Christmas Show

So I've been up and running as a legal business from my certified home kitchen since April. Sales started super slow but have been picking up the past three months. But I need more sales to meet my financial needs and actually profit.

I've tried participating in a few craft shows and the last was a total bust. I've already paid for a spot in a local show at the beginning of December and I'm wondering what products you guys think would sell best? I also do cakes and other baked goods as well.

I was thinking about doing sets of 25 shaped mini cookies for people to use as advent calendars as well as a large square cookie cut into 25 pieces and decorated individually as an advent calendar. Also maybe minis packaged in the thin sleeve cello bags as stocking stuffers.

I was planning on taking preorders for anyone who wants to order cookies for me to ship as Christmas gifts. 

Any other ideas anyone might have on how to make this show more successful would be greatly appreciated!

 

 

 

 

Original Post

Good luck - what did you do at the last show, and why do you think that wasn't successful for you? Maybe try something very different than that approach?

That being said, my gut feeling is that the stocking stuffer idea may be the better way to go. In addition to a few minis, you might do really striking single cookies that could be used as stuffers, but which would also sell your skills for custom orders. The advent calendar idea is cool, but I wonder how many people will commit to 24 cookies at a pop, especially when you'll already be into December (and supposed advent calendar use) at the time of the market. 

Thanks  for your response, Julia! At the last show ,which was this past weekend, a part of the problem at least was lack of foot traffic. For that show I did single decorated cookies in fall shapes (pumpkins, leaves, scarecrows, and woodland creatures) and then also nicely packaged  single servings of other desserts I offer. 

The Christmas show is Dec 1st which is the reason I thought advent calendars might be feasible, but I am concerned that people won't want to buy 25 cookies at once.... 

Trying to figure out what to make and showcase is always the hardest part of doing these events  for me .

This is an example of the cookies I did for the last show. 

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Maybe it's more a matter of choosing the right show, or knowing the show's clientele and what they want. I did a lot of wedding shows in the day, and it was mostly wedding planners and brides shopping for ideas, not to immediately buy. Depending on who goes to the show you're attending, you'll want to stock up and market yourself differently. If it's event planners, a few samples might be enough, supplemented with photos of your work focused on the custom cookies you've done for events. If it's the average consumer shopping for the holidays, then small stocking stuffers might be best to test the waters (along with photos of custom Christmas orders you've done).

If it's a first-time show for you, I personally wouldn't invest in big cookie offerings, as you may spend a lot of time making them and not sell much. I'd again start small to test the waters, and maybe also use the time to figure out (ask, even) what customers there are shopping for. Are they coming for holiday party ideas, looking for small gifts, or just taking a break from other shopping to browse and/or snack (and thus not seriously shopping for what you're offering)?

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