My Secret Is Out

There’s this concept online called crowdfunding. In basic language, crowdfunding is a group of people that buy into another individual’s/company’s idea. I mean buy as in money and buy as in you like what they are selling. I actually can’t tell you how I got involved, but believe me, it had to be something I saw online that made me say, “Wow!” I was working then, though money was tight, but what I saw made me say, “I’ve got to have this!” The problem was my spouse, who wasn’t my spouse at the time, but we were dating and living together. I knew that spending money on a watch was not going to fly. Yes, the first geeky item I pledged to was a watch. This watch connected to your phone and you got notifications. This was before smart watches were the rage. What I did was to first talk up the watch by saying how it could keep me from missing messages on my commute from New York to New Jersey. Well, that didn’t work, so I did what I knew was fail proof: it was an early birthday present to myself. While I was wheeling and dealing with my spouse on this watch, I went to a newfound website of geek items and saw another watch. This time, not only could I get notifications but I could talk into it. Dick Tracy here I come! Now, I’m talking about two watches. Well, I only have one birthday, so how could I get her to see things from my point of view? Nope, it wasn’t going to happen, so I did the unthinkable and just kept my big mouth shut. The website that had grabbed my attention that I was not mentioning was Kickstarter. 

Kickstarter
was started in April 2009 by Perry Chen, Yancey Strickler and Charles Adler. The Kickstarter headquarters is located in New York City. Kickstarter is a very user friendly site for project owners and backers. Kickstarter responds to questions and problems about their site very quickly and you can communicate with the project owner by clicking on the comments section or emailing him/her through the website. The comments area is also a place to interact, not only with the project owner, but with other backers, during the course of the project.
Kickstarter has a global community of people from more than 220 countries and territories. Roughly 35% of successfully funded projects now come from outside the United States, as do 45% of backers. Together, these backers and creators use Kickstarter to reach across borders and shape culture into what they want it to be, rather than accepting it for what it is. And as ideas from different cultures collide with one another, they inspire new conversations, creative approaches, and cross-cultural connections.
 

Kickstarter Project Manager 
I will discuss the technology area of Kickstarter; however, there are many types of projects that you can back, such as films, music, and books. The Kickstarter site enables people to discover and back as many projects as they believe will become a reality. When a person, or groups of people, decide to start a project on Kickstarter they must first build a project page, which includes a video with a description explaining their project. The next step for the project owner is to provide information about their budget and a timeline from beginning to end of the project. The project owner must then decide what kind of rewards they will offer backers, such as a choice of item color or engraving the item with the project name and year. These rewards are given when the project funding reaches certain milestones. Project owners have to keep in mind that they pay for all of the rewards offered to backers. When project owners think about the funds necessary to bring their project to fruition, they must consider everything because Kickstarter will not let their project become a reality if the funding goal is not met. A very important part of the project is promotion. A project needs active promotion because a project no one knows about will never get funded. Kickstarter’s fee is 5%, with an additional 3 to 5% for processing payments. If the project owner doesn’t meet their funding goal, they owe nothing.

Kickstarter Backers
There are different tier amounts that a backer can pledge. When a backer pledges early there is usually a perk from the project owner as a way of thanking a backer for coming aboard early. The different pledge tiers not only tell you the item, but an estimated month and year that you will receive the item. The shipping information will also be listed in each tier box, along with any accessories that might be given. Once he/she has met the project funding level, the project owner will give their backers updates as the project develops through each stage. Backers like to know they’ve made a wise decision in backing a project and hate it when shipping has to be pushed back time after time. My experience with Kickstarter is that projects are always pushed back for different reasons. The project owners try to give realistic shipping estimates, but often a project of this magnitude is new to many of them and they are not prepared for the problems that arise. You, the backer, have to be aware that there are also scam artist that will go through the motions of creating a project, but once funding is met and they receive their money, you never hear from them again. There is really no recourse for backers when a project owner takes the money and doesn’t fulfill his/her part of the deal. Kickstarter backing is partially about being first to get an item that no one might know about or have even envisioned. As I stated, not all projects make it to the backers. An example of this was a watch that I pledged for my daughter. It was supposed to be the thinnest watch out in 2013. The company wasn’t able to make the watch because they encountered too many hurdles that they weren’t prepared for. I recently received a letter informing us that after liquidating all of their assets, there was no money to give to backers.

Some might think this is throwing money away because these projects aren’t cheap, and if a project fails you can’t get your money back. I think of it like this: It’s no riskier than the lottery or going to the casino. You never know when you’ll hit the jackpot. There is a certain rush you get as the months go by waiting for your reward to make it from the project owner’s vision to you.

