When to promote, plan and sell products for your handmade business.
Planning guide for 2022
We have all been there…. you look at the calendar and think “OH MY GOSH!” it is November 1st and I don’t have any Christmas crafts ready?! How did this happen to me?
Time flies by! If you don’t have a calendar, how do you plan ahead of time? It is easy for things to slip by because you forget about it. I am a super planner myself but even sometimes it’s happened to me. Life is crazy, between the school schedule, sports, keeping mouths fed, and little ones clothed and clean.
So, thinking about what you’ll be selling or what show you’re doing in 4 months may be a little too far ahead some days.
But in order to make money like a business, you must treat your business like a business. Simple, right?
I’m sure you’ve heard how Hobby lobby is crazy for putting Christmas stuff out in September, but guess what, they are ahead of the game. We need to take notes from them! Always be looking ahead at least six months. Big chains order over a year in advance to allow time for the mass production and overseas shipping.
For paint parties, you want to book at least 4 to 6 weeks ahead of time. For example, if you are trying to book a football themed paint party I would start looking in July and August for a September – October date. Give yourself enough time to promote and plan for the party.
Let’s talk about what you should be planning and promoting for every month.
Starting with January. January is more of a cold and dreary month because the holidays are over and people are wondering what is there to look forward to. January is a good time to review your yearly plan of action . Write down in your planner or calendar what you need to be focusing on.
In January, plan for Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day and be thinking about spring. You also want to be thinking about booking paint or craft parties for the upcoming months.
In February we want to be thinking of Spring, Easter and Mother’s Day. Mothers day is a sentimental gift giving holiday, so make sure you offer something that is heartfelt and/or customized. In February people are wishing for warm weather, and are thinking about buying porch decor or other outdoor items.
In March we want to be planning for Easter and Mother’s Day. And we should be thinking about summer products too. Put together some ideas of what will be popular this summer.
By the time March rolls around everybody is really ready for warm weather and is trying to get outside for those few sunny days.
For April, customers are starting to plant flowers and dress up their front porch. People also might be doing spring cleaning so that was a good time to promote your general any-season type of home decor. In April you also want to be promoting summer, graduation, and Memorial Day.
In May we should be planning for summer, Father’s Day and Fourth of July items. This is a good time to be selling patriotic decor because people can use it to decorate for both Memorial day AND Fourth of July!
June we want to be thinking about Fall. In June, people look at their porch that’s been the same all summer, and thinking my flowers are dead, what is the next holiday to decorate for….oh yeah FALL!
In July we are working on fall decor, and also any back to school items. In July the days are hot and we are starting to think about those nice cool fall days.
Now is also a good time to get a jumpstart on Christmas, yes, Christmas in July. Put some sneak peaks out and ask your customers which ones they like best. Christmas is your biggest selling season so you always should be putting a lot of time in planning into that end-of-the-year timeframe.
August we want to be sell Fall items and also thinking about Christmasmas still and Thanksgiving.
This should be a busy month for booking paint and craft parties and listing new items.
In September, plan and promote for Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas. We should be selling fall items now and hosting paint/craft parties that we booked in July and August.
In October we want to be selling Christmas and winter decor. Plan out some customized gifts that you can offer to your customers. For example, a custom coffee table tray with their last name or ZIP code signs. ZIP code signs are a great inexpensive gift for a housewarming present too.
In November we are still focusing on Christmas and winter, and last minute gift giving items.Be promoting your any-season home decor to give as gift ideas.
In December focus on New years, snowman decor and valentines day.
Whew, take a break for the holidays!
If you are selling online, remember that getting a product listed and out there circulating on Pinterest is done ideally at least three months ahead of the actual season.
Now your homework is to get out your yearly calendar and start writing down what you will be working on every month!