Giving up on a niche 2 pages: 1 [2]
Posted: Thursday, April 25, 2019 3:24:17 PM
Fuzzy Felosarix wrote:
PetsDreamlands wrote:
The no-girly-stuff point is pretty serious, tho. Most gays are tired of getting associated with the stereotypical fancy, screaming, "girlish" minority (not that I've anything against them, in no case) and see themselves as normal guys which happen to like guys.

I'm not a 'normal guy'. (Oh, I guess that's obvious, right?)

If "most gays" are looking to trade one stereotype for another - that of the 'normal guy', so be it. I've never fit in anywhere, and this actually points to a larger problem I have. If I make what someone tells me ought to be more appealing, it will still end up being 'off' in some way, because my head isn't in the same space.

Sorry for the "normal". If you prefer, replace it with "common" or "the guy next door" or "that boring individual", whatever you feel sounds more adequate to you. It's not intended to be offensive, just descriptive. A "normal", old school choice of words without a trendy, politically correct coloration. But I'm pretty sure, you know well, what I meant.

Just fyi: I never was the scene guy, nor I identified myself with it, but I knew well the pretty diversified and colorful Zurich (Switzerland) gay scene and had all sort of people in my closer friends circle. I've always chosen my people by personality, inner qualities and compatibility, never by race, political or religious preferences, gender or whatever else. I admit, tho, I'm a bit allergic to (extreme) "girlish behavior", no matter if you're a guy or a gal. Just a personal preference. And I'm politically incorrect. What doesn't mean, I'm not respectful. If you know QAF, Brian represents my personality well, with one exception: ONS were never my thing.

That clarified, do whatever you want and feel to, no one has the right to tell you, how you have to live your life. Nor what you have to create. This includes my arrogant self. BTW, as a graphic designer, I know that feeling of being forced to do something that isn't my thing and ending up with mediocre results. I use to decline commissions that are too far from my own creative style. For the sake of my mental sanity AND the customer's satisfaction. Oh, and I create "girlish" stuff, too (more than not), despite my preference for "manly things" and the "darker side" (what will barely find its way to Zazzle) ;-)
Posted: Thursday, May 02, 2019 7:04:28 PM
...and today I sold a men's shirt with a unicorn on it in the colors of the six-striped rainbow flag to a guy in Colorado.
Posted: Thursday, May 02, 2019 7:36:09 PM
PetsDreamlands wrote:
Most gays are tired of getting associated with the stereotypical fancy, screaming, "girlish" minority (not that I've anything against them, in no case) and see themselves as normal guys which happen to like guy.


EXACTLY! My best selling stuff in my personal artwork store (Fharrynland) are my 2 pride related paintings. One is a hand-painted flag but the other is a rainbow Pollock-style splatter. I haven't worked in that store in over a year, and it appears most of my stuff has been hidden, but they still sell pretty well. Not sure if it's the LGBTQ connection or just people like Colleen that like the bright colors.
Posted: Friday, May 10, 2019 5:38:44 PM
Have decided to repurpose some designs that I was originally going to reserve for a gallery show that fit this niche. They'll be "one and done", and while I expect they'll be as doomed to failure as the rest, I put too much effort into them to just toss them aside completely. We'll see what happens.
Posted: Monday, May 13, 2019 8:08:12 PM
:sigh:

Had an idea that wouldn't quit bugging me, so made some pin-back buttons for my dead niche.
Posted: Friday, July 12, 2019 6:20:54 AM
LM Gildersleeve wrote:
Fuzzy Felosarix wrote:
Curious whether anyone here has ever given up designing for one of their niches?

I've reached the sad decision that I should quit designing LGBTQ-themed products.



CardHunter used to dominate the paper event categories. Now you see many others who have risen up and are taking their piece of the pie.


