If you've avoided social media, you're missing out on the latest trend in marketing your crafts online. Google search algorithms favor social media shared links because they reflect what real people want. Lots of crafters are already posting their work to Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Pinterest, Google+, Craftgawker, and Instagram. You should be a part of that dynamic.
If the idea of high-tech sharing goes against the grain of your creative spirit; you should know that fabulous photos are a popular social media norm. You can keep your right brain happy by sharing the art, color, creativity, and craftiness that intrigues your craft-buying followers. And while these sites might seem like a hodge-podge of people, places and things, they all work in similar ways that can benefit artists and crafters like you.
You Must Grow a Network
It's easy to share your arts and crafts on social media, but first you must have arts and craft lovers with whom to share. You can post links for your family and "friends," but the best way to build a network of followers, likers, and circle members who also love crafts is with a dedicated account or a Business Page. Here are a few suggestions for building your craft networks:
"Like" others - Search for people with similar interests and "like," "connect," or "follow" them. Many will like you back; and while some of them will be craft sellers just like you, others will be searching for crafts to buy.
Set up a "Page" - If you have an individual Google + or Facebook account, you can easily set up a free Page that focuses on your craft or craft business. Potential followers can find you with keywords through internal and external search engines.
Tell people about it:
- Add your social media information to business cards and promotional materials.
- Offer follower incentives or discounts for those who opt in.
- Set up a paid Facebook marketing campaign that will put your Page link in front of people with a known interest in crafts.
- Ask existing followers to share your posts with their friends.
You Must Post and Share Consistently
Once you set up your Page and build your network, you can share craft information, photos, and links to solidify your connections; but it can be a tricky process. Of course you'll want to post links to your website, blogs, and online store. That's the whole point isn't it? But if your sharing is all about me-me-me and buy-buy-buy, your followers might lose interest.
The prevailing wisdom on social media sharing recommends that you post regularly, but mix it up with content generated by others. Post article links, photos, anecdotes, news, DIY instructions, and interesting quotes that followers will likely pass on to their friends. When your posts are shared, it can put your information in front of people you don't know and bring new customers to your Page.
Get Your Followers Involved
Your social media Page shouldn't be a one way experience. Ask questions. Seek feedback about your crafts or techniques. Make your Page an interactive space where arts and craft lovers share and exchange information.
On Google+ and Facebook you can set up a Craft Community Page. You shouldn't share your own crafts for sale, but as a moderator or Page owner, you can share your article links or other information that sets you up as a craft authority.
Get started with these social media sites One or more of these sites will be a perfect fit for you and your craft:
- Facebook.com - Facebook is the original social media giant. You can use a combination of personal and professional pages to get your crafts in front of a diverse market. You can set up a Facebook shop on your Page with a free Easy Social Shop or with Shopify.
- Twitter - If you can shrink your message down to 140 characters, you can share your crafts on Twitter. You can post craft photos to your stream and use link shorteners to minimize the text needed to tweet links to your website and online store. You can set up your Facebook Page posts to tweet automatically to Twitter.
- Pinterest - Share your craft photos or anything else on categorized, virtual bulletin boards. Crafters regularly post photos with links to online stores, blogs and websites. You can set up your page to post automatically to Facebook.
- LinkedIn - This site is great for networking, exchanging tips on craft marketing and techniques, and searching for craft-related jobs.
- Instagram - This smartphone-based sharing site allows you to post photo collections of your work to your network.
- Craftgawker - A Pinterest style sharing site that curates and posts arts and crafts photos on categorized virtual "boards." Contributors have an onsite gallery of their work and links to their blogs and websites.