Author: Earlyn Sharpe
What started as a reluctant but vital trip due to this unprecedented time into the city of Montreal’s with my cousin Cavelle quickly turned into a meeting of the minds and a business opportunity to brand yourself on and offline. Now I know that you’re wondering what the heck I’m talking about, so let me give you the background of this story with all of the plots twist and turns. This story is so exciting!!!!
Although it is still summer, we can feel the autumn chill in the summer breeze nipping against our necks as we hustle against the wind to our desired destination. We both ran to the car and jumped in like the chickens we are when it comes to the winter frost of this cold city that these island girls now call home. The heat is blasting on the seats and in the car as we proceed to downtown Montreal, chuckling away at life, the time of uncertainty that Covid-19 disheveled our normal, leaving us to figure it out. Before you know it, we were at our destination, and as I got ready to exit the parked car, Cavelle said, these words that always make me very quiet. To add to this, Cavelle tone in her voice was very upbeat and vibrant, which is a clear indicator that she is up to no good, and she uttered these words, “I have a surprise for you, you got to close your eyes, Earlyn” My response was, “Seriously???” You know I hate surprises, what are you doing… no really?? Now I really wanted to wipe that smirk off of her face, but I had no choice but to suck it up and play along. Check out what took place in the video below!!!
I posted this video on social media, and it began to blow up! Clients began to DM me regarding the Sharpe4Life mask to know if I would have them for sale on my website. The truth is that it was a gift from my “cuz” to cheer me up and get under my skin a little by making it a surprise! The request about purchasing mask from me kept coming, and the attention that I got in public when I wore my Sharpe4life mask was huge. So I decided to write a blog about my experience and share the branding strategies with my fellow Femtrepreneurs regarding turning obstacles into opportunities.
Although we are socially distancing, people still stop to ask me what Sharpe4life is all about. I’m having conversations in Costco and Walmart, to name a few of the places where I received wonderful compliments about my branded mask.
One of my coaching strategies is to turn obstacles into opportunities. In this time of uncertainty, when asked to be responsible for ourselves and be our neighbor’s keeper by keeping each other safe, wearing a mask is becoming part of our daily fabric. Hopefully, this is only for a short period of time and we can then return to the “new normal” without wearing a mask. Then we can indulge in make-up again— oh how I miss my Mac! In the meantime, Femtrepreneurs, let’s take this obstacle and turn it into an opportunity by Marketing Your Mask and making some cash!
How To Market Your Mask In 5 Easy Steps
Do Your Research- You’ll need to research the best material to use to make your mask. Now that you’re reading this blog, I’m sure you realize that the research is here for you. But you may want to go further to explore other avenues of research to ensure that you are utilizing the correct fabric that will give you and your client’s maximum protection when they wear your mask. The study that I found recommended that a sheet of tightly woven cotton — of 600 threads per inch — plus two sheets of chiffon, made from polyester and spandex, seemed to make the most effective combination, filtering out 80–99% of the particles, depending on their size. They further stated that this combination’s performance is comparable to that of healthcare professionals’ N95 masks.
Other combinations of fabric that perform well, according to the researchers, are tightly woven cotton plus natural silk or flannel and cotton quilt with cotton-polyester batting. The researchers also explain that combinations involving a fabric with a tight weave, such as cotton, and one that can hold a static charge, such as silk, are likely effective because they provide a double barrier protection. Yet they emphasize that for these masks to be truly effective, they have to fit very snugly. So keep this in mind when you’re searching for material for your mask project. Having the right material for your mask is necessary for safety measures and can also be an excellent point when promoting your product.
Decide if it’s a DIY Project/Contract- Some of us have art skills and love a (Do It Yourself) DIY project. If you choose this method, there are a few things that you need to consider. Such as sewing materials and crafts, design, and pattern, packaging, if you’re going to retail, shipping, stock, and online marketing. If you choose to contract out your order, it is a much simpler process. Sewing material, skills, patterns, and design may not be an issue, but you will still need to select your colors, mask design, and other steps depending on what your objectives are for your mask.
Brand Your Mask-Branding your mask can be loads of fun. You have the opportunity to choose your colors, logo, font, etc. What is really fun about this part of the project is that you see a part of your business become alive. And for me, I feel a sense of pride wearing my own brand and a real sense of accomplishment when my clients do the same.
Retail or Promotion Maybe Both- You will make it rain by packaging your mask for retail on your website? Maybe you’ve decided to do a retail and promotion combination for your business by giving away a certain quantity at your Live virtual events and to members of your family and friends. They are willing to help you promote your brand by wearing your mask.
Get Ready To Market Your Mask-When your clients, friends, and family members wear your mask, ask them to send you a picture so that you can share it on social media. Please take photos of yourself wearing your mask and share it on your social media platforms. Have giveaways that include your branded mask. Proudly market your mask online. Wear your brand wherever you go. Have colors to match your outfits, let your mask be a conversation piece on and offline. There is a lot of negativity and mixed messages when you turn on the news and social media regarding mask and so many other issues that we are currently facing. You have the opportunity to change the narrative around wearing a mask and the benefit to you of branding your business. Have fun, ladies and remember to do you and let your brand represent!