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  1. #16
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    Re: So, I was thinking...

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Davis View Post
    We have a lot of folks who like to make things,
    some of us sell things,
    sometimes it is hard to have enough things to sell for a festival or craft fair,
    it is a lot of work to set up and,
    sell all day and,
    take it down and pack up at the end,
    no task is too large when you break it down into little bits and pieces,
    anybody wondering where this is going yet?

    Any lawyers and/or accountants in the group that could help advise?

    We need "this is how to make it work"
    not "it won't work".

    The local arts council has a store for the members to sell art.

    This would be like a mobile WW store.
    Hi Mike, I really want to add to this with you, however I am very confused. Firstly, the arts council is a state agency run by the Dept of Cultural resources. They receive (and should be working hard to earn) grant money from external sources. My point is that they are paid to serve the communities they are located in, and the extent of that service is reflected by the community involvement and the diligence of the staff. I was an Arts Council Director at one time and we fought hard for our funding and worked hard to support our artists.

    Approaching this from a different angle, what is is exactly that you want to do? Create a marketplace for fine wood objects, or organize a one time event with people that also do what you do? Here are a few things to chew on: what are your desired long term and short term outcomes? Have you thought about simply attending some of the established major shows as an independent vendor (Smithsonian Craft Fair, SOFA, Architectural Digest.......) how are you currently marketing your work and what could you do to improve that?... I'll be glad to contribute any way I can, we should keep the conversation going.
    Stuart Kent
    Founding Director of the North Carolina Furniture School
    Robust, Rikon, Oneida, Harvey, & Easy Wood Tools Dealer
    503 Second St, Ayden, NC 28513
    252-916-8226
    http://ncfurnitureschool.com/
    https://twitter.com/@tweetncfs
    https://www.facebook.com/northcarolinafurnitureschool

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  3. #17
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    Re: So, I was thinking...

    Thanks Stuart.

    It is very difficult for one person to make, market, sell, and follow up all alone. I was approached, no I was begged to exhibit or sell at two huge craft fairs this year and I just don’t have the time, energy, resources, funds, help, and anything else one may need to successfully participate in a large public event.

    I’m sure there are others here in similar situations. As well there are very experienced sellers who will scoff at the idea of sharing or helping a beginner in this arena. I applaud your offer of expertise.

    Short term I would like to get 4-6 people together who have nice work ready to sell and have never sold at such an event.
    I am already approved for the Jomeokee event and approved to share a booth with our group. This without even submitting an application. Which has not been offered in the past or to my knowledge offered to anyone else.

    This is is probably a one time thing. Certainly not something I personally want to pursue, but I think for some of the younger members It could open doors and lead to opportunities. So, I’m putting myself out there to help get it started.

    Long term I would like to see a program within NCWW to help craftsmen learn the ropes, get assistance in all aspects of marketing and developing products to sell. I don’t know at this point how that program would look or operate but I would hope that it can evolve in a very positive and fruitful manner.

    The first and foremost obligation of this group is woodworking education, providing education in the sales, marketing, and promotion of that craft is lacking and should be supported.

    sorry to be so fractured, confused, and disjointed but writing is not my best skill, and I think in pictures which I have to translate to English, it’s very hard for me.



    One machine can do the work of 50 ordinary men. No machine can do the work of one extraordinary man." -Elbert Hubbard

    WWFD

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  5. #18
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    Re: So, I was thinking...

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Davis View Post
    How many want to sell at the Jomeokee Marketplace Fall 2018 Oct 20 and 21.

    We can use the tents and tables from NCWW trailer. The Board of NCWW has agreed to pay the entry fee up to $75 for the first event.

    All you need to do is deliver a few pieces of your work and agree to help with either setup-takedown-packing-or man the booth for a shift on one of the two days.
    The venue is certainly interesting, and should be pretty scenic in October. Jomokeookee Campground.

    Jomokeookee marketplace, pinnacle, nc
    Last edited by Jeff; 05-16-2018 at 08:15 AM.

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  7. #19
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    Re: So, I was thinking...

    Quote Originally Posted by tri4sale View Post
    one thing to be weary of in group sales is price cohesion and non-overlap of products. You don't want 3 people bring pens for sale, and then one prices $10, one $20, and one $30. And if one member is high end $1000 items, and others are $5 trinkets, and can drive away buyers.
    I think this would show the wide range of makers we have at NCWW. Everybody I talk to says to have a wide range of pricing, some very expensive items that attract the future buyer of custom work and some very low cost items which sell in volume and pay the booth fees.

    I will say that I would expect to see very high quality work and not yard sale/flea market handicrafts.



    One machine can do the work of 50 ordinary men. No machine can do the work of one extraordinary man." -Elbert Hubbard

    WWFD

  8. #20
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    Re: So, I was thinking...

    Mike, I would have to put together the inventory, but a series of keepsake boxes and few other things could be a good start, I also could help with a number of other tasks as needed. Nothing ventured nothing gained.
    Nothing beats a try but a failure, failure is an opportunity to learn.
    http://graywolfwoodworks.wordpress.com/

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  10. #21
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    Re: So, I was thinking...

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Davis View Post
    Thanks Stuart.

    It is very difficult for one person to make, market, sell, and follow up all alone. I was approached, no I was begged to exhibit or sell at two huge craft fairs this year and I just don’t have the time, energy, resources, funds, help, and anything else one may need to successfully participate in a large public event.

