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Booths Planning a multiple vendor open house in my home- tips?

Discussion in 'Shows, Fundraisers and Booths' started by ChefCat, Feb 16, 2010.

  1. ChefCat

    ChefCat Member

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    Hello,

    I am working on a multiple vendor open house in my home. I have heard of others in my cluster having success at theirs so I am trying as well.

    So far it will be PC, Arbonne and Longaberger. I am hoping for Scentsy and maybe a jewelry company.

    I started selling in November and I am still trying to break out of my circle of family and friends. I am hoping to add some new names to my lead/client list.

    I have some details figured out, but I am open to suggestions. We will advertise mainly with fliers handed out and posted around town. Each guest will receive a gift bag with information from each vendor. I am giving out pan scrapers or maybe SB as well. Each vendor will have a free raffle for product(s).

    Do you have any tips or suggestions? I am extremely open to ideas!
     
    Feb 16, 2010
    #1
  2. wadesgirl

    wadesgirl Legend Member Gold Member

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    My biggest tip would be to not spend too much money/time preparing for this event. Keep it very simple. I have never had much success with these kind of events but usually enough sales to cover to I put into it.
     
    Feb 16, 2010
    #2
  3. ShelbyMichalek

    ShelbyMichalek Veteran Member

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    I would like to learn more about this as well. Thanks for posting this!
     
  4. NooraK

    NooraK Legend Member Gold Member

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    I would think the key is in inviting people. Each vendor should be required to send out x number of invitations to their own guests. You make up the flyer so that you can make sure you're properly represented (and the address is right :D). Then encourage the vendors to make calls to invite their VIP guests and past hosts.

    I'd almost think about it as a big party. You want to do everything you would ask a host to do, and coach the other vendors to do the same.
     
    Feb 16, 2010
    #4
  5. Hi there! I always have multiple vendors in my home, as well at other vendors home! You should either include candles, or purses... make sure that everyone invites thier people, it is a great way to get sales. Good luck!
     
    Feb 16, 2010
    #5
  6. pjpamchef

    pjpamchef Member Silver Member

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    my advice would be to not count on the other vendors to bring you new customers. Sorry to sound so neg. but I have not done one that I thought was successful. The most successful event of this nature I have done is my own customer appreciation event. giving them something for bringing guests, etc. You have to keep in mind a customer attends an event of this nature with "X" amount in mind to spend. therefore, the more vendors you have the more their moneys are diluted.
     
    Feb 16, 2010
    #6
  7. JennLizFran

    JennLizFran Member Gold Member

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    Chefcat- I saw you were hoping for a Scentsy rep, I'm a Scensty rep (nowhere near you) but I could post on their message board and see if I can find someone interested if you like....what's the date?
     
    Feb 16, 2010
    #7
  8. ChefCat

    ChefCat Member

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    Thanks, but I know a scentsy rep already. I'm just not sure if she is interested. If she is not I have a partylite person to ask. So I think I should be covered in the candle department. thanks!
     
    Feb 16, 2010
    #8
  9. JennLizFran

    JennLizFran Member Gold Member

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    No problem! I just thought I'd offer! :)

    Good luck! I'm participating in a multi-vendor open house this weekend at someone else's home! This is my first! So excited!
     
    Feb 16, 2010
    #9
  10. ChefCat

    ChefCat Member

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    Will you report back about your experience?
     
    Feb 16, 2010
    #10
  11. ChefCat

    ChefCat Member

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    Thank you for your suggestions.
    When I started in the fall I had a solo open house and put fliers out on 300+ mailboxes in the neighborhood. I had 6 or so people come. I am hoping that by having more vendors more neighbors will come. Once they come I can build a rapport and hopefully reel some in.

    I was thinking I will have two open houses a year, for each new product launch. The spring event will be a multi-vendor event and the fall will be a customer appreciation event. Last fall I didn't have any customers to appreciate yet. =( lol

    I am hoping for leads more than orders. Orders will be great, but names is what I am more after. I want to have people sign up for my recipe of the month email, pamper a business and free cooking show.
     
    Feb 16, 2010
    #11
  12. ShelbyMichalek

    ShelbyMichalek Veteran Member

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    How would somebody go about setting one of these up. I have done 3 open houses for other people and none of them were a success, I'm nervous about doing a vendor open house, although I have interest from other consultants. If you've done one of these, could you share how you did it?
     
