Prepare for Fall: Turning Your Products Into Profits

Prepare for Fall: Turning Your Products Into Profits
By Cynthia Bull

With fall just around the corner, now’s the time to get your sales products ready for maximum profits. But exactly how is the best way to do that? It’s easier than you might think, especially with craft products. Before you begin to create new products, think of ways to re-purpose last year’s leftover items by giving them a face lift. For example, add a new color to last year’s decorative decoupage box and put a fragrant potpourri scent inside.

In her article "Easy Fall Decorations - Fun Autumn Projects for the Entire Family,” Dana Burnett ( suggests making potpourri a family event. She states: "Send the kids out into the garden to collect the last flowers of the garden, pine cones, and even thick dried leaves. Coarsely chop these and add them to a glass bowl. Purchase your favorite liquid potpourri oils in autumn scents and toss it throughout the collected garden goods. Cover with plastic and let it cure for a few weeks and your family now has its own signature potpourri blend!”

By adding a new color and an aromatic fragrance, you’ve created a wonderful new product ready for the fall craft shows that even your most loyal customers may not recognize. What’s the bonus here? Along with enjoying family time, you get to add a new price to last year’s "unused” item that will potentially boost sales this year, and with very little extra work on your part.

Not sure that you want to start a business in a big way? Then think of turning a hobby into a business this season and step out with other craft show vendors with your specialty item. A great way to begin is to make your own cards. Carol Lennox ( says it’s important to choose the card making project that interests you; for example, birthday cards for family and friends. She says that some people prefer to make cards by hand, while others prefer to purchase card making software. Either way, she says a good business tip is to "Think of the card recipient and pick something that will be special to them…when you're producing mass amounts and a variety of cards, especially for sale.”

With a bit of ingenuity, your thoughtful ideas and talented hands can turn raw materials like paper, glue and stencil into products that last throughout the year… and also create profits!

It’s generally the fall season when many people think about going to craft shows and turning their hobby into a business. Hobbies can be a great source of relaxation and certainly reduce stress, but that relaxed feeling frequently changes when thinking about a hobby as a business. When that thought enters the equation, an otherwise normal, emotionally healthy individual can become a basket case and their own worst critique, their biggest stumbling block.

Sharon Michaels (, author of How To Give Yourself The Power To Succeed, found that she was her biggest stumbling block and took steps to make changes for the better. After years of studying, workshops and seminars she says that, "As I began to conquer my own internal stumbling blocks, things began to change for the better. I’ve turned all my learning and teaching into what I do today – it is my passion!”

Sometimes the greatest step you can take in business is to get out of your own way and let your natural talents and intelligence take over. Following your instincts can be your best ally, but you won’t realize it if you continue to stand back in the shadows and not venture out. Stepping out from the safety of a hobby into any business is a risk, and it takes courage.

Whether you're putting a new twist on an old product, or about to break through the starting gate of new business this fall season, these tips apply to any season and most types of businesses:

  • Get started! Don’t put off updating your sales products, creating new products, or turning your hobby into a business. If that's been your desire, now’s the time to venture out. (Most likely, other newbies will be there!)
  • Minimize expenses like accounting by handling this cost yourself, if at all possible. If you're operating on a shoestring, look to supportive family members and friends you trust to help out in these early stages and during difficult economic times.
  • Be inventive, attentive and polite to clients and always wear a smile.
  • Have something unexpected to give clients. You want them to buy your products, so as much as possible give them something extra. Along with your great product, they’ll remember that you went the extra mile for them. And Be Sure to invite them to return to your booth next year for more great items.
  • Have a mailing/email list and ask them to sign up, and then follow up with them as soon as the craft show is over (or within 72 hours). 

See how many of these tips you can stretch from fall into winter, then spring and summer. By constantly updating your products, paying attention to your expenses and marketing, and always doing more than what is expected of you, your chances for success grow exponentially. CYNTHIA BULL is an internationally published writer and editor who helps international authors, marketers and speakers add greater value to their products through her top-quality writing, editing and transcription services. She is the author of How To Be A Medical Transcriptionist and Winning At Work While Balancing Your Life, a contributing author of Walking with the Wise Entrepreneur (Mentors Publishing House), cited in Make BIG Profits on eBay (Entrepreneur Press), and Managing Editor of Mentors Magazine Think & Grow Rich Edition. Cynthia has created over 200 book products in the past two years for her clients and, as mentor, helps clients reach their goals through her products, experience and genuine caring. Cynthia
wrote this feature article exclusively for Debbie (, an organization dedicated to helping small businesses succeed.