I have an guest post up at Crafting an MBA about creating “multiple streams of income”. Check it out if you want to learn more about new ways to make money with your crafting.

And if you want to hear how a completely different kind of crafter has multiple streams in her business, read my interview with Heidi here.

But you know, I hate the cliche of  “multiple streams”. I mean, I get the metaphor, and I actually love that thought of building the river of my business with all these little streams filled with a flow of sales.

But when I hear (or type!) “multiple streams of income”, I feel all business-suity. And my hot pink sneakers do NOT go with a business suit.

What else can I can call this? What would make sense for others, but NOT be business-school-cliche? I think it needs to be metaphor'd!

My ideal metaphor

+something to do with baking?

Oh, I know!

Adding streams of income is like adding spice to a recipe!

Sure, you can just bake a plain cake with flour, eggs, milk and some leavening (like a business that sells one thing), but you'll have something worth sharing (and something your customers will rave about), if you add some spice. Make a cinnamon cake, a ginger cake, a vanilla cake, a chocolate cake!

Choose those spices carefully

In baking and in business, you want to make sure and add complimentary spices. You do NOT want to just throw in whatever you find (or whatever you read other people are doing). You gotta pick a spice based on what goes with YOUR recipe and YOUR taste buds. Maybe it's vanilla + ginger or cinnamon + apples or chili + chocolate.

Maybe your business wants products + teaching. Or products + patterns. Or teaching + writing.  My article about the different streams will help you see the options, but should not be read as a to-do list! Pick the ones that work for you (and experiment!) but don't let anyone else add their unwanted spice to your cake!

How are you going to add spice to your business?

PS. I learned this technique from Havi, she has some really fabulous pirate-inspired metaphors.

7 Comments on Add some spice = multiple streams of income

  1. Jo VanEvery
    August 10, 2010 at 3:52 pm (14 years ago)

    That spice metaphor really works. Suggests variety but the complimentary thing is SOOOO important.

    This isn't about doing anything and everything to bring in money, after all. 🙂

  2. TaraSwiger
    August 10, 2010 at 3:59 pm (14 years ago)

    Exactly – “This isn't about doing anything and everything to bring in

    Thanks, Jo!

  3. Elizabeth
    August 10, 2010 at 4:18 pm (14 years ago)

    I love how well the spice metaphor works.

    For me, I don't mind the idea of streams so much, because I picture little streams running together to make a lovely river. Maybe that can be my metaphor ..

  4. TaraSwiger
    August 11, 2010 at 4:53 pm (14 years ago)

    Thanks Elizabeth!
    I do like the metaphor, when (and if!) I can seperate it from all the
    business-suit ickyness it stirs up. Coming up with a new stream could be as
    relaxing as going to the river bed and thinking quietly.