This is very interesting insight. I have noticed that Card Hunter still does dominate the wedding niche in general, and that he has multiple names that he designs under (Girly Trend, Polly Fun Design are just two that I believe are his). If you search "rustic wedding" he has literally half the page of product results (if you include the shops he has under other designer names).

Zazzle doesn't see this as a problem? I think his designs are very nice, and I am sure he works hard, it just seems like it would be next to impossible to break through the sheer quantity of products that he has posted, but maybe I'm wrong.

I am a newbie to all this. I have been designing wedding paper products out of my pure love of it, but I would love to earn some sort of living from this eventually. Just wondering how difficult it will be to crack the code so my products can be seen. I am going after long tail keywords and trying to create a distinct style all my own, so I am hoping that will help, but any advice from more experienced sellers would be greatly appreciated.

Dawn
Posted: Friday, July 12, 2019 7:35:24 AM
Dawn wrote:
LM Gildersleeve wrote:
Fuzzy Felosarix wrote:
Curious whether anyone here has ever given up designing for one of their niches?

I've reached the sad decision that I should quit designing LGBTQ-themed products.



CardHunter used to dominate the paper event categories. Now you see many others who have risen up and are taking their piece of the pie.


This is very interesting insight. I have noticed that Card Hunter still does dominate the wedding niche in general, and that he has multiple names that he designs under (Girly Trend, Polly Fun Design are just two that I believe are his). If you search "rustic wedding" he has literally half the page of product results (if you include the shops he has under other designer names).





Zazzle doesn't see this as a problem? I think his designs are very nice, and I am sure he works hard, it just seems like it would be next to impossible to break through the sheer quantity of products that he has posted, but maybe I'm wrong.

I am a newbie to all this. I have been designing wedding paper products out of my pure love of it, but I would love to earn some sort of living from this eventually. Just wondering how difficult it will be to crack the code so my products can be seen. I am going after long tail keywords and trying to create a distinct style all my own, so I am hoping that will help, but any advice from more experienced sellers would be greatly appreciated.

Dawn


I never knew that about Card Hunter... I think though that the biggest factor in top spots on searches is sales so it will be very hard for any of us to break in to a situation like that.

I really don't know anything else to tell you except to promote the heck out of your stuff and try to find a style that is popular and unique at the same time. And diversify your product line if you can so that you have other things besides wedding paper items to carry you over.

Adding: the POD business is so super saturated with designers and artists now days it is almost like Amway.. coming in late makes it much harder to succeed.

One thing though is there is always a chance if you won't quit.




Posted: Friday, July 12, 2019 10:22:14 AM
Shelli Fitzpatrick wrote:
One thing though is there is always a chance if you won't quit.

Or perhaps if you consistently fail at trying to quit.

If the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over while expecting different results, then they should put my picture next to it in the dictionary.

I'm still making the odd product for my unsuccessful niche. Now and then I get a burst of inspiration. Still, the level of failure far exceeds that of success. I'm trying to accept the fact that breaking into the marketplace is a fool's errand, but it ain't easy to give it up.
Posted: Friday, July 12, 2019 11:22:38 AM
Shelli Fitzpatrick wrote:



I never knew that about Card Hunter... I think though that the biggest factor in top spots on searches is sales so it will be very hard for any of us to break in to a situation like that.

I really don't know anything else to tell you except to promote the heck out of your stuff and try to find a style that is popular and unique at the same time. And diversify your product line if you can so that you have other things besides wedding paper items to carry you over.

Adding: the POD business is so super saturated with designers and artists now days it is almost like Amway.. coming in late makes it much harder to succeed.

One thing though is there is always a chance if you won't quit.





Thanks for your thoughtful response Shelli. I appreciate your feedback.

