If you’re willing to sink a lot of time into sifting through amateur and unhelpful tutorials on YouTube, you can learn to craft online for free. For everyone else, there’s Craftsy.
Just like Lynda helps students pick up Web skills for a fee, Craftsy is a pay-per-video learning hub that covers the domestic arts—from cake decorating to quilting to jewelry making.
John Levisay, the founder of Craftsy and a former eBay executive, told Mashable that Craftsy’s audience is nearly 100 percent female. Eighty percent are older than 40, and almost 33 percent are in their 60s or above. This audience is willing to shell out anywhere from $20 to $50 for a video tutorial like Advanced Fondant Techniques.
“[W]e remembered from our eBay days what a huge, underserved market crafts and hobbies instruction is,” Levisay told Mashable.
Craftsy’s name and target demographics are markedly similar to that of another craft-oriented site on the Web, Etsy, and it’s fostered a good relationship between the two. As a joint promotion in August, Craftsy hosted the Denver Etsy Craft Party.
The majority of Craftsy’s promotions, however, are through unbranded clubs on Facebook. Users who unwittingly join Quilting Club or Knitting Club are soon exposed to dozens of opportunities to take Craftsy courses, sometimes with discounts. Each has more than 230,000 vocal fans.
“I love the classes offered at Craftsy web site. You can sign up for a class and view it as many times as you want. I like the fact that there are more classes than just quilting,” Terry Borger wrote.
Levisay said he estimates that Craftsy will have 600,000 enrolled students by the end of 2012.
“We have what we consider to be an underserved demographic that are passionate and affluent, and who are fantastic and loyal customers,” Levisay told Mashable.
Photo by flyingcats/Flickr