Sunday, September 25, 2011

Display Dilemma

Yesterday at my show I noticed something. I have a problem. I have an overwhelming need to put everything i have ever made out at a show. Because here's the thing. I hardly ever make the same thing twice, and if I do use the same pattern, I tweak it here or there or do an entirely different color palette. So, here I am, the seller/vendor/artist thinking about my customer, and what if said customer comes to my booth and wants something similar to what I have made, but in a different color/size/stone/metal, or wants a particular stone that I chose not to put out that day but they are too shy/busy, or distracted by their 3 year old that they don't ask me if I happen to have it in this or that style/color/metal, etc?

Now yesterday was really freaky because I sold two things that have been in my inventory for literally - YEARS. But being very well made and still stylish and lovely, they sold.

So what would have happened had I not put them out? Would I be out $140? or would those customers simply have found something else to their liking? And how many customers simply gave up in my booth because of too many choices and being overwhelmed. Did I lose sales or gain them because of this problem?

Here's the thing, I am going to be put to the test in the Spring. I am doing a show where I will be limited to one 8 foot table. ONE EIGHT FOOT TABLE!! And I am scared. I am scared that I will overclutter it, or that I will not have something out and no one will ask. But I have three days at this show in which to experiment.

So I think I will do this, I will start out with a lot on the table, and slowly through the day, like once every 15 minutes, I will take something off the table. Slowly wean myself to a very elegant, streamlined vision of my work.

I will trust that my customers find me approachable and friendly, and will discuss my work with me and be able to very simply find out if I have something they are looking for - and just in case - I will put up lovely little signs that say - "Just ask - I might have it, and if I don't, I might be able to tell you where to get it" or more simply - "Just ask." (and by the way - had to look up Dilemma to check the spelling - and funny, I always thought it had an "n" but it doesn't.)

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