  13. NooraK

    NooraK Legend Member Gold Member

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    My suggestion would be to knock on doors. Flyers on mail boxes or doors often get ignored (I know I find them annoying). If you actually speak to someone, you can start building rapport right then and there. I would suggest trying to go during the time when you're having the open house. If they're home, they'll be more likely to be available to come to the open house.
     
    Feb 16, 2010
    #13
  14. NooraK

    NooraK Legend Member Gold Member

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    I haven't done one, but if you wanted to do a fairly simple one, first you'd need to decide where to hold it. If your house is big enough, do it there. Then contact local consultants for other DS companies, and invite them to participate. I would suggest charging a small fee (if you do, you could even consider renting a meeting room in a hotel or something), because then they have an investment in the event, and are less likely to flake. If you're doing it at home, you could either use it to cover refreshments, or make it a refundable deposit.

    As I mentioned before, the key is for all participants to treat it as a show, advertise it as such, and invite people personally as if it were one.
     
    Feb 16, 2010
    #14
  15. ChefCat

    ChefCat Member

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    See I just can't wait for summer to get here! Our neighborhood is still basically shut down for the winter. Once spring arrives I will see more people out and about and at the park. Once the lake warms I will see a bunch of people down at the beach. I am willing to go knock on doors, but it is not my first choice. We'll see, maybe I will come to regret waiting, but for now I am too chicken. :blushing:
     
    Feb 16, 2010
    #15
  16. chefann

    chefann Legend Member Gold Member

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    Flyers on mailboxes are also illegal, unless they're in the newspaper cubby or attached completely externally to the box.

    ---
    I had a big post typed up and got kicked out. I'll retype and post it in a bit.
     
    Feb 16, 2010
    #16
  17. chefann

    chefann Legend Member Gold Member

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    I hate retyping posts, because I can never remember if I have the same info as the first time I typed it. :rolleyes:

    Request that all the vendors invite their ENTIRE customer lists. Most consultants send out email newsletters - they can include a blurb about the event. I recommend charging a small fee ($10) to help cover your expenses (more below). That small fee will encourage the vendors to a) actually show up; and b) actually invite people so they make enough sales to cover the fee.

    Expenses: have beverages for the guests. It makes them feel more at home, and also more likely to linger, which increases the chance that they'll buy something. And as much as we as PC consultants would love to serve only PC recipes, that can come off as "hard sell" to the guests who don't know you yet. Bottled water, lemonade and coffee should cover all attendees. Go ahead and serve them from PC serveware (carafe, pitcher), but don't make a big deal about the serving pieces unless someone asks. Have napkins disposable cups available, as well as an obvious trash can for the used cups. And sugar, artificial sweetener and creamer for the coffee.

    Clearly mark your house with balloons or a sign. That will make it easier for the customers who haven't been there (probably all of them) to find the place, especially if it's busy and they have to park a couple of houses away.

    Just like any other vendor fair, have a drawing at your table as a way for you to collect customer info.

    In lieu of a small fee, you can ask the other vendors to provide prizes. Give them a suggested value, so they're all about the same. The give tickets to each guest as they walk in the door, and another ticket when they make a purchase from any vendor (give the vendors tix to pass out to the buying customers). Then draw each hour for a prize. You can even stipulate "must be present to win" if you want to.

    If you can, get a "gold lady" to purchase guests' old and unwanted jewelry items. People have limited budgets, but if they know that they can get additional spending money at the event, they will buy more. Make sure that all of the invitations include info about the gold buyer so that guests know to bring things to sell.
     
    Feb 16, 2010
    #17
  18. chefann

    chefann Legend Member Gold Member

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    Hey, ChefCat, I just noticed you're in the D. Where are you? I'm in Southfield.
     
    Feb 16, 2010
    #18
  19. JennLizFran

    JennLizFran Member Gold Member

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    Of course! I know the host already has $300 in outside orders and 2 friends interested in booking open houses with me as well!!! :)
     
    Feb 16, 2010
    #19
  20. ChefCat

    ChefCat Member

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    Thank you for taking the time to share. I will mark my house and have street signs. Last event I did I did fliers on mailboxes, not inside, but outside. It is a somewhat common occurrence around here. I am tempted to mail postcards this time, but I am not sure. If I do postcards I almost want them to be just for my PC business. Each vendor is welcome/encouraged to hold a free raffle. My gift and the Arbonne ladys gift will be valued at around $35-50 retail. My neighbor is the creator/owner of Mystique jewelry and she also does cash for gold. I am hoping she will be a vendor.
     
