I was like,

40:32

No, one’s here. No,

40:35

  1. Well, I

40:36

mean, people are here, but no, my people here, I don’t need to be putting all this energy into this platform. Like it’s just, it’s not worth it for me. And so yeah, it’s such a

40:49

such a great point. Oh, a lot of this has been such a great conversation. And thank you for bringing up so many, just, sometimes they feel like basic points, but we can’t drive home enough. You know that some of these marketing basics are really important. And the fact that testing, trying things out, seeing what works, seeing what doesn’t like go the things that don’t work, hold on to the things that do and remember to write yourself and post a note. So you remember what campaign worked and what didn’t? Yes. Oh, gosh. Yes. Track track the things track test and track. Yeah. alanna, thank you so much. This has been awesome. I love you. I love edit, and Billy. And you know, on the show notes, there’ll be all kinds of links in there, we’ll make sure you know, there’s links to you, your social and everything else. So, again, I’m just so excited that you’re here with us today and just teaching all this that you know, so. Well, thank

41:51

you. Thank you. I feel really honored to be here and be able to share with everybody and thank you so much for asking me to be here and for creating this, you know, space for makers. I think that’s, as we we kind of talked about, it’s just so incredibly important and needed. So think it is.

42:09

Yes, it is and thank you for that. And you know, we’ll keep getting the message out, right, Alana?

42:14

Whoo. Yes. Yes.

42:17

And thanks to everybody, for joining us on the show. Thanks for being here. And we’ll see you next time on two hands made this!

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