In addition to being skilled artisans and woodworkers, we are also a small business. Like most art-driven small businesses, we didn’t have much to start with—a handful of furniture pieces, some recycled wood scraps, and local interest in our work. The past few years have been incredibly successful for all of those who had a hand in bringing Expressions Furniture to life. We want to share our experience with other small business owners as a way of passing on this success.
As a means of transferring this knowledge, we host a weekly, small-business-related workshops for local makers and artists. See our calendar for upcoming events, but here are a few samples of previous workshops:
Know Your People: An Intro to Marketing: Effective marketing is one of the most essential steps in starting a small business. In this workshop, we detail the ways in which you can effectively identify and engage your intended customer base. In the follow-up session, we will discuss how to expand your market reach once hitting the dreaded local plateau.
Business Accounting: Nobody wants to talk about business accounting and taxes until they’re in over their head. In this workshop, we detail the necessary financial security and budget you must obtain in order to start a small business in the green. Additionally, we discuss the importance of purchasing efficient accounting software—an inexpensive and effective means of bookkeeping, paycheck printing, and wage reporting.
From Site to Shop: Moving to Brick-and-Mortar: Like many small, art-driven businesses, our practice started in the form of an online shop. Eventually, and after running the numbers through dozens of scenarios, we gained the independence and financial ability to open a physical location. However, this transition does not come easily. In this workshop, we discuss the pros and cons of moving from online to in-store sales.