So herein lies the current state of Arcadian Dreams Metalwork -- might be of interest to other self-employed business mavens. :D
About $2500 in the hole at the moment, which is fine; my business plan allots for up to $5000 "red" before I will have to change strategies. So that's good. :)
Advertising and Promotion:
Will never be on the front page of Etsy, and my items honestly don't fit their new "branding" schtick... so I will change my focus from them to myself/other venues.
Project Wonderful got me views but no sales and no trackable hearts; will give it another go when I have a fully stocked shop.
Twitter would probably get me sales if I used it for my business, but it feels icky to do so and I'm worried about spamming people.
Current strategy is to open an ArtFire shop, keep three lines in my Etsy shop (Cocktails, My Heart Is A Castle and eyeballs) and use the rest in ArtFire, featured as a cart function on my main website, which will be overhauled.
Will likely stay the same for the moment. Right now I am using a formula that marginally works -- essentially overhead (shop expenses, packaging, shipping) + materials times x. Nope, no labour in there; I'm currently working for free, which is bad business, but I am trying to stay competitive. When I'm a big diva of the jewellery world this may change, of course. ;)
Will definitely be doing the gem and jewellery show this October; will be saving up stock to do it, and have lovely new displays. I'm aiming for 50 items, which is pretty ambitious, but I have a few months to do it.
Still have consignment space at the Purple Door; will put some pieces there before and after the gem show.
Cabbing! Cutting and polishing my own stones is not only a heck of a lot of fun, but will reduce my cost substantially.
So there you have it. I'm not kicking ass but I'm not going under. :D