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Selling Chocolates at Shows and Farmers Markets

Confections Chocolate Dessert

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#1 carol lang

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Posted 07 October 2009 - 10:44 AM

I will be selling my choclates at a large event the first week of December.

I am in the process of planning my timeline to have everything as perfect as possible

for “show” day. Some of my concerns are shelf life, having enough product, and display.

I need all the helpful advice I can get. I am so new at this that I don’t know what questions to ask. I would be most grateful to those of you with experience and expertise with selling at chocolate shows if you would share some tips for success.

Edited by carol lang, 07 October 2009 - 10:48 AM.


#2 Lior

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Posted 07 October 2009 - 03:30 PM

Hi!
Great! I can say that:
1. Keep bonbon variety down to no more than 15 if not less.
2. Refridgerate and then freeze to keep shelf life-wrap in nylon stretch or vacuum bags.
3. It is great to have ready made bonbon boxes to sell, you can prepare these in advance, wrap in the nylon stretch, place in a ziploc fridge and freeze.
4. Organize bars and such as the first things you make, bonbons last-if you can.
5. Besides having separate boxes and bars to sell, arrange some packages nicely wrapped- a box of bonbons, 2 bars etc all wrapped up nicely.
6. Have a display of bonbons and etcso people can also choose.

take photos for us! have fun and lots of success!!

#3 carol lang

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Posted 07 October 2009 - 03:42 PM

Hi Lior,

Thanks for all those tips, they will help me a lot. I am excited about doing this event but it is also a bit scary
because it is something new.

#4 Chocolot

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Posted 07 October 2009 - 06:08 PM

Take a box with all sorts of stuff you might never use but wish you had.
duct tape
masking tape
scissors
bandaids
pen/pencils
paper-clip board
change
copy of your license/health permits
bottled water
paper towels
are they providing tables and chairs?
what about skirting for the tables?
do you have to pay for electricity?
wifi
waste basket/box
gloves
signage

This is just the starting list.
Shows are a lot of hard work, but in the end, they are sort of fun.

Ruth Kendrick

Chocolot
Artisan Chocolates and Toffees
www.chocolot.com


#5 KarenDW

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Posted 07 October 2009 - 11:40 PM

When you are in production, keep any "hurt" bonbons or bars to use as samples. Store in separate, labeled containers for the show.
Learn the health-board rules for your region, with regards to sampling.
Decide whether or not you are willing to "trade" your product for other products at the same event.
Make a price list, and post it in your booth.
Depending upon the event, have some samples ready to share with other vendors, who may not have time for browsing, but may buy/trade once they have tasted your product.
Try and talk to one or two of the previous vendors, before the show, for set-up suggestions.
Better to be situated close to the door, and a bit cold, than to be warm, cosy, and LONELY at the back corner...bring a sweater and wear warm shoes.
Make sure you have BAGS for people purchasing multiple items. Offer gift bags or wrap and ribbon, if you think you'll have time.
Invite a friend or two to drop by during the day, if possible, so that you can take a break.
I usually try and set up a trial display at the beginning of the season, with various sizes of tables/booths.
Karen Dar Woon

#6 Lior

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Posted 08 October 2009 - 06:47 AM

Yes, a box with all sorts of items is excellent. Make a list. Bring lots of change with.
And yes, lots of water, as you will get thirsty-also because you get a bit nervous. I know that I put each type of bonbon in a plastic box and labeled it on the sides and top. I stored these under the table-each plastic box under the area of where that particular bonbon is displayed. So one on top of the other under the table under the display of those kinds. So if on the table you have two rows by six, under each kind you store that kind. So under the table you will have 6 rows of two boxes whereby one box is on top of the other. Hard to explain. You may want a sign up list for customers who want to recieve a newsletter.
Have helpers.

