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347 – Start a Business Selling Printables and Digital Downloads with Julie Berninger of Gold City Ventures
Episode 3474th December 2021 • Gift Biz Unwrapped • Sue Monhait
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how to start an Etsy printables shopHave you ever wondered how to start an Etsy printables shop? Wonder no more because in this episode we're diving into how to create a new revenue stream for your business with digital downloads. Selling printables and digital downloads is one business model that is very compatible with the life of a busy mom or fitting in a side gig. If you haven’t started your business yet, or are looking to expand on what you’re currently selling but not add to your backend shipping tasks, this may be the perfect option for you. It’s enticing, that’s for sure. Julie’s Etsy shop, The Swag Element, started as a side hustle and now earns her $1,000+ per month selling printable products for bachelorette parties, useful templates, and other digital downloads. Success speaks volumes and these Etsy results prompted another opportunity. While on maternity leave, Julie co-founded Gold City Ventures, which is a company that helps women start side hustles like hers selling printables and digital downloads on Etsy. Over 3,000 students have taken Julie’s E-Printables course with her top student earning over $150,000 on Etsy after starting the shop from scratch.

How To Start An Etsy Printables Shop

  • A digital download or printable is a digital file you make on your computer and your customer can download from Etsy without further action from you.
  • If you use Canva’s graphics or fonts, make sure you only use the ones that are okay for commercial use.  <-- Pro tip!
  • Find avenues to drive traffic to your Etsy shop.
  • If printable fits with your existing business,  it can be a profitable niche.
  • Make stuff people want to buy. You can make something beautiful but if it's not popular it won’t sell.
  • You don't need to be a great designer to create products that will sell.
  • Invest your time in a product that's going to be worth it. Use tools to help you see what's trending and get ideas of what to make for your target audience. Try these:  <-- Pro tip! 
  • You can buy premade templates for commercial use, customize them and then sell them. This can be a quick and easy way to get some products up in your shop.
  • Rather than using the same free clip art everyone else has, buy clip art from other websites to make your stuff more unique.
Listen to the full conversation for all the tips & tricks on how to start an Etsy printables shop for your business!

Resources Mentioned

Julie's Contact Links

WebsiteFacebook | Instagram

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Transcripts

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Gift biz unwrapped episode 347.

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There was a,

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In my late twenties where I wasn't unhappy with my life,

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but I thought I could do something else.

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I thought I could do something bigger.

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Attention. Gifters bakers,

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crafters, and makers pursuing your dream can be fun.

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Whether you have an established business or looking to start one.

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Now you are in the right place.

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This is gift to biz unwrapped,

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helping you turn your skill into a flourishing business.

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Join us for an episode,

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packed full of invaluable guidance,

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resources, and the support you need to grow.

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Your gift biz.

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Here is your host gift biz gal Sue moon Heights.

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Hi there.

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Thanks for being here today,

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smack in the middle of the holiday selling season.

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I remember when I had my gift basket company by early

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November, my house was already fully decorated for Hanukkah and Christmas.

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The tree was up holiday shopping was done for the most

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part and all my energy went into filling holiday orders.

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We produced thousands of gifts during the holiday season.

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And by early December,

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I'd find myself staying at the office sometimes until two in

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the morning when I'd finally be able to come home and

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collapse into bed only to get up and do it all

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again. The next day,

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I tell you this because I get what you may be

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going through right now.

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It's exhausting.

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You want to stay in the spirit and celebrate the season

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and you know how great your numbers will look come January,

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but it takes a lot out of you and your staff.

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And I want to say,

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thank you.

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Thank you for making the gifts you do.

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And the energy you put forth to ensure orders are filled

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and arrive when they should.

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Your amazing.

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So right now all eyes for sure on the holidays become

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early 2022.

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I'll be there with give back for you as another.

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Thank you for all your efforts and sacrifices as a handmade

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product business owner,

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more about that coming your way,

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but first stay focused on the holidays in talking about all

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of the pressure of this time of year with selling and

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fulfilling your holiday orders.

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There are other business models that don't include this type of

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activity. Did you know that selling printables and digital downloads is

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one of the options.

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If you haven't started your business yet,

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or are looking to expand on what you're currently selling,

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but not add to your backend shipping tasks.

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This may be the perfect option for you.

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It's enticing that's for sure.

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Let's listen.

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As Julie gives us all the deets Today,

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I am really looking forward to introducing you to Julie Berninger

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of gold city ventures.

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Julie's at T shop.

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The swag element started as a side hustle,

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and now earns her over a thousand dollars per month.

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Selling principal products for bachelorette parties,

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useful templates and other digital downloads,

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but success speaks volumes.

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And these Etsy sales prompted another opportunity while on maternity leave.

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Julie co-founded gold city ventures,

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which is a company that helps women start side hustles like

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hers, selling printables and digital downloads on Etsy.

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Over 3000 students have taken Julie's E printables course with her

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top student earning over $150,000

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on Etsy after starting the shop from scratch.

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Julie, welcome to the gift biz unwrapped podcast.

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Thank you for having Me.

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I am so excited that you're here and before we get

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started and hear about your journey and all that,

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you're going to share with us.

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I want to ask you a question that gives us a

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little bit of insight into you in a little bit of

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a different way,

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and that is through a motivational candle.

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So if you were to create a candle that would really

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resonate with you,

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Julie, what would it look like by color and quote,

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The candle would be white.

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The label would be blue and the quote would say,

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tell me,

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what is it you plan to do with your one wild

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and precious life,

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which is a quote by Mary Oliver.

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Ooh, I love that.

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And what does it mean to you and how do you

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apply it to your life?

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I think there was a point in my late twenties where

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I wasn't unhappy with my life,

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but I thought I could do something else.

