Updated: Aug 1, 2022
Hi! Welcome to the first post in zeitgeist gifting's blog! Over time I want to utilize this space for Meet the Maker posts, explaining my process of creation, rumination on starting a business, and who knows what else!
To kick off the blog party, I thought it would be a good idea to explain how this all began. Two months ago, I was unexpectedly laid off from a remote job. It had nothing to do with my performance, the business just needed to make some adjustments and it was more of a last in, first out kind of situation. I was initially upset and confused, but almost immediately refocused my attention- I was going to start my own business.
In my promotional marketing career, I was really interested in boxed gifts. I had noticed since early on in the pandemic that people really wanted to reconnect in meaningful ways since it created such a chasm. That, combined with frustration at socioeconomic disparities (read- big retailers that own half the world), I decided that themed gifts featuring local makers was the most appropriate place to start.
I have absolutely no experience in starting a business, so everything has been a learning curve. I began by researching TONS of small businesses around Minnesota. It is such an interesting process. While you know and understand that there are plenty of people out there creating, it really exists in your periphery until you start to actively look and pay attention. There are so many amazing makers/brands out there! One of the most difficult parts of this process was narrowing down options. I wanted to put EVERYTHING into gift boxes (and still do, but we can get into that at a later date). Anyway, I collected samples, materials, developed a logo/marketing tools/website, took pictures, and BAM- there's the business.
Starting a business is a lot. Humbling, confusing, complicated, exciting, etc. All of it. Some days I sell nothing, others I sell a good amount. It is an emotional rollercoaster and can mess with your head a bit. It has taken some time (and is still definitely a work in progress) getting to know myself as a business owner. Every success is reaching the peak of a mountain and every set back is a reason to throw in the towel. But I am learning to take everything in stride and understand that no day is the same. I just have to stay focused and excited about why I am doing this. I want to provide people with just the right thing. The thing that creates the sense of connection and care. The thing that warms your heart both as the giver and receiver. I hope you all feel the same way about these boxes.
Thank you for supporting my small business and being open to the unexpected!