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Recession-Proof Your Small Business with Five Keys to Lasting Success

How Pottery with a Purpose founder Samantha Hoff boosted sales by 500%, expanding her sustainable product line while prioritizing mental wellness. Although 2022 proved challenging for small business, Pottery with a Purpose (PWAP) founder Samantha Hoff achieved growth through careful strategic planning and mindful self-care.

Just 1.5 years into the journey, tech pro-turned-entrepreneur Hoff successfully weathered an unpredictable economic climate by mastering five keys to a balanced, scalable approach. In 2022, PWAP increased sales by more than 500%, introducing two new products and giving back to mental health initiatives like The Trevor Project and Voices of Children Ukraine.  

“This time of year can be especially tiring and stressful for small business owners,” says Hoff. “Staying focused on my customers - who are discovering the joy and relaxation of playing with clay through PWAP - motivates me to continue my own disciplined self-care for sustainable success.”

For Hoff, PWAP was a dream more than a decade in the making. Yet, many business owners like her find their dreams quickly dashed when they neglect their own mental wellbeing. To support lasting success, Hoff discovered five keys to sustained growth:

  1. Work smarter, not harder. In 2022, Hoff kept up with increasing orders by hiring a new manufacturing partner, along with staff to prep kit materials. She is also looking into a fulfillment center for 2023.
  2. Just say “no.” As sales volume increased, Hoff stayed healthy, focused, and mentally well by being more choosy with her time. 
  3. Make time for what you love. Hoff pushes back against the dominant “hustle” culture by making lots of time for self-care, rest, and the activities she enjoys - including daily tea breaks, baths, and cuddling her dogs by the fire. Woman with her eyes closed wars a cream colored sweater while drinking tea from a mug handmade with a DIY Pottery Kit. Woman drinks tea from a ceramic mug made with a DIY Pottery Kit
  4. Find creative ways to put more “you” in your business. As Hoff streamlines her production process, she frees up more time for customers. She regularly hosts a variety of live online pottery making workshop events (available in-person in the Boston, MA area) for corporate celebrations, teambuilding, mindfulness, and more. Recent customers include Amazon Corporate, Facebook, and The Obama Foundation.
  5. Stay true to your values. In 2022, Hoff continued her “give back” mission with a LIVELY x Girlfriends Boston x PWAP “Boob Pot” Event that raised money for Living Beyond Breast Cancer. She also found innovative ways to support artistic skill-building while remaining true to PWAP’s eco-friendly ethos, partnering with sustainable artist Leslie Espino to develop a brand new watercolor/clay Paper Plant + Pottery Kit($84) - featuring a beautiful, lasting paper begonia (for those without a green thumb!) - and introducing a Deluxe Air Dry Clay Kit ($78) featuring a wider array of paint colors.

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