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I thought I could do something bigger.

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And I was working in corporate America and I was recently

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married and I wanted a family,

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but I also wanted a career and I felt not confused,

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but just kind of going along with the motions.

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So I started learning more about online business and it inspired

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me to make changes that ultimately spurred me to creating my

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dream life.

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So now I am a work at home.

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Mom, I have a toddler,

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my husband and I moved.

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We're kind of building and renovating our dream home.

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And a lot of what I had wanted manifested for me,

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It sounds like you didn't have too many questions about whether

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you wanted to go for,

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it sounds like you're a risk taker.

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I'm definitely a risk taker.

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And I think another one of my favorite quotes is a

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hundred percent of the shots you don't take.

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Don't go in by Wayne Gretzky.

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And I've always tried to just put myself out there and

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take chances.

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And I think the biggest skill that I learned was just

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push away any embarrassment that you might feel about pursuing your

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dream. And I think for a lot of sellers,

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we feel kind of weird sometimes pursuing this new identity as

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a seller,

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telling our family and friends about our business.

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Particularly if we're in other areas of our life where people

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think of us as one way.

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And I had to push past all of those feelings to

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kind of really go after what I wanted.

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And now that I did,

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I'm so grateful that I took those steps to do so.

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So what would you say to somebody who's listening right now?

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Who says,

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yeah, yeah,

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but that's her,

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this is me.

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I'm scared.

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I don't know if I have what it takes.

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I definitely feel those feelings still and I've been there,

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but if you ultimately want the life of your dreams,

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you have to push past that and start making those steps

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now. And it might look like a small thing that you

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do every single week.

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You don't become a millionaire overnight.

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You don't change completely who you are overnight,

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but I think just strong belief in what could be in

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yourself is what ultimately will help you push past that.

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And that ties into your quote as well.

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So I think so often we take ourselves so seriously.

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And what we're doing here is not a life or death

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thing. It can reap so many rewards for us,

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both personally and financially,

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but it's worth taking these chances.

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You're not putting your life on the line.

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You might be putting what you think is your ego on

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the line,

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but whatever happens no matter what,

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the results you'll be able to work through it.

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So you can make adjustments.

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And when you have direction and help,

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like what we're providing you today,

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it is much easier.

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You don't have to do things alone.

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I'd be interested Julie,

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to hear about your experience with that too.

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You've talked with me a little bit already in the pre-chat

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that you had an Etsy shop.

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So let's talk a little bit about that experience as we

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move into today.

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So back in 2017,

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I was listening to tons of podcasts about starting an Etsy

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shop. And I still felt clueless about what I actually wanted

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to make and list.

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So I had been attending a bunch of bachelorette parties at

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the time,

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and I was still in my late twenties then.

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And I knew that people would attend these parties and they

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would shell out $40,

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easy to the maid of honor to buy some trinkets shirts,

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do dads that were more throwaway items.

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To me,

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that sounded like a good niche.

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Since when people are also buying for bachelorette parties,

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they typically buy in bulk.

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It's not like one gift that they're giving someone that they're

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buying enough for the whole group,

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which could be like 20 girls.

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I thought strategically,

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this is the right niche for me to be in,

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but I'm not necessarily a crafty person.

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So I decided to have temporary tattoos manufactured where I was

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the designer and I made the designs in Canva.

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And for those of you that haven't attended a bachelorette party

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recently beyond wearing matching shirts,

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it's often customed to where the bride's new name or some

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other fun saying about bachelorette parties on your wrist,

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on your face with these tattoos.

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So all in all,

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it was an awesome business for me on Etsy.

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And it worked out where I would have an average order

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size of like 15 or $20 and the tattoos were pennies

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to get manufactured,

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but it was just too much with my life in corporate

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America. I didn't get a sale every day.

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So I felt that kind of mental load of needing to

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check the app,

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making sure that I was getting the orders out on time,

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making sure I manage my inventory because I didn't know upfront

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which designs would sell,

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which wouldn't.

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So I kind of guessed and over time I learned,

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but it just became something that I started out excited about,

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but then it became a little bit of a load,

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even though it was profitable.

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So that's when I was looking for something else with my

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Etsy Shop.

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So you were liking the platform and that was working for

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you, but you just decided you needed to tweak what you

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were going to be offering.

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Yes. Which is a perfect example of what we were just

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talking about a minute ago,

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that when you start something,

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it doesn't mean that you can't make changes and tweaks along

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the way,

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which is exactly what you're demonstrating here.

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So what did you transition into,

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how did you make an adjustment to make it really work

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for you?

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Well, I went to a conference completely by myself,

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which was another one of my,

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just take a risk,

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try not to be uncomfortable or push past any uncomfortable feelings

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that I have.

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So I went by myself,

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I had,

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my husband dropped me off and I'm standing in line for

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lunch at the food truck.

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And I started up one of those awkward conversations with the

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woman next to me.

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Hey, what taco are you gonna order?

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Oh, this one looks good.

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And then we ended up chatting and she told me about

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selling digital downloads on Etsy and on her website.

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And I found out that she was a six-figure seller with

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this concept of selling digital downloads.

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So after the conference,

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it kind of blew my mind that the things that I

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was worried about on Etsy,

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like not keeping up with my orders and inventory shipping,

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I could just erase those problems and focus on putting out

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a product and essentially letting the customer kind of take it

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from there.

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And that was the beginning of the digital downloads Etsy experience

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for me.

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Wonderful and share with us a little bit on a tactical

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end, what steps you then took to get this set up

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for yourself on that T?

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Sure. So I think the biggest thing is what is a

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digital download or printable?

