• lesley posted a new activity comment 11 months, 3 weeks ago

    But it was enjoyable! : )

    I can’t believe I didn’t know about Will’s new career…amazing what he’s created and achieved. The watch numbers on some of his videos is stunning. Wonderful what a passion and much hard work can bring.

    I’d like to expand upon something you mentioned, Dori…the using just an excerpt in a newsletter and requiring…[Read more]

  • ::  :: Becoming more independent from social media ::  ::

    I’ve had the thought of giving up on this informal newletter course here because my days and my mind feel rather full lately…but instead, I d […]

    • I think you’re spot-on when you say that there’s no way to avoid the big corporations when it comes to online sharing – of any kind. Well, unless you’re some sort of multi-talented computer programmer who can build stuff from scratch but then how would anyone find you? 🙂

      I’m slowly coming to the realization that I have finite resources — time, energy etc — and that I need to be very discerning in how I spend those resources. Social media is simply not a good use of my time – both tangibly and intangibly (I get almost zero conversion from IG etc. for my book sales *and* it negatively impacts my mental health). I have my blog and newsletter and feel like that’s going to be it for a while….I’m feeling a strong pull to be retreating to my creative cave for the autumn and winter.

      YouTube is an excellent resource as a search engine and though it’s still governed by an algorithm, if you’re subscribed to a channel you WILL see the videos, unlike other platforms. The algorithm also seems to do a pretty good job of showing similar channels so I’ve found that very helpful…and I imagine helps with visibility and findability. I’ve also watch smaller creators get picked up by the algorithm and absolutely explode with new subscribers….one went from under a thousand to almost 75,000 in the few months I was following her!

      So, to answer your question — I’m still untangling the threads of my weaving but I think that’s the wiser option than trying to create something out of a knotted heap 😉

    • I am still on both FB and IG. A FB I have both my personal account and a business page. I have hugely pared down my “friends” list and businesses I follow, but am a member of a number of very helpful groups there (beekeeping for example), and our island community has several groups/pages where we can get info when the ferries have issues, or there is a road closure or power outage. I’ll remain at FB while it remains useful. I do have about 150 followers on my business page there, but have had some success in nudging them to my newsletter, and I’ll keep nudging until I can close that page, likely early next year.

      Instagram is for me, my magazine substitute, I suppose. I follow those who post the images that please me. I only allow those who might be like-minded folk to follow me, and have no qualms about blocking anyone for any reason. (mostly men or faux men…) I post images of my life, glimpses into what I love…in the main, nature, garden, herbs, crafting. I’ll be gone from there for a week or two or three, and then back when it pleases me to be. It is very rarely used to promote my products, but when I do show a new tea, or soap, or whatever I may be creating, I almost always have visitors to my website/blog.

      None of the social media sites consume the number of hours they once did. Although, I too am looking at YouTube as a way to stay better in touch with customers both old and new. Even after eleven years, so many still miss coming into the shop to see me and visit. I think there is a way for me to bring some of the coziness of my shop back to life as well as share other things and promote whatever I determine to be that which I want to produce, promote, or…. That really is the crux of the issue, I suppose.

      By-the-way, my son started a YouTube channel a little over two years ago, with a very clear vision to build subscribers and then launch an aquarium plant business. He has grown to 8.22k subscribers, started his “grow” business, launched a webshop, and earlier this month gave notice at his county job. He goes full time as a solo-preneur Nov. 2. I’ve been so impressed with his vision and determination. I am very proud of him. (You can see my boy at NWAquahobby and hear him say “What is going on everyone. I am Will and this is Northwest Aquahobby” Never fails to make me giggle.)

      As my post bricks-and-mortar tea business has shrunk, so has my newsletter list! Right now my newsletter is basically my “Shopkeeping” posts from my blog with info on new products, sales, shows, and a bit about what’s happening in my tiny part of the world. Like some of you, I send a pretty photo and a snippet of text with an invitation to click on for more. I like this so much better! Recipients can click through or not, and I am quite fine with that. Next year I plan to start sending nearly all posts out as newsletters. That won’t be a deluge, however, because I don’t see myself posting more than 2 to 4 times a month. There will be fewer if any shopkeeping posts, and more posts about my garden, the seasons, nature, teas and herbs, and making things and more offering of heartfelt words. Goods will ever become less the emphasis, as sharing my love for nature becomes more the focus. And I betcha my subscriber number takes another hit, as customers realize my intention to shrink my business even more. But that is okay, right? Because we want to reach out to our perfect audience.

