So... you’re a super motivated crafter and micro business owner, and you’re looking to really connect with your audience, broaden your exposure and gain more sales. Going to market sound attractive, but don’t know where to start? The CHA are here to help!
This week is ‘Market Week’ where we share the combined knowledge, experience and expertise of many people connect with the CHA; from members contributing their thoughts on the Discussion Thread, to sellers who are known for their outstanding visual merchandising and other friends of the CHA who have more than 2 cents worth to add.
Applying For Market
Now you’ve found the perfect market! It meets your needs, has your target market, it’s within a reasonable travel distance, it features other great quality products, and you can’t wait to be a part of it! But you need to apply and get approval as a stall holder first, before you can do your happy dance. Have you thought about how your application looks to the event organiser? Is it clear, professional and well presented? Does it entice them to want you at their market event?
So what makes an appealing stall holder application?
- Supply quality photos of your products (they don't want to know what your living room looks like); dark photos of your products detract from your business image.
- If you are relying on your blog to provide the relevant information and photos to the event organiser, make sure they are quality photos & big enough to enlarge. Otherwise you may need to send in your photos separately via email or in the mail on disk.
- Make sure it is easy to locate your blog; send a link and spell it correctly. With all links, make sure it is a direct link so it doesn’t have to be searched for! This is time consuming and when there are hundreds of applications to go through - yours may get overlooked.
- If you are sending in your photos, name all your photos and other documents clearly with your business name. Markets get 1000's of photos for each event, and unless the photos have your business name, it can be hard to remember which photos belong to each business.
- Sometimes with stock, less is more – stick to your genre and do it well, instead of trying to cover all bases or categories. This is very important at a competitive market.
- Be clear, specific and realistic about the stock you intend to come with. Don’t apply to bring handbags and turn up with one bag, and the rest of your stock is jewellery; nothing will get you uninvited quicker!
- Be polite, be polite, be polite. Always be polite!
- Make sure you read terms and conditions and the application carefully; you might find this answers a lot of your questions and saves you contacting the market organiser unnecessarily.
- There is a difference between persistence and stalking.
- Be prepared for rejection.
If you were unsuccessful:
- Be polite in your response. Shooting yourself in the foot is unprofessional and unwise - burning bridges never helps future applications.
- Try not to take it personally; remember that different markets target certain demographics, and there may be limits to how many stalls the market can accept, or how many stalls in the one category get accepted.
- The market may just not be looking for the type of product you offer.
- Sometimes your blog and website (and how professional or up to date it is) can be the difference between you or the next person being accepted.
If you were successful, then help promote the event! Advertising the event is a two way street. The organisers must advertise the event and with any luck they will know their target market. If you do not see the advertising, it doesn’t mean that it hasn’t been advertised appropriately. Stallholders should also assist in promoting the event as much as possible too. Remember; it makes you an attractive stall holder to the organisers if you are a great ambassador for the event!
Thanks to Julie of Handmade Canberra for supplying the outline for these guidelines.
Next post: Pre Market Preparations
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