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A lot of you have seen them,

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but you might not actually know that you could sell them,

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but what they are are digital files that you make on

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your computer,

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that the customer can download from Etsy without further action from

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you. So they can be things like scavenger hunts,

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which I sell for bachelorette parties.

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They're printable letter size,

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scavenger hunts.

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They could be printable games or coloring pages for your kids

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for the holidays.

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It could be something that someone never prints like a social

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media template for an entrepreneur,

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even Etsy branding templates.

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So for the concept of the customer,

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they download the file.

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And then the work that you have to do is really

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just answering questions if they have any and not everyone has

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questions and it depends on how user-friendly you make the product.

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Okay. And then how are you getting the content for the

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digital downloads?

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Are you creating those all yourself?

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Yes. And I'm not a graphic designer and I'm not a

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very creative person.

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I don't have an eye for it.

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Let's just say that.

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But I still was able to put together design.

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Some of my best-selling designs have made over $2,000

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in, I call it quote,

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unquote, passive income.

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Nothing is truly passive income,

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but it's as close to it as I can get on

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Etsy. And you're doing it through Canva.

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Yes. So I'm creating the designs in canva.com,

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which is an online graphic design tool.

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It's super easy.

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I started out with the canvas free version,

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but then at some point I upgraded to pro just for

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ease of use.

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And I do you,

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one thing need to know about selling printables.

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You can't just use canvas templates or graphics or fonts.

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You can't use all of them.

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You have to make sure only use the ones that are

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okay for commercial use.

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So to kind of avoid that trouble,

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I buy them from other websites like design bundles or font

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bundles, and I'll get packets of cute clip art and fonts

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that I can use for like 10 bucks.

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I have those forever for whatever you're going to create.

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And so then you're actually putting all of that together with

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whatever that downloadable it's going to look like.

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Yep. So your work is really just understanding what size to

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make the printable and CAMBA and then arranging the clip art

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and the fonts to look cute enough that someone would want

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to buy it.

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Perfect. Okay.

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And so when someone has a shop set up like this,

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what does a Workday look like?

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What are the tasks that you're doing?

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Because you're not making another product unless you're creating something new

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as a download.

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Yeah. So to give you an idea,

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this is still a side hustle for me.

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And it brings in over a thousand dollars per month in

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Etsy revenue.

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This year,

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I moved 3000 miles cross country with my family.

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So I didn't put one listing up for six months and

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didn't do anything except for answer customer questions.

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And I still kept the over thousand dollars in revenue.

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It's passive income quote unquote,

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because at one point I made those designs.

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And if someone asked me a question,

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I answer it.

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But beyond that,

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I don't have a daily to-do list,

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which is why I wanted to switch to downloads in the

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first place,

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because that daily to-do list,

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even if it only took me 10 minutes previously,

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when I was selling tattoos,

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it was just too much mentally.

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Cause I have a million things to keep track of.

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Now that I have a kid and I felt like I

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was dropping the ball,

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which perfectionist me didn't like that feeling.

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Right. Well,

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and just to make sure that everybody understands like there's no

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shipping involved or anything,

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when you go and you make a purchase,

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it downloads to you.

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So Julia is not doing anything other than catching the orders,

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answering any questions that you have,

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et cetera,

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and creating new designs.

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Would that be accurate?

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That's it,

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that's all that I do.

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It sounds a little bit magical.

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It is a little bit magical,

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honestly. And I think you mentioned that one of my students

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has made $150,000.

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Honestly, she makes me jealous sometimes because imagine if I didn't

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take six months off and I actually put tons of effort

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into the shop,

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I mean,

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what could be possible with this?

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It's truly amazing.

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And it's fun.

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I think a lot of us start Etsy shops.

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Cause we like to show that little creative side of ourselves

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in our pockets of time.

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We think it's fun to do this stuff.

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So that's what I love about digital downloads.

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It's that same kind of creative flow that you get into.

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You're just making it on your computer.

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Well, and you're also able to ebb and flow with your

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lifestyle. Like if you find a time,

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a point in life where you could spend more time,

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you can make more downloads or you can just,

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as you were just describing with your past year leave,

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what's there let that work for you for the time being.

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So a lot of ability to be flexible as need be.

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And especially as a young mom,

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so that I think pique some interest for some people who

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are listening,

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who are in a similar situation,

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let's talk a little bit more about at sea and I'm

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thinking one other thing that is an important thing to do

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is somehow be promoting your Etsy shop.

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Yep, totally.

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And I think for me,

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I started off on the Pinterest train and I would pin

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all of my items.

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I would create new pins.

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I'm a huge canvas person.

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So I would create new pins in CAMBA to essentially drive

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traffic to my shop.

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I am a former blogger.

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So I would create blog posts about bachelorette parties and then

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use that to drive traffic to my shop.

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Okay. Beautiful.

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And we've talked a lot about that on the show already,

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Julie, about the advantages of doing pins and how Pinterest has

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really changed recently and the value of blog post as well.

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So people who are following along with the shows clearly understand

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that. What would you say about actually on the Etsy site,

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SEO opportunities there,

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or how you get found in search on Etsy or promotion

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doing Etsy ads.

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I've tried all of those.

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I think there's one important element that I've learned over the

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years that has made all the difference,

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make stuff that people want to buy.

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You can make something beautiful that you like,

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but if it's not popular right now,

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it's like running uphill.

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But the second that you find something that's in demand or

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you make something,

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a demand it's like running downhill,

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it's so much easier.

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You don't have to put all the effort into it.

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Of course you want to have a clear title and put

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all 13 tags and be somewhat thoughtful about it,

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but it really starts way before you even create the product.

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So for me,

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I have a few tools that I use when I'm going

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through my brainstorming process of what to make next.

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The first tool is Google trends,

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trends dot,

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google.com, and that's completely free.

