Sunday, December 7, 2008

How to Have a Good Slow Craft Show

hair florettes, originally uploaded by littlegirlPearl.

No, the two are not mutually exclusive. Yesterday's show in Canterbury wasn't as busy as we all would have liked. But everyone knows that folks are pulling back a little this year. So, what can we as vendors do? Here's my top 5:

1. Get excited about your craft. Even if the buyers weren't buying, they were talking. I got so much positive feedback on my designs that it was a real thrill. If you feel positive about your work, it shows. Don't let the lack of a monetary reward get you down. And hopefully you gave out enough business cards that people will think of you when they do have that extra disposable income to spend.

2. Stay positive. Please don't be that vendor (whom we have all seen) that sits with their arms crossed behind their table or display and never comes out front to see what is going on. Chat up the customers who are there. And I don't mean push your wares. But be polite, make conversation, and look interested. When someone is buying something that you made, they want to feel like their hard earned dollar is going to someone who appreciates what it took to earn it.

3. Talk to the other vendors. I learned a great little nugget of information from both the vendors near to me, and bartered with one for the most gorgeously made paper earrings. She got some ponytail holders for her daughter for Christmas, and I received a piece of her art. What could be better!

4. Remember that these shows are always hit and miss. Learn from everything. What do your customers pick up? What do they buy? And more importantly what never sees the light of day? How could you market that item better? Make it a learning experience from start to finish. Every time I do a show I try to figure out how I can make my booth/table more attractive and convenient for shoppers.

5. Use the down time to create if possible. I was able to bead a few of my hair florettes during the slow time, making me feel productive at the very least. If you are able to do so, bring some supplies along so that you can create, and maybe even engage a few shoppers in the process.

Every show for me is new and exciting. I realize that a lot of vendors have been doing shows for eons and are way more experienced than I, but sometimes a fresh pair of eyes helps to refocus, and put things in perspective. I don't know when my next show will be, but I already have some ideas to experiment with, and am grateful I'm able to do what I love!

1 comment:

Jacqueline said...

I just did a craft show this past weekend too. It was my first - a bit slower than I'd hoped, but a really great experience. I too was glad for the feedback I got and for all I learned. I also enjoyed getting to know the other vendors. I really enjoyed this post!