Monday, 21 February 2011

Lessons I’ve Learnt 11 – More Market Hints

When I first started doing Markets I approached it like most people; set up a stall and see what happens. Over the years I learnt how to sell more by watching what others did and trial and error. By the time Alan & I started doing markets together my attitude had changed from one of a ‘nice way to spend a day’ to ‘ we are in business’.

Here are a few more Lessons I’ve Learnt

1. Don’t sit passively reading while you wait for customers. Reading keeps you occupied but does not entice customers. You are disengaged from your customers. Do something constructive. This brings me to my next point.

2. Demonstrate. Demonstrating your craft allows you to start a conversation with your customers. You need to think about this when you are setting up your site. You need to be where your customers can see you. Don’t sit at the back of your stall stitching. They can’t see what you are doing. If at all possible, stand up. The customer has a better vantage point and you have better access to your product.

3. Leave the kids at home. Do you take your kids into work with you? Of course you don’t. Think of your stall as your workplace. Kids have short attention spans and you will spend your time entertaining them instead of  selling to customers. They will also cost you more money than  you will make buying lunch, drinks, that new toy etc.

4.  Leave your wallet at home. You’re not shopping you are selling. In over 20 years of marketing I have made one impromptu purchase, a vintage kimono. Again I have seen stallholders spend more than they make.

5. Don’t treat your float as your wallet. Don’t shop/ buy lunch etc and pay for it out of your float. This is bad business practice.

6. Don’t be in too much of a hurry to pack up. Lingering customers often make last minute purchases. If everyone else has packed up guess who will make the sale?

7. Vary your display. This is especially important if your are doing a regular market. You don’t want customers to  think ‘its the same old stuff’. Change the products you put out the front, maybe highlight a different colour. Boutiques and Department stores change their windows regularly to keep customers interested.

8. Have an oooh aaahhh piece. One piece that is jaw dropping, stopping people in their tracks is one of the best marketing tools you can get. I know a Mosaic Artist who has  a life size cement base mosaic surfboard that he lugged around to every market. It was very expensive. The amount of people who stopped and admired this was incredible, people who probably weren’t likely to stop otherwise. Looking at the surfboard then lead them to look and admire other items which invariably lead to sales.  The Artist didn’t make the piece to sell, he made it to sell off.


Please leave comments on any other hints that may make a new stallholders marketing experience more successful.


Hot Fudge said...

These are such excellent and practical tips Trish. I can't bring my sewing machine along to markets, but I will definitely bring along some hand sewing. The only thing I can add to your list is to put on your smiley face and keep it on all day, and look busy!

Chrisy said...

This series is so insightful dear girl...I can see a book coming out of it!

littlechrissy said...

Trish this is super helpful. I'd like to add wear comfy shoes and a smile, and wear your product if you can.