Thursday, August 21, 2008

seattle gift show - the show part 1

The Seattle Gift show was quite an experience. It was my first wholesale trade show and I learned a lot. I made some great new friends and made a few promising connections as well. We were located in the "handmade" section, which was in the North Hall, way, way, way back there.
See the map below.

Turns out I was a bit optimistic in my projections for the show. Here is some insight into my logic. I was told there would be 10,000 retailers attending. Based on those numbers I thought I'd be lucky if a third owned boutiques, and of those 3,000 I'd be lucky if 100 of them were interested in my awesome glass pendants. So, I expected to meet 25 interested retailer/buyers per day and of those 25 I thought I might get 10 purchases of around 10 pendants for their stores. Roughly a 100 contacts total and 40-50 orders written with a total of 100 pendants being ordered/sold per day. Boy was that way off the mark. The traffic was much less than I had expected in the Handmade area and apparently the summer show is much slower than the February show.

For those of you who are contemplating jumping up to the wholesale trade show level, consider the investment carefully. As I said, this was my first show, so I have nothing to compare it to, but I'm not sure that I would consider it a "success" (despite being told otherwise) when I take into account all that went into it.

I had a few orders from awesome people (I'll be posting those soon) and one really, really awesome order. So it wasn't a bust, but it wasn't a boon either! Feel free to email me if you have any questions or would like some specifics, I'm be happy to share.

Thanks to everyone for your support and well wishes. I was overwhelmed by all of your support via phone calls, emails and texts. Like I said earlier, I met a lot of really awesome people, both exhibitors and retailer/buyers, so it was a really good and valuable experience as I grow the glass empire! I'm happy to be home now and so happy to take a little break.

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