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09/20/2023 at 7:53 pm #4685Laura BerlageKeymaster
If you only want to make kits for your classes, that’s great–go for it. If you want to turn your edupreneurship into an even more financially viable practice, harness the work you made when preparing for your class into something with sales potential all on its own.
If you already have pre-recorded tutorials, written instructions with pictures, and the materials assembled into a nice package, why not offer this as a stand-alone item? What if your students want to make a skill builder project but that class isn’t being offered soon? What if they loved felting a cardinal and would want to take home the option to felt a fox with their niece? See where I’m going?
I sell vastly more needle felting kits through gift shops and ecommerce than I do through the classes I teach. I budget the time to design them for upcoming classes, then utilize that effort as a revenue generator afterwards. I sell crochet and knitting patterns on Ravelry. I offer “tapestry taster” kits that are novice level, introducing folks to the medium in a friendly way. If this sounds interesting to you, get yourself an e-commerce platform, get on Etsy, get yourself into gift shops that cater to the type of person that would love your kits–essentially, get out there. Spread the net wide!
Your kits have the potential to funnel folks to your classes as well. Include links to your website and class calendar. The kit may give them a taste that leaves them wanting more–feed the appetite.
Some considerations when adapting your kit for sale outside your class:
- Price your kit so it can stay the same or similar price not matter where it goes. Many consignment shops have a 60/40 split for sales, so keep that in mind. If it’s $20 from you but $40 from somewhere else, that gets nasty pretty quick.
- Make your packaging eye-catching. I’m transitioning to clear packaging for many kits so folks can see what’s inside easier, as the colors are delicious!
- Make sure your branding is there. Draw students to you and what you have to offer.
- Start small, with things that are easy to package and sell without you. Start at beginner level.
- Approach the gift shops of places where you teach. This makes a great connection!
- Continue to develop new kits, so clients can be excited about new releases.
- Keep in close touch with shops that carry your kits. Prompt them when you are coming through with a potential delivery, which saves them on shipping. They will order from you more often when you are more present for them, as they are busy people and may forget to reach out about restocking.
- Share which gift shops you are in or links to your e-commerce platform on social media and on your website, so people can find your goods wherever they are. Toot your horn and announce product releases. Get folks excited!
As a sheep farmer, wool is one of our crops. Turning wool into roving or yarn and then that into kits is a triple-fold value added process. Selling those kits even beyond my class availability increases the income I can earn from my efforts and helps me not have to stretch too thin with my teaching schedule in order to feel like I am making this effort pay. This might not be for everyone, but it is certainly worth considering.
How does this help you think about merchandizing your materials kits? What questions about this process does this raise for you?
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