October 20, 2015

30 Day Small Business Cleanse: Day 19

Yesterday: Think about the businesses that you admire, that are similar to yours. Carefully choose one or two whose trajectory you would like to emulate. Spend some time looking at how they handle their business. What are their marketing strategies? How do they use social media? What steps can you take to get yourself to where they are?

Pages from Rosemary's notebook from the very early days of Ink+Smog Editions.
When we first started Ink+Smog Editions, we were very confident in our process and in our means of production, but we were uncertain about the business side of our business. We had very little experience setting up an online store, managing business accounts on social media or dealing with wholesale customers. One of the ways that we dealt with our knowledge gap was to look at what other businesses were doing and how they were doing it. We reached out to the small business owners we knew and asked them questions, we looked at how other people had set up their Etsy shops and we spent hours exploring Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. Some of the examples we followed were in our field but many weren't. It was so helpful to see the ups and downs that other people had gone through in order to figure things out for our business.

Whenever we've mentored other small business owners, we often suggest that they start off by doing the same thing. Look around, see what other people are doing and learn from how they've set their businesses up. How do they handle the things that you are having issues with. How have they gone from startups to whatever stage they've currently reached. How can you learn from what they do well and what they don't.

Three years in, we still do this. Whenever we go to do something we've never done before, we look at who else is doing the same thing and how they handle it. We then try to incorporate some of those elements into our process. We try some of the tricks that they've mastered and see how they fit with our company. We're still inspired by some of the companies that we chose as role models early on. We've also added companies along the way. It's been helpful to find new inspiration at every twist and turn.
Some of our role models. L-R: Iron Curtain Press, Anemone Letterpress and Dot&Lil.
Today: Donate or recycle any old tools, supplies, technology, phones, materials, furniture etc. that you no longer use.

No comments:

Post a Comment