Do you want a little help making beautiful Christmas bows? Watch the video below to follow Kandi’s tutorial.
Social media is addicting, and whether you like it or not really has no merit on its powerful impact on the consumer market. The fact is, people of all ages and genders like watching people—how and with what they decorate their coffee tables, what they look like when they sing in the car, how they play hide and seek or build a lego house, I could go on forever with examples. By learning to creatively leverage the power of Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc., a new opportunity has emerged, bringing with it a new sphere of self-employed entrepreneurs. We call them Influencers.
Kandi Jung’s entrepreneurial heart has been driving her desire to build her own business for as long as she can remember. “I think the first wreath I made was for one of my girlfriends. It was Georgia Bull- dog-themed. When I gave it to her, she said ‘you need to open a business making these!’” Kandi says this was about the time she decided to try her hand at building her company, Kandi’s Kreations. “I found out very quickly just how many custom orders it would take to make enough money to justify leaving my full-time job, and I shied away.” Kandi laughs as she tells us about her humble beginnings. “But, no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t stop yearning deep down in my soul.”
Like any good marketer, Kandi learned the tools of the trade and began posting im- ages of her items to share with her friends on Facebook in hopes of driving them to her Etsy Shop to make a purchase. Fast forward a year, and an additional social media platform later, and Kandi’s tweet about her Halloween-themed Christmas tree landed her a cameo on Good Morning America! Overnight, her following skyrocketed with people interested in what type of ribbon she was using, what brand glue gun, where she purchased her base structure for her creations… She was influencing the consumer’s purchase by simply doing what she loved to do.
She began making videos of start to finish wreath-making to share on all of her social pages, commenting on the ins and outs as she went. When the who, what, when, why, where questions began rolling in by the droves, Kandi decided to dedicate a special time to meet with people LIVE to share her means and ways. Today, her sphere of influence in the crafter’s niche is enormous to the point that people pay a monthly fee to be a member of Kandi’s Kreation’s Design School, and each week she makes a new craft with her audience from her studio in Richmond Hill. This, in addition to monetizing her posts—where people pay to share their advertisements on her pages because of the large following—has allowed Kandi to make her passion for crafting her full-time job.
Kandi’s story is such an inspiration. Her positive energy online earns her many letters and thank you notes from followers, as well as invitations to present and design in front of large crowds at crafting conventions. As any entrepreneur knows, you must always be evolving and working to better your brand, setting goals every year to grow. Kandi says her next measure of success will be collaborating with a major chain or brand in her area of focus. We look forward to the day we see her face on point of sale collateral in Michaels or Hobby Lobby.
Photos by: Erin Hixson Photography