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And you can type in various things that have to do

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with your Etsy shop.

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Some of the main keywords,

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the stuff that you make.

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And you can see what's trending now and you can play

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with the filters to see what's trending last 30 days,

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what's trending seasonally over time.

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It's kind of a nifty cool tool and that can give

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you some ideas of what to make.

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Then there's Pinterest trends.

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That's also free.

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That does the exact same thing.

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I do look on Pinterest and Etsy.

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I'm sure many of you do to see what other people

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are making,

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what people are talking about on blogs.

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But then I also use some tools like E rank pro

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and Uber suggests because I'm coming from a blogging background.

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So I kind of love that data to see how many

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searches per month.

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Something has to understand if it's going to be a hit

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or it's going to take more effort on my end to

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get this in front of people.

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So those are some of the tools that I use to

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make sure that the time I'm investing in a product is

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going to be worth it for me.

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Okay. And I imagine through these tools as well,

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you're getting ideas for blog post or different types of ways

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that you can communicate what that new principal's going to look

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like. Absolutely.

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Or How to use it or whatever.

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In the bachelorette space,

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there's a lot of kind of trendy slang that people use

Speaker:

to describe certain types of parties.

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Like the Nashville,

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bachelorette is a national RET or a Nash bash.

Speaker:

You kind of have to know how people are describing these

Speaker:

things in order to put the right tags.

Speaker:

So tools like the ones that I described can help you

Speaker:

find those.

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If you're not personally in that place,

Speaker:

for example,

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I've sort of,

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I don't want to say I've aged out of the bachelorettes,

Speaker:

but I'm not going to nearly as many anymore,

Speaker:

particularly with the pandemic.

Speaker:

So I'm not in that target zone where I understand what

Speaker:

to say on the principal naturally.

Speaker:

So I need to use these tools to make sure I

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really have it right for the customer.

Speaker:

Okay. I have another question for you when I'm looking at

Speaker:

reels and there are a lot of people who are making

Speaker:

reels, who are makers these days and they're selling printables,

Speaker:

right? So they're selling like the little stickers and all of

Speaker:

that. Are they getting those from a company like yours and

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then printing them and selling them locally?

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Yes and no.

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We do on gold city ventures.

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We have a Shopify store shop.

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Dugald city ventures.com

Speaker:

where you can buy commercial use templates and then resell them.

Speaker:

And particularly we focused on the planner space since we see

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a lot of work on Tik talk and reels of people

Speaker:

that are writing out their daily routines through these planners.

Speaker:

And it's actually really popular to do so on an iPad

Speaker:

or a tablet right now versus printing out a physical planner.

Speaker:

So yes,

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you can take a commercial use printable and then just kind

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of jazz it up and resell it as your own.

Speaker:

And we also offer some like the holiday printable market is

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huge on these websites and social media.

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I don't know if you've seen letters to Santa or elf

Speaker:

on the shelf letters.

Speaker:

Those are things that you can get.

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If you don't know how to make a printable,

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you can just buy one for commercial use and then make

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some changes to it and then sell it on Etsy as

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your own.

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And that's totally okay.

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As long as you make those changes.

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Okay. And so that is really a totally different business model

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because then you're actually printing them for people to purchase from

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you. So then you have shipping and all of that involved.

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Well, no,

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it's still digital download,

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but what's better about that is instead of you sitting behind

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your computer on Canva,

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putting the font and the graphics together,

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you already had someone that already wrote it for you.

Speaker:

So for example,

Speaker:

Halloween, there was a big trend to do these things.

Speaker:

You've been booed.

Speaker:

It's some game where you leave a treat basket on your

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neighbor's front steps.

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I don't know if you've seen that,

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where you live,

Speaker:

but it's kind of a big thing where I am here.

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You can create that product from scratch,

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or you can buy someone else's printable.

Speaker:

They created for commercial use.

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They have to say it's for commercial use.

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And then you already have the instructions there.

Speaker:

You already have kind of the basic words there.

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Then you can just put new clip art in and make

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it look different.

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And then you can resell it as your own.

Speaker:

There's not as much right now in the seasonal holiday space

Speaker:

of that commercial use templates,

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but it can be a really fast way to get a

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bunch of products up in your shop.

Speaker:

Instead of you starting from scratch.

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Now, what you mentioned,

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Sue, can you print it out for the customer?

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A lot of sellers actually give themselves an advantage by offering

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to print it out for the customer.

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That's a whole different setting on Etsy.

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What I'm choosing is the digital setting where I just upload

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the file.

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And when the customer makes the purchase,

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they can go into their purchases section and download it.

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I don't print for them.

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I could make more money if I did offer to print

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for them.

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Yeah. But you're also adding a whole new element to your

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business, to the whole flow.

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Yes. And for me,

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if you think about my original quote,

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tell me what is it that you will do with your

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one wild and precious life?

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I don't want to spend it doing more work for an

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extra 30 bucks.

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My time is what's beautiful to me and ever since I've

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had my daughter,

Speaker:

I think even more about the time that I'm spending with

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her, the time I was spending with my family versus behind

Speaker:

a computer,

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I really don't want to go out of my way.

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I'd rather keep my business completely passive.

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Even if it does grow slower and have it work this

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way, then trying to kind of bend myself to make it

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work, to make it a little bit.

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Right. I understand that completely.

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Well, the reason I started this line of conversation is when

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I've been seen people doing those physical products,

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like the stickers or they're selling those that I was assuming

Speaker:

were downloaded from somebody because they're all very similar to each

Speaker:

other. Like I'll see sticker sets that clearly weren't uniquely created.

Speaker:

They got them from somewhere and they're now selling them.

Speaker:

And I see multiple people doing that and selling the exact

Speaker:

same product.

