Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Marketing Tidbit: Make 'Em Put A Ring On It

Winter art and craft festival time is FAST approaching, so this little tip is for those of you gearing up for the crazy weekends to come.

You've probably been there - you're at a festival or art/craft fair and a customer asks you to hold an item, ostensibly to find their husband/wife/holder of money.  You want to make the sale, but you know there's a very good chance of them never returning. Festival-induced ADD is the main reasons I would never hold items for people.  There's nothing more frustrating than turning down the next customer who wants that item - except maybe being the next customer who is turned away! Chances are you won't be seeing them again, either.  

My new-found collague, Kattaztrophe Arts' has a simple, but brilliant solution:  include a small deposit in your hold policy.   Base it on a small percentage of the price of the item, which is refunded/applied toward the final cost.  With a deposit in your coffers, you don't completely lose out if the person doesn't return.  I think you'll find that anyone who refuses to pay a deposit wasn't really interested and those who do will come back more times than not.  If they don't have cash on them and they really want the item, they'll move pretty quickly to find their other half!

Here are some extra Krissi-tips on the side:
  • post your hold policy and deposit requirement (with amount or %) - never make people ask
  • remove any item on hold from public display immediately (don't tease customers with what they can't have) 
  • keep order forms on hand and have a proper system for accepting customer orders (with payment or a deposit, of course)