So you want to sharpen and sell shears at a beauty show. Large national beauty shows can be very expensive. However, if you keep your ears and eyes open you may hear about smaller shows in your area that will allow you to come in and sharpen and sometimes even sell shears. These shows may be conducted by
- Beauty school chains
- Clubs and organizations
- Quilting and sewing guilds
- Beauty supplies
- Educators associations
- Individual salons
When you find these, keep asking each year to participate. We were recently at a show that we had requested admittance for a number of years and this year the time was ripe. Also, negotiate for a reduced rate or free booth. Since sharpening is a service to their attendees they will often give you a cheaper rate. Also offer to hand out their literature to your clients to increase attendance and put a link on your website. This way you can help each other.
Once you have secured a booth (a corner booth is ALWAYS worth the additional investment), write out your plan as if planning a battle or war. Be armed with literature and table banners and signs. If you are allowed to sell items, talk to your suppliers about products on consignment. Many companies like us, here at Bonika Shears, will send shears and other items on consignment to our regular customers. We will even loan banners, displays and other selling helps. Be sure you have a method of display for each item you sell.
Now make a list of incidentals. Our list includes business cards, breath mints, calculators, extension cords, extra tables, portable DVD with a loop showcasing our products, mannequin head for testing shears, bags in pouches for shears, band-aids, bottled water to drink and snacks, camera, banners, signs, table cloths, credit card necessities, receipt books, pens, anti-fatigue mats, small electric fan, all sharpening supplies plus extra, insert rings and oil pens to sell and product.
Keep notes and lists on the show from year to year. This will make repeat shows much easier to plan for. Also, remember, a show that breaks even is still one that makes money because of the residual business that will come to you long after the show. However, I wouldn’t recommend going to a show more than twice where you lost money.
If you are one of Bonika’s Gold Level Sharpeners we can possibly make arrangements to equip your booth on a consignment basis. This of course would be something we would need to discuss.
Lastly, shows are not for everyone. Either you love them or hate them. Enjoy what you do or do something else. My husband Gene and I really enjoy shows and will continue until they are not fun anymore.