#7 carol lang

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Posted 08 October 2009 - 07:11 AM

Lior, Ruth, Karen

I don't know how I can thank you enough for all your help.
My fears are turning to excitement.
You have given me a focus for my timeline.
I know this is going to be hard to do but I feel much
more confident, thanks to all of you. :biggrin:

#8 pringle007

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Posted 08 October 2009 - 07:57 AM

Check local food laws. Is this a food show or a craft bazzar/farmers market? Do you have a retail food permit? Most states don't allow you to legally sell individual pieces of chocolate without a retail food permit unless the show is designated as a food show. Ive made my living the past three years off farmers markets and craft shows/flea market, and let me tell you - each state can confiscate ALL of your product on site if it isnt up to par with regulations. Also, Ive seen show organizers send vendors home for not having the proper labeling, etc. Poor soul! She had like 200 cupcakes!! Obviously, thats an extreme example, and I'll be the first to admit they are wayyyy to overbaearing on some markets, but it can happen. I've even heard of farm markets being shut down by the state for too many vendors not following the regulations on labeling, packaging, etc. They want you to have everything preboxed. The reason is that all food produced without retail food permits is required to be labled with the items makeup, which isn't done when being sold by the piece. I live in Ohio where the laws are generally considered some of the most lenient in the nation, so make sure to check around before you go and see what kind of enforcement the BOH has been doing and what their specific regulations are.
"It only hurts if it bites you" - Steve Irwin

"Whats another word for Thesaurus?" - Me

#9 carol lang

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Posted 08 October 2009 - 08:31 AM

I am in NY and I have my permits and insurance, labels and everything else needed. I rent a commercial kitchen for production. This is a food show and sale and the sponsor has spelled out the requirements very clearly.

It is a very important point that you have raised and I thank you.

#10 lebowits

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Posted 09 October 2009 - 07:16 AM

Carol -

Like you, I have just begun selling my chocolates at a local farmers market. In my case, the market had a set of requirements in that I needed to bring my own 10x10 tent with weights to keep it from flying off in case of a stiff breeze. I also went out and bought 3 5' tables at a local office supply store. When I set up, I drape my tables and and have a "runner" across the front table upon which I place 6" tiles for displaying the chocolates. I put out 3 pieces of each type on their own tile. I bought "matching" corner tiles which sit on the table at a nice angle to label each type. Clear mailing labels printed and applied to each corner tile make the labels look nice.

For storage, I bought a Cambro food container which holds standard size sheet pans. My first week, I took 6 full size pans loaded down with 2 types per pan. This turned out to be not just way too much product to sell, but was also very heavy. Remember to travel as lightly as possible. I now take 1/2 size pans each with 3 - 4 types on each. For now, I'm not putting out more than 12 - 14 different pieces. Some pieces will sell well, and others simply don't. One of my personal favorites, Bananas Foster simply isn't appealing to the people in any volume. You'll figure out pretty quickly what appeals to your crowd. Play to those tastes.

For the rest of my assorted stuff, I bought some waterproof containers with latching lids at Container Store. They cost $15 - $25 each but are invaluable given the chances of weather. I keep my empty candy boxes in one and put all my other stuff (clip board, table covers, disposable gloves, display tiles, label tiles, hand soap, paper towels, etc.) in another.

Don' forget to get yourself a cash box with some type of latch. It doesn't need to lock, but it's important to have something which closes so you can both keep an eye on it, and the wind won't take your cash away. My "bank" is $80 consisting of $1, $5, and $10 bills. I also keep quarters as I sell individual pieces for $1.50. All of my prices are inclusive of sales tax so I don't need to calculate the total and can keep prices in even $ increments. This saves me a great deal of hassle. Don't forget to count your cash box before you start and after. You should also track how many of each type of box you sell so you can reconcile your cash at the end of the day. I use a spreadsheet to enter in those numbers and make sure I've got the right total at the end. And of course, replenish your drawer after you count out for the next event.

Finally, I have two "directors" chairs which I take with me. These allow me to sit up higher when I'm not standing, or even to lean against them a bit so I can look people in the eye as they come by. Sitting down lower, keeps you out of view. It is important to engage people as they walk by. Simply saying "Hello" or "Good morning" can often draw someone in who would have simply walked by.

Best of luck to you. If you're in the same place week after week, it will take some time for people to figure out you are there. I'm now in my 6th weekend and my revenues have been steady but I'm now starting to get repeat customers.

