Sales booth for (my first) demo next Saturday

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Sales booth for (my first) demo next Saturday

Postby mstibs » Sun Jul 22, 2012 6:55 pm

We have a well known art and flea market in Dresden each Saturday. I can have 4 x 3 m for €20 from 9 - 15h. I thought, I see what goes. Just demoing won't get me the 20 € back, so I'll add a little sales booth. Since I know, most other booths are wallpapering tables, I thought, a little colour won't hurt. Of course I'll have business cards available. Some pics what I prepared, the bench will fill over next week.
IMG_0033.JPG
Those little guys are ghosts of the wood and will hopefully sell for €1 each.
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My wife still has to write something intelligent on the plate.
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IMG_0031.JPG
Hopefully the scythe and the rake will be sold.
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If you have more/other ideas/ideas for booths and pictures I#d be grateful. I'm of course interested in your opinion as well.
Best!
STIBS
Saxons. Were good wood-turners, they had to be because they were poor potters...from "A Short History of Woodturning with the Pole-lathe" by Brian G. Howarth; My bilingual (de/en) Blog: http://mstibs.wordpress.com
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Re: Sales booth for (my first) demo next Saturday

Postby mstibs » Sun Jul 22, 2012 7:16 pm

Where's the "Edit" button gone to correct myself? Sorry for the tpyos in the last sentence...
Saxons. Were good wood-turners, they had to be because they were poor potters...from "A Short History of Woodturning with the Pole-lathe" by Brian G. Howarth; My bilingual (de/en) Blog: http://mstibs.wordpress.com
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Re: Sales booth for (my first) demo next Saturday

Postby gavin » Sun Jul 22, 2012 9:59 pm

Helicopters - Hubschrauben.
Whistles.
More helicopters.
Pencils.
Great thing about helicopters is you give them to people to try - along with the flying lesson!
You don't ask for money up front.
You don't even write a price. (If you do, some folk will decide NOT to buy and walk on.)

Just give out the helicopters, and then a flying lesson.
Get a bunch of people - say 5 or 6 - all with a helicopter you have just given them. I lay a rope on the ground and ask them to line up along the rope, facing downwind. ( see below for image) You appoint one of the group to be a " Squadron Leader" and on the Squadron Leader's command e.g. Chocks away, Biggles or any other phrase you suggest, they all launch their helicopters. You can rely on it that YOUR helicopter will work even if theirs all crash. They cannot see which was theirs, and they know at least one worked, so they are motivated to keep trying.

Trust me, a bunch of adults doing daft things like this very soon generates a crowd.

I give the flying lesson which goes like this:
    1. Don't move your right hand. That's the runway. Last time you took off in a plane - did the runway move? No - your plane moved along the runway. (If they move the right hand the helicopter will fly backwards and hit them in the face. Steve Tomlin informs me this is a function of right-handed people whittling helicopters - right-handers naturally make their helicopters fly clockwise i.e. they need a left-hand push against a stationary right hand.
    2. Now, just taxi along the runway - that's your right hand. Don't take off yet - you have not completed training! When you are confident they are mostly not moving the right hand and have some chance of success, you say Squadron Leader - clear for take-off
    3. After several prompts ( but maybe even on your first prompt) your nominated Squadron Leader should say Chocks away, Biggles - or whatever the agreed phrase is.
    4. The people launch their helicopters and fun is had.
    5. Tell them they can play as long as they like for free, but if they want to take one home, that will cost £2 - or whatever price you like.
Some will be anxious about taking them home, as they are obviously fragile. So I tell them: Aircraft can be moved around in various ways. Some folk use aircraft carriers, and if you happen to have a large aircraft carrier, you can keep this helicopter there. Others have a small aircraft carrier, sometimes called a handbag. I pull the propellor blade off the the driveshaft or BBQ skewer, and give it and the propeller blade to the prospective customer and say Now put that in your handbag or Put that in your pocket In salesman speak, that is the close. Once they have the goods in their bag or pocket they have taken possession and clearly they need to pay for their new possession. Their money will be in their bag - or pocket.

Pencils are good - but even better if you combine pencils with a dowel plate. You must get the right diameter of pencil lead to go with your drill. You don't need glue. Refer my earlier video link

As soon as they have your goods in their hands and they start interacting with you, you hugely increase the chance of a sale.
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Re: Sales booth for (my first) demo next Saturday

Postby gavin » Sun Jul 22, 2012 10:13 pm

I would not have blue-painted poles over your table. That is not congruent. Have un-painted poles. Also have several small rakes - at least 2. Then you can say and actually do with a rake: "You scratch my back, and I'll scratch yours" as you scratch their back and get them to do the same.

Don't sit - stand.
Wear an apron - makes you look like a craftsman.
Have some tool in your hand. Look like you are making.

A dowel plate and 2 wooden hammers will attract a crowd of kids up to 14 years of age very easily - they will pay to walk away with a dowel !!! even if it has no lead in it. How easy is it to take candy from a baby? Very easy! How easy is it to make money with a dowel plate ? Even easier - not all babies have candy, but most people have some money in their pocket.