Speaker:

If you're tracking with me what I'm saying here.

Speaker:

And so then my question to you is,

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as someone looks at doing downloadable products only,

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so digital products only,

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which is really where we're bracketing our conversation today.

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If you take a lot of already pre formatted files,

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you're not going to look much different from anybody else.

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So I'm thinking,

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not being part of this space at all,

Speaker:

but I'm thinking it's to your advantage to make your own,

Speaker:

to be totally unique because that's how,

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when people come to you,

Speaker:

you're going to be different and stand out.

Speaker:

I wanted to pause this discussion for a second to let

Speaker:

you know that I recognize you may be feeling overwhelmed right

Speaker:

now. I mean,

Speaker:

I bring on great guests who are specialists in their fields

Speaker:

and we get into fabulous conversations that,

Speaker:

you know,

Speaker:

can help grow your business.

Speaker:

So after the show,

Speaker:

you have all the full intention of grabbing a download,

Speaker:

making an adjustment to your website or any other number of

Speaker:

ideas that arise as a result of the podcast.

Speaker:

But what happens,

Speaker:

you get back to all your other activities and the momentum

Speaker:

you had gets lost.

Speaker:

What you plan to do is forgotten.

Speaker:

Then you feel bad because your business is going on as

Speaker:

usual without implementing anything that you know,

Speaker:

would help grow your business.

Speaker:

You're just too busy doing all the things like a robot,

Speaker:

moving from one thing to another without thinking,

Speaker:

because you have to,

Speaker:

I get it.

Speaker:

I've been there,

Speaker:

but guess what?

Speaker:

There is another way since I recognized this exact behavior in

Speaker:

my own business,

Speaker:

I set out to do something about it.

Speaker:

And now what works for me,

Speaker:

I'm sharing with you.

Speaker:

It's the inspired daily planner made specifically for gifters bakers,

Speaker:

crafters and makers,

Speaker:

that's you,

Speaker:

but it's not your ordinary planner.

Speaker:

First off,

Speaker:

it comes with a video explaining my productivity strategy,

Speaker:

plus it's undated.

Speaker:

So you can start using this planner.

Speaker:

The second it arrives at your doorstep and that's not all

Speaker:

included for each day is a motivational tip and plenty of

Speaker:

space for you to write down your intention and then schedule

Speaker:

time so that you can actually take action on all those

Speaker:

ideas that are now getting lost.

Speaker:

It's the perfect solution to truly act and move your business

Speaker:

forward. And yes,

Speaker:

I'm offering you a special discount to get you started with

Speaker:

the inspired program,

Speaker:

because it's my greatest joy to see you make progress and

Speaker:

grow, go to gift biz,

Speaker:

unwrapped.com forward slash get inspired and enter code sale in all

Speaker:

caps to get 40% off of the inspired daily planner.

Speaker:

That means for only $21 plus shipping,

Speaker:

you'll have a hard copy planner along with my power of

Speaker:

purpose video that will set you on the path for true

Speaker:

business growth now and into 2022 makes a great gift too.

Speaker:

And if you're already using the inspired program,

Speaker:

grab a fresh planner with this discount to gift biz,

Speaker:

unwrap.com forward slash get inspired and use the code sale.

Speaker:

Remember in all caps,

Speaker:

this offer won't be available forever.

Speaker:

So don't forget to do it right away.

Speaker:

Okay. Let's get back to the show.

Speaker:

Oh yes.

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Or to completely overhaul.

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When you do buy a template to make it look different.

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I a hundred percent agree with that.

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I understand why some of the sellers will buy the same

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clip art.

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Typically though,

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where you see this,

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it's not in clip art that they purchased.

Speaker:

It's in free clip art,

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and that's why people are using it.

Speaker:

So that's why I recommend that people pay the extra five

Speaker:

bucks to get a pack from a website because it's a

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better chance that their stuff will be a little more unique,

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but really it's not that hard to arrange the clip art

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in a unique way on a piece of paper.

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I think maybe the people that are,

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they're just trying to make a quick buck by selling a

Speaker:

design that they got from somebody else and truthfully Etsy.

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They don't want you to have the same product as other

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people. I mean,

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this is supposed to be a handmade marketplace.

Speaker:

So putting your own stamp on it is almost critical.

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You did mention Sue when you see people selling stickers,

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there's a whole nother business that we probably won't get into

Speaker:

today, but you could do drop shipping where you make the

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labels and then it's fulfilled by a partner.

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And instead of you offering a digital download,

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it gets shipped to the customer,

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but you don't actually have to be the one that's shipping

Speaker:

it. And you'll see a lot of those on,

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for example,

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I was just looking at a shop yesterday,

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that's in my niche and they sell wine labels.

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If you're gifting someone something,

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or let's say that you're doing a bridesmaid proposal,

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like you're asking your friend to be a bridesmaid.

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You can make the digital download,

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which is what I do.

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And that person has to print it on a label.

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They can buy sticker sheets from Walmart,

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wherever, and then print it out and cut it and stick

Speaker:

it on the wine label.

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Or if your Etsy shop offers this element,

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you can make the design.

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But then you're working with a sticker company that actually prints

Speaker:

the sticker and ships the sticker to the customer.

Speaker:

You're still in a passive business model.

Speaker:

It's a little more complicated though,

Speaker:

because you need to worry about your relationship with this printer,

Speaker:

but the customer might like it more.

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Yeah. There's two different options.

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And obviously the margins look different for each.

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The time involved looks different for each et cetera.

Speaker:

All right.

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Where does social media play a role for you as you're

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promoting your products,

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your digital,

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The products.

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I'm not a big social media person in general.

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And for someone that has my online business,

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most of our traffic is coming in through organic,

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through a word of mouth from referrals and affiliates.