If you have any other questions I can answer, send me a PM and we can talk off-line.
Steve Lebowitz
Doer of All Things
Steven Howard Confections

Slicing a warm slab of bacon is a lot like giving a ferret a shave. No matter how careful you are, somebody's going to get hurt - Alton Brown, "Good Eats"

#11 Lior

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Posted 09 October 2009 - 07:40 AM

Gosh you guys have so many rules and regulations! I am certain we do, but they are never followed!! I suppose it is really in everyone's best interest. I would love to see a picture of your stands. I think I have posted a pic of mine, if not I will be happy to. Everything seems so organized, set and established in your neck of the woods. Despite the personal hassle it really is correct.

#12 carol lang

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Posted 09 October 2009 - 02:15 PM

Lebowits,

Thank you for an incredibly helpful post. It is so kind of you to share your hard earned experience.
My December event will be indoors and the sponsor provides an 8" table and a 6" table. I have to get my own table drapes and runners etc.
It sounds like you have a very attractive arrangement for your chocolates. You have some great ideas.

#13 lebowits

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Posted 09 October 2009 - 05:09 PM

Lebowits,

Thank you for an incredibly helpful post. It is so kind of you to share your hard earned experience.
My December event will be indoors and the sponsor provides an 8" table and a 6" table. I have to get my own table drapes and runners etc.
It sounds like you have a very attractive arrangement for your chocolates. You have some great ideas.


I've been meaning to take pictures but never quite get around to it. I'll see about remembering this weekend and post a few.
Steve Lebowitz
Doer of All Things
Steven Howard Confections

Slicing a warm slab of bacon is a lot like giving a ferret a shave. No matter how careful you are, somebody's going to get hurt - Alton Brown, "Good Eats"

#14 Chocolot

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Posted 10 October 2009 - 04:00 PM

This is a picture of our booth at the Colorado Chocolate Show 2009. Pictured are my daughter and daughter-in-law. (they work cheap:-)

Attached Images

  • denverbooth.JPG

Ruth Kendrick

Chocolot
Artisan Chocolates and Toffees
www.chocolot.com


#15 mostlylana

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Posted 10 October 2009 - 05:56 PM

This is a picture of our booth at the Colorado Chocolate Show 2009. Pictured are my daughter and daughter-in-law. (they work cheap:-)


WOW!!! Beautiful!!

#16 mostlylana

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Posted 10 October 2009 - 06:07 PM

Carol -

Like you, I have just begun selling my chocolates at a local farmers market. In my case, the market had a set of requirements in that I needed to bring my own 10x10 tent with weights to keep it from flying off in case of a stiff breeze. I also went out and bought 3 5' tables at a local office supply store. When I set up, I drape my tables and and have a "runner" across the front table upon which I place 6" tiles for displaying the chocolates. I put out 3 pieces of each type on their own tile. I bought "matching" corner tiles which sit on the table at a nice angle to label each type. Clear mailing labels printed and applied to each corner tile make the labels look nice.

For storage, I bought a Cambro food container which holds standard size sheet pans. My first week, I took 6 full size pans loaded down with 2 types per pan. This turned out to be not just way too much product to sell, but was also very heavy. Remember to travel as lightly as possible. I now take 1/2 size pans each with 3 - 4 types on each. For now, I'm not putting out more than 12 - 14 different pieces. Some pieces will sell well, and others simply don't. One of my personal favorites, Bananas Foster simply isn't appealing to the people in any volume. You'll figure out pretty quickly what appeals to your crowd. Play to those tastes.

For the rest of my assorted stuff, I bought some waterproof containers with latching lids at Container Store. They cost $15 - $25 each but are invaluable given the chances of weather. I keep my empty candy boxes in one and put all my other stuff (clip board, table covers, disposable gloves, display tiles, label tiles, hand soap, paper towels, etc.) in another.