With the dowel plate, I just give the wooden hammer into the hand of a passer-by and say Bash that! and put a split cleft into the hole. They bash, I bash, they bash, I bash and then the dowel pops thru. After several holes, I will say: If you'd like to keep going, this will become yours. That will cost you £2 and you can have it as is, or with lead in it. By this time you have them hooked, and kids will then work over their parent to come up with the money. Rarely you will get an objection and therefor no sale. I don't mind providing free entertainment, for I know that has created interest in some other person who will then buy.

There will be those reading this technique who will shrink from such tactics as I outline here. I offer what works for me. Take from it what you will.
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Re: Sales booth for (my first) demo next Saturday

Postby gavin » Sun Jul 22, 2012 10:31 pm

gavin wrote:I would not have blue-painted poles over your table. That is not congruent. Have un-painted poles. And lash or tie the poles together. Yours are fixed with a bolt. A lashing improves congruence and allows variation in the height that your bolt won't.

Also have several small rakes - at least 2. Then you can say and actually do with a rake: "You scratch my back, and I'll scratch yours" as you scratch their back and get them to do the same.

Don't sit - stand.
Wear an apron - makes you look like a craftsman.
Have some tool in your hand. Look like you are making.

A dowel plate and 2 wooden hammers will attract a crowd of kids up to 14 years of age very easily - they will pay to walk away with a dowel !!! even if it has no lead in it. How easy is it to take candy from a baby? Very easy! How easy is it to make money with a dowel plate ? Even easier - not all babies have candy, but most people have some money in their pocket.

With the dowel plate, I just give the wooden hammer into the hand of a passer-by and say Bash that! and put a split cleft into the hole. They bash, I bash, they bash, I bash and then the dowel pops thru. After several holes, I will say: If you'd like to keep going, this will become yours. That will cost you £2 and you can have it as is, or with lead in it. By this time you have them hooked, and kids will then work over their parent to come up with the money. Rarely you will get an objection and therefor no sale. I don't mind providing free entertainment, for I know that has created interest in some other person who will then buy.

There will be those reading this technique who will shrink from such tactics as I outline here. I offer what works for me. Take from it what you will.
Gavin Phillips


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Re: Sales booth for (my first) demo next Saturday

Postby gavin » Mon Jul 23, 2012 6:46 am

I would also take a horizontally-mounted hand-drill and I would then drill holes circa 4 mm cross-graing through the carved figures above. Put a piece of green cord through that hole long enough to go round customer's neck.

Better still is offer the customer to do that drilling.

Emyr Parry did this recently...
Image

I now prefer the drill to be mounted ON a block of wood. More info here
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Re: Sales booth for (my first) demo next Saturday

Postby mstibs » Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:33 am

Good morning, Gavin, thanks for the long replies. Yes, I thought of it as a funny sales event in your style that I've read about in the thread where also Steve Tomlin took part at your stand.

- I planned also ghosts of the wood with an angry face so that parents can exchange it if the kids didn't behave and I tell the kids that the ghost changes its facial expression if they don't behave. But the green cord is a nice touch. Since I only have one drilling machine and value it, I fear to let it use the public, so I'll probably drill the holes myself.
- Regarding the helicopters: I've searched the board and Youtube but I can only imagine how they work (boomerang way). Are there any pictures available? I darkly remember my great-grandpa making me one 40 years ago but that's too far away. Shashlik sticks will work for them, I guess.
- Whistles: already 10 prepared (and madly cut my finger yesterday :oops: - I know know, my Mora is sharp).
- Pencils and dowel plate at the booth: worth a thought - even pencils with the wooden ghost motive at the other end.
- spinning tops, simple smokermen in mushroom form (http://www.europeangiftpalace.com/German-Smokers-and-Smokermen-from-the-Erzgebirge:_:20300.html) and some more kitchen/household utensils like the shoehorn beside the plate are planned.

Again thanks for the show ideas!
Best!
STIBS
Saxons. Were good wood-turners, they had to be because they were poor potters...from "A Short History of Woodturning with the Pole-lathe" by Brian G. Howarth; My bilingual (de/en) Blog: http://mstibs.wordpress.com
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Re: Sales booth for (my first) demo next Saturday

Postby ToneWood » Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:52 am

Do you have more spoons? The more product you have, the more you are likely to sell, I would think. I like the booth, it seems quite intimate & likely to draw people in for a chat - but it is also quite small, so one or two customers might completely block the approach and view of your stall.
gavin wrote:...
You don't even write a price. (If you do, some folk will decide NOT to buy and walk on.)

Just give out the helicopters, and then a flying lesson.
...
As soon as they have your goods in their hands and they start interacting with you, you hugely increase the chance of a sale.

