After my chat with Leona on Monday 28th October, on the brink of the Christmas season, it was a much needed topic for many.
Here is the summary of our chat.
Question: How can I make the most of my Christmas markets?
Our top 5 tips/ideas on how to maximise or even amplify opportunity.
- Let people know where they can find you in as many ways as possible.
a) Write your own posts with a beautiful eye catching image and if you @…. tag the organisers and friends/fellow stallholders that you know are going to be at the event too, they might just share.
b) Share the organisers event to your Facebook business account (don’t create your own- it’s more work and less successful). See video below.
c) Share the event to your timeline on your business account. Add a really quick caption about the event.
d) Comment on the event to say you will be there.
“I am really looking forward to attending this event with my business ….”
e) Comment on posts that the organiser puts out.
a) Tag organisers when making a post.
b) Put it in your stories and tag organisers and fellow stallholders to see if they share.
c) Comment on organisers posts.
Similar principle to twitter too.
Write a blog on your website with a list of your Christmas markets and link to the organisers pages. Link to Pedddle pages too if you wish. Your customers want to find as much interest as possible in your post and if they can find out information this is great. So a link like this to one of your Christmas Markets where they can find out more information about the event is really useful and Google will reward you for this!
Pedddle stallholder members should check in on our calendar. By doing so it generates a list of markets on their page and also it populates the market page with their business, increasing brand awareness and trust from customers.
However, with all of the above, please do with some level of judgement. Tagging once or twice is fine- more than that it could be seen as annoying!
2. Offer a range of products and consider having some ‘Secret Santa’ gifts.
One of Leona’s great ideas.
This is perfect- you need to make it easy for people to buy your products and if you have options available for them then you are doing your job.
However, we appreciate not everyone’s business will suit this market.
Do you have something of interest, an attention grabber that will bring people over? Once a customer is at your stall, you have their attention and something might take their fancy.
3. Offer something alternative or a gift wrap service.
Let’s face it, who looks forward to the wrapping of 90,000 presents 5 days before Christmas at a time when your wardrobes are at bursting point, the kids are in bed and you have finished every other job in the house- this time does not exist. Not in my house at least.
I start with all great intentions to wrap beautifully but it ends up as some frenzied mission to get it done. So, what if you solved this problem. You see lots of happy customers walking away from the market with a wrapped gift.
This can depend on space and time however, but market organisers want to offer a point of difference to other events.
So why not just send a Cheeky DM to the organiser and offer a gift wrapping service with your gift wrap that you have designed OR do you have an alternatve idea that will make you stand out. Ask questions and a little DM is a great way to contact people.
[note to self: do not get disheartened however if they do not reply-people are busy]
Maybe offer a service where people can stamp their own tags and write them too. Possibilities are endless.
Also, something that was raised in our chat was to be quick at your stall. Have your stall set out and then when someone buys something give them one from under the table. Again, not everyone can do this due to type of stock. But if you can, try it!
4. Don’t get cold.
This may seem obvious, but when you are stood outside in the freezing cold all day you function less well, make mistakes and you don’t want this.
I wrote a blog about practicalities and ways to avoid getting cold a while back- to read the full article click here.
In summary: stand on a mat if outside (the transfer of cold through the floor is a killer), wear thermal insoles and bog boots, wear thermals and lots of layered natural fibres, heat rox (hand warmers), take lots of food and drink to keep energy levels high.
Wear fingerless gloves so you can still work card readers, have your money strapped to you in the form of a bum bag (trending right now so you will be totally cool!).
5. Collect Information of customers.
Leave out a clip board for people to add their email addresses to be notified about whatever you want to tell them. Be aware of GDPR. A tick box to confirm they read your information about how their email address will be used and then keep/archive that piece of information as your back up.
Alternatively have the link on your phone or ipad and allow them to submit themselves.
Make it a competition maybe and encourage people who like your work to sign up to the newsletter for a chance to win.
Selling at markets is hard and there are a lot of variables that can affect performance on the day. However, if you haven’t done as well as expected try not to beat yourself up. Ask a few questions and use it as learning for the next one.
1. Did I let my audience know where I was going to be- using social media/email enough?
2. Did I engage with the customers in the right way- not stare at them-they feel the pressure too, chat with them if they initiate, share stories about your products, show them you love what you do? Have some one liners to engage about their experience of the day, what the weather…whatever, you soon know if they want to chat to you.
3. Did you have a good stall layout- simple and effective, on brand for you- not one way is right, so see what works for you and try to take something from any interaction from a customer. Even if it is some idiot that says your work is too expensive or is dismissive – they ARE NOT your target audience and THAT IS FINE!
4. Were you prepared- did you have everything you need. Nothing like feeling disorganised to not start you off in a good way.
There are so many more, but what I am trying to say is see the positive. The feedback. That’s all. It’s a journey and an evolution.
Then the final thing to take away is that customers have seen you! You might have reached a new audience that didn’t buy on the day but may do in the future. The only question to ask yourself then is are you easy to find online? Do you have a good digital presence? Is your link on your social media pointing at all the places people can buy from you, find information about you.
There is no better way to sell your products than at a market in real life, but once you have left- how will they remember your name, how were you memorable?
I find it so hard to remember stall names and if you have heard my back story before, this is one huge reason for creating the functionality for stallholders to check in at markets. I would promise to go back and then for various reasons- wouldn’t! Lack of time/kids needing feeding etc. I always remember which market I went to but don’t always remember the name of the business I saw. So when creating Pedddle, that had to be one of my priorities and I am so pleased how it is working and as awareness of Pedddle grows so too will awareness of our stallholders and their markets.
I hope you found this useful. Keep watching as we have IG Live interviews lined up with Ingrid Fernandez from Dec and Dash 7th November 2019, Rosie from PR Dispatch 14th November 2019, Sarah Hamilton from Just A card Campaign 21st November, 2019, Sam Burgess from Small & Mighty 5th December 2019 and many more. Plus an exciting line up in January.
I will continue to document the summaries for you all.
Founder of Pedddle.