      It’s all still a bit of a muddle in my mind, but the tangle is loosening. I may go ahead and watch Yarrow’s next video on choosing a newsletter provider, because I wish to leave MailChimp soon. I’ll likely head to MailPoet as it is designed to work so well with WordPress. : )

      • Oh, my goodness… I’m so sorry that is so long!

        • But it was enjoyable! : )

          I can’t believe I didn’t know about Will’s new career…amazing what he’s created and achieved. The watch numbers on some of his videos is stunning. Wonderful what a passion and much hard work can bring.

          I’d like to expand upon something you mentioned, Dori…the using just an excerpt in a newsletter and requiring those who want to read in full to click to the website. I do with with W&S, of course, but haven’t done it with my newsletter because a few people said how much they like receiving the whole thing. These were W&S subscribers so they could compare.

          It’s much better for our businesses to have people on our websites so they might click around there and go further or purchase or….whatever. But I’ve hesitated to require it.

          I’d love to hear everyone’s opinion on that…

          • I did receive a few comments from people wishing to see the whole newsletter. However, the clicks over to my website have greatly increased, and I’ve begun getting comments on my posts. Joy! Not many, but oh, what a pleasant surprise when I do. It does seem, once someone clicks over to read the entire news post, they are so much more inclined to read other posts or take a gander at teas and apothecary goods. And it’s so nice just to write my post there at wp, and copy and paste in just one photo and a smidge of text at mailchimp and send it on it’s way. Feels rather ‘two birds with one stone-ish’. (I don’t like that saying either….) My voice evens feels more authentically me, less sales pitchy.

            Will’s commitment has just been amazing to me. In this case those OCD tendencies have served him well! : ) Yes, those watch numbers are incredible. I was trying to explain some of this to my mother…..!

  • lesley posted a new activity comment 12 months ago

    Oh, I’m definitely following my new crush, mel. : ) And it is the first time in a long while that I’ve felt joy in my creating. That’s how I knew it was a good thing.

    Your newsletters are magnificent, by the way…or at least deeply delightful with gorgeous photos.

    By the way, mel, do receive the personal emails I send? I don’t hear back…[Read more]

  • lesley posted a new activity comment 12 months ago

    As mel said, you can get around the real address easily. There seems to be no checking up on it. I use “lark rise” which is what I would name our home if it didn’t already have a a historical name. And I use a nearby town, not mine.

    But I think a podcast sounds wonderful! And the best fit for your needs.

    I’ve been learning a lot about…[Read more]

  • So…I listened to the first video in the Newsletter Magic course and found it pretty straightfoward and familiar in the main, until the very last part…

    Why a newsletter?  What is important about having […]

    • Oh now this is interesting. I’ve wanted to do a newsletter for years but the real address issue always stopped me (PO Boxes are £300 over here!). And now with the RA, typing is one of my pain triggers so what I’ve done is started a verbal newsletter in the form of a podcast. I’m hoping it fills the same space because it’s all I can do. But I haven’t really thought of it as a platform for selling/informing…at least not yet. And from my research, a YouTube channel’s reach can be massive. If i could handle the editing, I’d start one.

      • mel replied 12 months ago

        Are you concerned about the address bit that appears at the bottom of the newsletter, Michelle? I use MailerLite as my provider and have evaded putting in my actual address…..

        Territory of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy <—- true story
        The Borderlands <— we live on the Canada/US border
        Ontario, Canada

        I'm pretty sure you can do that with any of the providers.

        I love the idea of the podcast newsletter….I think that has enormous appeal. xo

        • Thanks, Mel. I suppose I should have thought about not using a real address but all the forms say you have to be able to get mail at it and I’m paranoid. So. But it’s a moot point as typing isn’t getting easier. Podcast it is.

      • As mel said, you can get around the real address easily. There seems to be no checking up on it. I use “lark rise” which is what I would name our home if it didn’t already have a a historical name. And I use a nearby town, not mine.

        But I think a podcast sounds wonderful! And the best fit for your needs.

        I’ve been learning a lot about youtube in the last few days and have some realistic goals now. It won’t, in itself, be a moneymaker for me unless I get really popular, but I still feel it is the best fit for what I am interesting in doing now.

        Oh, and I found a super simple editing program (month long free trial and $9.99 after that) called Adobe Spark that you might look into if little films do appeal to you, michelle.

        • If you get picked up by the algorithm, you can get quite popular quite fast on YouTube, but that’s a headache in itself, I imagine. And thanks for the software recommendation – I have tried iMovie & DaVinci and both were far too confusing. Glad you found something simpler.

    • mel replied 12 months ago

      I don’t love writing newsletters either….I feel like it’s just one more intrusion into people’s lives and so have put this ridiculous amount of pressure on myself to be magnificent. :).

      But, as you say, without social media, one isn’t left with a huge amount of options.

      I think you should follow your distraction, Lesley…there’s a lot of wisdom in going where the joy is because it shows in whatever it is that you’re creating. 😉 xo

      • Oh, I’m definitely following my new crush, mel. : ) And it is the first time in a long while that I’ve felt joy in my creating. That’s how I knew it was a good thing.

        Your newsletters are magnificent, by the way…or at least deeply delightful with gorgeous photos.

        By the way, mel, do receive the personal emails I send? I don’t hear back from you usually and wonder if they are falling through a crack…

        • mel replied 12 months ago

          I just went scouting in the cobwebby places of my email and there you were….relegated to Spam…the horror!!! So I have your latest missive, but none before that…i imagine they were jettisoned into the ether without my ever having seen them. I really should check the spam more often — so sorry!!!!

          I’m thrilled that you’re following your crush…and excited to see the fruits of your labours 🙂 xoxo

    • Silent films on YouTube – this is ringing a little bell inside me. I did make one years ago and had a ball doing it, spent way too long on it but then apparently forgot all about it. I’m going to look into this again.

    • Quickly wanted to add that I’ve also thought longingly about sending newsletters through the snail mail. I used to love and adore writing letters back in the day. I know some people do this with their mailing list for a small joining fee to cover costs but I’m not sure of the logistics of it. I might sign up for some and see how it all works.

      • This is my secret wish too. I love, love, love the idea of real mail newsletters. Sylvia Linsteadt used to send out short stories and gifts she’d found on the land that way and I thought it was the most beautiful thing ever. But I know myself that I would struggle to keep up with doing them so I have never attempted it. Maybe a short season of doing it, like three letters in winter or something…or one every quarter would be doable.

        • I had a very short run of sending out short stories by mail, Tonia, lo these many years ago. It was three, I think, over the course of the summer….but even that felt like an immense strain on my resources – ha!. I would love to figure out a way to do it in a more sustainable fashion….a written newsletter would be the very best of all worlds as far as I can tell. 🙂

  • lesley wrote a new post, newsletter magic!, on the site Rosehip Business 1 year ago

    So…shall we do Newsletter Magic together? Slowly, slowly? Those of us who bought the course can watch the videos that go with the prompts and exercises, those who haven’t could do the journaling/thinking […]

    • dori replied 1 year ago

      I’ll follow along. Timing will be perfect for me, too.

    • mel replied 1 year ago

      I will happily follow along with the journaling/prompts portion…..there’s always an opportunity to learn new things. 😉

    • tonia replied 1 year ago

      The newsletter course sounds very intriguing. I haven’t had much focus lately and I’m intrigued.

  • lesley posted a new activity comment 1 year ago

    Pearly white and pineapple…that’s evocative. I didn’t even do that prompt because I seem to be over prompts. : ) But I’ve done so many of them over the years, including the ideal client work that you mentioned with Hannah. Now I know none of that is right for me, tho’ when it was fun to explore it all, I certainly did!

    Your mention of Hannah…[Read more]

  • lesley posted a new activity comment 1 year ago

    Yes, Dori, the switch was easy…tho’ I haven’t done it entirely for one of my mailing lists because that would mean changing out the breadcrumbs in the Peaceful Homeschooling Pages download that lead to the signup page. It seems too much for my brain right now. : )

    But MailPoet only works with WordPress, as far as I know. Do you use that for…[Read more]

  • lesley posted a new activity comment 1 year ago

    And in the way of things in recent years…I knew almost immediately after skimming some of Susannah’s prompts that I’ve moved beyond her way of pondering. Too many questions for me! But if there’s much you still need to suss out, you might like it.

    I do rather wonder if Susannah herself actually uses this approach, or if she is creating what…[Read more]

  • “Being a beekeeper, I’ll add a thought about flowers attracting with color and scent. Flowers also attract with frequency or vibration. If they are a nectar producing bloom, they emit a different pitch when t […]

    • lesley replied 1 year ago

      And in the way of things in recent years…I knew almost immediately after skimming some of Susannah’s prompts that I’ve moved beyond her way of pondering. Too many questions for me! But if there’s much you still need to suss out, you might like it.

      I do rather wonder if Susannah herself actually uses this approach, or if she is creating what she thinks others might want?

      Wondering if what this space would best provide is some accountability? Yarrow (Root Stem Bloom) is having a sale until the 21st and I wanted to support her so bought her newsletter course for only $28. I thought it was generous of her to let us use the RSB videos and she is one of only two women who I find interesting in their approach to business just now.

      And I remember Leanne (I believe?) mentioning wanting to work with her newsletter. I want to, as well, since it is my main source of reaching out these days…yet I still don’t send one out as often as I would like to.

      If a newsletter focus was something many of us would like to give some attention to, perhaps we could do Yarrow’s little course together? Those who can afford to buy it could do so (she explains her reason for the sale so beautifully here //yarrowdigital.com/2021/09/15/67-back-to-school-sale-30-off-everything-i-do/ )

      Those are my Saturday afternoon thoughts…

    • dori replied 1 year ago

      I purchased Yarrow’s newsletter course. She was so generous with us, I’d like to support her in a small way, too. This is actually so timely, since by next year I hope to better use my newsletter for more than just selling tea and herbal things.

      Lesley, you use MailPoet, was it easy to transition to? I want to finally leave MailChimp; they no longer play well with Shopify and were just sold to Intuit, and I can imagine the pressure soon to be levied to purchase additional products.

      • lesley replied 1 year ago

        Yes, Dori, the switch was easy…tho’ I haven’t done it entirely for one of my mailing lists because that would mean changing out the breadcrumbs in the Peaceful Homeschooling Pages download that lead to the signup page. It seems too much for my brain right now. : )

        But MailPoet only works with WordPress, as far as I know. Do you use that for your blog/website?

        • dori replied 1 year ago

          Yes! : ) My website and blog are at WordPress now. I paste snippets of code in to bring products over from Shopify onto blog pages basically. A little bit of work on my end, but very doable, and it still allows me to use Shopify’s cart and checkout and tax calculations. I just didn’t feel up to learning woocommerce.

          I will buckle down and switch to MailPoet. Will be nice to send a newsletter direct from WP.

    • Leanne replied 1 year ago

      I did start Susannah’s free course but only got to day 2 before I was overwhelmed with the questions. The day 1 prompt was lovely though, discovering my business is pearly white and smells like pineapple!
      Anither person whose work has been helpful to me previously is Hannah Marcotti – she had a course called Community Grace and another called Write To Me which were all about connecting with our ideal people. She seems to have gone in another direction recently though.
      I’ve completed all my prompts from our recent workshop so I’ll definitely have a look at Yarrow’s course Lesley, thanks for sharing it.

      • lesley replied 1 year ago

        Pearly white and pineapple…that’s evocative. I didn’t even do that prompt because I seem to be over prompts. : ) But I’ve done so many of them over the years, including the ideal client work that you mentioned with Hannah. Now I know none of that is right for me, tho’ when it was fun to explore it all, I certainly did!