    Feb 16, 2010
    #20
  21. ChefCat

    ChefCat Member

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    I'm in West Bloomfield. Not really in Detroit, but near-ish. Who is your upline?
     
    Feb 16, 2010
    #21
  22. chefann

    chefann Legend Member Gold Member

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    Randy Weiss, in Missouri. All my local upline have quit. Yours? You're not too far from me. :)
     
    Feb 17, 2010
    #22
  23. ChefCat

    ChefCat Member

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    Maureen Kimmel in South Lyon and above her Karan (Radcliffe) Josephus from up north.
     
    Feb 17, 2010
    #23
  24. smithcooking

    smithcooking Member

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    I do these twice a year and have had really good turn out on them. I started out doing in my house and then I was getting so many other vendors that are in or around the little communite that we live in wanting to do it. So we have moved to a community center and I make flyers and postcard invites for everyone and they all hand them out and I make them help pay for everything. I have not had any complaints from anyone and everyone enjoys doing it. If you have any questions please don't hesitate to ask.
     
    Feb 17, 2010
    #24
  25. scottcooks

    scottcooks Veteran Member Gold Member

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    Here is a multi-vendor invite that worked well for me. We had a steady stream of about 38 guests and good bookings from it.

    Each vendor should bring simple treats, split the costs. Signs, Signs, Signs, Signs, Signs, Signs. Post it on Craigslist. Signs.
     

    Attached Files:

    Feb 17, 2010
    #25
  26. smithcooking

    smithcooking Member

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    This is what I have made up and I give each one of the vendors that will be setting up 40 of these and they also get flyers to hang up at different business around in the community and other surrounding communities.
     

    Attached Files:

    Feb 18, 2010
    #26
  27. MHPampered

    MHPampered Member

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    Ok, So I had my first one in December and I had thrown it together very quickly. It went very well I booked 3 shows and sold $400 in products. What I did and I am doing for my next one in March is:

    - BE VERY CLEAR TO THE OTHER VENDORS HOW YOU WANT IT TO RUN AND ANYTHING YOU WANT THEM TO DO. (I DONT CHARGE THEM ANYTHING THE ONLY REQUIREMENT WAS THAT THEY BRING TWO ITEMS TO RAFFLE AND THEY TELL ALL IF THERE CONTACTS)

    - I MADE THE FLYER EMAILED IT TO ALL THE VENDORS AND HAD THEM PASS IT OUT. I ALSO ASKED THEM FOR ANY SPECIALS THEY WILL BE OFFERING AND PUT IT ON THE FLYER.

    - I PRINTED A BUNCH OF THE FLYERS AND LEFT THEM EVERYWHERE I WENT. AND MOST BUSINESS DONT MIND YOU TAPING IT ON THEIR WINDOW OR ON THEIR BULLETINS. i JUST ASK.

    - TELL EVERYONE!! I MEAN EVERYONE!! I SENT AN EMAIL TO ALL MY CONTACTS I HAD AN EMAIL FOR, I MAILED A FLYER TO ALL THE ONES WITH NO EMAIL ADDY AND I DID THE PHONEVITE THING AND HAD A CALL GO OUT TO ALL MY CONTACTS THE NIGHT BEFORE.

    -SALES/RAFFLES/FREEBIES REALLY ATTRACT PEOPLE. ON THE FLYER I PUT ALL THE SPECIALS THE VENDORS WERE HAVING AND I DO A RAFFLE EVERY 30 MINUTES FOR THOSE WHO ARE PRESENT NOTHING TO COSTLY. IF YOU HAVE EVERYONE BRING TWO ITEMS YOU WILL HAVE PLENTY WITHOUT TAKING TOO MUCH OUT YOUR POCKET.

    I WILL ATTACH MY FLYER. IF YOU HAVE SOME QUESTIONS PM ME AND WE CAN TALK MORE!
     

    Attached Files:

    Feb 18, 2010
    #27
  28. Susan Ling

    Susan Ling Gold Member

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    what a great idea!!
     
    Feb 18, 2010
    #28
  29. Laura4

    Laura4 Member

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    I'm participating in one at the end of next month. It's being put on by Brown Bag Parties, and I am participating along with Premiere Jewelery, Partylite, and ThirtyOne (a Purse Party)

    I'm up against the Brown Bag Parties I think unfortunately. LOL!!
     