Musiclens Sunglasses

It’s Grandma Gadgeteer Time. I’m selling Musiclens Bluetooth Sunglasses on EBay. You can listen to your music and receive calls without taking your phone out of your pocket. I ship the same day and shipping is free. These are awesome with great sound. They are Brand New never used. The item number is 113817967782 just put that in EBay search. Thank you.

Paparazzi Jewelry – A Great Side Hustle


Amy Out Selling Parparazzi Jewelry

We all want to make money, especially these days when everything is so expensive. There are many side hustles out there that can bring in that extra cash you need. One of those ways is selling Paparazzi five-dollar jewelry. 

 Paparazzi History

Paparazzi Jewelry was founded by two couples who saw a market for inexpensive jewelry. They have brought this company a long ways since they started it in 2010. Paparazzi stated as a party planning company, and, not long after, they introduced their jewelry. The jewelry is made mostly of aluminum, steel, and other minerals and is hypoallergenic. The founders, still to this day, are involved in the design and manufacturing of their jewelry. They are located in Utah. Paparazzi jewelry is sold online or through one of their many consultants.

The owners had the jewelry but needed a way to bring it to the masses. The idea of using consultants was born. I want to address the elephant in the room right away. Their model is based on direct sales, which many companies use today. The company is very successful at doing what they do.

How It Works
  Selling Paparazzi jewelry works like this: You join a team that’s already established, or you can start your own team. The startup cost is about $100 to become part of the Paparazzi family and purchase your first order of jewelry. The concept is simple. You buy the jewelry from Paparazzi and resell it for five dollars. You make a 45% commission on each piece of jewelry you sell. There are sets that cost more, but they are still very reasonable. There is constantly new jewelry being released, and the look and appearance of the jewelry is not cheap. 

No, I do not sell Paparazzi jewelry because I don’t have a salesman bone in my body. I have met two women (Amy Briggs, website: blingwithamy.com and Adrian (Pink-Diva) Jones, website: paparaziaccessories.com) who are doing well as team leaders and salespersons. They are both dedicated to having a successful team, and they aren’t just in it for themselves. They are bringing members of their teams with them as they climb the Paparazzi ladder of success. Amy went to a convention that Paparazzi had in Vegas, and I could tell by the excitement of her voice that she is all in when it comes to selling her jewelry. The Vegas convention was a success; from what I was told the amount of people was staggering. There were classes, lectures, team building, and she got to see the newest styles in jewelry coming out. There were women from all walks of life and ethnic backgrounds. This is not just for women, but men, too, can become a Paparazzi consultant. There is a men’s section available for them. There are some things about Paparazzi that I feel are great, such as the camaraderie and incentives that are offered. If you need a side hustle, are retired, or just want to try a different job, this could be your answer. You can be anywhere and join a team. Amy is in Florida, but her team consists of women living in South Caroline, Tennessee, and Florida. She interacts with her team mostly online. While Adrian is in New Jersey, she is very hands-on with her team. You can find Adrian and her team at flea markets, church functions, and anyplace where she can set up her jewelry board. 

What is there not to like about making money and friends? The jewelry that is sold is not only nice to look at, but for that price you can have a color and style for every outfit. The Christmas holiday will sneak up on us soon, so why not join a team now. You know that as the holidays and birthdays come along you’ll be scratching your head trying to think of something to give your family, friends, and coworkers. Well, Paparazzi jewelry might just be your answer. I know the question that everyone wants the answer to is, can you make money doing this? The answer is definitely yes, and just like any job, you must put in the work to be successful. The higher you rise, the more money there is to be made. There are women making in the six and seven figures, and some have quit their 9-5 job to sell Paparazzi. Entrepreneurship is beautiful. You can work when and how many hours you want without any pressure from a boss.