Don' forget to get yourself a cash box with some type of latch. It doesn't need to lock, but it's important to have something which closes so you can both keep an eye on it, and the wind won't take your cash away. My "bank" is $80 consisting of $1, $5, and $10 bills. I also keep quarters as I sell individual pieces for $1.50. All of my prices are inclusive of sales tax so I don't need to calculate the total and can keep prices in even $ increments. This saves me a great deal of hassle. Don't forget to count your cash box before you start and after. You should also track how many of each type of box you sell so you can reconcile your cash at the end of the day. I use a spreadsheet to enter in those numbers and make sure I've got the right total at the end. And of course, replenish your drawer after you count out for the next event.

Finally, I have two "directors" chairs which I take with me. These allow me to sit up higher when I'm not standing, or even to lean against them a bit so I can look people in the eye as they come by. Sitting down lower, keeps you out of view. It is important to engage people as they walk by. Simply saying "Hello" or "Good morning" can often draw someone in who would have simply walked by.

Best of luck to you. If you're in the same place week after week, it will take some time for people to figure out you are there. I'm now in my 6th weekend and my revenues have been steady but I'm now starting to get repeat customers.

If you have any other questions I can answer, send me a PM and we can talk off-line.


Steve, what a fabulous post. I thank you too! What detail... so helpful...

I have never done a show or farmer's market. I keep scratching my head as to how to keep the chocolates from melting (at an outdoor event or farmer's market). I have been considering getting some of those Cambro sheet size containers. Do the lids fit very tight? I freeze my chocolates and so far have been boxing them in assortments and freezing that way. I'd like to offer more choice to my clients but being home-based I don't go through inventory like a shop does. I was thinking of using these Cambro half sheet size containers to store different flavours in my upright freezer. I'm assuming they would hold 2 layers? I'm quite confident that with an absorbent pad on top - and if the lid fits tight - the chocolates would be just fine. I can then dip into the containers as needed and get whatever selection is asked for and thaw appropriately. Whatcha think? Would it work? :hmmm:

#17 carol lang

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Posted 11 October 2009 - 02:16 AM

Ruth,

Your booth looks beautiful.

The colors are so vibrant.

#18 lebowits

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Posted 12 October 2009 - 01:09 PM


Carol -

Like you, I have just begun selling my chocolates at a local farmers market. In my case, the market had a set of requirements in that I needed to bring my own 10x10 tent with weights to keep it from flying off in case of a stiff breeze. I also went out and bought 3 5' tables at a local office supply store. When I set up, I drape my tables and and have a "runner" across the front table upon which I place 6" tiles for displaying the chocolates. I put out 3 pieces of each type on their own tile. I bought "matching" corner tiles which sit on the table at a nice angle to label each type. Clear mailing labels printed and applied to each corner tile make the labels look nice.

For storage, I bought a Cambro food container which holds standard size sheet pans. My first week, I took 6 full size pans loaded down with 2 types per pan. This turned out to be not just way too much product to sell, but was also very heavy. Remember to travel as lightly as possible. I now take 1/2 size pans each with 3 - 4 types on each. For now, I'm not putting out more than 12 - 14 different pieces. Some pieces will sell well, and others simply don't. One of my personal favorites, Bananas Foster simply isn't appealing to the people in any volume. You'll figure out pretty quickly what appeals to your crowd. Play to those tastes.

For the rest of my assorted stuff, I bought some waterproof containers with latching lids at Container Store. They cost $15 - $25 each but are invaluable given the chances of weather. I keep my empty candy boxes in one and put all my other stuff (clip board, table covers, disposable gloves, display tiles, label tiles, hand soap, paper towels, etc.) in another.

Don' forget to get yourself a cash box with some type of latch. It doesn't need to lock, but it's important to have something which closes so you can both keep an eye on it, and the wind won't take your cash away. My "bank" is $80 consisting of $1, $5, and $10 bills. I also keep quarters as I sell individual pieces for $1.50. All of my prices are inclusive of sales tax so I don't need to calculate the total and can keep prices in even $ increments. This saves me a great deal of hassle. Don't forget to count your cash box before you start and after. You should also track how many of each type of box you sell so you can reconcile your cash at the end of the day. I use a spreadsheet to enter in those numbers and make sure I've got the right total at the end. And of course, replenish your drawer after you count out for the next event.