I think it would be exceedingly hard to break into the top search results at this point, which is why I am not setting my hopes on that. I am going to try to go after long tail search phrases on Zazzle and then focus heavily on marketing and promoting away from the site, both online, with Pinterest and a blog, and offline (collaborating with local wedding industry people in my hometown etc.). I think a huge part of setting ourselves apart from a seller like Card Hunter is putting your personal story behind your shop and products. When people feel a connection with you they are more apt to buy. I know that I would much rather buy something from Kristen at Redwood and Vine because she shares information about herself that I can relate with rather than merely producing massive volumes of products. I also think she does amazing work. I can spot one of Kristen's designs a mile off because they are so elegant and lovely.

Posted: Friday, July 12, 2019 11:36:49 AM
Fuzzy Felosarix wrote:
Shelli Fitzpatrick wrote:
One thing though is there is always a chance if you won't quit.

Or perhaps if you consistently fail at trying to quit.

If the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over while expecting different results, then they should put my picture next to it in the dictionary.

I'm still making the odd product for my unsuccessful niche. Now and then I get a burst of inspiration. Still, the level of failure far exceeds that of success. I'm trying to accept the fact that breaking into the marketplace is a fool's errand, but it ain't easy to give it up.


Fuzzy, I have thought about how you should just decide to Zazzle for the fun of it and phooey on the rest. I am glad you are still hanging in there and I hope you still get some enjoyment out of designing... sometimes it seems like Z zaps the fun out of it but I don't want to let that happen to me and I hope you don't either. Roses
Posted: Friday, July 12, 2019 11:40:09 AM
Dawn wrote:
Shelli Fitzpatrick wrote:



I never knew that about Card Hunter... I think though that the biggest factor in top spots on searches is sales so it will be very hard for any of us to break in to a situation like that.

I really don't know anything else to tell you except to promote the heck out of your stuff and try to find a style that is popular and unique at the same time. And diversify your product line if you can so that you have other things besides wedding paper items to carry you over.

Adding: the POD business is so super saturated with designers and artists now days it is almost like Amway.. coming in late makes it much harder to succeed.

One thing though is there is always a chance if you won't quit.





Thanks for your thoughtful response Shelli. I appreciate your feedback.

I think it would be exceedingly hard to break into the top search results at this point, which is why I am not setting my hopes on that. I am going to try to go after long tail search phrases on Zazzle and then focus heavily on marketing and promoting away from the site, both online, with Pinterest and a blog, and offline (collaborating with local wedding industry people in my hometown etc.). I think a huge part of setting ourselves apart from a seller like Card Hunter is putting your personal story behind your shop and products. When people feel a connection with you they are more apt to buy. I know that I would much rather buy something from Kristen at Redwood and Vine because she shares information about herself that I can relate with rather than merely producing massive volumes of products. I also think she does amazing work. I can spot one of Kristen's designs a mile off because they are so elegant and lovely.



Yes I agree about her designs and her being a marketing guru can't hurt either...Smile

Your planned approach sounds smart to me and I wish you lots of success! Love
Posted: Saturday, July 13, 2019 3:12:43 AM
Dawn wrote:
LM Gildersleeve wrote:
Fuzzy Felosarix wrote:
Curious whether anyone here has ever given up designing for one of their niches?

I've reached the sad decision that I should quit designing LGBTQ-themed products.



CardHunter used to dominate the paper event categories. Now you see many others who have risen up and are taking their piece of the pie.


This is very interesting insight. I have noticed that Card Hunter still does dominate the wedding niche in general, and that he has multiple names that he designs under (Girly Trend, Polly Fun Design are just two that I believe are his). If you search "rustic wedding" he has literally half the page of product results (if you include the shops he has under other designer names).

Zazzle doesn't see this as a problem? I think his designs are very nice, and I am sure he works hard, it just seems like it would be next to impossible to break through the sheer quantity of products that he has posted, but maybe I'm wrong.

I am a newbie to all this. I have been designing wedding paper products out of my pure love of it, but I would love to earn some sort of living from this eventually. Just wondering how difficult it will be to crack the code so my products can be seen. I am going after long tail keywords and trying to create a distinct style all my own, so I am hoping that will help, but any advice from more experienced sellers would be greatly appreciated.

