We had the good fortune of connecting with Ravyn Crescent and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Ravyn, can you talk to us a bit about the social impact of your business?
My business has been wonderful not only at bringing people together and allowing people to find connections (I have so many customers who met new friends at my booth/table at craft fairs and conventions and others who found friends because their pet had a fandom themed leash or collar,) it has also served to help businesses to have their brand on collars, leashes, paw balms to help them advertise and bring in new customers.
In addition, Crescent Canines is pro-environment. Our products can be recycled! The paw balm comes in a reusable metal tin and if customers return the tin, they get a discount on a refill for it. The collars and leashes are made with sturdy parts and if customers order through the mail, they get a mailer that’ll work as a return mailer! Should they ever want different design they can send back the old collar and the parts will be reused. We also donate to One Tree Planted.
Additionally, because we are a tiny, single family business, the money gets circulated back into the local economy immediately. No shareholders or investors get it, it doesn’t go overseas, the money earned pays for my groceries, medical bills, necessities I otherwise have no other way to purchase.
I started this company when I was not finding many pet products I loved the theme of and having the ability to custom print the materials used, making it so my customers can use their kids drawings, art they commissioned, etc. means that people get something they truly feel connected to. When my heath declined, it became my primary source of income. This part may not benefit the world, but it truly means that my customers are changing my life for the better! These are people who decided they wanted to help a disabled woman with her business rather than buying from a larger store and it means so much to me and to others who are starting their own small businesses and can see the real support that good customer service and truly caring for your customers and their pets can lead to.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
My art is important to me. It’s primarily just sewing, but it allows me to turn some scraps of fabric into something people use for years to come! It was in no way easy! It’s taken years of practice with my sewing machine, countless hours watching youtube videos and learning all I can, months of product testing for every single item made to ensure the quality is there. . . It’s taken a lot of time and at first I made it work by having it be a “hobby” I did in addition to my “real job”, terms I now hate as my craft and artistic projects have been my primary income for ages.
I learned fast not to discount my time and expense. Don’t under-sell yourself! Sure, there may be some that can mass produce your product cheaper, but they won’t have the same personal touches or social benefit as yours will. Do not undervalue your time! It’s taken you a good while to learn your craft, you deserve to earn a fair wage for it! When you spend 8+ hours a day working on something, that is your job. You need a wage that makes your time worth it, and if you undersell you’ll find yourself unable to continue.
Know your product and your audience! I had a lot of luck at first by supplying rescue groups and dog trainers with free products, and then discounted products. They then referred their adopters and customers to me, and this let me not only have a wide range of “testers” and help out rescue groups, it also helped me learn what my customers needed the most.
In the end, to me, the most important aspect is to know without a doubt that you yourself would gladly use everything you are mailing out. If I wouldn’t give it to my best friend, I don’t give it to my customers. I care about them and their pets as if they are in my inner circle and I never want them to have anything that isn’t the best it can be.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I think we’d start by dropping off our pets at Dogtopia Gilbert so that they can have a wonderful time playing and being kept safe while we went adventuring.
I’d take them to Black Bear Dinner, Giant Hamburger, and of course to Joe’s Real Barbecue! Walking up and down downtown Gilbert and downtown Mesa would also be fantastic and allow us to view all the small shops and businesses there! On Saturday, the Gilbert Farmer’s Market would be a great place to grab bones from the pet bakery and Ruff Life Dog Bones! We’d go to the Phoenix Zoo and the Arizona Science Center, as well! Then of course there is Cosmo’s Dog Park! Bark Avenue Pet Supply, Barking Dogs, Exceptional Pets, Healthy Paws Market, and Green Bulldog are great places to bring the pups to!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
A special shoutout to Dogtopia Gilbert, for stocking my products and being the best daycare I’ve ever used! To my mother Jhennicea, and my father Roger Morrow for all the help and support throughout the years! To my sister Evea, for her dedication during conventions and helping out with sales when I grew too ill, and to my husband Robin who has made my life a dream come true and has shown such amazing and continued support!