Four years ago, I had this crazy idea that i'd like to run my own business. I literally did not know a thing about marketing, but I was creative, motivated and passionate. And so my journey began. I have recently spoken to a few people who are thinking about setting up their own creative businesses, so I thought i'd share a few ideas to help get things up and running.
First of all, if you have the intention of selling, you must register with the hmrc. It doesn't matter if you are making a loss, if you sell something, you need to register. Its simple, and you can do it online in a few minutes.
Facebook is a powerful tool. In the early days, I ran my business primarily through my facebook page. Setting up a business page is simple, and there are so many networking groups you can join. Its a great way to test the water, see what interest your products get. You can now run facebook ads for a small fee, which is great if you know who your target audience are.
You'll need a Paypal account if you are planning on selling online. Using paypal means that both the buyer and seller are covered should there be any problems.
It can be useful to get out and sell face to face - school fairs can be great if you sell seasonal gifts. Also check out any local craft fairs and events. There is usually a fee to pay for having a stall - I always view this fee as a marketing fee. Even if you dont sell anything, you've got your name out there and made contacts.
There are also many online selling platforms you could looking into using - ETSY, Folksy, Not On The High Street and Amazon are perhaps the biggest ones.
Finally, love it or hate it, social media is a brilliant power tool. Make sure you have business accounts for Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest and get networking.