Dawn


Dawn, sorry to break you the news, but I am not Card Hunter. I am Audrey Chenal , owner of Girly Trend and no other stores. If I were you I would spend more time creating products rather than trying to penetrate specific market or wondering who owns what stores. It takes hard work, focus and long hours (many years) to succeed in Zazzle.
Best of Luck!
Audrey
Posted: Saturday, July 13, 2019 10:07:03 AM
Not very good at quitting, prefer saying I'm moving onto something else.

Before you do you might try a few things first.

https://youtu.be/hh2HQUZ3RfI

Maybe moving your LGBT and Horses to the top 2 spot. Give it a month or 2 and see if your views go up. June is gay pride, and I'm not sure if its seasonal or not.

Or combined to two groups into one Category and have subcategories. Then have the designs together. Forgot an old html book said that people has a 30 second attention span when doing a search. Your LGBT might just be seen.

Seemed to help me, a little bit. I've been trying to focus on life, and some niche have larger markets.

Posted: Saturday, July 13, 2019 3:04:31 PM
Ira wrote:
Not very good at quitting, prefer saying I'm moving onto something else.

Before you do you might try a few things first.

https://youtu.be/hh2HQUZ3RfI

Maybe moving your LGBT and Horses to the top 2 spot. Give it a month or 2 and see if your views go up. June is gay pride, and I'm not sure if its seasonal or not.

Or combined to two groups into one Category and have subcategories. Then have the designs together. Forgot an old html book said that people has a 30 second attention span when doing a search. Your LGBT might just be seen.

Seemed to help me, a little bit. I've been trying to focus on life, and some niche have larger markets.


I appreciate the suggestions, and I've nothing against Elke (she must know what she's doing, to have achieved her level of success), but I'm not really someone that can be helped.

I incurably loathe everything about marketing, so I'm not focused on making my public storefront a destination for customers. My sales come from third party promoters (and somewhat less frequently, Z's marketplace.) I haven't had a self-referred sale since December 2014, which probably says something about how laughable it is for me to bother trying to promote anything. If someone finds my store, it's very much by accident.

With regard to Pride season, June is probably the biggest month because of the Stonewall anniversary, but events take place in various cities throughout the summer, some even later. There's also a boost in October for National Coming Out Day.

While I manage to get the odd sale of LGBTQ-focused products now and then, I'm pretty far removed from goings-on within those communities now. So it doesn't make a lot of sense for me to be creating for the niche anymore.
Posted: Saturday, July 13, 2019 5:40:45 PM
I've placed 4 stores on the back burner, even unpinned them. So I understand.

And it wasnt so much about the niche but the structure of the storefront and getting something the promoter could use.

Another good u tube channel is Wholesellted.
In no way am I suggesting dropshipping. But there some things in common amongst economic. Past the Title, description, and tags.

And that lays in promotion and structure.

At thr beginning I viewed it as a chick or egg problem. But it was more of an issue of planned growth. And finding stuff that matched.

Posted: Saturday, July 13, 2019 6:21:05 PM
On side note, a bit more personal. One of the niche I had to put on the backburners and unpinned was patterns. Patterns and factual patterns are very closey related. Both are abstract, biggest difference is one is inward and other is outward expanding.

Both are eye catching and distracting. We look at them but dont buy. At the end the customer walks away.

M.C. Escher summed it up best when he said, "It's where art and math doesnt touch"

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/M._C._Escher

He has math and artbooks all talking about him. Even a website and he been dead for a while. Probably greatest patterns maker ever but .... He had to take a college job to make ends meet.

Sorry to be blunt, and it was a painful to abandon the niche I enjoyed. But it might be your wondful fractual stuff that is holding you back.

Once again try sliding your LGBT and simple design category to the top. And place the patterns and fractual to the bottom.
Posted: Saturday, July 13, 2019 6:39:48 PM
Ira wrote:
On side note, a bit more personal. One of the niche I had to put on the backburners and unpinned was patterns. Patterns and factual patterns are very closey related. Both are abstract, biggest difference is one is inward and other is outward expanding.

