[vc_row][vc_column][vc_message]Niche : Personalized Design
Shop link : https://www.etsy.com/shop/DrifterStudio
Youtube : https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC271sNYeVvL3_ZKRoPX1G_g[/vc_message][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]
Tell us something about yourself. What is your niche? How did you get your idea or concept for the business?
I’ve always been fascinated with watercolor and different processes to create watercolor artwork. Digital watercolor originally got my attention because watercolor is very difficult to scan/digitize for the purpose of creating art prints. Digital painting totally circumnavigates that problem along with a few others.
What are your responsibilities as a business owner?
Most of the time I’m creating new watercolor tutorials for the Drifter Studio Youtube channel. I’m really trying to focus on short, simple, and inspiring watercolor techniques for the iPad. Other than that, I spend a lot of time just chatting with my customers.
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What are your best selling products, what type of materials are used in your creations, how do you design your products, what makes your products stand out?
My best selling product is a full watercolor set for the Procreate app. The kit comes with digital brushes and paper textures necessary to create watercolor paintings on your iPad. You can install the textures and brushes into the Procreate app and start painting very easily. Most of my customers are very new to this, so all of my video tutorials on the channel are beginner-oriented.
What do you enjoy most about being an entrepreneur? What’s the hardest about it?
Procrastinating is really tough, along with tolerating failure. Most of your ideas will fail but you have to do it anyway…the product that sells is very hard to predict. Sometimes, just before you complete a product, you really have to fight the urge to move on to some other project. You have to finish everything and make that a habit.
Who do you sell to (and how do you get customers)? What marketing tools or strategies you use to boost your sales? Are you satisfied with the results?
The best way to sell something is to create a need – otherwise, you are just competing with hundreds of other people. 99% of my marketing is just with my YouTube tutorials – they are so easy and inspiring, but you need to buy my digital watercolor kit in order to follow it. People find my tutorial to learn about procreating, but often fall in love with my simple digital-watercolor system and just buy the set.
Do you believe there is a winning formula for becoming a successful entrepreneur? What is yours?
You just need to keep creating new product ideas, new marketing techniques, and always finish what you started. Most of your ideas will fail but it’s normal. Try new stuff all the time, even silly ideas — the idea that is successful is really hard for you to predict. It may be that the thing you find easy is exactly the thing the world wants from you.
What was the toughest moment you have experienced in your business practice? How did you succeed to get over it and move forward?
Eventually, a successful product starts to decline and you may have a few failures in a row. This is a death-spiral for creative people – never lose your momentum. Always have another product to work on, even if your current one is doing well. Also, always have another product planned before you complete the one you are working on.
What inspires you when you’re creating? How do you get ideas for new products? What are some methods or tools you use to get creative?
I think it’s good to follow your instinct and play around. Try to use Pinterest to find out trendy ideas, buy other people’s products, and learn how they work. Learn design software, learn new tools. For me, ideas will just randomly link together across several of my skills and it ‘clicks’.
Do you ship your product internationally? How do you handle postage pricing? What is the average time it takes from the order to the delivery? Do you use free shipping? If so, why? How do you package your products?
If you want to make a lot of money, you need to sell a product that can ‘scale’. This is why I stick with digital products and digital resources. They are easy to distribute and it’s easy to handle busy days with hundreds of sales.
What would you say are the key elements for starting and running a successful online business?
You should learn to focus on your work. Don’t let negative ideas distract you. Learn how to manage and inspire yourself.
What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs who are starting out?
For me, I started with very little knowledge. So, I bought other people’s best-selling products and took them apart to figure out how it worked. I learned how to re-create their products, and then made them better. Eventually, I started getting totally new ideas and I finally had the tools and skills to make it a reality.
How do you personally define business success? Is it money? Freedom? Influence? Creative expression and innovation? Something else?
For me, a business is successful if it provides enough money to live on without causing stress. That’s why I focus on creating digital products. I’m always online to chat if someone needs help, but all of my products come with professional tutorial videos. This is a skill I really had to force myself to learn, but it has paid off tremendously.
Describe your day-to-day operation. How do you manage your time?
Most of my day is spent with my wife and son who is just a baby. We live near the beach and a few waterfalls, so we like to visit outdoors stuff. I work at least a few hours every day doing emails and pushing some new products forward. Some days I work very long hours because I really get sucked it. My schedule is very random. If I had to guess, I would say I work about 30 hours a week or less.
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How do you plan on growing your business? What is the biggest impact on your profitability?
I want to make more videos and grow my channel. The videos really drive traffic to my products and I can market new products to my subscribers.
What are some things you did to set your shop for success on Etsy? What is one lesson you learned the hard way?
The YouTube channel really did most of it. I already had a great product because it was selling on another site – I moved to Etsy because I have WAYY more control over the price and stuff.
Anything you wish to add, feel free to do so here. We value your opinion
The best way to market a product is to create a ‘need’ for people. Show people that your product can help them do something creative they never even thought of. Don’t just fill a category with the same thing someone else is selling. It’s 1000x harder to make money that way.