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I spend a lot of time talking with other bloggers in

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this space to have leads sent my way,

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but I'm not a huge Instagram and tech talk person.

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I like checking out those apps and consuming information,

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but honestly it's just never been me.

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So I haven't put a lot into those channels,

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but because I'm coming from a blogger,

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I created a niche website that I only write about bachelorette

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parties on that site.

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And I do get a good deal of traffic from there.

Speaker:

And then I tried hard being clear with my tags and

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title on Etsy.

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So Etsy's bringing me the majority of the customers.

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Okay. So I think you're blowing some people's minds here thinking

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that there is a way to be making money and not

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be full in on social media.

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Absolutely. I know I'll make more if I do,

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but I absolutely just can't,

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it's one thing that I just can't fit into my day

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right now.

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I'm hoping I become a different person tomorrow.

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Cause I know how important it could be,

Speaker:

particularly on Tik talk and reels as you mentioned,

Speaker:

but I just can't do it.

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I can't bring myself to do it Well.

Speaker:

And if what you have going right now is working for

Speaker:

you, then why would you,

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you don't need to.

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And I love that you're talking about this and not many

Speaker:

people are going that route.

Speaker:

I've talked with one other person who actually runs a brick

Speaker:

and mortar chocolate store who also isn't on social at all.

Speaker:

So it's just another option for how to promote.

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Yes, you get to different audiences,

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et cetera,

Speaker:

but it is achievable to,

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to run a business,

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make money without being all in on social,

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I guess would be the way to say it.

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Right. I think just my biggest thing is that I want

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this to fit in my life.

Speaker:

So I'm so optimistic that it can be this magical passive

Speaker:

thing. And I'll pursue that even when it makes me turn

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down, opportunities turned down more sales because I have more than

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enough on my plate right now.

Speaker:

And I have to continue to keep this manageable or else

Speaker:

I'm going to burn out.

Speaker:

And I think a lot of people can to this,

Speaker:

but this has been a really difficult last few years for

Speaker:

a lot of us.

Speaker:

And those with young kids,

Speaker:

it's just been tough.

Speaker:

So for me,

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social would just,

Speaker:

I know it would put me over the edge and I

Speaker:

am smart enough in how I promote in the other spaces.

Speaker:

And I'm okay with the growth being the way it is

Speaker:

for me,

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I'm thrilled with a thousand a month more passive income.

Speaker:

That's awesome.

Speaker:

So it's something that I've sort of accepted as the season

Speaker:

in my life,

Speaker:

maybe five years from now,

Speaker:

I'll have a lot more time and I'll be that person

Speaker:

posting on tech talk sort of more of an influencer brand.

Speaker:

But for me right now,

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this is why we're X for me and my family.

Speaker:

Perfect. And I think it's an important point that bigger isn't

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always better.

Speaker:

I think it's the American way that how much has your

Speaker:

business grown year over year,

Speaker:

that type of thing.

Speaker:

You're not successful unless you're seeing massive growth,

Speaker:

but to your point,

Speaker:

if it doesn't fit in with your life overall,

Speaker:

then pretty soon you're going to shut down or you're going

Speaker:

to feel depleted,

Speaker:

or you're not going to be appreciating what you have right

Speaker:

in front of you,

Speaker:

which is living your life.

Speaker:

So how much time would you say you devote to both

Speaker:

of the businesses,

Speaker:

your Etsy shop and then also gold city ventures.

Speaker:

So up until July,

Speaker:

I had a corporate job.

Speaker:

I was working for a giant tech company.

Speaker:

So I only spent a couple of hours per week and

Speaker:

then my husband and I moved.

Speaker:

And after a while of sort of prioritizing my career,

Speaker:

it's sort of his turn to prioritize his,

Speaker:

so that doesn't necessarily leave a lot of time for my

Speaker:

businesses, but I still have those nap times.

Speaker:

And I just recently got a nanny,

Speaker:

which is giving me two hours per day,

Speaker:

a couple of days a week.

Speaker:

So I would say I probably spend three hours per day

Speaker:

on my two businesses and gold city ventures has been the

Speaker:

most exciting passion of mine because there's changing my life through

Speaker:

se, but then there's the ability to give other people more

Speaker:

time in their life,

Speaker:

more income,

Speaker:

more flexibility,

Speaker:

and to be able to help women,

Speaker:

particularly in this difficult time,

Speaker:

the last two years sort of reach what they wanted their

Speaker:

life to look like and what income level they were hoping

Speaker:

for. That's really rewarding for me.

Speaker:

So I leaned into that and that's where I spend the

Speaker:

majority of my time.

Speaker:

You've just positioned yourself that you are the example of that

Speaker:

two, three hours a day,

Speaker:

working on your business.

Speaker:

You can have a money-making business.

Speaker:

So that's first off and then let's move into gold city

Speaker:

ventures now.

Speaker:

And talk a little bit more about what you offer through

Speaker:

this program.

Speaker:

Sure. So gold city ventures aims to help you create a

Speaker:

printables at T shop from scratch.

Speaker:

You can convert from a handmade shop and add some printable

Speaker:

listings. That's totally fine.

Speaker:

We have a lot of people that take the course that

Speaker:

do that.

Speaker:

But the overall aim is to take you from zero to

Speaker:

a successful shop selling principles.

Speaker:

And what we hope is that you reach a hundred sales

Speaker:

with principles.

Speaker:

And when you do that,

Speaker:

we send you a nice little gift in the mail,

Speaker:

a personalized gift from another Etsy seller,

Speaker:

of course,

Speaker:

and you get free membership in our group and it's something

Speaker:

that's really celebrated.

Speaker:

So I would say it's how to go from zero principal

Speaker:

sales to a hundred.

