Northeast Comic Con is coming up this weekend and I have to admit, I am more excited than nervous. The last few times I went, I had a blast. I went as a cosplayer and then one year, I decided to go as an exhibitor. It's a great con with a lot of things happening.
Trying to sell stuff with my designs proved to be challenging, given that it was my first con and while I didn't sell anything then, I'm optimistic that it could be different this time around. It was the Spring last time and this time, with the holidays coming up, I might manage to actually make some sales.
Working at a con is a bit different than going dressed up. While most of my experience has been cosplaying as various characters, it's nice to come back and be behind the table again.
The fun thing about cosplaying is that you're always moving, always meeting people and checking out a variety of different vendors and artists. Being behind the table you're obviously not as mobile, but hopefully you get to meet as many people as you would moving about. I can't say one is better than the other (though they can be exhausting in their own ways) but the rush is about the same. You get to hang out with like-minded people and share in the love of the geek world.
Despite the rush and the exposure, working a table can be very challenging. While I only worked a table once, it's tough, given that there are so many times where you are so close to making that sale and while people kind of saunter over or pass by and look, they never really stop completely most of the time. Last time was rough since we didn't make a single sale, but we tried to keep positive and know that this was exposure and our first time so there was bound to be some disappointment (despite the fact that were were a little sure we would sell SOMETHING).
So going to the con this time, we have a new game plan that will hopefully pay off. There has been quite a bit I have learned during, after and in the passing months:
- Make sure your prices are reasonable, especially if people want to buy multiple things. Some things might be more pricey then others, but keep them manageable.
- The first time is always hard, given that no one knows your brand or who you are. They will look at your stuff and the least they can do is take a card for later.
- Have a variety of things to sell is important. Prints are great, but having more items with the designs on them will attract more people. Stickers and magnets are good.
- Network, network, network. One of the best things to do is meet new people and take their cards and try to stay in touch. I have met dozens of artists and we are all in the same boat. Helping out each other is key.
- The table needs to catch people's eyes. As they walk by, make sure everything is eye level, pops in color so people will not only come by but remember. The more flash, the better. The better displays you have, the more likely people will stop by.
- Probably THE MOST IMPORTANT THING IS TO HAVE FUN. Yes, you won't get a lot of people maybe or even make sales, but having fun is probably the biggest priority. It helps to sell, but always be energetic and always be positive.
I have tried to keep a good mind set with these kind of events, especially because it takes some time to really get up and running and get people to buy your stuff. I just want to make sure that I engage people and just have fun. I know it's going to be tough, but I remain optimistic. This weekend will be another great time and I hope my takeaway is better then the first time.
Sterling arts & Design
Creating, getting inspired and reflections.