Not hitting your targets is hard. Especially when you have been having a successful run at things. I haven't hit my April sales target, and in fact have missed it by a significant stretch. This might be my second-best month on Etsy, but it has been my most disappointing in terms of expectations.
Missing your goals is tough. It doesn't matter where you miss them, be it a fitness goal, a sales goal, a maths score, it is always disappointing. And of course, it is inevitable as well. At some point, we all fail. And if we don't fail, we don't really get tested as a person - we don't really understand the joys of our success if we haven't tasted defeat. And yet. And yet missing your goals also draws in self-doubt, the whispers of failure, the nagging thoughts of just jacking it all in. So, how can we turn missing our goals into something positive?
Well, it gives us a chance to reassess ourselves. This is a crucial part of any learning exercise. Let's go through my thoughts on my failure this month, and see what sort of action list I draw up for May.
- Are my products right? Well, I've been shifting my products slightly, and maybe I have gone too far away from the crochet products in preference of the easier to make felt badges. My word badges usually sell pretty quickly, quicker than the pretty embroidered badges. ACTION: work on creating at least four crochet pieces this month to list. List more word badges.
- Have I promoted as much? I haven't been posting as much in the forums, since I was worried that I was going to lose my job from my far too frequent etsy surfing. I'm not going to go back to that though! I did spend some time in chat rooms, and that vastly increased my hearts and views, but did nothing for my sales (short term). I also haven't been posting as much to flickr. My blog posts have been fairly consistent. ACTION: spend at least two hours a week posting photos to flickr, taking part in groups, commenting etc. Try to upload at least 2 new photos twice a week. Also, do at least one myspace promotion this month.
- Have I been listing/relisting as often? Yes. I've been listing/relisting almost every day. I am loathe to get into things more than that, as my products are not such high cost that it is worth spending a large amount of relisting fees. I have a reasonable number of new products to list that I can continue to list something new every day for the next couple of weeks. ACTION: continue with listing trends.
- Have I been advertising enough? I've had one round of project wonderful advertising. That is probably not enough, to be honest. ACTION: undertake at least 2 campaigns of PW advertising through May.
There's also the question of outside factors, and whether I set myself realistic targets in the first place.
I believe, that whether you are doing well or not, that it is important every so often to stop and reassess - what am I doing, how am I doing it, and is it working?
Let's see if my proposed actions have a positive impact on Moose and Bear over the next month.