Speaker:

And who is this for?

Speaker:

This is for women that are starting without experience creating and

Speaker:

selling principles.

Speaker:

And what it is is a series of video tutorials that

Speaker:

I created on teachable with my business partner,

Speaker:

Cody Berman.

Speaker:

And we show you in these over the shoulder videos,

Speaker:

we show you us going through creating a bunch of different

Speaker:

printables in Canva.

Speaker:

And we also talk about this certain keyword research tools that

Speaker:

we use,

Speaker:

because I think us both being bloggers,

Speaker:

we think about it slightly differently than other people in terms

Speaker:

of before we even create the product.

Speaker:

Like I mentioned before,

Speaker:

how exactly do we ensure that it's going to be a

Speaker:

hit so that we get that return back on our time.

Speaker:

And we also have the community at this point,

Speaker:

over 3000 people have started at T shops or Etsy printable

Speaker:

businesses with us.

Speaker:

So we do have that,

Speaker:

that group of people,

Speaker:

particularly the hundred sales club,

Speaker:

people that are in our Facebook group,

Speaker:

they're now successful printable sellers.

Speaker:

And they're kind of giving back to new people,

Speaker:

giving advice,

Speaker:

sharing, and it's just kind of a fun environment to be

Speaker:

part of.

Speaker:

So someone who is listening to us has been thinking about

Speaker:

starting a small business,

Speaker:

wants to have flexibility over their time could be a perfect

Speaker:

candidate for your program.

Speaker:

Oh, Absolutely.

Speaker:

And they can take this on their own time.

Speaker:

It's not structured scheduled classes too.

Speaker:

So you get access to the course and then you go

Speaker:

through it as time permits on your end.

Speaker:

Yep. It's all self-paced.

Speaker:

You can take forever if you'd like.

Speaker:

What we do try to focus on is doing a small

Speaker:

way in every week.

Speaker:

And actually we celebrate those wins Cody and I go live

Speaker:

on Wednesday nights in the Facebook group and we share small

Speaker:

wins from our community for the week,

Speaker:

because I think all of us are trying to become millionaires

Speaker:

overnight. And that's just not how it happens.

Speaker:

You just gotta do one thing every week.

Speaker:

And people that are busy like myself,

Speaker:

you can get really discouraged or overwhelmed by trying to achieve

Speaker:

it all at once.

Speaker:

So it's just putting up one listing or making a couple

Speaker:

of sales.

Speaker:

We celebrate those things every single week.

Speaker:

So we encourage you,

Speaker:

even though you could go self pace,

Speaker:

we try to have you stay with it so that you're

Speaker:

at least moving the ball forward once.

Speaker:

Perfect. So someone who really needs that accountability it's in there.

Speaker:

If you ask for it.

Speaker:

Yes, but you don't have to accept it if you don't

Speaker:

want it.

Speaker:

If you just want to do it all by yourself,

Speaker:

I love the support that you're doing through the nighttime calls,

Speaker:

because I think even if someone just goes in there and

Speaker:

watches what the successes are of others will help motivate them

Speaker:

to have these little small successes too.

Speaker:

And the small successes we know what happens with that.

Speaker:

They end up being big things,

Speaker:

big achievements overall.

Speaker:

Yeah. And it's not a competitive group because there are more

Speaker:

than enough principles that you can make for myself.

Speaker:

I started selling bachelorette party principles.

Speaker:

Recently I started creating business style printables.

Speaker:

And one of them that sells a lot for me is

Speaker:

a real term marketing template who would even think that that's

Speaker:

something that people want.

Speaker:

I mean,

Speaker:

I discovered it through a keyword and it's been a profitable

Speaker:

niche for me.

Speaker:

So I don't want people thinking,

Speaker:

well, this is saturated or,

Speaker:

you know,

Speaker:

I'm in the group and someone will steal my ideas.

Speaker:

If I say something,

Speaker:

it's definitely not like that.

Speaker:

People are printing out stuff like crazy.

Speaker:

And it's only the demand for printables is only increasing.

Speaker:

If you look on Etsy,

Speaker:

you'll be shocked about what people are selling in this space.

Speaker:

So there's more than enough room for everyone right now.

Speaker:

And I think this opens up also opportunity for people who

Speaker:

have a nine to five job right now.

Speaker:

And it's in a totally different area.

Speaker:

Like maybe they're a dental technician or they work in a

Speaker:

bank or the school system,

Speaker:

you know,

Speaker:

who knows where you may see just by the way you're

Speaker:

working through your day opportunities to create principles that can serve

Speaker:

an environment that you already know.

Speaker:

Oh yeah,

Speaker:

totally. I was looking up keywords yesterday and I saw one

Speaker:

regarding doula templates.

Speaker:

So if anyone out there is a doula or,

Speaker:

you know,

Speaker:

a doula,

Speaker:

if you can create something in that space,

Speaker:

I mean,

Speaker:

I see that being a profitable niche right now,

Speaker:

personally, I know nothing about that.

Speaker:

I have a kid,

Speaker:

but I feel like that period of my life was a

Speaker:

whirlwind. I forget what happened then.

Speaker:

But yeah,

Speaker:

there's just so much.

Speaker:

And I think what we really focus on in the course

Speaker:

though, we want you to get some sales early on.

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So we tend to push people to focus on seasonal products,

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which is why I think Sue,

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if you're okay with this,

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I want to share an ebook called the seasonal product secret

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for free with your audience.

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And it's 21 pages of printable ideas,

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advice for starting an Etsy business selling printables.

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But we tell you how to use upcoming holidays and events

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to brainstorm what printables people will be looking for on Etsy.

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So that's where we recommend people start with seasonal holiday stuff.