Finally, I have two "directors" chairs which I take with me. These allow me to sit up higher when I'm not standing, or even to lean against them a bit so I can look people in the eye as they come by. Sitting down lower, keeps you out of view. It is important to engage people as they walk by. Simply saying "Hello" or "Good morning" can often draw someone in who would have simply walked by.

Best of luck to you. If you're in the same place week after week, it will take some time for people to figure out you are there. I'm now in my 6th weekend and my revenues have been steady but I'm now starting to get repeat customers.

If you have any other questions I can answer, send me a PM and we can talk off-line.


Steve, what a fabulous post. I thank you too! What detail... so helpful...

I have never done a show or farmer's market. I keep scratching my head as to how to keep the chocolates from melting (at an outdoor event or farmer's market). I have been considering getting some of those Cambro sheet size containers. Do the lids fit very tight? I freeze my chocolates and so far have been boxing them in assortments and freezing that way. I'd like to offer more choice to my clients but being home-based I don't go through inventory like a shop does. I was thinking of using these Cambro half sheet size containers to store different flavours in my upright freezer. I'm assuming they would hold 2 layers? I'm quite confident that with an absorbent pad on top - and if the lid fits tight - the chocolates would be just fine. I can then dip into the containers as needed and get whatever selection is asked for and thaw appropriately. Whatcha think? Would it work? :hmmm:


I've made a concious decision NOT to freeze product and to make smaller batches. In general, I make 64, 96, or 128 piece batches depending on how an item is selling. For the products I'm making, I get between 6 and 8 weeks of shelf life, but don't like to keep things longer than 4 - 6 so this gives the customer some time to consume them. I store all my product at room temp on a "speed rack" with a cover since I rent kitchen space and don't want other things floating onto my stuff.

To carry and serve out of, I bought a Cambro "Camcarrier" (Code 1826MTC) which holds 6 full size sheet pans or 12 1/2 size pans. As I learned my lesson NOT to take more than I really need, I generally take 4 1/2 pans with 12 - 13 products. This leaves room at the top of the carrier for a 6th pan on which I can put a freezer pack wrapped in several layers of paper towel. The paper towel absorbs most of the condensation and since I'm using 1/2 pans, I push this pan to the back of the carrier so condensation doesn't fall directly on top of the tray directly below.

Now that the weather has turned cooler, I don't even bother with the freezer pack.

BTW... I did take some pics yesterday and will upload them ASAP.
Steve Lebowitz
Doer of All Things
Steven Howard Confections

Slicing a warm slab of bacon is a lot like giving a ferret a shave. No matter how careful you are, somebody's going to get hurt - Alton Brown, "Good Eats"

#19 lebowits

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Posted 12 October 2009 - 02:15 PM

So here are the promised pics of my farmers market setup.

A view to a tent, me in my chair...
Posted Image

An array of goodies...
Posted Image

License, prices, boxes, and stock...
Posted Image

Inside the stock container...
Posted Image

Hand washing station...
Posted Image
Steve Lebowitz
Doer of All Things
Steven Howard Confections

Slicing a warm slab of bacon is a lot like giving a ferret a shave. No matter how careful you are, somebody's going to get hurt - Alton Brown, "Good Eats"

#20 mostlylana

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Posted 12 October 2009 - 02:55 PM

Steve, thank you so much for sharing. Your set up looks beautiful and professional! I appreciate the 'behind the scenes' photos. As I said before, I have never done a farmer's market as I can't imagine how I would keep the chocolates from melting! Your Camcarrier is a fabulous idea!

I really like your tile display. Do you find your display chocolates melt in the summer months? I'm in the Interior of BC, Canada and we have a dessert climate here in the summer - very hot. I was thinking if I ever did a farmer's market I would make my sample pieces out of that horrible wax based fake chocolate - and maybe even add more wax! Then I would have to pray that those sample pieces don't accidently end up in a box. :shock:

Thanks again for posting your photos - it's so helpful for those of us who have yet to venture into the market scene.

