To self-educate with biz knowledge and practices, I find I visit with random regularity (is that an oxymoron?) to review the Etsy Community Forum topics. Recently one post (“600 Sales and what I learned” by ) caught my eye. At number 4 of the posted  learned-list, I read it was important to include a THANK YOU GIFT along with the customer’s order.

Of course, I have always included a little notecard printed with the corresponding HIDE A HEART product photo including the information and hand written my thank you message on the back. But, I had never thought that the THANK YOU needed to be in the form of a gift as the Etsy Forum topic suggested.

While just about every successful Etsian Shop owner has some sage advice to offer and while what works for one seller won’t be a perfect fit for another, I think it’s important to at least ‘consider’ suggestions.

In the Etsy topic post the writer infers that the THANK YOU need not be extravagant, the idea being that people simply like to ‘get something for free’ or at the very least percieve they have received something for free.

I took a peek at the Esty ‘give away’ listings and nothing really appealed to me and besides it meant I needed to ‘purchase’ something to give away! Wait a minute!!! Is this REALLY what I need to do to be an appreciative seller?  Hmmmm.

OK, I have to admit I have an absolute committment to being an appreciative seller.  I know going the ‘extra mile’ is, to quote the handmade diva Martha Stewart, “A Good Thing”! I thought, ” If I’m going to give something away shouldn’t I also take advantage of this being an advertising opportunity?”  I found myself obessing about the idea, and when my dreams chronically began to be about ‘designing the give away’ I realized the entire idea had become intriguing and was going to haunt me to the end of my nights if I didn’t at least TRY to figure something out! Obviously this was going to require a fair amount of thought! For example:

What to make that–

  1. Someone would like to receive
  2. Wouldn’t take a lot of time to create
  3. Could be created in advanced
  4. Could be stored
  5. Didn’t take up a lot of space
  6. Would ‘fit into’ the mailing pouch or box without being ruined, crushed, bent or broken (after all, receiving  a THANK YOU in bad condition would NOT reflect appreciation!)

And, most importantly

     7. What materials did I already have on hand so I didn’t need to make an additonal purchase to ‘give’ away something of reasonable value that also served as an advert piece in appreciation for buying a HIDE A HEART–jeez!

This was beginning to smack of sending a THANK YOU card for receiving a THANK YOU card! I was taught the practice to be ‘superfluous’ but somehow what once was ‘superfluous’ has now morphed into ‘biz best practice’!

So, not wanting to be thought of as an unappreciative seller or left out of the ‘best biz practices of the day’, I spent hours trying to think of SOMETHING by hunting through various bits and pieces I have tucked into every nook and crannie of the HAH studio–(I’ve grown fond of calling it the HAH STUDIO vs. ‘workshop’–‘office’ or one of my favorties ‘purgatory’! After all, I too have read that “words are powerful” and create a ‘reality’ so if one is going to choose one’s BETTER reality, one had better choose WONDERFUL words! This is a lesson learned some years ago when keeping a ‘cancer journal’ but that’s a whole other topic!) I try to upcycle, recycle and includicyle EVERYTHING! Besides, I’ve learned that divesting myself of materials has it’s EXPENSE!!!

I finally hit pay dirt one day when stumbling, quite literally, over a sack. You see, when first developing HAH I created a ‘mini’ HAH for a wedding favor.  Unfortunately, no one ordered any, so I have a fair number of ‘mini HAH’ on hand. “Hmmmmm”, could I have finally found a use for the mini HAH? Might, in fact, the mini HAH  hold the key to my HUNT for the perfect THANK YOU!

Along with mini HAH’s there are also pieces of HAH ribbon, mismeasured or ‘gone ragged’ or what-have-you AND there is card stock with misprints or ‘oops, the ink just ran out’ prints, leaving a fair amount of USABLE space! (However, I have taken to shredding  the ‘mistake’ or edited card stock for use as packing material, but there’s still plenty around!)

I fiddled with gluing the mini heart to the THANK YOU photo notecard.

I thought perhaps I could simply hand write THANK YOU on a mini heart and tuck it into the package…but it looked as if it was less than thoughtful.

Finally, I decided a bookmark would be useful, had space for including a little advertising AND allowed for the handwritten THANK YOU message! Whew!

Please, post your thoughts.

In the meanwhile, I’m so thrilled with what I designed, a larger generic version of the HAH BOOK MARK could easily become a listing at some point, but that will require a lot of sprucing, finishing and OMGosh: MARKETING!!!


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