Last weekend was a big city-wide art event and I have a booth in a garden marketplace of a sculpting studio.
We had good attendance, about the same as previous years, bouyed through the recession because the host does a really nice job of providing great food, music and good ambiance.
I had good sales. Not great - but modest (the story of my small business life!!) Very happy though, and here are some of the secrets to my success...
Grab their Interest
I embroider quotes on cards. The cards are not expensive, and have become a popular item. At this event mine were three quarters sold out. Why? Visitors stop to read several, and stay to browse my jewelry
Here's one on my website - The Future by Einstein
Another interest grabbing item seems to be my pearl confection rings. These are small, different, and colorful. For example - Mystery Concoction
(see more details here)
Even though a customer is not really thinking to buy one, it is easy and fun to try on. Gives me a wonderful opening to chat and let them browse further.
Secret #1: Have an interest-grabbing item up front and center.
All of my cards were 'Buy 3 get 1 Free'. Small frequent signs were placed on my table near the different baskets of cards.
Although a sale in and of itself does not necessarily boost sales, there were plenty of times a group of friends were browsing and I suggested they pool together to take advantage of the special. A very low pressure, but effective, technique.
Secret #2: Suggest customers purchase together to receive a discount.
Also some older work that was too good to give away went for 1/2 off. This seemed to be the right price point for customers. For example, when one particular customer noticed a nice stone necklace & earring set was 1/2 off, he snatched up 3 other pieces.
Secret #3: Deeply discount old inventory.
For signing up on my low-key email list, I gave away a goody bag. Inside were older, but nice jewelry I had made that didn't sell but (like stone rings), as well as fun stuff like stickers, stampers, kid stuff, craft stuff.
A couple of folks came back for a purchase after opening their goody bags. They were thrilled with the treasures in their goody bags!
Secret #4: Make attractive sample bags to give out for doing a no-charge requirement, such as joining a mailing list.
I also had a bracelet rack with a sign 'Free with Any $10 Purchase. These were a collection of recycled guitar string bracelets which were inexpensive, and made for fun to use some of my old supplies. I was surprised how many folks read that sign.
I was pointing out some large fancy pressed flower cards next to those bracelets to one lady (probably the grandma) who had with her a little girl. And offered to give the girl a bracelet with purchase of the card. It worked.
Also near the end of the 2-day event if a person was lingering near the bracelet sign, I offered a bracelet free. FREE. No purchase. I really didn't need these bracelets, and had at least one fellow insist to buy some instead of taking them free!
Here's what I'm talking about, some of the better Recycled Guitar String Bracelets in my website-
Teal and Plum, Set of 3
Secret #5: Give away things you really don't need. FREE. To build good rapport with visitors.
Thanks for taking the time to read, and happy festivals to all.