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Shut Up And Kiss Me

Answers to your questions about selling.

Written by Clare

Some excellent questions landed in my inbox this week.

Today I thought I’d saddle up my horse and gallop on over to my computer to answer them.

Question: “How do I get my buyers to come back?”

Answer: Anthony bought me a Time Team t-shirt and it made me want to marry him all over again.

In case you don’t know, Time Team was a TV show in which a team of experts carried out an archaeological dig in three days. They excavated sites ranging from the furthest reaches of the stone age to the Second World War.

Although it’s been off the air for seven years, I’m crazy about Time Team. And a couple of weeks ago, Anthony came home with a present for me.

He’d bought me an official t-shirt, simply because he knew I’d love it.

I do, but mostly it reminded me how much I love him.

How does this help you get more repeat custom?

Sometimes selling is about delivering delightfully unexpected moments to our customers.

If it feels like yours are drifting away, ask yourself what they care about.

Use that knowledge to create an enjoyable little surprise for them.

Something that makes them remember why they love you.

If you think about it, I bet you’ll be able to give them a “shut up and kiss me” moment of your own.

Question: “Is it too late to pitch my work to stores for Christmas?”

Answer: No, but the window is closing.

This is one heck of a weird year for retail. My sense is most shopkeepers are still aiming to have the majority of their Christmas buying nailed down by the beginning of November.

I think, however, that retailers are being more cautious about how much they’re spending than usual – certainly in the UK where we could be told to close again very soon. That means there may be more money available for new orders, especially if you can deliver quickly.

Either way, now is an excellent time to pull together a catalogue or line sheet and send a persuasive pitch email…but get your skates on.

Question: “How should I respond to a bad Etsy review?”

Answer: Calmly.

But do these three things first:

1. Feel your feelings.

Bad feedback is like food poisoning – it’s not going to magically vanish if you just ignore it or think positive thoughts.

2. Notice what story you’re telling yourself.

We all tend to go off on one when we get bad feedback.

It usually feels like proof that whatever bad thing you secretly think about yourself is true.

But no. This is just a thing that happened. There’s no need to knit it into some big story about how you suck and your business is doomed.

3. Look again at the actual feedback.

When you can separate your story from the situation, go back to what the customer said.

If you’re in the wrong, apologise and fix it. Everyone is allowed to make mistakes.

If they’re in the wrong, acknowledge their feelings and say what you’ll do to prevent similar confusion in the future. Stick to the facts.

Then get out of there and have a pumpkin spiced beverage. You deserve it.

Question: “How do I write good emails to my mailing list?”

Answer: Write like you talk.

Trying to sound “professional” is the biggest mistake I see artists making with email.

If I’m on your list, I already think you’re worthy of my time and attention.

Like, you’ve got me. You don’t have to keep trying to win me over by pretending to be something you’re not.

So loosen up. Share something YOU think is cool about your work.

You probably don’t realise how interesting that is.

Clare Yuille Bio Picture

Hello, I'm Clare Holliday. I'm a shopkeeper who's helped thousands of creative people sell their work to stores, galleries and regular customers all over the world. Now it's your turn.

Worry less. Sell more.