An exceptionally visual business, the sewing pattern business is full of incredibly talented makers and designers, but most of them struggle with the business side, focusing instead on their love, on the creative side. So how to market your sewing pattern businesson video when you’re a behind-the-scenes designer? As with anything, it’s preparation, skill acquisition and practice.
Let’s dive in on how to market your sewing pattern business on video. First, learn what your customers want. It may be tempting (or scary) to develop complex how-to videos with a lot of steps, when simply showing one quick technique or just providing inspiration will do. The easiest way is to ask your customers what they want to see from you.
Don’t reinvent the wheel
– if a colleague (aka competitor) has a great video on something, share it. What? Really? Yes! Your customers sew patterns from your competitors all the time. Collaboration over competition.What your customers really want is more YOU and the unique skills that you bring to sewing YOUR patterns.
Can’t I just use photos and regular posts? It’s not nearly as effective, but yes. Consider making a slide show video with technique photos and copy
Do I have to be on video myself? No, you can show your dress forms, your worktable, and your sewing space without showing yourself. You can have someone else’s hands (or your own) on camera to show a technique.
Do people even WANT to see me on video? I’m not sure I’m interesting/camera ready enough!
On a recent Facebook thread, some friends told me they watch videos of people cleaning dirty carpets. Or power washing. Or unclogging city drains. I am NOT kidding. Although those power washing things, they are strangely satisfying, no? So when I say your clients WANT to see you (doing almost anything, even power washing!) I’m not kidding. Especially for sewing pattern and design businesses, you have a wealth of knowledge that translates perfectly to evergreen video content that will drive traffic to your website for years to come.
OK, I’m convinced, what should I feature in my sewing pattern how to videos?
Bite off tiny chunks, not big ones
Most sewing designers aim to show far too much in a single video. It’s enough to just show ONE pattern feature, or ONE small technique. Save the “five step process” videos for courses, not for live or recorded promotional video.
It’s OK to mess things up if it’s live
People value authenticity more than production value. If you’re recording, you can edit the video and you can do more than one to practice. If you’re live, you can just go with the flow! People are looking for connection, especially with their favorite designers. You’re a celebrity!
Plan your content over a longer period of time
Do this so you can stay focused on producing work that builds on your skillset, content authority. This means, grab your calendar, Trello board (with calendar power up) or notebook and plan 8 weeks of content (at least 8 videos). You can build on your videos or just show a mix of how-to and design ideas.
Videos are incredibly effective at driving traffic to your sewing pattern website
Using real metrics multiple clients, we consistently see traffic numbers jump up and stay up for clients that use video. If you combine recorded video with written content and use Pinterest, this evergreen content will drive traffic for YEARS. Videos that appeared almost a decade ago still drive traffic, especially if those were posted to YouTube (this is not the case with videos posted to Facebook, or Instagram, as those tend to be faster moving content.) If you have video content on these platforms, it is sometimes possible to export them (it used to be a feature, but it was removed) with 3rdparty tools. We recommend producing recorded video or live recording with more than one device to capture this for use on other platforms.)
Here’s a sample 8-week video plan for sewing pattern companies:
Week 1: Introduction
Week 2: Pattern feature
Week 3: how-to (one small technique)
Week 4: pattern feature
Week 5: how-to
Week 6: pattern feature
Week 7: how to
Week 8: pattern feature
Each of these segments is fast and easy to produce. How-to requires a little more forethought, a bit more planning, as you’ll need to cut the pattern, show them how to on video.
A pattern feature is a dress form + pattern sample (or two), the pattern itself and maybe some pattern tester photos mixed in.
You can utilize this method to keep up a steady stream of content that people will access for YEARS to come. If you combine this with blog posts and Pinterest posts, this evergreen content will pay dividends for years to come.