I think one of the major reasons many writers write is because they want to teach and share what they know.
That brings me personally to a place of identifying what is the most important topic that I feel I know and want to teach.
There are niches, there are passions and interests – there are overcoming of challenges. It could add up to a lot of writing. There are certain publishing opportunities. There is time.
So, how do we choose — how am I going to choose — for instance, what to put into my blog or ezine newsletter next? Or what outside e-newsletter to pursue to write a regular column for? Or what free digital product to create to give away on my blog website to get followers – people who will actually listen to me as I write, teach, share?
Years ago when I first started my blog – I told myself, “It will all pan out. I’ll just start writing, and one day, soon hopefully, something will stick – and that will be my primary focus or niche.”
You know, it never really happened. My blog is still all over the place!
Now, I have a little business I call Katherine’s Mercantile where I sell a variety of a lot of different things, holiday items – Christmas things – and many eclectic, rare, specialty, reference, regional – Texana, for instance, and popular used books.
I started Katherine’s Mercantile on Amazon — used books were and still are a major part of their business. They have grown, and I have also grown and expanded into other areas. But books are still a major part of my business.
I love my online business and making sales on Amazon with things – it’s not digital stuff but real items you pick up and handle.
But I’m pretty positive I’d be bored stiff if that was my chosen niche and the only thing I talked about in my blog, ezine, and future Column.
So, I’m still working on this niche thing.
I know a LOT about alternative health.
And I am writer-copywriter. I know a lot about online marketing, copywriting, direct sales writing. I write. I sell my writing-copywriting.
I just finished an excellent e-book with Bob Bly called LinkedIn Marketing Magic: www.linkedinmarketingmagic.com I know about LinkedIn.
So it’s tough to pick one thing! But one thing I have learned from selling on Amazon and mentors and training in doing that better. People buy products. They don’t buy stores. They don’t buy general blogs.
OK, I said, writers often want to share, teach and help others with their writing. This is true – so very true.
But because I also want to make a living following my passion and doing what I love, and because we all need to work, unless we’re independently wealthy – we need to work for a living.
So, back to square one – we still need to find a niche, or maybe a couple of niches. If we want to make a living doing what we love, and to be really good at it – we need to do it every day. Hopefully, it needs to be a part of our livelihood – our career path, our bread and butter work.
And there are many ways to go about this. But we cannot ignore the fact that we need to find one — or two or three. One day, we need to mature and start focusing on one or a couple of areas of expertise, because then we can make a living doing it. People do not buy blogs, ezines or stores – they buy specific things. They read about one thing at a time – they buy one product at a time.
So, let’s find that product, that niche that we love, master and go after NOW!!
Here we are in the middle of Christmas season — and on Amazon for me.
I keep saying, this is the last day or two to get things out to Amazon. But then I keep sending things in every day. It takes a week or so for items to arrive to a warehouse and then to go active/ Live.
I’m happy to have just finished this e-book described at this sales page: www.linkedinmarketingmagic.com
And then I want to write a lead magnet. That’s a a free give away that represents me and what I do. I can give it to people; and they hopefully then will want to sign up for my e-zine or hire me for what I do and love to do.
Some children looking at a selection of Christmas Cards during the 1910 holiday season. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Sales are better than ever on Amazon. This is my best year yet. Of course, it’s been the biggest online sales season/year too.
Still have so many things I could send in, but not sure how much I can really do.
I do arbitrage. And that means buying low and selling higher. And arbitrage is often local items – they may be 2nd hand, collectibles – or they may be items found on clearance shelves of retail stores.
Right now I have a LOT of Christmas inventory. Many of my things are brand new – some I even bought last week Thanksgiving evening or on Black Friday.
Many of these items do not have listings on Amazon. So that means my own UPC codes, images. Everything from scratch.
I already have a storage….but I really did not want to fill it with Christmas things to sell next year! Things just caught up with me this year. Life happens.
I was pleased today though. I had pics from last week – good ones of a French chef nutcracker. In a matter of a few minutes – I created a new Amazon listing. Started filling in all the details…. brand, manufacturer, assigned UPC code that I had bought. The sales info – description, price, etc. Bullet points. Search words. More details.
And as I said in a few minutes it was live. And not only that but I shipped it off to Amazon in a box of books I was sending in.
So there’s hope for many other ornaments, Santas, a Santa train, angels, board games. And the next thing too is to learn how and post Amazon Sponsored Product ads for a few good products that I have multiples of – like this one:
Between now and through Christmas, Katherine’s Mercantile — my Pinterest store and Amazon outlet, cater to the Christmas craziness and beyond. Stop by my Amazon Outlet as well as my Pinterest Hub.
It’s a lot of fun. And we’re in the middle of the holiday e-commerce buying and selling frenzy that online sellers prepare for all year long.
Selling Books Online
It’s only been recently that I’ve been catering to the Christmas crowd. My focus had always been and still is — books. And shoppers still find great books, even during this season.
My most popular during this season is children’s classics, cookbooks, religious and spiritual — Bible, storybooks for kids. Texana regional do very well. And of course crafts, handmade things, presenting and giving parties — anything like that.
Toys and Games
Five or six years ago, I started selling toys and games. I do well with board games, wooden toys and fun pastimes during this season. My understanding is retail arbitrage is becoming very competitive in this area. Everyone wants to get a piece of the pie on Amazon. So new sellers go to the same stores, find the same items on clearance, and Amazon gets flooded.
That’s why I lean toward the more rare collectible, out of stock, hard to find toys and games, figurines, etc.
Before all this Christmas focus on Amazon, I always did well with school books this time of year — college texts. Because fall semester is finishing up, and a new semester begins early January. So students start buying their texts at the end of December. December / January and July/August have always been peak sales for me with textbooks. And that still stands true. Oftentimes these book buyers start early.
But this Christmas and last and even before — I’ve found that Rockin’ Santas are very popular. You know these Santas that stand about a foot and a half tall. There’s a power cord. We plug in the cord turn on the switch and Santa moves his hips or head and/or arms and appears to be dancing to the music that also plays. This year I found one where he’s sitting at a piano and moves his head and arms to play the piano.
It’s all a lot of fun. And keeps us very occupied this time of year.
For more tips and ideas for last minute selling — find me on Facebook and ask questions in my Comments back and I’ll get back with you.