The Stone Soup Challenge is a grassroots movement founded by artist Laura Bray. The goal of the challenge is for artists and crafters to help one another by promising to use a portion of their monthly profits to invest in a fellow artist's shop. To join us in helping artists everywhere and to read more about the challenge, please go to our Facebook page.

Remember! If we all contribute a little to the pot of Stone Soup, we will all feast.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Matchmaker, matchmaker, make me a match!

I recently received word from two Stone Soup challengers stating that, not only are they purchasing from other challengers, but they have joined forces and are "shop buddies"-all because they met on this blog! Basically, they cross-promote each other's shops. They aren't direct competitors, but they did notice that the items in their shops would be attractive to the same target market, so they joined forces. Now they are in front of twice the number of potential customers. Pretty cool and exactly the kind of ideas I wanted this blog to generate. The two shops are Sheepshape Spinning and Winemaker's Sister. Here's what they each had to say about their joint venture in marketing:

Sheepshape Spinning:
It all grew out of an etsy conversation! I had been on
Alchemy looking for yarn requests and saw a large number of stamp
requests. I knew from the Challenge that she made stamps so
I wrote to her. We got to talking about various things: her
successful Alchemy bid, my knitted animals, the challenges of selling these days, the benefits of selling patterns, etc. I looked at her shop again and realised that we might have a common customer base, but weren't in direct competition. I wrote to her and said: "Hey, I've just had an idea. Do you want to be shop buddies? We don't make the same stuff (so we're not in competition) but we make complementary stuff.
People buying my yarn might want your stitch markers, and people wanting your knit/sheep stamps and knitting bags might want my yarn! We could talk about each other's stuff on our blogs and link to each other's Etsy shops.
...And she liked the idea, and so we linked to each
other in our shops! This weekend I'll be writing on my blog about some of her items.

Winemaker's Sister:
When Elizabeth suggested we be Etsy "Shop
Buddies" I thought it was a great idea and a nice
extension of the whole Stone Soup concept. I had done the same thing
with the EtsyPaper street team during the holiday season.
KisforCalligraphy was my EtsyPaper buddy and we ended up sending each
other customers who BOUGHT STUFF!
I think our items work together really well -- she has the yarn and
roving and I have the stitch markers and knitting-themed rubber

You go girls! As for the rest of us-check out some of the shops on this post and see if you can join forces too!

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