Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Bridal Show Booths Revisited

This weekend Chad and I participated in the Pink Bridal Show.  It was sort of a last minute decision; I didn't have any cakes booked for the weekend and I really do think they help promote not only customer relations, but vendor relations as well.  Here are some tips I have learned from my previous shows.  I may have touched on some of these topics before, but it bears repeating.

If the event allows you to setup your booth the day before, then you should do it.  The actual day of the show is very tiring, you'll need to start the day with all the energy you can muster.  Setting up the day before also allows you a "second chance" if you accidentally forget something.

Don't be afraid to rearrange your booth.  The show promoter will generally give you an 8-foot table with 2 chairs and a small sign with your business name on it.  If you want different tables, let the promoter know or bring your own.  Look at other vendors' booths, see what they are doing.  Don't copy them, but use them as inspiration.  In the photo above I have used none of the items that am with my booth.  I ditched the sign, the chairs, and replaced the 8-foot table with 2 6-foot tables and 4 highboy tables.

Don't sit in your booth.  The reason I ditch my chairs is that I want to be on my feet and energetic when potential customers walk by.  I'm very interested in their business and I want to look that way.  If you're sitting, customers will walk by without engaging you or when you start to get up they will say "No, don't get up, we're just looking".  Don't believe me?  Find a booth where someone is sitting behind a table and watch the action.  Odds are the only thing you will see going through it are tumbleweeds.  Or better yet, go by a booth where people are packed in like sardines.  I bet they're not sitting.

The aftermath of standing all day and booth teardown is that you will be tired.  Give yourself some time the following day to recoup.  But you want to be near your phone too.  These brides have spent all day searching for the perfect vendor.  They are excited and they want to iron out details.  Monday morning they will start calling.  Make sure you are there to answer the phone!

The last thing I'll mention is that while you are in that booth, make sure to have your patience pants on.  You might get the same question 100 times in that 5-6 hour span, make sure you answer with last as eagerly and energetically as the first.  Remember why you're in the room... Brides are there to find information, but it's also a job interview for you as a vendor.  Your cakes can taste delicious, look amazing, but if you give the customer an eye roll over a "silly" question the customer may just decide to pick your competition over you. 

So stay positive and have an awesome week!!

1 comment:

  1. I love and appreciate all your posts, especially regarding bridal shows! I was preparing for one about a year ago and I came across your blog. Don't get me wrong, there are informative blogs out there and CakeCentral/Decor (which I frequent daily) but when I was preparing for my first show your blog provided the most information as well as the most useful source of info that I could find! I have grown a lot from my first show, expanded my workspace, confidence and of course experience-I am planning to do another one this fall (my new kitchen wasn't finished so I was working between both all summer so I didn't get to do much advertising wise, I didn't have the space for the extra business)! Anyway, I just wanted to thank you for continuing to share your experience and expertise!
    Also, I am curious what you find to be the best way to offer samples? I was going to make tons of cupcakes last time, can you imagine lol, but I ended up making sheet cakes using sample cups like you suggested. It was a big time saver but the other designers cut wedding size servings from sheet cake pans that took up a lot of room on their table. I think that's way too much, but I felt strange for doing something different.


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