Introduction: Quill From Home | Things a Paper Quilling Entrepreneur Can Do During Quarantine

Nowadays, as a paper quilling entrepreneur, I face some rough times due to quarantine. There are no graduations, wedding ceremony, and everyone are saving their money for their primary needs. My business paused, but actually on the other hand, it gives me sometime to prepare several things for my paper quilling business. So in this instructable I will share how I maintain my paper quilling business during these rough times of the year.

Step 1: Evaluate

I think this is a good opportunity to evaluate how the business went up until now.

- Check the cash flow, profit, and loss. As a newbie in the entrepreneur world, I still need to learn a lot about many things, especially this one. Documenting the "money" is never show up in my to-do list (oops!) but I learned that this is a crucial thing especially in the entrepreneur world.

- Evaluate what kind of product is the most and less liked by the customer. Yes, this is essential in paper quilling business. I made some projects for graduations, weddings, birthdays, and engagement in various forms. I noted that the most requested paper quilling projects are for graduation and birthday. Therefore I need to improve design and style, especially for these occasions.

- At some point, I thought about giving the customer a satisfaction questionnaire, but I didn't do it yet :D.

- Learn to improve. I noticed that there are still many things to improve in my business such as: how I communicate with a customer, how I deliver the project (time spent, packaging, safety), and how I promote my business.

Step 2: Restock

As a provider of customized paper quilling products, I need to re-evaluate what kind of product that mostly liked by the customer. In my own experience, I often get paper quilling requests for graduation, especially in the form of a floral wreath. Thus, in the time being I can restock my paper flowers so that I wouldn't need so much time when a customer requests a floral wreath paper quilling.

I already made an instructable for paper quilling flowers, click here.

Step 3: Try and Practice New Design

This is a little bit risky, because we need quilling supplies, but it isn't guaranteed that the custumer would like it. But for me, I would take that risk. Of course I should come up with a good paper quilling design.
I need to observe and looking for inspiration through the internet. No, I didn't mean that we can steal someone else design and remake it then sell it. That's not good, people :(.
What I often do is try their technique, not the design. Paper quilling has different style and technique from one person to another. Yulia Brodskaya, Sabeena Karnik, Sena Runa and many more are my inspiration. I often try their technique then apply it in graduation, wedding and other celebration design.

~ Practice paper quilling typography or even hand lettering with pen or brush
In addition, these two are quite favorited by my customers. Typography is pretty essential in my paper quilling business, of course learning how to do it needs practice and patients. So quarantine time is a good opportunity.

Try make one product from each new designs, take good photos, and upload on social media.

Step 4: Learning and Managing Internet Marketing

The business might be paused, but marketing must go on. If you rely on the internet and social media to sell your product just like me, this tip might help you. I use an Instagram account to promote and sell my paper quilling work. These times when there is no order from a customer, doesn't mean I stop promoting my work on social media. So, if there is no request from a customer, what to post?

- I repost some old projects but using different photos from the one that I already posted. The photo could be the same project, but from a different angle (yes, I took several photos from a project for this purpose :)).

- I also sometimes post a paper quilling tip for my audience. Well sharing your knowledge won't harm you right? I found that some people are interested in paper quilling but too shy to ask a question to a commercial account like mine. This way, we could engage with our audience, and that would benefit our Instagram account too (talking about algorithm).

- Engage with the audience in the comment section is important too.

- Edit the alt text in every post (including old posts). The alternative text in the Instagram post is the alternative to your photo in case your photo doesn’t load on a website (for example). Instead of seeing the photo, people will read your alternative text. Learn more about Alt Text.

There is still a lot about internet marketing that we could learn, and now is the right time!

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