#21 carol lang

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Posted 12 October 2009 - 03:59 PM

I love the pictures, Steve.
The tiles make the chocolates look great.
Your set up seems very organized and trouble free.
How long did it take you to design such an attractive,
yet uncomplicated "store". I know it would have taken me tons
of hit and miss before coming up with such good ideas.

Thank you so much for sharing

#22 Lior

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Posted 13 October 2009 - 12:04 AM

Wow to chocolot and wow to Lebowits!! Thank you sooo much. I hace never seen this cambro half tray thing. Is there a url for me ? I appreciate it a lot. I see how lovely and organized. I will certainly start selling in boxes and not displaying all as is common here.
I willpost an older picture and then a more recent one with my "tiles".
Thank you both ever so much. Such fun. The green and brown is an eye catcher and stunning.

#23 Kerry Beal

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Posted 13 October 2009 - 04:34 AM

Both those booths look fabulous. So professional.

Give the popularity of TV chef's these days I wonder if Steve wearing a chef's jacket would bring more people over to talk and sell even more.

#24 Lior

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Posted 13 October 2009 - 06:06 AM

The wine festival- an oldy but note how we display our bonbons out in the open along with all those dust particles and who knows what else!! :blink: My son is far left, his friend is in the middle.

#25 Lior

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Posted 13 October 2009 - 06:10 AM

In the above photo I am near the little square plates where I give explanations on chocolate and tastes of the different kinds and percentages.

Last year I did a backyard artists' sale at our local vet's backyard. It was smaller and I used my new glass tiles that my friend, a fusion glass artist custom made for me.

No more open displays for me. Thanks for teaching me that!!Ganache Display.jpg

#26 mostlylana

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Posted 13 October 2009 - 09:06 AM

Wow, I wish I could walk into the screen and browse around at all these booths! I'm trying to see everything and I just can't!

Ilana, I see what you are saying about the open concept for food safety reasons but your display looks fantastic. I wonder if there's something to the Costco mentality (in case you don't have Costco Ilana - it's a bulk buying warehouse) where people are overwhelmed being surrounded by so much that they buy so much! If there's only 1 chocolate out it does suggest quality but maybe that scares people off?

I'm thinking, when possible (it would have to be an indoor event), it might be best to do a refined QUANTITY display as Ilana has shown. I really have no idea - I'm just thinking out loud.

Ruth, I notice you have 3 raised displays. It almost looks like chocolates behind glass... or are they large boxes of chocolates? You have 1 in the middle and 1 on each end...


.

#27 RobertM

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Posted 13 October 2009 - 11:58 AM

I'll post some photo's tonight when I get home, but, a few observations that I've learned. I know I don't have a degree in "marketing" and I can't afford someone who does, so, I do the next best thing. I walk through major department stores to "see" how they display different products, then, I use their idea's in the best method I can. For instance, I've learned that people like to see "height" - instead of a 'flat' display - the different heights of display actually pulls them into my booth. I have no shame watching something that works and using it at my own location. If it works for Macy's; Godiva; etc, it should work for me.

I also have found that having to much "product" on display actually discourages sales. The customer must think "they have plenty, I'll come back later to buy some", but for the majority of buyers, never never comes. They forget where you were, can't find you, it's to far to walk back and so forth. Therefore, I keep my display's to a minimal - and use the reverse psychology. "Oh, they must be selling this stuff quickly, I better buy mine now."

I discourage samples as well. Costco has introduced the "free lunch" concept and I work to hard to add to that. Now, I will also say, it's situational; sometimes you can just tell people are professional samplers and not interested in buying. Instead, I make them an offer that is unbeatable. I tell them, "buy (product x) - go enjoy the show, eat a little, or eat it all, if you do not like it, you bring me back the (product) and I'll give you your money back" Sometimes, I'll even give them the product and say, "here, you take this, and if you like it, come back and pay for it" - I'm that confident that they'll love it. I've done it enough to know that very, very few people have returned the product, but instead, they come back and ask to buy more. For those I "give" the product to, they actually pull out their money to pay; and I insist, "no, that wasn't the deal" - but they insist (and I let them) and they pay for it and come back to tell me how much they love it.

