I get a lot of questions about money-making. Folks want to know everything about starting a Cricut business, Etsy, Shopify, Teachable, Patreon and any other conceivable way of selling stuff on the internet.
This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Cricut. All opinions are 100% mine.
You're in luck, friends. I have tried basically every side hustle on the planet! Now, I'm a full-time blogger, but I'm also a marketer at heart. Way back in college, I was on a street marketing team when the concept was just getting started. I worked in newspapers and magazines and eventually became a data junkie, analyzing and researching all angles of any fun new schtick or business that hit my desk.
So it makes sense that whenever I see a potential new product angle or cool side hustle, I tend to go down a rabbit hole. Along with brand partnerships, I make money through consulting gigs, affiliates, display ads, product sales, a wine MLM (true story), ebooks, Teachers Pay Teachers and even the occasional old-school word of mouth sales.
Diversification, you guys, it's fun.
How My Cricut Business Started
My Cricut business falls into that final category: word-of-mouth. I'm totally obsessed with my Cricut machines and am constantly slapping vinyl on anything I can find!
So one day, Nate and I were out camping and he cut the end off a log for our campfire. That sparked an idea in me. Pun intentional. I'm hilarious.
“Hey! Could you make some more of those little wood ornament things for me with your chainsaw?”
Wood… ornament… things? He stared at me blankly. I explained: you know, those little round discs! I see them on Etsy all the time, being sold as Christmas ornaments. I want those, but bigger, like the one you just made.
He laughed out loud. “Cookies,” he said. “We call those wood cookies. And I can't believe people pay for them. That's ridiculous.”
Oh yes, I explained. If I had the time, I bet I could make a full-time Cricut business out of this.
I've made Cricut crafts for a good long while, so this space isn't new to me. I'd already been slapping snarky corona-sayings all over my masks, my coffee cups, my t-shirts. With a kiddo who has damaged lungs, this virus scares me to bits and when we do go out in public or for walks around the block, I want people to know to STAY AWAY from us (please!).
We'd been having an ongoing issue with delivery folks and salespeople lingering mask-less at our door, so I thought this could be a handy solution.
I took those oversized ‘cookies' that Nate graciously made for me and I whipped up several funny expressions on some smart vinyl in my Cricut Joy (you could also use a Cricut Explore Air or Cricut Maker cutting machine), drilled a hole in the top of the wood, looped some jute string through and hung them on my front door. My neighbors thought they were hilarious, and asked if they could pay me to make some for them. A few friends did the same, and folks kept seeing them on each other's doors and laughing and asking where they came from.
And so, my accidental Cricut business was born.
So far I've sold a bunch to fellow homeschooling moms who got tired of being interrupted with random knocks at the door mid-day. Apparently, this makes people hesitate and delivery people just abandon packages without requiring signatures. Huzzah!
My Cricut business then inadvertently took off pretty well at my local online farmer's market (which is basically turning into a giant Facebook craft fair at this point, but I digress). I've finally, finally gotten around to starting an Etsy shop and I'll update this with the link when I actually get some listings live.
Yeah, I'm giving y'all the template for a couple of my favorite graphic expressions that have driven my overnight-sensation Cricut business. I've got more where that came from, but I have to keep something proprietary, I'm told. That's how business goes… apparently. I dunno, I'm a blogger and therefore have a tendency to overshare, so it's a tricky concept for me.
Point is, in my house, this is a side hustle. It's totally not intended to generate a full-time income. I already have a business I love, and I'm sticking with it. But I also adore the process of learning, honing in on new talents and reminding myself that I have unlimited options for earning potential.
And your options are unlimited, too.
All this to say… I think some of the best business ideas are accidental, like my Cricut business. When things happen organically, they just come together gracefully. I've seen a lot of people do things like this recently: Instagrammers hitting it bit overnight because they jump in with both feet, friends throwing together courses that consist of a Paypal checkout button and a stream of daily emails, moms developing streaming preschool subscriptions where they basically just record themselves teaching their own kids!
I think one of the things that slows people down in business way too much is that they overthink all the details. Packaging, processes, staff, planning out steps and procedures and iterations of leveling up. A Minimum Viable Product (known in the business world as an MVP) is all you need to test the waters. Slap something together, show it off to friends and see if anyone bites. If the demand for your product is there, they'll let you know. And if not, you haven't really lost anything. Material cost in projects ideas like this are minimal, thankfully.
In my case, I rescued scraps from a fire and turned that into cold, hard cash. If I can create a Cricut business around some snark and a fear of germs, you can succeed too.
- Identify the need (for example, a desire to have strangers get off the front porch)
- Find the simplest way to address that issue (for example, make a sign out of scrap wood)
- Test the market as quickly and efficiently as possible (for example, display your product on your front porch or Facebook page and see if anyone buys)
That's it. That's literally all you need to do to get a new business off the ground. And if it's a Cricut business, it can all be done on-demand. Easy peasy. It's very simple to start a business when you don't overthink which products to sell. And existing small business owners, now is the time to pivot and keep experimenting. If you were previously an office based business, the time and space you need to rock it at home could be considerably less than you think. Let's do this thing!
Are you crafty and entrepreneurial? Would you ever start a Cricut business?