So, this weekend I opened my first stall at a craft fair held regularly here in Nottingham, called Bird in Borrowed Feathers. The standard of these stalls is generally super-high, so it was a huge privilege to have my application accepted. I was flanked by some wonderful sellers and I felt hugely inspired afterwards! I didn't make loads of money, but I learnt a hell of a lot, so I thought i'd share it here on the blog.
1. Work out your first Point-Of-Contact So for this market, the stall were set up two-to a gazebo, with our tables around the edges, creating mini corridors for customers to 'walk' through in order to browse the tables. I had been expecting the generic behind-the-counter layout and I thought all my products would be visible at once. However, due to this layout, people walked past the right-hand side of the table, and the intial glance at what you had on that side determined whether they came over for a proper look. This resulted in me doing a bit of a switch-around to place everything that I really wanted to show off
2. Put Your Name on Stuff
Gah! Why did this not occur to me? The people who did buy my stuff (thank you!) are left with no reminder of my name, my website, my shop, anything. If they didn't take a business card, I'm relying on their memory to make them come back to me. Putting your name and website on your work means people can always find you if they want to come back for more!
3. Prepare for The Elements This fair was outside and although the weather was super warm and lovely, there was a significant wind that had mine and several others' prints fluttering away. I had to remedy this by sticking my prints to the table which didn't really serve well from a sale point of view. People wanted to pick up the prints and then got embarrassed when they found they were stuck down. Next time I want to invest in some kind of display that will remove the necessity of the tape, and make for easier browsing.
4. Make it Clear What Your Stuff Is It sounds dumb but due to their smaller size, a lot of people thought my prints were cards. Because there was no 'categorized' layout, the things that were cards were not immediately distinguishable from the prints, notebooks, etc, and people were a little put off.
5. People Like Stuff That Has A Purpose So, I already knew this, which is why I got my butt into gear and ordered some new cards, notebooks and stickers, but my holiday kind of hindered my ability to get more of these. People much preferred the cards and stickers, that had a purpose beyond 'looking nice'. It appeals to more than just the 'arty' people. For next time I am looking at nice 'gift' ideas.
6. People Love Business Cards Even if they don't have money right now, they might want to follow you on instagram/bookmark your site for later, etc. I know, I've done it myself. YOU MUST MAKE THEM.
Let me know if you have more tips to share!