Monday, June 7, 2010

I would love to promote your items!


That's right, let me do the hard work for you!

The inaugural round of AmuseBoites was highly successful, with most packages selling in the first day! Two boxes remain for anyone still looking to snatch one up before they're all gone :)

In any case, I am now looking for sellers who would like their items promoted in the next round of samplers! I already have a couple of Etsians signed on, and will be posting seller info as soon as those samples arrive (and I have a chance to try them out for myself), but if you'd like to get in on the fun, send me an email and we'll work something out!  I'm especially interested in the following items:

- homemade laundry detergent
- non-perishable edibles
- bath & beauty products
- reusable items like tote bags and produce bags
- items made from upcycled / repurposed materials
- jewelry

...and all items MUST:

- be eco-friendly in at least one major way (ie: all-natural, organic, fair-trade, little or no packaging, recyclable/biodegradable components or packaging, recycled/upcycled/repurposed materials, etc.)
- appeal to a wide range of individuals
- be handmade by you!

If your items fit those descriptions, I'd love to hear from you!  You can also click here to learn more about AmuseBoite's profit-sharing model and how I ensure that you get compensated for your hard work!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Samplers as an advertising tool - an overview (plus tips and tricks!)


I recently came across this article on the EcoEtsy team's blog, and I wanted to share it. Not only is it extremely well-written, but it also does a fabulous job of highlighting the pros and cons of using sampler boxes as a way to advertise your business. As the article says, this form of promotion is definitely not for everyone, but it provides many tips and tricks to ensure that you (the seller) make the most of the opportunity, if you decide to give it a try. Here are some highlights:

If you do decide to partipate [sic.] in a sampler program, here are a few tips for you:

1) Mark your product or promo with your business name. Subscribers will be opening a box full of samples. If your card gets separated from your work, how will they know who made it, and how will they find you?
2) Send an example of your work, whenever possible, rather than a coupon or flyer, and send your best work. Don’t use your “seconds” or “oopsies” as advertising. You’re making a first impression here, after all.
3) Sign up for more than one month if you can. Some contributors reaped benefits after a few consecutive months of participating.

Having now organized a sampler box of my own, I'd like to add the following tips gained through my experience at the organizing end:

1) Keep all of your materials and products together. Rather than sending products with a handful of business cards, take the time to attach your business card to your product sample as you would like it to be attached. This gives you much more control over the final presentation of your product, and it ensures that the recipient of the sampler will be able to know how to purchase or order more from you, should they choose to do so.

2) As a sort of corollary to #1, Include as much information as possible. Don't go overboard here, but including a price list, photos of other products, even a little card outlining your philosophy and background can really help potential customers to get a sense of who you are and why your products are special. Help them see the person behind the product!

3) Provide a coupon or discount code. This one is more beneficial than you think. Not only are you providing an added incentive for sampler recipients to purchase from you (and when you consider the fact that any sampler may have duplicates of one kind of item, any little bit helps here), but you're also making it easier to track the source of new customers. By adding a coupon code such as "MaySampler10" to your business cards or product labels, you can help get a sense of how many sales were generated through this venture.

4) Label and wrap your sample as you would like sampler recipients to receive them. This one does not apply solely to products destined for samplers, but it always bears repeating. Label products properly and include all relevant information so as to make it easier for new customers to find you if your business card gets lost. New customers shouldn't have to go searching for ingredient lists to ensure that your samples are allergy-safe. Wrapping your sample properly is also extremely important, especially if it involves liquid or powders - anything that could leak out and damage other contents. Proper labeling and packaging is one of the easiest and best ways to make a professional and positive first impression!

Have you ever participated in or purchased a sampler box? What tips would you offer buyers or sellers?

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

all bundled up and ready to go!


There are only a few packages left for sale in this round (2 to be exact), but some of you may be waiting for yours to arrive in the mail, so I thought I'd post a few teaser photos. I do oh so love teasing! 


I don't know if I've mentioned my packaging-ethos before, but I've been striving for a balance between eco-friendly and pretty.  I want you to feel like you're receiving a lovely gift in the mail, but I also want to minimize waste and reuse materials as much as possible.  That's why almost all of the packaging supplies I've used to wrap the AmuseBoites are repurposed and reusable/recyclable (packing paper, packing peanuts, magazine pages, etc.).  In fact, only the tissue paper inside, and the plastic bags used to wrap some items (to make sure that nothing leaks), are not living out a second life.

I highly encourage you to reuse all of the shipping and packing materials as much as possible before throwing them out :)

Sunday, May 9, 2010

box half-full/empty?


Well, I guess it depends on your perspective!

Either way, half of the available samplers have been sold (in the span of four days - impressive!), so 5 now remain in case you still want to snag yourself some awesome swag (:

Since I've been having so much fun with it, I've decided to extend the "customize your box" option. If you're interested in a sampler but want to make sure that you'll get only scents/colours that you'll use, get in touch with me! I'd be more than happy to give you an overview of the selection still available (mostly because I'm very confident that you'll find something you'll love).

There is also the option of a mini-sampler if you're interested in the products available but don't want to commit to the full-size package (or are dismayed by the shipping costs - frustrating for you and I both, I assure you!). I haven't bothered to list them for sale, but if you'd like to try a half-sized package, let me know! I'm nothing if not flexible (: The shipping price will vary depending on the samples you'd like, but could be as low as $2.50.

Once again, here are the links!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

...and they're up!


UPDATE: The first few samplers flew off the shelves within minutes of being listed!
Only the NEXT BUYER will get to choose his/her samples, if he/she so desires - after that, samples will be selected at random. Love/hate a particular scent or colour? This is the last chance to have your way!


It's been over a month of planning, convoing, buying, shipping, and anxiously awaiting, but the samplers are finally ready to head out the door!

You can click on the images below to be taken directly to the AmuseBoite etsy shop, where you can purchase your very own sampler. Keep in mind that the first 5 people to purchase boxes will get to choose the scents/colours of their box contents (if they so desire), so if you have a preference one way or another I wouldn't sit on the fence for too long (:

Happy Thursday!

Monday, May 3, 2010

The samplers go on sale on Wednesday!


I'm still waiting on two parcels to arrive, but it's been long enough.  It's time to get these packages out the door!

Sampler packages will go on sale on Wednesday evening.  Each one will contain between 17 and 19 samples from different Etsy sellers.  As I've mentioned before, the first 5 buyers will get to choose the scents / colours of the items they receive (in the case where there are different options to choose from), so there's definitely added incentive to purchase early.  If you're a fan of surprises, though, you can still elect to have all of the contents remain a mystery!  Just let me know either way by writing a note in the "message to seller" section when you purchase your Sampler (:

I'll add another post on Wednesday once they're up... the final countdown begins!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

LEFTZ eco-friendly sparrow plush giveaway!


When Mary from ArtTales offered me a promo spot on her blog a few weeks ago, I was very excited at the opportunity to be a "featured etsian" on such a great blog.  If you haven't yet checked out either her shop or her blog, be sure to head over and do so -  I can't recommend them enough!

One of the things that is so cool about Mary's work is her total commitment to being eco-friendly, from using recycled fabrics (collected from family members, thrift shops and yard sales) to stuffing each plush with plastic bags that would otherwise be destined for the landfill.  In fact, in every product description she notes how many bags were used to stuff that particular piece, so you can even picture the volume of plastic that is being repurposed.  How cool is that!?

ArtTales is currently hosting a giveaway on her blog, so if her creations sound like the kind of characters that you'd like to have around (and seriously, why wouldn't they?), head on over to enter it for yourself!  She's giving away three of her adorable plush sparrows, so you have three chances to win (: