Two Chicago-based small business owners - Michelle (Michelle Starbuck Designs) & Emily (OrangeBeautiful) - meet each week for breakfast to discuss the perks and problems with running your own company, and the everyday life stuff that happens in between.
In this week's episode, Michelle and Emily research email marketing platforms for possible replacements for MailChimp since they no longer have an integration with Shopify. They compare the programs based on price, template designs, automation and reporting, ease of use, and the absurdity of their names.
Emily and Michelle get right back to business after a busy weekend at Show of Hands... just in time to react to Instagram’s newest potential change: hiding "likes". Is this really for our benefit to make the app more fun/genuine or is there an ulterior motive?
In addition to going to local craft fairs, they talk about the importance of supporting small businesses year round.
Vendor SHOUT-OUTS include:
E.Lo Ceramics, Jamie Tubbs Studio, Paisley Paper Co, Ponnopozz, Grace M. Gaynor, The Sunday Standard, Hungry By Nature, Geek Chic Fashion, Cago Supply Co., Alapash, AND Studio, The Willary, Ella Calas Jewelry, Everand, Locked and Layered, Long Dog Dandy, Hunter Labs, Wildship Studio and more!
If you're in Chicago, see us (and all of the vendors we shout out in this episode) THIS WEEKEND:
Show favorites, Sarah deHebreard (Bonnie™) and Julie Madison (Long Dog Dandy), join Emily and Michelle on the podcast after they spent the afternoon at the new Markets for Makers event. Besides the obvious critiques like narrow aisles and bad lighting, it was impossible to ignore the fact that a large number of vendors weren’t actually "makers". Despite having lots of negative feelings about the event, they end the discussion on a positive note with shout outs to the vendors that they loved and made purchases from.
WARNING: Many drinks were consumed before, during and after the recording of this episode!
In this week's episode, Emily and Michelle revisit one of their favorite topics to rant about: Dropshipping. Since their first dropshipping episode (Ep. 45: Drop Ship Rosé), it really seems like these businesses have started to infiltrate the handmade world. They talk about the ways they have learned to identify a dropship store and the things we should all be doing to make sure it’s clear that our shops are handmade.
BONUS:Listen 'til the end for our rave review of The OA: Season 2.
Michelle and Emily chat with Sarah deHebreard of Bonnie™ about a brand refresh for the 10 year anniversary of her Chicago-based, natural skincare business. They talk about simplifying and elevating her packaging by having boxes cut and printed, adding custom labels with a new color scheme, and a whole lot more!
Mandy Adamick of Madcanvases joins Emily and Michelle for a brainstorming session. Mandy is looking to quit her full time job and she wanted to get an outside perspective on how to accomplish her goals. They focus on adding to her product line, updating wholesale listings, and promoting her custom work.
In this week's episode, Michelle and Emily take a deeper dive into the pros and cons of keeping your business small... which inevitably leads to a conversation about being tired of the hustle. They find inspiration in an Instagram post by illustrator, Lisa Congdon feat. a piece of hers about giving yourself“permission to take an intermission”.
Since February is the new January, Emily and Michelle share their plans and goals for 2019. A theme they both share is choosing to keep their businesses small. And since making under $2 million is apparently still considered small business, that probably won’t be a problem
Emily and Michelle address the recent drama about Instagram's algorithm making it so only 7% of your followers are seeing your posts. If this conspiracy theory is true (although that seems unlikely), how can we be proactive without seeming desperate to our followers? Michelle also shares the results from her Instagram experiment over the holidays...