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Thanks so much,

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Julie, for offering that e-book gift biz listeners,

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you can grab your copy at gift biz,

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unwrapped.com forward slash seasonal printables.

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All right.

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So as we're circling to the end here,

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Julie, are there any objections or any questions that you get

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when people are considering entering into the program with you that

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you would like to share and talk about?

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Because our listeners might be having those questions themselves.

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I think there are two main objections that people have,

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which I totally get.

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The first one is that they don't think they're techie.

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And I promise you,

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if you haven't used canva.com,

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you're going to love it.

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You can use this for your handmade business super easily.

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You can make your logo,

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your branding.

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There's so much you can do with Canva,

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your social media graphics.

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I mean,

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this is going to be a skill that's going to pay

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in spades for you.

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Even if you decide you want to stick with handmade.

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And then the second thing,

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people are worried that they're not a graphic designer and that

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they just don't have the eye for something pretty.

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And I will tell you that I,

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myself am no graphic designer.

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Some of my best-selling designs I cringe when I think of

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what they look like from two years back and people do

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buy them particularly,

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you know,

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when we're thinking about what printable to create,

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and this is what we focus on a lot in the

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course, if you are starting out,

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just don't make Walmart.

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A lot of people who want to make a printable,

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they see Walmart on Pinterest,

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like things that people would hang in their house.

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If you're brand new,

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stay away from something that you think someone would love enough

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to put in their living room and keep it there every

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single day.

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Like the bachelorette party space,

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these are throwaway items that people are only using for one

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night. So it's okay if they're a little gaudy and if

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you know,

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it's not perfect,

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there are so many niches like that in particularly the seasonal

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stuff that we focus on in the course,

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it's like little things that are only used for a particular

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occasion. So you don't have to be all stressed about not

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being a graphic designer,

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canvas, super easy to use.

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We promise you,

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you can do this.

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We've seen 3000 people with those same worries,

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kind of make it through and thrive on Etsy.

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So it's something that you can overcome and kind of what

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I was saying before with the Wayne Gretzky quote,

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you miss a hundred percent of the shots you don't take.

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I mean,

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why not add a printable?

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If it fits with your existing business,

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it can be a cool skill that can turn into something

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else later.

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And so Why not?

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Why not?

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And I agree with you.

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I mean,

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I use Canva almost exclusively now and I used to be

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a big Photoshop person with all the tech and learning it.

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Cause that was the only option out there for awhile.

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And now I don't even open it.

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Like it's canvas all the way and it's not difficult.

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I agree with you.

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And then I was also just thinking,

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as you were talking,

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Julie, that depending on the type of principals that you make,

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they might be celebratory to type principles like the bachelorette or

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child parties or whatever it is.

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They could be functional,

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like organization type downloads,

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or they could be decorative.

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I mean,

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there's all different types of things.

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And to your point,

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zeroing into a niche that can also be based on how

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you feel.

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You can create whatever it is you're going to sell.

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Yeah, totally.

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And you can create a new shop for this.

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You can add it to your existing shop.

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Personally. I don't think I've been penalized by having things in

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multiple niches in one place.

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If you feel like you would rather keep it separate,

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you can.

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I think Etsy just requires you to disclose that you own

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both shops in your about section,

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but it's really up to you what you want to do.

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If you have an existing shop.

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Perfect. I am excited about this for some of our listeners,

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Julie, I think that this could spark the idea and get

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people moving and started with their business.

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I think it's fabulous.

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Where could people go and find out a little bit more

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about you and your business and gold city ventures and get

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all the goods?

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You can learn more about me@goldcityventures.com

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and that's where you can get some freebies and learn more

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about the printables course and hear more success stories of other

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people who have taken that course and what results they've gotten.

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Perfect. Wonderful Julie.

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Well, thank you so much.

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I appreciate your coming on today.

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Sharing everything about printable products and your business success that you've

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had. And I just really love that you're helping other people

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be able to do the same thing that you've done.

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Thanks again for being on the show.

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Thanks Sue.

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This was a blast.

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Are you intrigued by the world of printables?

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If so,

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don't forget about the free downloadable ebook.

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Julie offered.

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You can get it at gift biz,

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unwrapped.com forward slash seasonal printables.

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I'll link that up in the show notes for you to

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make yourself a special reminder to tune.

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In next week.

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I have two very sweet and special guests that I can't

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wait to share with.

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You. They'll make you smile and feel all warm and cozy

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like a hot cup of cocoa complete with whipped cream and

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a dusting of nutmeg.

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Thanks so much for spending time with me today.

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If you'd like to show support for the podcast,

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leaving a rating and review helps the show get seen by

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more makers.

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It's a great way to pay it forward.

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As a loyal listener,

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there are other ways to show support for the podcast to

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visit our brand new shop for a wide variety of gift

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biz paraphernalia like mugs,

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t-shirts water bottles and more featuring logos and quotes to inspire

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you throughout your day.

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They make great holiday gifts too.

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Can be shipped throughout the U S and are available at

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gift biz,

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unwrapped.com forward slash shop all proceeds,

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help offset the cost of producing this podcast and now be

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safe and well.

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And I'll see you again next week on the gift biz

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unwrapped podcast.

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I want to make sure your familiar with my free Facebook

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group called gift is breeze.

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It's a place where we all gather and our community to

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support each other.

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Got a really fun post in there.

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That's my favorite of the week.

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I have to say where I invite all of you to

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share what you're doing to show pictures of your product,

Speaker:

to show what you're working on for the week to get

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reaction from other people and just for fun,

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because we all get to see the wonderful products that everybody

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in the community is making my favorite post every single week,

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without doubt.

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Wait, what aren't you part of the group already,

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if not make sure to jump over to Facebook and search

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for the group gift biz breeze don't delay.