Art Fair Insiders

Call for Artists, Making Money at Juried Art Fairs, Craft Shows and Festivals

Video: How to Profit when the Booth Fee is High

$2000+ booth fees -- how does an artist show a profit and want to come back next year? Mixed Media/Photographer Mikel Robinson and his wife Christina share their strategies. A lot of information in only 2 1/2 minutes.

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Comment by Connie Mettler on April 8, 2014 at 2:47pm

This video is really short -- but it is packed with so many good ideas, both verbally and visually. I agree, Susan, there should be a "honker" in every booth ;) It makes them think BIG.

Comment by Susan Parry on April 7, 2014 at 7:29pm

I appreciated the time and effort you took in sending this. I make glass jewelry and for several years now have included an extremely large flashy piece in my display because it brings people into my booth to see what it is. I only sell about one of these a year, but I sell many that are a smaller version. The "Honker" as I jokingly refer to it usually does the trick. I also have a picture of a very attractive lady (who bought a honker from me) in my show book---one that shows her wearing it while smiling.

Comment by Connie Mettler on April 2, 2014 at 11:01am

I know the sound wasn't great, Geoff. There was such a bustle and large crowds indoors, plus my limited video skills. I tried to fix it in iMovie, but again, not an area of expertise for me.

You're right, John. I especially liked the idea of adding in the large pieces and if you looked at their booth you could see the price points would be very wide. Pretty smart it seems to me.

Comment by Karen Sconyers on April 2, 2014 at 11:01am
I was exhibiting at a Delray beach show a couple of months and noticed my neighbor was always saying "I am the artist if you have any questions." I must have heard this statement 50 times the first day. The second day, I began saying the same. I doubled my sales from the previous day. Was it what I was saying? I feel it was. If you are alone in your booth it is essential to be in front; where the customers are.
I do have a problem with the vendor who calls the customer from my side of the show to the other side for their benefit. Exhibitor etiquette needs to be put out there.
Comment by John Warr on April 2, 2014 at 10:53am

He was saying that he looks at this show more like a business rather than an Outdoor Art Show....I think prety much every principal that he outlined is exactly the same as you would approach any Art Show, indoors or outdoors. His best advise though, that I have been moving toward over the past few years, is incorporating larger pieces into my display.....even if they are too large or expensive for the average buyer, it does draw folks into your booth!

Comment by Connie Mettler on April 2, 2014 at 9:39am

The show was the One of a Kind Show in Chicago. But you are right, Suzanne, it isn't necessarily which show it was the advice is helpful for any high fee show. We never did any of these high fee shows because we couldn't see our way through to making them profitable, so I've always been curious about how others handle it. 

Comment by Suzanne Ens on April 2, 2014 at 9:26am
Was not sure what show this was. Altho same principles and strategies could easily apply to other shows, especially I'm thinking Jazz Fest. I will need to sell $2500 before I see a profit there.
Comment by Geoff Coe on April 1, 2014 at 9:43pm
Unfortunately the ambient crowd noise overwhelms Mikel's voice. I had trouble hearing it. :-(

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