If you can get away with it, people love to watch someone working. It's easy to start talking to them too. I work a little "show" and "routine" into my demo's. Being a guy, I flirt with the women and am deferential to the men. Everyone is a Sir or Ma'am. People love to buy something they have actually seen being made. It fascinates people to see something they are not familiar with, it's an opportunity to educate, to develop a customer base.

I also have a notebook handy, if they seem interested, I'll ask them for their name and email address. That way, I can keep in touch with them when I WANT to. "Dear friend, we met each other at ABC show/farmers market" etc, and I wanted to thank you for stopping by, I truly hope you enjoyed the [product] that you took home. I'm running a special this month because it's Halloween, all reorders are 10% off (or free shipping).

An 800 number for easy reorders, call us on OUR dime (in the States)

Don't forget that 80% of your business is going to come from 20% of your customers. BUILD that customer base.

Just my take on some of these things -

#28 lebowits

lebowits
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Posted 13 October 2009 - 12:45 PM

This is a picture of our booth at the Colorado Chocolate Show 2009. Pictured are my daughter and daughter-in-law. (they work cheap:-)


Really nice display. I like the way the green and brown colors work together. I'm still trying to find a graphic artist/designer to help me with a logo/identity.
Steve Lebowitz
Doer of All Things
Steven Howard Confections

Slicing a warm slab of bacon is a lot like giving a ferret a shave. No matter how careful you are, somebody's going to get hurt - Alton Brown, "Good Eats"

#29 lebowits

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Posted 13 October 2009 - 12:53 PM

Wow to chocolot and wow to Lebowits!! Thank you sooo much. I hace never seen this cambro half tray thing. Is there a url for me ? I appreciate it a lot. I see how lovely and organized. I will certainly start selling in boxes and not displaying all as is common here.
I willpost an older picture and then a more recent one with my "tiles".
Thank you both ever so much. Such fun. The green and brown is an eye catcher and stunning.


Cambro Manufacturing (southern California near Los Angeles) makes a large line of commercial food products, focusing on service and storage. Their web site is here. I tried going there a few minutes ago and it seems their server is down. Here is a link to a restaurant supply company that sells their stuff. Cambro sells almost exclusively through restaurant supply companies.

I display with minimal product for two reasons. 1) If the weather is warm and there is danger of melting the pieces, I only have to sacrifice a small number. 2) The product on display is very likely being breathed on (or worse), touched, or otherwise contaminated by being in the open. Keeping the real stock in a temperature "controlled" and closed container, keeps it safer and makes people feel special when you go in to fill their box with whatever they want.

You would be surprised how many people ask me if they can choose anything or if the boxes are pre-packaged. I tell them that I would never get in the way of someone and their favorite chocolates. :biggrin:
Steve Lebowitz
Doer of All Things
Steven Howard Confections

Slicing a warm slab of bacon is a lot like giving a ferret a shave. No matter how careful you are, somebody's going to get hurt - Alton Brown, "Good Eats"

#30 lebowits

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Posted 13 October 2009 - 12:56 PM

The wine festival- an oldy but note how we display our bonbons out in the open along with all those dust particles and who knows what else!! :blink: My son is far left, his friend is in the middle.


Lior - the display looks wonderful. I've only been putting out a limited number of pieces simply because I haven't had the time to figure out what else to offer (or what would sell) and the time to make it all. I also believe that have a limited range of products can sometimes be an inducement to customers as they perceive that there is something "special" about what you have. Interestingly, as people have gotten to know me and my products, I'm developing a bit of a following and with that comes repeat business. This past week, my sales went up 50%. I don't know if that is a one time event or a trend. I'll have to see what happens the next few weeks.

I do admit that I'm jealous about having an indoor venue. That would be so much easier in many respects.
Steve Lebowitz
Doer of All Things
Steven Howard Confections

Slicing a warm slab of bacon is a lot like giving a ferret a shave. No matter how careful you are, somebody's going to get hurt - Alton Brown, "Good Eats"





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