Welcome to Curious Business
Every Friday, I post a small insight into running Curio City and/or Blue Hills Editorial Services. My most recent posts are directly below. You can also start with the first post, or use the subject labels to the right to home in on particular topics. Feel free to comment on anything that interests you.
Friday, May 24, 2013
No post last week, and only a quick one today, because I’m focused on gardening. I’ve been struggling against off-and-on rain to get my vegetables into the ground by Memorial Day. Customers are cooperating by delivering what could end up being the worst week since July 2011 (my gross pay for this week so far comes to $72). However, I’m too compulsive to skip two blog entries in a row, so you get a few half-baked thoughts today.
Thanks to Dove kites, Pentecost is a much bigger holiday than Mothers Day. “What is Pentecost?” you ask. Well, it’s got something to do with Easter and doves and it moves around the calendar from year to year. I should try to remember to pay attention to it next year.
I should use the Facebook more often, because that’s the only marketing that ever goes anywhere anymore. Posting a decent new product (in this case, the Red Cup Wine Glasses) plus a discount coupon draws some interest and sometimes even a sale or two. ‘Course, those are discounted sales, but hey, they beat storing the stuff in my cellar at full price until Christmas.
How many Facebook posts would constitute overdoing it and turning people off? Most people don’t hate shopping as much as I do, so maybe I could post as often as twice a week. The Facebook says that I “reached” 140 people a couple of weeks ago – how meaningful is that? Are those unique users or repeat views?
I also sent out my first email newsletter in three months: 367 sent, 3 bounces, 4 opt-outs, 1 spam report; 103 opens, 16 clicks, 0 sales. Opt-outs always puzzle me; you opted in to the mailing list and got a coupon plus new product announcements…what did you think you were signing up for?
Anyway, I paid Constant Contact $48 at $16 per month to send out this newsletter. A 28% open rate is considered excellent and a 15% click rate isn’t too bad. But I effectively paid $3 per click and got nothing in return. Is it worth spending that $16 every month just to remind people that I exist by appearing in their inbox? (I know that young people shun email, but my customers are mostly aged 40-65 and many of them shun the Facebook.) If making periodic contact is worthwhile despite the lack of response, should I do it more often? Or should I forget about email entirely and save a little money?
This is not the first time I’ve asked that question, nor is it likely to be the first time I’ll answer it. Someday I should. Indecision costs me $16 per month.