With the rush of Christmas behind us, I wanted to take a moment’s pause and recap on my successes of 2023 — and in the spirit of transparency — my failures. Or better called, learning opportunities!
Success in my business
- I FINALLY started sending out a newsletter, I sent 17 newsletters in 2023. My goal is to send 24 (bimonthly delivery) next year.
- I licensed 4 different pattern designs in 2023, it was the first time a company bought my pattern designs.
- I was selected by Shannon McNab’s Sketch Design Repeat as their Spotlight designer for the month of June.
- I opened my Spoonflower shop.
- I invested in professional photographs.
- I attended Camp Minted, an in person creative retreat in Arizona.
- I joined a local mastermind group where we meet in person monthly, began an online coaching program focusing on sales and marketing, and met regularly with 2 different art buddy groups (remotely). I also maintain 2 other online memberships. Overall, I have been doing a much better job talking and networking with other artists and business owners this past year.
- My etsy sales were up 44% in 2023 (despite only adding 4 new listings for the entire year!)
- I made numerous illustrations, hand lettering designs and patterns. I’ll need to count how many, but I really prioritized creative art time and drew or created something almost every day.
- I picked up more graphic design work for clients including brochure designs and social media marketing and graphics.
What didn’t work out as well as I’d hoped
- Probably my largest disappointment was not getting a win from Minted, despite entering numerous challenges. For those not familiar with Minted, it is a design marketplace. Minted sources creative content from around the world from independent artists, then sells the best content in the form of Art, Home Decor, and Stationery, directly to consumers. The competition is crazy! I won my first challenge in 2022 and had hoped 2023 would bring 5 wins, that was my goal. I know my designs have gotten so much stronger by entering all of the challenges and I am going to keep entering them because they definitely challenge me! I’ve met so many other designers through Minted and I’m also glad I pushed myself out of comfort zone and attended the retreat, everyone made me feel welcome!
- Speaking of challenges, I only entered 4 Spoonflower challenges. I vow to get more consistent in entering these in 2024. Spoonflower has recently changed the number of challenges they are offering, so this goal should be easier to achieve. A challenge is a good thing to push your creative boundries and try something you wouldn’t normally do.
- I missed my income goal by 25%. Despite this, I’m setting the bar even higher this year on what I need to make. Since I am being more strategic in planning, I feel I can make my goals.
- I never got my Zazzle shop up and running and neglected regularly updating my Etsy shop.
Despite not achieving everything I had hoped for, I’m extremely grateful for the year I had and the growth that has happened. I have accomplished a lot but I have big plans of where I want my business to grow. Slowly but surely, I will get there!
How did your year go? Drop me a comment and let me know!