By Gladys Mae
Gladys is the Associate Director of Admissions & Student Services with over 10 years of experience at the International Career Institute.
Are you looking for a career change? Do you have a passion for creativity and, in particular, jewellery design? You may not believe it, but many people these days are using their creative juices and their love for stunning accessories to create their own business in jewellery making. Many people have found great success both online and in traditional retail methods in building a business from their desire to have jewellery making and design be their new 9 to 5. If you think this may be something you’re interested in, you need to think about a few different tasks that will impact on the success of your new business venture.
Depending on how you currently design and create your jewellery, you may need to source more reputable and consistent suppliers for your materials and tools. if you create and design your own beads and materials, this may not be a huge factor. However, if you rely on pre-made beads and materials, you will need to have reliable suppliers. In the event that you don’t, you may find that orders cannot be filled due to your suppliers not keeping up with your demand.Always trial a supplier before you commit to using them, and ensure you can maintain a solid and stable relationship between your business and theirs.
With such a creative business, it’s important to have a business name that is just as creative as you. Not only does it need to be a creative business name, it also needs to serve its purpose, by informing people and potential customers who you are and what you do. There’s no point in having a completely unique name that no one understands, unless you can add in to the name that you’re a jewellery maker. For example, Nike make sports clothing and associated athletic gear, and everyone is familiar with the Nike company and logo. However, it took serious brand recognition and years of build up of the company’s reputation in order for it to be instantly recognised as the business they are today.
Once you’ve thought of a great business name,you need to check its availability and see if it’s currently being used by anyone else. You can use websites such as the British Business Register to see if a business is already active with the same name. If not, this is a great opportunity to trademark your business name. This is also a good time to check if an internet domain name that you’d be interested in using is available.
To really get ahead, you will need to market yourself strategically. There are a few different options available in regards to marketing, but the most basic is creating a website, social media accounts and business cards. Depending on your marketing strategy, you may look at building up your brand online through SEO (search engine optimisation) for your website, or you may go a more traditional route and build up new clients through direct mail promotions. Whichever option you choose, make sure it’s the right one for you and your business. Be sure to have business cards at the ready for when you meet people during networking.
So many people start in business thinking they can use their personal bank account for their business needs. The truth is, this is never going to work, for a few reasons. You will likely need to spend a little at the start of your business operations, so using your normal everyday banking account may lead you to having less money at the end of the week for your weekly shopping and everyday needs. It also creates a huge headache come tax time to organise your finances and expenses if everything has been used in the one bank account. By keeping your business funds separate from your personal account and savings, you’ll be able to track your business’s success much more easily than if all the funds were combined.
So many jewellery designers go into business with the thought that they love designing jewellery, they can make it, they want to sell it to people, and that’s the end of that. Truth is, like any business, no matter what you’re selling, you need to have a clear idea of who your key demographics are and who you’re actually designing the jewellery for. Are you designing jewellery for hip teenagers? Or new mums in their 30s? Are you designing jewellery for both men and women, or just one gender? This will keep you with a clear goal of what jewellery to make, as well as giving you an idea of how to set up your marketing strategy.
Many people will make jewellery and just charge the customer the cost of the materials needed to make the piece, plus a little extra as pocket money. People might be buying your work, but that’s because it’s cheap. The truth is, you need to consider carefully how much you’re charging your clients. You need to ensure you’re covering all of your costs, plus making enough to make a solid living. It might take a little longer to sell your pieces, but you’ll actually be making a profit, and not just earning £5 an hour!
You will be able to use your creativity and your love of jewellery making to have a successful business. The key to success is good planning and ensuring you’re covering all bases, from both a creative and business perspective. You will need to ensure your business is setup correctly, and that all registrations are in place. From there, you’ll be able to focus your attention on creating stunning and beautiful jewellery for your clients.
To become a qualified jewellery designer, visit the ICI Education website today and learn a new future.