If you are selling crafts for your business, then there are a few basic rules you should follow.
Not only do you need great well made products, but you need to work on a few other things too, to look polished and professional at your next craft show.
If you want to know how NOT to sell crafts, then follow these rules:
1. Pile everything you have created in a big pile on the table, and then sit behind the table with a novel in your face. When people come to look at your products, totally ignore them and continue reading your book. Make sure everyone can see that you are reading the latest romance novel, and don't want to be disturbed!
2. Wear your best worn out track pants, with the holes in the knees, and that big ugly fanny pack tied around your waist holding your baggy t-shirt in place. Look like you were up all night trying to get this organized, and give your potential customers the impression that you would rather be at home asleep then at this craft show.
3. Selling crafts, that are totally inferior. After all, you went to a Christmas craft show last year, and saw people making money with selling crafts, and you thought it looked so easy, that anyone could make these crafts and sell them. This works, because you absolutely HATE doing crafts, but what the heck? Easy money right? Even though they don't look good or well made, try and sell them anyways!
4. Eating at the Table - Make sure and wait until there is a large crowd around your table, and then start to stuff your face with a HUGE hamburger complete with onions and ketchup, while people are looking at your products, and are hoping to get some questions answered by you. You of course, all excited to answer any questions, start talking to them with your mouth full of food...
5. Slurp away on a big large pop, and make sure to get every last drop from the bottom. Everyone down the aisle can hear you, but you don't care, you want every last drop in that cup. Then of course this creates a bit of gas.... (you can imagine the rest!)
6. Break Replacement - You need a break so you get your 9 year old daughter to take over the booth, while you go and yak to other vendors to find out the latest gossip. You daughter can't answer any questions, and looks totally bored, or better yet, wanders off herself, leaving your area unattended.
7. Instantly leap on the customers, the minute they show interest in your product. Don't give them any breathing room, be right behind them looking over their shoulder while they are trying to look at your products, and then as soon as they touch something, try and get them to buy it. Get right into their personal space. Then look totally disgusted when they continue on down the aisle to someone else.
8. Have no change available, and insist, they will have to buy more product in order for the sale to work. Put pressure on them to buy other things to add up to the dollar amount they were going to give you.
9. Set everything up in a pile on the table, show absolutely no interest in display, then just sit there and yawn. Shrug your shoulders when a potential customer asks you a question, or sigh if any question requires you to get out of your comfy chair and away from that novel..
10. Do not smile at all, look like you have just been dragged from the dentist chair, slump in your chair, and show no interest in any potential customers. Look totally disgusted with the fact that people are not falling over themselves to buy your products, and as the day wears on, you might as well close your eyes and have a nap! Better yet, start snoring, slumped in your chair with your hands resting on that ugly fanny pack, with your legs stretched out, showing off those lovely worn out track pants and dirty sneakers!
Each and every point above is TRUE. I have been to enough craft shows, and sold my own crafts in crafts shows, to see these mannerisms in action. I have seen every one of them. And yes, people do fall asleep behind their table of crafts, and snore!..
When you rent a space for selling crafts, you are quite often given a ticket for a free lunch. (This is included in your rental of the space). Usually somewhere in the place, usually an adjoining room is the food area. But many vendors, will go and purchase the biggest sloppiest burger and instead of sitting there to eat it, and making proper arrangements for someone else to take over your booth (and not your 9 year old daughter!, hopefully another vendor, or a good friend who knows your crafts) they bring these smelly foods back to the booth and eat them in front of the customers, who may absolutely love your crafts, but one look at your with your cheeks puffed up, and the smell of onions wafting around, and they will just keep on moving.
If you were in a meeting at work in a boardroom, would you stuff your face with food like that, and continue talking? Not likely. This would cause total distraction and disgust. You would take a lunch break later, and eat lunch sitting down at a table with other people eating lunch. You would not take a burger and greasy fries with gravy on a flimsy paper plate, back to the boardroom and continue with your meeting and talking.
Many people do not take their craft business seriously, and then wonder why they don't make the money they feel their products should bring in.
You have to attract customers, this is a business, just as important as any other business, and you have to treat it and yourself with care, and run it with a professional attitude. Whether you make 100 dollars or 10000 dollars.. you should still treat it like a successful business.
When organizing your craft show, you have to not only create great products, but you have to allow some time, for your appearance, your attitude, and some relief for breaks.
Nothing wrong with that burger, just make sure and take the break, and eat it at a dining table area. Do NOT bring food like that back to your booth. Bring breath mints! I see so many vendors doing this. Flimsy paper plates filled with greasy fries and gravy, with a burger, and dressed in their best worn out track pants. So what does this say to a potential customer about your craft business which you are representing?
So, when prepping for your next craft show, spend some quality time on your appearance, attitude, and your smile.
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