Engaging with the customer is a good idea. The helicopters too - I saw somebody successfully selling - and carving - those at Art in Action on Saturday, as well as selling magazine subscriptions. But I disagree with the point about not putting a price on -- so many times I have not purchased items because they are not priced and I don't have the time/energy/enthusiasm to hunt down the price. My wife is the same in this regard; I expect many others are too. Sometimes, you just want to buy something quickly and easily. If you vary your price and maybe give discretionary discounts - that's a different matter. BTW The helicopters were selling for £3 at the show (where things were generally quite expensive/"high end") - equivalent to about half an hours work at minimum wage, before deductions.
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Re: Sales booth for (my first) demo next Saturday

Postby mstibs » Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:56 pm

ToneWood wrote:- so many times I have not purchased items because they are not priced

Same here, of course I'll put prices on each item.
Saxons. Were good wood-turners, they had to be because they were poor potters...from "A Short History of Woodturning with the Pole-lathe" by Brian G. Howarth; My bilingual (de/en) Blog: http://mstibs.wordpress.com
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Re: Sales booth for (my first) demo next Saturday

Postby gavin » Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:25 pm

mstibs wrote: Since I only have one drilling machine and value it, I fear to let it use the public, so I'll probably drill the holes myself.

Then get another one if you have to!

Trust me, you will definitely earn the cost of the drill by letting people actually use yours in one day at the market. Even if you buy one new you could not spend more than €60, but you can get them cheaper on Ebay or at a 2nd hand market. Remember you must fix it horizontally to a block of wood, and then fix that block of wood to some firm stand or table.

A half-log with 4 cleft legs 4 holes drilled in it looks good as a bench, or a planked low-bench.
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Re: Sales booth for (my first) demo next Saturday

Postby gavin » Mon Jul 23, 2012 10:29 pm

mstibs wrote:
ToneWood wrote:- so many times I have not purchased items because they are not priced

Same here, of course I'll put prices on each item.

Suggestion: try them priced and not priced at different times of day. See what happens. I prefer not to price because I wish to convey the idea that I am doing public entertainment rather than running a shop. I have some shows coming up early August, and I will try pricing there and will see what happens.
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Re: Sales booth for (my first) demo next Saturday

Postby Bob_Fleet » Wed Jul 25, 2012 12:40 am

gavin wrote: I prefer not to price because I wish to convey the idea that I am doing public entertainment rather than running a shop.
I probably don't price if I'm being paid to demonstrate.
If you get the pitch free on the basis of sales then fair enough.
Otherwise remember you're representing yourself as a competent craftsperson to the organisers and not just out to make a quick buck.
I asked someone if they saw the bodgers at a recent show and they said they were very commercial and almost "cross my palm with silver and we'll show you something". Their phrase - unprompted.
Probably OK if it was free but most unprofessional if a paid demo.
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Re: Sales booth for (my first) demo next Saturday

Postby mstibs » Wed Jul 25, 2012 5:53 am

Bob_Fleet wrote:Probably OK if it was free but most unprofessional if a paid demo.

In my case I pay 25 bucks for the space, the rest is upon me. I want demo-training for myself, that's my motivation to go there. I'm going to test show and craft-demo elements. If the rent for the booth is in my pocket in the evening, I'll be happy, if not, I learned something. But I'll put the pricetags on because I prefer them myself as a customer. I can understand Gavin very well: His passionate comments show his good experiences and his success with the main focus on the show part.
Best!
STIBS
Saxons. Were good wood-turners, they had to be because they were poor potters...from "A Short History of Woodturning with the Pole-lathe" by Brian G. Howarth; My bilingual (de/en) Blog: http://mstibs.wordpress.com
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Re: Sales booth for (my first) demo next Saturday

Postby gavin » Wed Jul 25, 2012 6:52 am

Bob_Fleet wrote:I asked someone if they saw the bodgers at a recent show and they said they were very commercial and almost "cross my palm with silver and we'll show you something". Their phrase - unprompted.
Probably OK if it was free but most unprofessional if a paid demo.


Was that show the Royal Highland Show 2012?

If so, that was me and my team i.e. not a one-man show. And if it was only me they spoke with, they would have had a stronger sales impression. And I place myself nearer higher footfall areas - so I will interact with more people.

But it it were say Rolf at the pole-lathe it would have been free - have-a-go lathing is free. And watching what paying punters are doing is free. And the huge entertainment value of our pitch is free.
I assert it is quite ok to charge for gimmicks e.g. twig pencils or whistles or helicopters - else demand is unlimited.

It is important to earn enough money that the demonstrators get paid something too. I have yet to refine my show model such that all demonstrators get paid enough to keep them happy and pay their transport costs.
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Re: Sales booth for (my first) demo next Saturday

Postby mstibs » Sat Jul 28, 2012 8:02 pm

Haven't gone to the demo, got a light sunstroke yesterday while sawing firewood and this morning I didn't feel like spending another day in the sund at 30+°C. :? So I unpacked my car this morning and simply carved a spoon from all the fresh beech I have lying around.
Saxons. Were good wood-turners, they had to be because they were poor potters...from "A Short History of Woodturning with the Pole-lathe" by Brian G. Howarth; My bilingual (de/en) Blog: http://mstibs.wordpress.com
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