The Competition of Creative Business

Tonight- I'm nosing around on Etsy, when really I should be cleaning out old tags & updating my descriptions. Just then I receive a nice convo from a fellow seller- she starts out by complimenting my shop & goes on to say that she too- designs appliques using reclaimed materials. She wants to know if I use reclaimed tees and mentions that shes not sure how to price her items. Has this ever happened to you? How do you handle it? 

Anyone who knows me personally, knows without a doubt that I am extremely competitive. It's hardwired into my system through years of conditioning and competing in sports ever since I was a wee bit. Can you see me running up the steps in Philly with my Ginghers in hand re-enacting the scene from Rocky? *running with scissors is unsafe and should not be attempted

This convo came from someone I should deem 'competition.' It is one of many I've received and responded to. Yes siree, I wrote back answered her questions (not about pricing) and shared the whole TN2T kit & kaboodle. When it boils down to certain business aspects, for me at least- there is no us vs. them.

A great example, Lauren's gem of comment last month on my Create Change App feature at Sustainablog.
We share the same end goal. We're playing for the same team. There is enough to go around, and heck, if I could get my way I would want MORE people out there sharing the message, selling eco friendly designs, and taking action to make a difference in the world.

Every woman who becomes rich by competition throws down behind her the ladder by which she rises, and keeps others down; but every woman who gets rich by creation opens a way for thousands to follow her, and inspires them to do so. - Wallace D. Wattles

I never realized this about myself, but I suppose I'm some type of a romantic (or nincompoop!) I want to support others in their creative dreams and passions. In my mind it could be a matter of a mom getting the opportunity to stay at home with her young children. That's exactly why I write about how to get found, the importance of making connections, and why I'm about to spill my guts on failing big- that's an upcoming post. The lessons I learn, I choose to share- so others aren't making the same mistakes.  I'm successful because I focus on what I bring to the table, the unique experience and services I can provide. The focus should always be your customers, not the competition. 

Post a comment below and share your thoughts about creativity & competition. Have you been faced with a similar situation or a copy cat? Would you handle it a different way?


  1. You are super supportive! Thanks for the chat on friday!

    1. Anytime Rebecca- It was absolutely wonderful to hear your voice & learn about your amazing ideas!

  2. I mentioned this in a tweet to you the other day - if someone asks where I got an easy-to-find supply, I have no problem sharing that. If it's a secret, only-for-me thing, I'm keeping that to myself :)

    As for sharing experiences - like how to be found or what tricks you've learned, even pricing strategies - I think that for a lot of people, it's the only way they'll be encouraged into making a change, taking a risk, doing something different. I'd much rather hear from someone who's willing to help out with their experiences than someone who just lectures at people.

    And in the long run, the more of us that help each other, the more successful we'll all be.

    1. I totally get what you're saying Stacey. There certainly are some aspects of any business that are best kept close to heart- a special sauce, a subtle stitch, or something special that gives you an edge.

      Thanks for joining me in conversation on both twitter & here on the blog- it's always a pleasure!


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