When I sat down to write this post, the sheer number of things that have been done in the past month to move Oola forward was really exciting. And it could not have come at a better time to recall those small accomplishments as we draw to the end of the school term, and I know that I’m facing a couple of weeks where very little gets done apart from entertaining the eager and energetic school kids I love so dearly.
It’s funny how with each accomplishment comes a list of lessons learned and new actions to complete! Here’s a couple of things I’ve learned this month that hopefully can help you with some ideas without having to make the mistake first.
1. Communicate every new product. We’ve grown our inventory by about 50% over the past 4-6 weeks which has been exciting, but I realised that we’ve added lots more than I’ve managed to communicate. I sometimes put new products on Facebook through a photo gallery, and sometimes in our newsletter, but other times they just go up on the site quietly. A definite area for improvement! And for those of you spending a winter afternoon indoors, we’ve added lots of beautiful wooden puzzles for toddlers and preschoolers as well as significantly increasing our range of Ravensburger Jigsaws for older kids. We’ve also added 500 piece puzzles which I’ve heard are difficult to find in bricks and mortar stores.
2. Newsletter experiments. I’m very aware that people are reading newsletters more and more on mobile phones – a really high proportion of Oola newsletters are opened on iphones. So I adapted it to be easy to read on a mobile phone. And then I had my lowest click through ever! I brooded over this for a few days, and am still not certain whether it was the content, the format, or the timing. This is a lesson in progress …
3. Use a Virtual Assistant! A couple of months ago, I wrote about needing a team. I’ve since started working with Michelle from Consider It Sorted. Just having someone else to help pick up some of the details I can’t manage has been invaluable. This is one where I wish I’d done it sooner and am delighted with the results.
Despite all the activity, I’m ready to embark on a new advertising approach: display. I’d love the thoughts and advice of any of you who’ve used display advertising – what sites worked well, not well, did you use an ad network like Nuffnang or Google, did you use the same creative across all channels, the list goes on.
The irony of me asking these questions is that in my past career, I’ve been the media owner, the one trying to convince advertisers to spend their dollars with my company. It is amazing how intimidating it is to be on the other side of that equation. I could really use some advice.
Thanks so much in advance!
Photo credit: BrittneyBush via Flickr
This post originally appeared on Diary of a Mumpreneur 14 June 2012.