    Feb 18, 2010
    #29
  30. ShelbyMichalek

    ShelbyMichalek Veteran Member

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    Hey, I've been trying to get a party set up actually and I have a Thirty-One catalog, do you know anything about them as a company? I'm seriously considering inviting a consultant to my event.
     
  31. ShelbyMichalek

    ShelbyMichalek Veteran Member

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    I can't open those type of documents but I'm curious to see what it is, could anyone make a pdf of this? or a .doc.? Thanks!
     
  32. Laura4

    Laura4 Member

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    I know I read somewhere on her site that it's based off of a bible verse (31:proverbs maybe???)

    Here is the link to her site:
    http://www.mythirtyone.com/14416/

    Looks like some cute stuff!
    I'm excited to meet her and have her be a part of our little group!!:angel:
     
    Feb 19, 2010
    #32
  33. Deb Bixler

    Deb Bixler Member Gold Member

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    I have done many programs for Thirty One Gifts and found them to be a attentive and professional group of consultants.:thumbup: I am always wary of multi-vendor events for two main reasons.
    • They only work when every vendor invites people.
    • Guests need to spread their purchases out between all the vendors as most people arrive with a budget.
     
    Feb 19, 2010
    #33
  34. MHPampered

    MHPampered Member

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    Here is the flyer in a word doc.
    I always forget that most can't open publisher files.

     

    Attached Files:

    Feb 20, 2010
    #34
  35. mrshamel3808

    mrshamel3808 Member Gold Member

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    I participated in one with a MaryKay consultant, a Cookie Lee consultant and a girl that runs her own boutique making hawaiian quilted pillow/blankets and had GREAT results! Pretty much all the customers were the hosts (cookie lee) neighbors and clients but with about 25 people attending throughout the entire day I had about 12 orders totaling OVER $600. She didn't require us to give any product (tho I would have been willing); I brought an appetizer and she had surprise envelopes that each guest got to pick as they came in with 5-25% off coupons good at each vendor (there were like...10 5%, 5 10%, 2 20% and 1 25% or something like that). It was at the beginning of December so maybe it was the whole Christmas thing but alot of people were buying for themselves! Also, an open house around this time of year could benefit with tax refunds :) I'm actually working on contacting other vendors as we speak. This thread reminded me and then helped me decide to invite others to the open house I was planning on hosting at the end of March (sadly the earliest I'm available after the new product launch!). So far I've contacted a PartyLite rep (just by searching online), an Avon rep (a good friend of mine), and a Premier Designs rep (who I met doing a mall booth and have purchased from). I know another Avon rep if the first one isn't interested and I also know 2 Sensaria reps (spa products), one of which is my sister-in-law who I'd prefer but she's not working her business right now to stay on unemployment which they need so I don't know if she'll want to participate.
     
    Feb 20, 2010
    #35
  36. ShelbyMichalek

    ShelbyMichalek Veteran Member

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    That's okay, I actually can't open .docs either on my computer, I have to use Google documents to open those, but google docs doesn't open publisher files at all. Thanks so much!
     
  37. Laura4

    Laura4 Member

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    So far it's getting great feedback from all the ladies we tell. We're planning on doing 2 more in the other ladies' area to get their names out as well. LOL!!

    My friend and I are going to a ladies' luncheon today. $5 and a small gift. I'm going to give the adjustable spoons. I'm also taking some catalogs with me and trying to add to my order I got from the Business Expo yesterday. I was able to put together a $150 show from that!! WOOHOO!!!
     
    Feb 21, 2010
    #37
  38. Laura4

    Laura4 Member

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    Hmmmm. Sensaria....someone mentioned that at my booth yesterday to the other lady who was going to be booking a show from me. I wondered what it is. Thanks for telling me what that is. ROFLMAO!!!! :)

    I'll have to remember that for future group shows!!
     
    Feb 21, 2010
    #38
  39. pamperedlinda

    pamperedlinda Legend Member Gold Member

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    I've done several of these and have always been successful. Some of the things that we do are:

    We spilt the beverages, appetizers, desserts

    We each donate a door prize worth @ $35-$50 retail value

    We each do Mystery Host

    Each of us invites everyone we know

    currently, this is my invite....but I love the one Scott posted - I might make a few changes.
     

    Attached Files:

  40. ChefCat

    ChefCat Member

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    Thank you everyone for your posts!
     
    Feb 21, 2010
    #40
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