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    4 Ways being a Military Spouse has Trained You for Entrepreneurship

    Business Blast Off, New BusinessLauren KeplingerComment
    Being a military spouse makes you uniquely qualified to be an entrepreneur -- it is the hard and fast training required for running your own business. We'll talk 4 ways that being a military spouse prepares you for entrepreneurship, specifically selling on etsy and working from home.

    Military spouses are incredible people.

    Seriously. I hope your spouse appreciates all the hard work, loyalty, strength, and determination that it takes to be in that very unique role. If they don’t (or even if they do) I’m here to virtually pat you on the back -- you’re amazing! What a tough/rewarding/challenging/ and ultimately amazing learning experience it is.

    So many of these same characteristics make military spouses unique positioned, and uniquely successful, at being able to face to the challenges of being an entrepreneur.

    Don’t think you have the guts to run a business?

    Think about that time you moved across the country and didn’t know a single soul, only to meet your bff for life and thrive in the new environment? Think about when you hugged his neck and watched your husband get on the bus to deploy, and you were stationed 26 hours away from your family and had just arrived from a PCS two months before. Scary business goals? Pshhh. You’ve got more guts than you know what to do with.

    Don’t think you can put yourself out there like that?

    Is this even a question? Think about walking into that first FRG meeting to introduce yourself to a new leader and other spouses in the company. Think about interviewing for a job in a totally new town. You’re putting yourself out there all the time. It’s a basic necessity of military a life, and you’re a master at it.

    Military wives are rockstars. I was and am constantly in awe of the women behind the scenes who hold it all together.

    Here are some characteristics military spouses have that make them amazing entrepreneurs:

    1. Grit

      Ever met a military spouse who curled up in a ball and couldn’t handle it when it got tough? Yeah, me either. Military wives have a unique ability to keep on going when the going gets tough -- which is an awesome skill set to have as an entrepreneur. I love being an entrepreneur. I eat, drink, and breath business, marketing, and leadership podcasts and books. Seriously, I thrive on this stuff. But that doesn’t mean that there haven’t been times that I’ve wanted to chuck it all out the window, hang out on my couch, and watch Real Housewives all day. Entrepreneurship is hard, and adding it into the flux of military life can make it harder. But your position as a military spouse makes you all the more qualified to tough it out and succeed

    2. Determination

      I’ve never met a more driven, determined group of people than the Army wives I met while my husband was active duty. Determined to succeed, determined to go after their goals, and with a stubborn desire to excel at every position they were in, from CEOs of companies to volunteer FRG leaders. You won’t see a military wife passively giving up when it gets hard. We are conditioned to set goals and chase after them, and determined to accomplish them.

    3. Creativity

      By virtue of necessity, military spouses have a creative and imaginative way of dealing with whatever life throws at them. Household goods haven’t arrived in time for Christmas? That’s ok...we’ll make a tree out of felt and paper. No furniture for weeks while goods are stuck in transit? We’ll make do and camp in the living room. Military spouses have a flexibility to deal with situations that change often and dramatically, and have creative solutions to almost any problem under the sun. Entrepreneurs also need to be able to creatively imagine new products, problem solve solutions to inventory issues, and calmly and cheerfully respond to unhappy customers.  

    4. Strength

      Ultimately, it all boils down to this. Military wives the strongest people around. We have the fortitude to deal with a lifestyle and challenges that other people never even dream of - and to do it all as a sacrifice to our husband’s career (happily, nonetheless...at least most of the time). This strength will carry through as an entrepreneur - in the way that you deal with setbacks, in the way that you handle customers, and in the goals that you set for yourself and your business.


    Being a military spouse and Etsy shop owner are a match made in Heaven -- the very same traits that have made you a successful military spouse will be a huge boost to your ability to be an entrepreneur. Being a business person can be taught -- and I can teach you that -- but being a strong, determined, driven person with the grit to stick with something is a unique characteristic that will set you on the path to success in anything you do.

    I’m super excited to announce that I am offering military spouse scholarships for the VIP Etsy Roadmap to Success 8 week training course (plus one on one training!) on how to take your Etsy shop from a side gig to a full time income. If you are a military spouse and would like to apply, please visit the scholarship application page.


    The Secret to Building Your Email List on Etsy

    Increase Etsy Sales, Business Blast Off, New BusinessLauren Keplinger
    Secret to growing your email listing on Etsy

     

    If you've ever read anything about online marketing, listened to any business podcast, or basically not been living under a rock, you've probably heard that you should be building an email list. That's because email marketing is where it's at. 

    Think about it. On social media, you're just one of many accounts people are scrolling through. On Pinterest you're lucky if people notice your graphics. On Etsy, there are a million shops selling competing items. With email marketing, you're talking one on one directly to your customers. Bonus: they've opted in, so you know they WANT to hear what you have to say!

    Etsy doesn't make it super easy to build an email list from your sales on their platform. You're not allowed to add people directly after selling, and my understanding is that with the new GDPR compliance rules sellers won't even have access to people's email addresses when they purchase.

    So, how do you get them to sign up?

    Here's the secret key that isn't widely known: ADD A GRAPHIC inviting them to sign up. 

    Here is a snapshot of my email list growth over the past year. I've had an email list for forever, but struggled to add any new subscribers. Seriously, a good month was +1 subscribers.

    Enter the graphic invite.

     

    Top Secret Info for Growing an Email List on Etsy

    As you can see, from June of 2017 (and probably even before that), my subscribers stayed pretty much stagnant. I added 12 subscribers in 6 months. *sad face*

    In January 2018, I implemented this new strategy, and between January and April I added 173 people! This accounted for a 68% increase!

    So, what kind of graphic am I talking about? Here is the one I use:

    Building an Email List on Etsy - the secret to success!

    For simplicity sake, I use a bit.ly URL to shorten the link. I also include the link the product description, since the graphic is not copy and paste-able. By directing the customers to the description, they scroll down (and maybe even read the description details!), copy and paste, sign up for their coupon, wham bam. 

    This has been such a game changer for me. I average about 1.5 people per day subscribing to the mailing list, so over the course of a year this will be a growth of over 500 people. Not to shabby if I do say so myself!

    I hope this has been helpful to you! As always, email me if you have specific questions I didn't answer in this post. I always love to hear from y'all!

    Your friend,

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    Building an email list on Etsy - how to get people to actually subscribe to your email marketing for your Etsy shop

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