Jamie Carbone is the owner and operator of Yumtastics, a home based business she runs out of her Kent, Ohio home. Jamie creates custom order cake pops, cakes, cup cakes and other tasty treats. We’ve been “talking” back and forth over the last several weeks while she lets me in on how she works full time, takes care of her home, hubby and two small children and still has time to run a small business out of her home. As is the case with most small, home based businesses, social media plays a huge part in Jamie’s time management, promotion and sales efforts.
What social media platforms are you currently using to promote your business?(Etsy, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter, etc.) I currently have platforms on Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Twitter, Google+, as well as a Website & Blog.
Do you feel that these platforms have increased your business’ scope? Definitely. Photographs seem to play a key role in people’s interest. Word of mouth is great, but the ability to share photos on Facebook and Pinterest to the masses are what spark ideas in people for their next special occasion.
Do you feel as though you are getting more jobs due to using social media to promote your business? Yes. I started my business in June of 2012. Friends and family placed
orders, but that was as far as it would go. Once I started posting pictures of my work on Facebook, other’s started leaving comments and it really started to take off. Since January of this year, the business has been steady with several orders a week.
How long did it take to start getting leads from each social platform? I would say almost immediately. I am one of only a handful of people in the area who make cake pops. People became very curious about what they were and wanted them instead of traditional cakes and cupcakes.
If you are using more than Facebook, which platform do you feel has the greatest reach for your business? Pinterest. I love Pinterest. I personally use it all the time for recipes, party ideas, home projects, etc. I pin everything onto Pinterest from my blog and it’s amazing to see people re-pinning my creations.
Have you been featured in any traditional media? (newpaper, radio, etc.) No, not yet!
Have you been featured on a blog of any sort? If so, do you have a link to that post?
Bakerella? Very cool! I know, right! I was very excited and even got a personal email from her letting me know my cake pops would be showcased on her website.
Why do you think social media is a good fit for your business? Social media that is free works for me. This is basically my second job. A super fun second job. I work full time outside of the home. For me, baking is almost therapeutic and a nice way of making extra money.
How much time do you spend in a week promoting your business on various social media platforms? No more than an hour or two a week. I update my Facebook page, website, blog and Instagram each time I make something new. Uploading the pictures and posting really takes no time at all.
Or, are you purely an organic user – you allow social media to do the ‘talking” for you (as it should be to a certain extent) – do you just allow others to post and comment on your work, or do you actively promote? A little of both. I have to promote my work by posting it and then people pin it, post about it or share with others.
How many aspects of your business do you host on social media sites? Do you sell on Facebook? Do you use Etsy? Do you use Facebook purely for promotion or do you list products, etc. I only use these social media outlets to promote. I love Etsy and buy a ton of my products on there, but I do not sell my own products. I may someday though.
Do you have any advice to offer other home based business owners? Network, Network, Network! Find other’s that do what you do. I have found a great group of people who share their ideas, do tutorials, have great giveaways that I am included in and trouble shoot with one another. It has brought many new fans and business my way.
Though Jamie primarily uses her social media platforms to promote her Yumtastics bakery business, she notes that the use of photographs seems to be what really pulls in orders. People need a visual cue to want to know more. It’s not enough anymore to just talk or post about what you do, social media almost necessitates the use of images to make the sale. So one quick tip: If you are using social media to promote your business, especially on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest, gaining some good photography skills is a must. A great image of your product can actually speak a 1,000 words for the skilled photographer, but a terrible image will make your operation seem less professional.
Do you have a home based business you would like to see profiled here? If so, shoot us a message in the comments. We’d love to tell people about your business!