By Peg Corwin
Meet Noelle Sharp, owner of APORTA and Featured Business Owner at SCORE Chicago this week. Learn about her business and what tips she has for your success.
What is your company’s elevator pitch?
APORTA is excellence in craftsmanship and quality of living. Founded by Noelle Sharp in 2011, APORTA designs are handcrafted by Sharp, a skilled knitter and weaver. APORTA fibers are handpicked to ensure all products are of the highest caliber. APORTA honors the tradition of honest, hard work.
“Local resources and local crafts people. Never outsourced. Never imported. You deserve to use and surround yourselves with exceptionally fine crafted products.”
Who are your clients, and give an example of how you served that person or business?
APORTA clients are not age or gender specific, and the design and presentation of our products reflect this. They are bought by children, teenagers, young professional to retired professionals. In addition to creating accessories, APORTA works one-on-one with designers to create custom textiles for their businesses.
What is your most successful sales strategy?
Having worked in customer service for over 12 years Sharp says that she approaches each sale with the objective of listening to the customer, developing a relationship and making him or her feel like they are shopping with a friend. She does not push sales on clients, but “invites them into the world of APORTA, which in turn motivates them to return to our products.”
Who is your Mentor and how they have helped you in your business?
Ezzy Dabbish is her mentor. “I couldn’t have asked for a better one. He has helped me develop and refine my business plan, as well as introduce new aspects to my business that will help grow profits. His knowledge has been overwhelmingly beneficial, he genuinely wants to help and guide my business.”
What is the most important lesson you have learned in business that might help others?
Utilize every online/digital marketing opportunity available to you — Facebook, Instagram, Pintrest, Tumblr. It’s not just enough to sell your products. People want to be involved with the process, they want to feel like they have a connection and a peak into the world you have created. What you show in these avenues will have an affect on your customers. They will remember the tiny details and come back because of those details — the way you package your products, what type of materials you use, the quality of your photographs and online presence.
What is your website for further info?
Our business mentors can help you, too!
Disclaimer: SCORE Chicago helps small business owners manage and grow their businesses. We help startups write business plans and launch. Nevertheless, our involvement should not be considered as an endorsement.