If you would like to join or get more information on either team, here’s their contact information:

Amy’s website: Blingwithamy.com
Adrian’s website: Paparazziaccessories.com

Flea Market Selling

Hello Unique People 

You have your products, and you are ready to make that money. The problem is, where are the people who are supposed to be spending their money? The last blog, I talked about advertising and more advertising. You can never do too much advertising. Advertising is an ongoing part of selling that you will have to keep spending money on. There are so many ways to advertise. One of the things we did was go to a flea market.
 I had done flea market selling years ago in the Poconos, and it was very fruitful in terms of making money. Here in New Jersey, the way this flea market worked was there’s a line up time, where people would try to get there at that time, so they can get the space and area they wanted. The lineup time for Saturday was 6:30am for the outdoor area. We had packed the car the night before, so all we had to do was get up at 5:00am, get ready, and walk the dogs. This was our first time, so we didn’t know anything about areas or spaces. We got there about 7:30 and the weather was cold, cloudy, and windy. There wasn’t any line, and a lot of spaces were already taken. We finally found two spaces that weren’t far from the indoor part of the flea market. This particular market has outdoor and indoor selling. You pay more for indoor, and usually the owners of the flea market wants a year commitment. The next thing is the fun part, unpacking all of your merchandise, and setting up so people will get the best views from across a table. The setting up part can take from 30-60 minutes, depending on how fast you unload your car and whether you know how you want to display your items. We unpacked and sat, waiting for customers. It was cold out, so I went indoors to get warm, and discovered that was where all the customers were. The indoor sellers were making a killing, and all of the outdoor sellers were just cold. There were a few stragglers that did come and look, on their way into the indoor market. We might have made 2 sales, before we got tired of things blowing all over the place and the lack of foot traffic. Then, the next fun thing happens, which is packing up all of your merchandise and fitting it all back into the car. This was a lesson learned, on many levels; check the weather and get to the flea market early to get a prime spot. The next blog, I’ll talk about our second trip to the flea market. Have a safe week.

Buying a Website Versus Just Doing it Yourself Part 2

Listen to music and look cool uniquethingsonline.com

In the last blog, I discussed building a website yourself. This time, I’ll talk to you about paying someone to create your website. Having someone else create the website of your dreams seems like the perfect idea. Here I bring you the “but”… The but is that you must work just as hard, as if you’re creating the website yourself, and you may also lose vital control over making changes or editing the backend of your site. The one thing that you should want, besides a reasonable price, is a detailed list of what they will do. The other thing is knowing whether they are creating the site from a template, or building it from your ideas. A template, to me, is just filling in the blanks with content, and tweaking it as much as possible to your specifications. When this can’t be done to exactly your specifications, then comes a conversation where the web designer tries to gently persuade you that his/her idea is better. I feel that you should pay more for a website being built from the ground up, than when a template is used. It’s like getting a house built from nothing, versus a prefab where they just snap the pieces into place. You’re paying for what you get; so you need to decide what kind of website you want. You need to get estimates, because the prices run from sane to insane amounts. You should get them to show you previous websites that they built, and when possible, contact the person that bought the website. I feel that there should be, not good, but great, communication between you and the web designer, because if there is not, you’ll end up with a website that just pisses you off whenever you look at it. “Money back.” You’ll ask, and the web designer will quickly tell you about, all of the work that was done. The web designer will also point out that you should have said something sooner. Your blood pressure will go through the roof, and you’ll just want to be done with that person.

Unique Things Web Builder

Now that I’ve gone over a few things to look out for when getting your website created, this is what happened to us. My spouse was getting frustrated that we weren’t getting any customers, and thought that hiring a web designer was the answer. She never believed in what she did. I told her over and over that it was good, and what we needed was advertising. It did no good. She checked online, and got some recommendations from Facebook. She decided to use a web designer she found online for $1000. What they offered was that you could get your money back within 30 days if you didn’t like what they did. There was to be a working website within 7 days, and they would also drive traffic to the new website. She paid the initial fee of $500, with the remainder due when the website was done. My spouse did look at other websites the company had done, and thought they were okay before she paid the initial money. The problems started as soon as the initial money was paid.

There was poor communication between the two of them immediately, but at that point she was hoping things would get better. The beginning issue was about creating a website from the ground up, which is what my spouse wanted, not a prefab website. There were days when the web designer was supposed to call and never did. They had to take down the website she created, which meant no business. The web designer created a new website, but it had a new name. But, what my spouse really hated, was that she could not make any tweaks to the newly-created website. I knew then that she didn’t want to give up the hard work she had done. The more she tried to explain what she wanted done, the more they tried to tell her what they felt was best. The next time they missed a telephone call that was it for her. She didn’t care about the $500. She wanted her website back and to be in charge. They didn’t care that they made money on a nonexistent website. I was happy that she got rid of that web designer. I felt that they were more frustrating than creating the website she wanted herself.

I hope you got a little knowledge from this blog about your business website. I’m not going to say that all web designers are bad, but just be careful. In the next blog we’ll look at some more products and advertising. Be safe out there.