Both are eye catching and distracting. We look at them but dont buy. At the end the customer walks away.

M.C. Escher summed it up best when he said, "It's where art and math doesnt touch"

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/M._C._Escher

He has math and artbooks all talking about him. Even a website and he been dead for a while. Probably greatest patterns maker ever but .... He had to take a college job to make ends meet.

Sorry to be blunt, and it was a painful to abandon the niche I enjoyed. But it might be your wondful fractual stuff that is holding you back.

Once again try sliding your LGBT and simple design category to the top. And place the patterns and fractual to the bottom.


I make fractal art and have sold some of it but as you say, it isn’t a big seller so far. I think it is fine to do as long as it isn’t the only egg in your basket.
Posted: Sunday, July 14, 2019 4:43:50 AM
Dawn wrote:


This is very interesting insight. I have noticed that Card Hunter still does dominate the wedding niche in general, and that he has multiple names that he designs under (Girly Trend, Polly Fun Design are just two that I believe are his). If you search "rustic wedding" he has literally half the page of product results (if you include the shops he has under other designer names).


Nah, you are just assuming. This reeks of conspiracy theory logic to me. What truth do you base this theory on?

Posted: Sunday, July 14, 2019 10:09:50 AM
Ira wrote:
Once again try sliding your LGBT and simple design category to the top. And place the patterns and fractual to the bottom.

Moot point now. I've finally hit my 'nope' point, so I and my store are going on hiatus, maybe permanently. My low sales don't justify the amount of work it takes, just to have any size image of my original art made available to anyone savvy enough to right click in the product grid, open a new tab/window, and adjust the image size in the URL.

Apologies to anyone who has promoted my work, but Zazzle's inability to protect my images has finally pushed me to my breaking point.
Posted: Sunday, July 14, 2019 11:41:54 AM
Fuzzy Felosarix wrote:
Zazzle's inability to protect my images has finally pushed me to my breaking point.


Can't say I blame you, that is a big deal and needs to be corrected now... If they don't treat it as important I am not sure what I will be doing

Posted: Sunday, July 14, 2019 11:45:05 AM
LM Gildersleeve wrote:
Dawn wrote:


This is very interesting insight. I have noticed that Card Hunter still does dominate the wedding niche in general, and that he has multiple names that he designs under (Girly Trend, Polly Fun Design are just two that I believe are his). If you search "rustic wedding" he has literally half the page of product results (if you include the shops he has under other designer names).


Nah, you are just assuming. This reeks of conspiracy theory logic to me. What truth do you base this theory on?



Did you see that Girly trend posted in this thread above and disproved the theory?




Posted: Monday, July 15, 2019 4:15:21 PM
Shelli Fitzpatrick wrote:
Fuzzy Felosarix wrote:
Zazzle's inability to protect my images has finally pushed me to my breaking point.


Can't say I blame you, that is a big deal and needs to be corrected now... If they don't treat it as important I am not sure what I will be doing


I may have a workaround, of sorts, but it basically means not participating in the marketplace anymore. Have to wait for things to reindex to see what happens.
Posted: Monday, July 15, 2019 4:29:05 PM
Fuzzy Felosarix wrote:
Shelli Fitzpatrick wrote:
Fuzzy Felosarix wrote:
Zazzle's inability to protect my images has finally pushed me to my breaking point.


Can't say I blame you, that is a big deal and needs to be corrected now... If they don't treat it as important I am not sure what I will be doing


I may have a workaround, of sorts, but it basically means not participating in the marketplace anymore. Have to wait for things to reindex to see what happens.


Well I hope you work it out!

And... I hope that Z takes this seriously and fixes it soon!

Scott said they were discussing it, so now it is wait and see. But I really think we need to not let it slide...
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