Asip Ink: Designing a Growing Home Business

Katy Asip is a talented entrepreneur whose business has grown steadily over the past 6 years. She is the perfect example of a successful, small business woman who has learned to work and grow her business alongside of her family. Katy has an artistic eye and a flair for both the cute and classic. I’ve been a loyal customer for years! Today, Katy shares with us her tips for running a home based business.

Tell us about your business and the services you offer.

My business is Asip Ink. I design and print personalized stationery, custom invitations and a line of inspirational greeting cards called “Love Notes”

How did you come up with the idea?

I didn’t start out with a business in mind. I was doing volunteer work for a start-up charity in Atlanta. We needed thank you notes and letterhead for our organization so I learned how to do make them. Next, I began making notecards and notepads for friends as gifts. Before I knew it, friends were asking me to make notecards for them to give as gifts. Little by little I grew the concept into a business.

What do you like best about being a small business owner?

I love making my own hours and schedule. I have a family, so it is so nice to have the flexibility to do carpool or doctors’ appointments when my kids need me to. I can tailor my schedule to match my family schedule. I also love working at home. I can have dinner cooking or laundry in while I am working.

What are the frustrations?

When I get super busy I can get overwhelmed. I often think “it’s only me,” but I’m guessing most women have a lot on their plates and often feel the same way.

I have learned to use my less busy times of the year – winter and summer – to stock up on cash and carry inventory, organize my workspace and work on fine-tuning marketing tools. These are the things that I cannot focus on when I am slammed with orders.

Also, I invested in a couple of tools which make my business run so much smoother. I purchased an excellent printer which means less wasted paper, ink and time! An excellent paper cutter saves so much time. So, what may seem like an extravagant expense can save time and money in the long run.

Lastly, I have dedicated time in my office during the day, but I never work at night.

How have you grown your business?

I do several craft show and markets a year and I always make new contacts at these. I have a very large email distribution list and though I don’t send too many emails, it is a good way to stay on customers’ radar. I have a website, asipink.com, which my customers share with friends. My business has grown through word of mouth and the internet.

What advice do you have for others who have a great idea and dream of turning it into a successful business?

I would say the easiest part of having my own business is that every day I am doing something I truly love. If you have a talent or passion it is fun to make money doing what you love. Shape your business so that you are doing the things you love…and hire someone to do the things you don’t!

You can find Katy’s work at asipink.com or contact her at kasip@mac.com