How to make the best of your market experience
With MoDA Market right around the corner, you should already be on your A-game when it comes to your exhibitor preparations :) But just in case you aren’t, we’ve put together some tips that you can use to guide your preparations so that you can have the best experience possible! And if applied, some of these will help you with your business development on a whole.
1. Do your research
Pre-market research includes learning about the platform you will be exhibiting with.
What type of demographic attends the show? How many persons attend each staging? What are the testimonials from other makers that have exhibited? What about the patrons that attend? What’s their event feedback like?
Asking and finding answers to these questions will not only help you to prepare, but also build your confidence in the platform which will lead to you being enthusiastic in anticipation of the event. An optimistic outlook will increase the likelihood of you genuinely enjoying your market experience. You’ll also be more motivated to get everything in check before the day (or in our case- days!) .
2. Decide which products would be best to sell and finalize your collections
After doing some preliminary research you will have a better idea of what you expect to get out of the exhibition and the market size and type that you will be serving.
So at this stage you’re challenged to find the best products for the show and create collections around them if you haven’t already. Collections are the perfect way to exhibit, as they simplify your product range (& mix) for customers, encourage multiple purchases, and are a great way to share your brand’s story with them.
Keep in mind that attendees may not spend a lot of time at your space as they have an expansive amount of products to peruse from other brands. So make the time they do spend worth their while (and yours!).
Once you have finalized all the products, you will need to create an inventory listing to help you keep track of all the items that will be available for sale.
3. Consider costs and make a budget
“You have to spend money to make money!” There’s a lot of debate around how true this statement is and whether or not it’s something that should be encouraged...but in this case it is definitely a truth. This stage is crucial to a successful exhibition process. It’s where you consider how much it will cost you to exhibit and set a plan in place to ensure that you make a profit at the end of the show.
Costs to consider include:
-The cost to exhibit; registration fees and commissions, displays for products
- Raw material and production costs associated with getting your collections ready
-Labour costs associated with hiring an assistant/assistants to help you on the day/s of the show.
Knowing your costs ahead of time will obviously give you more time to budget and ensure that you can cover them.
When you have an idea of your total costs, you will be able to project the amount of sales you will need to make during the period to make a profit. Thus, confirming the amount of products that will have to be ready for sale.
During the Market
1. Get creative with your display
Needless to say, your display is what will attract attendees to your products. Though we curate your space at MoDA Market. You still have to work with the platform to ensure that the right display fixtures, stands etc. for your pieces are provided.
2. When customers visit your table or build-out, Make them feel welcome!
Your display will help you to attract customers but it’s your job to keep them!
Greet customers with positive energy and a smile. When introducing them to your items, try not to be too pushy. Give them space to browse your collections freely and when you see them linger on a particular item- that’s your cue to jump in with an interesting product fact or story :)
3. Always be ready to sell
Though these rarely happen, if there are any slower periods don’t make the mistake of scrolling through your phone on social media or reading a book to occupy your time. This may turn off potential customers that are passing by as you’ll seem disinterested and they may be hesitant to ‘bother’ you. It’s best to look pleasant while being attentive. That way you’ll avoid any missed opportunities.
4. Network, network, network.
Your aim should be to make lasting connections with both Wholesale Buyers and attendees that are at the show. Make a good first impression (read this post on how to be ‘pitch’ ready) and ensure that you exchange contact information so that you can follow up with any leads after the event.
1. Reflect on your experience
How was the overall experience? What do you think you were great at? And What areas do you need to improve in? A market experience will teach you a lot about yourself and your brand and is an opportunity for you to learn how to make your business processes more effective.
2. Follow up on the leads made
There’s no sense in networking if you never follow up! Add the customers that showed an interest in your brand to your email listing and keep them updated on your business’ promotions, events, etc. Do the same with the wholesale buyers that you met. If an agreement wasn’t finalized at the show, you can send them a follow-up email or give them a call.
Written by: Noelle Black
The Collection MoDA in association with Sagicor Bank will be hosting the Creative Canvas workshop on September 15th that will help you to understand all the different elements of your creative business, that when combined will lead to a successful brand!
Check out the details below! And register now before all the spots are taken :)