This year, Etsy Resolution returns to make 2017 the Year of the Maker. Beginning Jan. 30, turn creative genes and talent into a new career. Last year, Etsy Resolution saw 5,000 creative entrepreneurs across Canada sign up to learn from mentors and participate in the four-week program and are offering a chance for new creators to learn how to turn their passion into a career. We sat down with Erin Klassen, Manager of Community Programs & Partnerships for Etsy Canada, to learn more about the program.
- How did you begin working with ETSY?
I joined Etsy more than four years ago as the second hire in Canada, back when we didn’t even have an official Toronto office yet! My friends who run the independent label Fortnightstarted their business on Etsy many years ago, and encouraged me to apply for the position. It’s a dream job to support creative entrepreneurs across Canada — I’ve met hundreds of remarkable, inspiring creators!
- What’s your creative passion?
I moonlight as a writer, editor and actually launched an independent publishing company last year called With/out Pretend.
- What inspired ETSY to create their resolution campaign?
#EtsyResolution is designed around the needs of creatives who want to open a shop and like the idea of having access to a community of experienced mentors to support them in their first few weeks. Even though it’s easy to set up a shop on Etsy, we understand that starting a business or selling online for the first time can be a bit overwhelming. The Resolution program is a like a bootcamp — the lessons and support group are there to keep you motivated and on track!
- How does ETSY select their mentors? How are their mentors helping to inspiring and teaching new #creators?
We look for mentors from all across Canada who have had success selling their work on Etsy, who understand firsthand the kinds of questions and concerns that new sellers often face. Our group of 24 mentors are all really passionate about helping new sellers get started because they are empathetic to all the little decisions that go into running a creative business. Many of our mentors have experience helping others in their communities, like Crystal in Vancouver who hosts regular in-person workshops. Some of our mentors bring a wealth of knowledge to the group, like Arounna from Bookhou who started her Etsy shop in 2009 and has more than 12,000 sales!
- Any advice for aspiring #CREATORS?
It might sound cliché, but done is better than perfect. You have to start somewhere, and there’s no time better than right now. I have been personally so inspired by the Etsy sellers I’ve met since joining the company four years ago — it’s a truly amazing, supportive community of likeminded creators! So that’s another piece of advice — you don’t have to do it all alone. You can learn from others along the way, just don’t be afraid to ask.
All images were provide by Etsy Canada.