We’ve been taking part in events and markets for 5 years now and with the festival season coming up I thought it would be good to share 5 tips over the week covering finding the right event, organising what you will need to take, what products should I sell? easy customer service and how to sell! and analysing the day, is it worth me doing it again?
Today I’m covering – finding the right event
Obviously this is one of the most important things when starting trading at an event or a market. But what should affect your choice?
We take part in the Annual Christchurch Food Festival and before starting we took a day off to see what it was actually like. Now the clue is in the title what with it being a food festival so we knew we where selling the right product at least. However the Winton carnival you wouldn’t nessasarily assosiate with food yet there are about 20 food traders so it’s wise to check them all out.
The second thing we looked for was the amount of people attending. Obviously we want as many people there as possible but being told how many people attended the previous event by the organisers and actually seeing how many attend are two quite different things, Event organisers tend to stretch the truth slightly to get more traders on board. If there is a good flow of people throughout the day then there is a good flow of sales to be made.
Next is to check the competition
Now using Christchurch as an example again, when we started 5 years ago we where the only cake stall selling our fab cupcakes that were relatively new to the UK, now there are 6 cake stalls with 4 of us specifically selling cupcakes, if I was someone looking for a market to take part in I would know this might not be the best one, however if I went to Wimborne food festival for instance and saw there was only 1 or 2 other cake stalls then this would definitely be beneficial.
This obviously applies to all, from cheeses to handbags!
You may want to ask other traders what they think of the event? Do they think it is worth taking part? Has it been beneficial to them? Is it well organised?
I would always reccommend taking part in events or markets that are already established, of course I know everyone needs to start somewhere and obviously in business you should take risks but take a wedding show we did recently for instance, the show was the first one and a table cost £85 (reduced from £150) the show was in a good position (a restaurant at the end if the pier) and the previous week they had done a baby show with good numbers through the doors. On the day it turns out the doors where open to the general public (hence the large numbers) and we could have counted the actual brides on one hand, we had 2 members of staff attend and incurred no sales so therefore this event just didn’t work for us and as a small business this risk is too high for us to continue with new events.
Tomorrows topic….. Organising what you need to take.
Useful links –
Anonymous Traveling Market
Christchurch Food Festival