We had a hole in our show list for this weekend so I grabbed a show because it was available. After I just got done telling you to be sure to do your homework on a show first, I broke my own rule with this show. My justification was that some show was better than no show on this busy craft show weekend. As a result of not doing my homework, here we sit at a very slow show. We are almost 2 hours into this 5 hour show and we have not had a sale. We will be lucky to make back our booth fee and the cover the donation I was required to make.
The problem with this show is the lack of shoppers. This generally means that the coordinator did little or nothing to promote the show. This supports a county 4H program so I would have expected at least 4H members to be aware of the show. The location we are in is a bit off the main roads but well placed signs would have helped with that. We only saw one small sign. The few shoppers here are also lookers not purchasers. Normally by the weekend before Thanksgiving, people are starting to think Christmas gifts. This is not the type of show where our items sell best so I already know this one is a no go for next year.
So what do you do during a slow show? Try to remain productive! Slow shows are always a great opportunity to network with other vendors so make some new friends. Talk to them about other shows they have done, ways they merchandise or how they make their craft. So far today I have leads and recommendations on several new shows for this summer (Homework!) just from spending time talking to other vendors. As you do shows in the same area or the following year, you will find that you see people that you have exhibited with before.
I generally come prepared material to make scrubbies at a show (of course I forgot to grab it for this show). This is an easy and portable item for me to make wherever I am. I can get a lot of scrubbies made during slow shows. The woman in the booth behind us is doing finish work on new inventory and getting them ready for future shows. Since I forgot my scrubbie stuff today, I did a updated inventory of our wood bowls so that I can make sure everything we have is listed in our Etsy shop. It was a great time to do that since everything was out and easy to look at.
Now that I am home finishing this post, I can share that we did make our booth fee and made a huge profit of $10. Not the kind of day we would have liked to have but I still remained productive with our businesses despite the show traffic. In addition to everything I mentioned above, I wrote most of this post on my tablet. Make the best of shows even if they are not what you wanted them to be.