One Month Down!
Being a small business owner requires an extraordinary amount of reflection, at least from my perspective. So, here's a brief check-in and rundown of what's happened and what I've learned so far since launching Queer Chocolatier!
1. I believe in myself more than I ever imagined!
I am tremendously confident in selling my chocolates, talking about the quality of the ingredients, discussing my production of the truffles, and opening up to folx of all sorts who come to have conversations with me about Queer Chocolatier. Believing in myself doesn't lead to arrogance; I stay in my lane, learn from people every day, and connect in meaningful ways that genuinely impact me.
2. Learning from people about what they want is the best source for ideas!
People know what they want. I don't have to come up with every idea from a blank slate. Occasionally, my ideas do resonate with others and that's wonderful! But, more often than not, I take the ideas and suggestions of others and run with it, newly inspired! Some of these ideas include:
- Single Truffle Boxes
- Truffle Assortment Packs
- Newsletter Suggestions
- Grand Opening Theme and Truffle Flavors
Speaking of which...
3. I am opening a retail space for Queer Chocolatier!!
Whoa! I know! It's a big step! But this is such an exciting step. Sometimes it makes me picture how a kitten on a wooden floor will have its rear legs outrun its front legs. I am that kitten. I am a frenzy of motion.
I'll sleep when I'm sleepy.
That's how the saying goes, right?
Anyway, there will be a Grand Opening event on Thursday, October 5th at our new space, 405 S. Walnut St. #204 in Muncie! You should totally be there! My wife and I are big fans of the Netflix series Stranger Things and I'll have Maple Eggo Waffle Truffles to sell for this one night only! For how much do you ask? Eleven dollars for a box of 4. Eleven.
4. I was profiled in a Ball State Daily News series featuring local businesses!
Some of my experiences I've had in the last month of being open for business are things that I expected would happen if I put some muscle and effort into it. Other things, though, have come so easy and smoothly that it really does feel like luck. My wife and I were recently interviewed for the Ball State Daily News Muncie Origins series and I am thrilled with the article! I appreciate that it was evident what my goals for the business are because the interviewer, Kirsten, did a lovely job of highlighting the overall values of Queer Chocolatier. We are as much about community as we are about chocolate. We are unapologetic. We are passionate about what we create. And we love Muncie!
5. I created an Etsy storefront to feature Homo Decor and my truffles!
If people are shopping for holiday gifts and they haven't already heard of Queer Chocolatier, they are probably not going to make it to my site. But, if they are shopping on Etsy for their loved ones, then they may make it across my storefront and be able to purchase my truffles as well as my Homo Decor offerings!
What's Homo Decor?
Homo Decor will consist of art pieces to warm the spaces of those who are not as frequently represented in off-the-shelf home decor items. Everyone and all consentual relationships should be celebrated!
Etsy will serve as another marketplace for my truffles and art pieces can reach more folx who are making purchases for themselves and those they love unapologetically! Homo Decor pieces will be up within a week for both my storefront on Queer Chocolatier and Etsy.
6. I really need to up my game to be ready for my second month and beyond!
Everything that has transpired so far has been wonderful. I've worked hard, I've been supported, I've had a stroke or three of luck. But I am ready to reach the next level of business and community.
I'm one month down, but I'm just getting started!