Saturday, November 02, 2013

The Business Chat - How to NOT sell your work

Black Friday, cyber Monday, Christmas, Hanukkah, ‘tis the season people. The customers are shopping! And we’re selling! Or trying to sell. Yet all around me, I see crafters who seem to be doing their best to not sell their work. 

Before you can sell your work you have to do a little bit of marketing. Marketing is communicating what you do to your customers. That’s it. Now that’s not so hard is it? Tell them what you make, how you make it, why you make it, and how much it costs. 

Selling means customer service and being nice to people, that’s all there is to it. Some artists are starving for a reason, they sabotage themselves by bad behaviour. 

Here is a list of how not to sell your work.

Ignore the customer who walks into your booth.
One reason customers come to a craft show and not shop at the mall is to meet the artist. So meet them. Greet every single person who walks in.

Talk on the phone while a customer stands there.

Read a book, or check your email while a customer stands there.

Prop your iPad up on a stand and watch a movie on Netflix in your booth.

Invite your friends to come and hang out in your booth. Have extra chairs for them. Chat with them and ignore the customers.

Don’t put pricing on your products. Make them come to you.

Pull out a picnic lunch, something nice and messy. Add some garlic or curry maybe. Don’t check your teeth after eating because everyone loves a nice big wedge of spinach between your teeth.

Leave your booth to go and check out the cool stuff in the show.

Have your husband/boyfriend/partner drop by your booth and then make out. People just love interrupting some serious cuddling.

Whine to your neighbours about how stupid people are. Talk loudly about how people are so cheap and the show sucks.

Don’t tell the customers how you make what you do. Everyone understands your process don’t they?

Have a nap in your booth at a craft show.

Post comments on your facebook page about the stupid questions people ask you. Post more comments about how you hate the show. After all, customers are too stupid to actually look at the internet. 

Blog about your sick kids, your broken computer, the overprice bills for your supplies. Whine about how hard it is to sell. Whine more about your life.

Treat your blog like a therapists couch. Talk about how you hate everyone and everything and why life just isn’t fair.

Apologize profusely for not blogging more. Then don’t blog again until you apologize again.

Grab your phone and snap a small blurry photo of your work. Just one photo. Then list that item. 

Don’t bother describing the item you’re listing online. You gave them a photo, they can see it all and if they can’t, well, they’re stupid. 

Each and every one of these I have seen. The napping one was great because she started snoring and drooling. There was a whole crowd of other vendors walking past and laughing at her. The napper? She couldn’t understand why she wasn’t selling anything.

I could go on and on. However I must go and make more jewelry to sell this week. Me, I greet my customers and welcome them. And I sell. It’s not hard. Be nice to people, say hi, tell them about what you do. Smile. Sell your work. 

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