As we come to the end of 2020 it is a good time to reflect on what the year showed us, and how far we have come!
Back in January of 2020 Paul and I went to an amazing marketing retreat in Florida. We met some incredible small business owners, and it was fun talking and learning from them as well.
None of us had any idea what 2020 would hold and certainly it never dawned on any of us that we would have a virus to contend with. And boy did the virus throw small businesses for a loop!
But, we crafted several goals and although we didn’t know how we would obtain them, we had a lot of ideas. This was an exciting time for us and we were eager to implement what we had learned.
By the time April rolled around it was clear that all of our large events would be getting cancelled for the year. It seemed like every other week we were getting notified that yet another event was cancelled. This was a huge blow for us as about 50 percent of our sales usually comes through these events. But we didn't let this defeat our spirit, and if anything it made us more determined to succeed. So we put on our thinking caps, and pivoted our business to selling primarily online.
Here are some more goals that we wanted to accomplish!
Goal #1- Build a community
What the heck does that mean? For us it was to have a larger presence on Facebook as that seems to be where we could reach the most people. We do have an Instagram page, but honestly it is hard to keep track of a couple social media platforms and try to be engaging at the same time. .
In order to build this community of awesome followers we hosted many giveaways while showcasing our products. Do you realize we gave away over 700 dollars in products this year? We also gained over 600 new followers to our Facebook page. Our plan for 2021 is to offer more giveaways as well.
Since you all helped us create this community whether by sharing a post or a giveaway, purchased from us, or even told a friend about our products we do appreciate it...so Thank You!
Goal #2- Minimize Stress
This goal may sound easy, but it was probably the hardest one to overcome with 2020.
Although we are retired, Paul is a work-a-holic and he had been working a full- time job in addition to turning products nights and weekends, which meant he wasn’t really getting any time off.
Although quitting a job is stressful in itself something had to change. With a lot of conversations, and a lot of procrastination, on his end, the goal was to have Paul working part time by the end of 2020.
I am happy to report that Paul has enjoyed working part time, and spending more time in his shop!
Another way we reduced stress in 2020 was not working the business 24-7. We do love this business, but we also love taking vacations.
The ideal vacation for us would have meant traveling to Vermont and Maine to see our kids and grandkids, but due to the travel restrictions we had to settle on staying in North Carolina!
Since moving to North Carolina three and a half years ago we had always wanted to go to the Smoky Mountains. Seeing all of of what nature had to offer as well as all of the stunning waterfalls was awesome. Just getting away for a week it what we needed to get rejuvenated.
We hope that in 2021 we will be able to get up north, as we certainly miss the kids and grandkids. .
Goal #3- Offer More Products
Well, that sounds all well and good, but which products do we produce? Since we get quite a bit of feedback from you, we take that seriously. We certainly can’t make everything that everyone wants, but if we receive enough interest, we always investigate it.
For 2020 we decided to expand our pen line while discontinuing a line. The response we have receive with the Crown Jewel and Big Ben pens has been outstanding.
We also decided to add the stiletto to our sewing line. So now we have the single blade, double blade seam rippers, and stilettos for those that love to sew. We continue to make the crochet handles as well for the interchangeable hooks. All these new products are made with resin as well as with usually exotic woods.
The overwhelming support of these products certainly kept Paul busy!
Stay tuned for more exciting things coming for 2021.
Say Goodbye to 2020
Although 2020 was a challenge for us it certainly didn’t stop us. With all the love and support we get from all our customers/followers it is so heartfelt when we say Thank You!
We have often said that without you we would just be Paul and Aleta...
As we go forward, we will continue to have a presence online, will continue to make quality one of a kind hand turned items, have more giveaways, and most importantly have fun!
What goals do you have for 2021?