Promoting Your Business Outside of Kitchen Shows Craft Shows, Fairs, Garage Sales By Julie Gizzi, Independent Senior Sales Director Why do it? These opportunities allow you to grow your business with groups of people you have never met and who you may never see at a kitchen show. Here you have the chance to cast your net for bookings and recruits far and wide. How do you find out about events? Read the newspaper, be involved in your community, tell other people youre looking for events and ask for their recommendations, contact the Chamber of Commerce, call the mall, read bulletin boards. How to pick an event: choose something that attracts local people from the area where you hope to grow your business. Pick events you personally like and consider how much time you want to spend. Generally, one day events are best. Some events are seasonal like holiday craft fairs. Others are more educational in nature like a childrens safety fair or a home-schooling event. Garage sales are casual events allowing much flexibility and certainly low budget. Try to choose events that are well publicized. What about cost? Booths at craft shows range anywhere from $30-250. The higher prices dont always mean that booth will generate more business. On the high end, a booth that goes for $250 is more manageable when 5-8 consultants go in on it together. On a personal note, in my 5^th month of business I took a booth at the Homemakers School at Two Rivers Convention Center by myself (Mike also helped). I paid just under $200 for a 3 ½ hour event and over 3 years later Im still enjoying business that originated from those bookings! So the money is well invested if you learn how to follow-up with the leads. How do you decorate your booth? Its always a good idea to decorate with the theme of the event in mind. If you do the peach festival, design a booth with a peach theme. A peach cobbler in a 9 Square Baker would be beautiful. Or how about a Quick-Stir Pitcher filled with Peach Tea Slush? Try scattering fresh peaches throughout your display. When doing holiday shows, make up gift basket ideas, use a holiday table cloth, dress in holiday clothes with bright reds. Dont overdo it with products. The Super Starter Kit is perfect because you can tell people interested in the opportunity that theyll get everything they see on the table. Also consider bringing a piece of cookware with you. What about Garage Sales this one is fairly casual, but with the same concept. Have a card table set up with a few tools and do a prize drawing. How should I dress? Regardless of the time of year or the type of event, look professional. Business casual is recommended and wear a Pampered Chef apron. If you have a name tag wear it. People will judge your business with one look at your table and at you, be sure to make a positive impression that this indeed is a business that you take seriously. What paperwork should I bring? Take any outdated catalogs you may have and give them to whoever is interested. If you like, prepare a flyer covering 4 areas bookings, recruiting, fund raisers, and bridal shows. Include a simple recipe in the flyer so people will hang onto it. I would recommend giving current catalogs only to those you really feel will give you business fairly soon. Less than 1% of those you give a business card will ever call you, so save yourself the money. How do I encourage people to have a show? ALWAYS have a prize drawing and ALWAYS make sure your prize is a free kitchen show! (Read that again!) This guarantees that the winner will bring you business. When someone wins a products they may never call you again for reorders, but the kitchen show winner will bring you more bookings that will grow your business. A free kitchen show award means that you bring the ingredients for the recipe(s) prepared at the show. The hostess provides the beverage and plates/utensils and of course LOTS of guests! At the end of the fair go through your prize slips and randomly draw the name of a winnerI suggest to award as many free shows as you like so that youre guaranteed some solid bookings from the booth. What do I do at my booth? Smile and look like your happy to be there. People are drawn to a friendly face. Make eye contact with passersby. Dont stand behind your booth, instead stand in front so that youre more approachable. When someone walks up to your booth say something like, Hello, are you familiar with The Pampered Chef? If they say yes, say Great! Whats your favorite product? If they say no say I teach people how to make family mealtimes easy, quick, and fun! I would suggest: Im having a drawing today for a free kitchen show, most of my hostesses save at least $100 by having a kitchen show and if you win Ill bring all the food. So go ahead and fill out one of these slips to see if you win. Dont say to a person who comes up to your booth (loudly) Want to have a kitchen show? Want to start a business? Our hostess program gives you lots of points, blah, blah, blah. Learn to ease your way into these conversations or else youll overwhelm your visitor and they wont want any part of it. Can I do a demo? We dont have a license to serve food samples to people at these events, but its fine to demo products. Bring some carrots and demo the Food Chopper. If youre doing a fall festival bring a few apples and use the AP/C/S. (dip them in lemon juice so theyll look good for several hours.) A great thing to bring is a sample burnt rice cake and display it next to the cookware. How do I work a booth with other people? Each person hands out there own paperwork. Try to take turns visiting with people rather than having 3 consultants talking to 1 person. If you spend a significant amount of time visiting with someone have that person write your name at the top of the prize slip so youll be able to continue with that lead. At the end of the event split bookings and recruiting leads evenly. Try to also be fair when splitting bookings so that one person doesnt end up with all of the out-of-town leads. Now that I have leads how do I turn them into bookings? Follow-up within 24 hours of the fair. THIS IS NON-NEGOTIABLE!!! If you let too much time pass youll lose them! Know what youre going to say before you call and be ready for objections. Have your calendar handy with your next available dates. These leads are best to be scheduled as soon as possible while they still remember visiting your booth. When you call say, This is ________ with the Pampered Chef, you came to my booth today at the festival. Congratulations! You won a free kitchen show! Have you ever been to a kitchen show before? If the answer is No, then say I come to your home to do a cooking demo to show you and your friends how to make cooking quick, easy and fun. Ill prepare a couple of delicious recipes right in front of you using our tools and at the end youll all get to sample the recipes. Most of my hostesses save at least $100 by having a kitchen show and youll get to choose whatever products you would like for having the show. Doesnt this sound like something fun for your and your friends? Great! I have an opening 2 weeks from today, how does that work for you? Youll have people who didnt realize that they were signing up to host a kitchen show and once you call them they realize theyre not interested. So what! Dont take it personally, just thank them for their time and call the next one. If you spend time visiting with people at your booth you can get them excited about having a show so that when you do make the call backs theyll be very likely to book a show. Some people will want to know moreif they are hesitant, invite them to come along to your next show so they can see what it is. If they say their house is too small suggest that they co-host with a friend or try a catalog show. Some will say nows not a good time, maybe in a few months. Always ask for permission to call them back on a certain date and THEN DO IT!!! One good booking lead from a craft show is worth the investment of time and money. I had a booth at a Closers Association meeting 1 ½ years ago and ended up with one lead from a 4-5 hour event. The one lead had never heard of PC and neither had her friends. I ended up having a whole string of shows from that one lead - many of whom have been very faithful customers. They have already spent $1000s with me and I almost thought that the time I spent at that booth has been a waste. Closing Words of Advice booths are incredible! If you havent had great luck read what I wrote and ask yourself if you honestly followed through on every lead within 24 hours. Your whole business can turn around with a new booking, so approach these events with that in mind and be excited for what lies ahead for you and your business! Good Luck!