My Secret is Out

There’s this concept online called crowdfunding. In basic language, crowdfunding is a group of people that buy into another individual’s/company’s idea. I mean buy as in money and buy as in you like what they are selling. I actually can’t tell you how I got involved, but believe me, it had to be something I saw online that made me say, “Wow!” I was working then, though money was tight, but what I saw made me say, “I’ve got to have this!” The problem was my spouse, who wasn’t my spouse at the time, but we were dating and living together. I knew that spending money on a watch was not going to fly. Yes, the first geeky item I pledged to was a watch. This watch connected to your phone and you got notifications. This was before smart watches were the rage. What I did was to first talk up the watch by saying how it could keep me from missing messages on my commute from New York to New Jersey. Well, that didn’t work, so I did what I knew was fail proof: it was an early birthday present to myself. While I was wheeling and dealing with my spouse on this watch, I went to a newfound website of geek items and saw another watch. This time, not only could I get notifications but I could talk into it. Dick Tracy here I come! Now, I’m talking about two watches. Well, I only have one birthday, so how could I get her to see things from my point of view? Nope, it wasn’t going to happen, so I did the unthinkable and just kept my big mouth shut. The website that had grabbed my attention that I was not mentioning was Kickstarter. 
Kickstarter

Kickstarter
was started in April 2009 by Perry Chen, Yancey Strickler and Charles Adler. The Kickstarter headquarters is located in New York City. Kickstarter is a very user friendly site for project owners and backers. Kickstarter responds to questions and problems about their site very quickly and you can communicate with the project owner by clicking on the comments section or emailing him/her through the website. The comments area is also a place to interact, not only with the project owner, but with other backers, during the course of the project.
Kickstarter has a global community of people from more than 220 countries and territories. Roughly 35% of successfully funded projects now come from outside the United States, as do 45% of backers. Together, these backers and creators use Kickstarter to reach across borders and shape culture into what they want it to be, rather than accepting it for what it is. And as ideas from different cultures collide with one another, they inspire new conversations, creative approaches, and cross-cultural connections.
 

Kickstarter Project Manager 
I will discuss the technology area of Kickstarter; however, there are many types of projects that you can back, such as films, music, and books. The Kickstarter site enables people to discover and back as many projects as they believe will become a reality. When a person, or groups of people, decide to start a project on Kickstarter they must first build a project page, which includes a video with a description explaining their project. The next step for the project owner is to provide information about their budget and a timeline from beginning to end of the project. The project owner must then decide what kind of rewards they will offer backers, such as a choice of item color or engraving the item with the project name and year. These rewards are given when the project funding reaches certain milestones. Project owners have to keep in mind that they pay for all of the rewards offered to backers. When project owners think about the funds necessary to bring their project to fruition, they must consider everything because Kickstarter will not let their project become a reality if the funding goal is not met. A very important part of the project is promotion. A project needs active promotion because a project no one knows about will never get funded. Kickstarter’s fee is 5%, with an additional 3 to 5% for processing payments. If the project owner doesn’t meet their funding goal, they owe nothing.

Kickstarter Backers
There are different tier amounts that a backer can pledge. When a backer pledges early there is usually a perk from the project owner as a way of thanking a backer for coming aboard early. The different pledge tiers not only tell you the item, but an estimated month and year that you will receive the item. The shipping information will also be listed in each tier box, along with any accessories that might be given. Once he/she has met the project funding level, the project owner will give their backers updates as the project develops through each stage. Backers like to know they’ve made a wise decision in backing a project and hate it when shipping has to be pushed back time after time. My experience with Kickstarter is that projects are always pushed back for different reasons. The project owners try to give realistic shipping estimates, but often a project of this magnitude is new to many of them and they are not prepared for the problems that arise. You, the backer, have to be aware that there are also scam artist that will go through the motions of creating a project, but once funding is met and they receive their money, you never hear from them again. There is really no recourse for backers when a project owner takes the money and doesn’t fulfill his/her part of the deal. Kickstarter backing is partially about being first to get an item that no one might know about or have even envisioned. As I stated, not all projects make it to the backers. An example of this was a watch that I pledged for my daughter. It was supposed to be the thinnest watch out in 2013. The company wasn’t able to make the watch because they encountered too many hurdles that they weren’t prepared for. I recently received a letter informing us that after liquidating all of their assets, there was no money to give to backers.

Some might think this is throwing money away because these projects aren’t cheap, and if a project fails you can’t get your money back. I think of it like this: It’s no riskier than the lottery or going to the casino. You never know when you’ll hit the jackpot. There is a certain rush you get as the months go by waiting for your reward to make it from the project owner’s vision to you.