        Your mention of Hannah sent me down a little rabbit hole. In the early days of the interwebs I met her often here and there, and signed up for a few of her email courses. She is a deep soul, for sure. It was interesting to look her up and see that she is in an earthy/homesteading season now. I think she might have been at Squam for the first art camp there that I also attended.

        • Leanne replied 1 year ago

          Oh Squam, I kept hearing about it way back when and wanting to go so badly!
          Hannah’s courses as I remember them weren’t so much about the ideal client but more about connections with the like-minded in general, on reflection a lot like what you’ve created with W&S. I’ll have to see if I can find some of my journaling from those prompts.
          I would really like to do as Mel mentioned and move to a new paradigm away from the focus on reaching a six figure income on the pain points of others.

    • mel replied 1 year ago

      I clearly missed the boat on the Susannah Conway thing…which is just as well as when it first appeared in my email letterbox, I knew it wasn’t for me. I only considered it again on your recommendation and so I’m quietly amused to see that it no longer resonated. I feel like my idea/thoughts/visions for whatever it is I’m doing — and I’m no longer certain that what I want is a ‘business’ in the traditional sense — simply does not jive with most of what exists out there. (Yarrow’s work being an exception.)

      Regarding your wondering about if Susannah operates in the same way that her course outlines, I find it very curious so observe that even those who are operating from a ‘heart-centered business’ philosophy, are still rooted very deeply in traditional, capitalist-driven business practices …. so perhaps she’s tailoring her offering to popular ‘pain-points’. I don’t know. I shouldn’t comment, I’m fairly jaded by the internet these days. Everyone’s a snake oil salesperson in my eyes right now! 😀

      Funds are snug in these parts so I wasn’t able to support Yarrow through her sale….though, again, I’m feeling that what I really need is time for reflection, rather than tangible direction. ;)…and my newsletter seems to something that I do fairly well with.

  • lesley posted a new activity comment 1 year ago

    I am finding the getting back to work (W&S, communicating with shop customers, beginning the Daybook designing) not meeting my energy for it all very well. Hope to have a followup post this Friday? So we may keep the conversations going…

  • lesley posted a new activity comment 1 year ago

    Oh yes, I have to let much of it wash over me and just reach out for treasures…what feels like a treasure to me. : ) So much online is like walking along a beach, isn’t it? We are all drawn to pick up different things…

  • lesley posted a new activity comment 1 year ago

    So glad, mel! You might enjoy her free workbook Our bodies as anti-capitalist business mentors. I’ve only skimmed it, and it deserves the opposite of skimming, so I am saving it for the right moment. Tho’ I have a feeling my body has long been teaching me this…

    //yarrowdigital.com/workbook/

  • lesley posted a new activity comment 1 year ago

    I seem to have come to a stopping point…or my brain has. : ) My page is nicely filled and I am making small lists on the back with ideas for the still-unanswered bits on the front. I know I will keep this page next to me in my studio so that I can keep adding to it.

    As I said, I will share what has come to me early next week, and I hope you…[Read more]

  • lesley replied to the topic Dori's Teatime Journal in the forum journals 1 year ago

    Beautiful! I had to delete everything in front of the www and then it worked.

  • lesley posted a new activity comment 1 year ago

    That is why I pulled all of the paper things out of my shop this summer, because I’ve lost the joy of them. When I do put some back next month, I want it to only be what I feel truly happy and connected with. So there won’t be much…for now.

  • lesley posted a new activity comment 1 year ago

    …or don’t feel like offering them at all. This is insightful, Dori.

  • lesley posted a new activity comment 1 year ago

    Ok, so…I feel ready to try to fit my notes and thoughts into the Root Stem Bloom page. A first draft, really. Because this is the sort of thing I’ve been taking first steps with for awhile…and will find more steps to take as I am in the midst of working.

    I can see us having many conversations in the future using the Root Stem Bloom…[Read more]

  • lesley posted a new activity comment 1 year ago

    I put nuts in it, so it would make a lovely breakfast. : )

  • lesley posted a new activity comment 1 year ago

    Oh good…were you not able to sleep after all?

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