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Plan: How to Start a New Scrapbooking Business
Scrapbooking is a fun pastime but is it something that can be turned into a business? Absolutely! If you are motivated and driven to do well as a self-employed person in the creative arts, you can make a decent living in the scrapbooking business. This is a job that you can do from home, setting your own hours and working at something that you already enjoy. But you have to realize first and foremost that this is a business and that you're going to need to treat it as such if you want to succeed.
Create a Business Plan
The first thing that you will want to do to start your scrapbooking business is to work through a business plan template. This will allow you to set some goals and to define what you want to do with your scrapbooking business. Keep in mind that there are many different ways that you can work in the scrapbooking business. Examples of some of the services that you might provide include:
- Professional scrapbooking artist. This is a position in which you are given the photos by the individual who wants a scrapbook and you work to create the scrapbook that they desire. This is a very hands-on position in the sense that you are actually doing the artwork and dealing with the clients on a daily basis.
- Scrapbook supplies reseller. You may be more interested in doing the business side of scrapbooking in terms of supplying resources to other scrapbookers out there. This would involve finding wholesale suppliers for scrapbook supplies and books about scrapbooking and reselling them through a storefront or online portal.
- Scrapbook teacher. If you are someone who is great at scrapbooking then you might be someone who is good at teaching scrapbooking skills to others. If so, you could start a business as a scrapbook instructor.
These are just a few of the things that you could do with your scrapbooking business. Working through a business plan will help you figure out the details of your business including the services that you want to provide and the way that you want to provide them (in person vs. online, for example). Making your business work out on paper is one of the most important things that you can do if you want to make your business work in real life.
Establish Yourself as a Legal Business
You don't have to do this but it's always a good idea to make sure that you have taken care of all of the legalities. You should apply for a business license in your area. You should set up a separate bank account for your business expenses and apply for a business credit card. You should figure out what you'll need to do about taxes.
Get Your Supplies
Once you have created your business plan and filed for legal business status, you will be ready to start preparing to open your scrapbooking business. You probably already have some scrapbooking supplies but there may be other things that you need to have on hand to start your business. Get your business credit card and get ready to go shopping. This part of the scrapbooking business may require anything from converting your home office to accommodate these supplies to actually leasing out a retail space for your business. Get the location ready and filled with the things that you are going to need.
Put Together Your Samples
The business of scrapbooking is a very visual business. People are going to want to see what you can do before they hire you. This means that you must have samples of your work. Of course, since you already love scrapbooking there's a good chance that you have samples in your own collection that you can use. The key here is to find a good array of samples and to organize them in a way that is going to make them appealing to potential customers. You are going to want to put together a physical scrapbook sample for customers if you plan on doing local work from your home or opening a storefront.
Whether or not you do this, you will also need to create a website that shows off the samples of your work. If you are not skilled at this, you should hire a web designer because this is really what is going to sell people on your services. You should have high quality images of your scrapbook work on your website along with information about the services that you offer and the rates that you charge. Creating a good website filled with great samples is crucial to making a scrapbooking business work.
Open your Doors for Business!
Once you have done all of this background work, you are ready to launch your scrapbooking business. The early days of the business will be all about drumming up customers. It is wise to create a marketing plan to make this successful. Some of the things that you might do to generate business for your scrapbooking company include:
- Hold a scrapbooking party or event. Invite everyone you know and have them invite people as well. This will encourage people to start thinking of you as a resource for scrapbooking services. Friends and family may be your first customers and they'll certainly be the ones who help spread the word.
- Do an online marketing campaign. Work with a search engine optimization company that can drive traffic to your website. The more people there are seeing your work, the more customers you are going to have.
- Do some cold calling. Try to partner up with local business that might be interested in scrapbooking services. A nursing home, a local art store ... you never know who might want to work with you if you don't bother to ask.
- Hand out fliers and business cards liberally. You should have a wealth of promotional materials and you should be putting them everywhere that you can so people know that your business is out there.
- Create scrapbooks for everything. When you have downtime, you should be working. Make scrapbooks for friends and family, for your kids' teachers and your old boss ... the more samples of your work there are in the world, the more likely you are to get hired.
- Hire a PR person. If you can get profiled in magazines and websites then you can generate more business. You can also write articles on the topic of scrapbooking and submit them to relevant magazines.
There will be a lot involved in running a scrapbooking business but there will also be a lot of rewards with this kind of business!