    I’m sure there are others here in similar situations. As well there are very experienced sellers who will scoff at the idea of sharing or helping a beginner in this arena. I applaud your offer of expertise.

    Short term I would like to get 4-6 people together who have nice work ready to sell and have never sold at such an event.
    I am already approved for the Jomeokee event and approved to share a booth with our group. This without even submitting an application. Which has not been offered in the past or to my knowledge offered to anyone else.

    This is is probably a one time thing. Certainly not something I personally want to pursue, but I think for some of the younger members It could open doors and lead to opportunities. So, I’m putting myself out there to help get it started.

    Long term I would like to see a program within NCWW to help craftsmen learn the ropes, get assistance in all aspects of marketing and developing products to sell. I don’t know at this point how that program would look or operate but I would hope that it can evolve in a very positive and fruitful manner.

    The first and foremost obligation of this group is woodworking education, providing education in the sales, marketing, and promotion of that craft is lacking and should be supported.

    sorry to be so fractured, confused, and disjointed but writing is not my best skill, and I think in pictures which I have to translate to English, it’s very hard for me.
    thanks for expanding. I still have lots of questions for you, but I get the idea. Of course you know you are asking very large questions with lots of circumstantial nuances in the answers. The good news is that business isn't hard, the bad news is that business is very complicated for independent Artists and Craftsmen. We are the designers, the makers, the janitors, the marketing, sales, owners, investors, etc. And we thrive in a vacuum compared to other creative industries. Consider the following in order to understand the problem (which leads us to the answers). Assume for the examples that all things go as they should - don't get mired by the inherent problems, that's not the point.

    1. Music: you work hard by playing in local venues and gaining a following. Then hire a manager who books all the shows, associates you with similar successful acts, and solicits labels that specialize in your genre of music. Once with a label, their staff manages details like equipment purchases, insurance, studio time, travel logistics, accounts payable, etc. All of the actors in this scenario are theoretically invested in your success because they make money when you aren't distracted and can focus on creating great art - which in turn keeps you paid.

    2. Acting: you join a local troop or act in area little theater productions, gain a following, hire an 'agent' which is essentially a manager. They scour the scene to find roles for you to audition. They hedge your performances against bigger productions and help you grow. As you gain success your agent will assign a personal assistant who's job is to take care of all your daily appointments, bills, travel logistics, etc. They together market you in the right circles by getting you in front of producers, casting crews, social circles, etc.

    3. Writing: you submit well formed ideas, articles, manuscripts, or short stories to a publisher. They assign a manager (often an editor), who keeps you on track, helps you structure your projects, gets you paid, assists you with managing costs and bills, etc. Then they go through your finished projects and identify your errors and help you understand how and when they occur, how to avoid them in the future, and how to fix them. Then the publisher markets and sells your work and gets you on the radio, book tours, news stands, etc...

    do you see any recurrent theme here? something visual Artists and Craftspeople lack? what do we do about it?

    like minds organize and seek solutions together.

    There will be some general framework applicable to your broader question, but we should first focus on solutions. While I applaud the group effort to organize one event, I propose a different approach. We should form a group - consider it a 'think tank' on how to leverage our collective resources toward manageable and meaningful solutions i.e. NCWW itself, business expert members, grant writers, woodworking business owners, finance experts, marketing experts, professional artists, etc. We assemble a group to look at the problem, and then present a plan replete with solutions that include short term and long term goals. Those goals must include market identification, marketing strategies, Then we establish a market by organizing target events supported by the newly established strategic plan where we can sell together in a concerted effort in a sustainable manner.

    I have taught an introduction to Marketing and Management for Artists class in the past, perhaps we should start there so that we all understand the same framework as the starting point. I would have to charge for it because this is how I make my living - but I am more than willing to teach this class at a discount and then participate in the group going forward at no cost. I will be glad to host it at my shop, and I will prepare the class specifically for NCWW members. Also, one of my close friends is a very successful business consultant who works with businesses of all sizes. I will ask him for marketing and management mechanics in preparation for the class so that we are better tooled as a group with bigger goals in mind than just my class.

    ultimately, i think you are asking the right questions and in an abstract way, seeking the right outcomes for us as a group. I will help in every way I can, thank you.

    If you want to talk more about this, please give me a call 252.916.8226
    Stuart Kent
    Founding Director of the North Carolina Furniture School
    Robust, Rikon, Oneida, Harvey, & Easy Wood Tools Dealer
    503 Second St, Ayden, NC 28513
    252-916-8226
    http://ncfurnitureschool.com/
    https://twitter.com/@tweetncfs
    https://www.facebook.com/northcarolinafurnitureschool

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  12. #22
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    Re: So, I was thinking...

    Oh, that's way better than what I had...

    See, there is a way.



    One machine can do the work of 50 ordinary men. No machine can do the work of one extraordinary man." -Elbert Hubbard

    WWFD

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  14. #23
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    Re: So, I was thinking...

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Davis View Post
    Oh, that's way better than what I had...

    See, there is a way.
    call me, let's talk.
    Stuart Kent
    Founding Director of the North Carolina Furniture School
    Robust, Rikon, Oneida, Harvey, & Easy Wood Tools Dealer
    503 Second St, Ayden, NC 28513
    252-916-8226
    http://ncfurnitureschool.com/
    https://twitter.com/@tweetncfs
    https://www.facebook.com/northcarolinafurnitureschool

  15. #24
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    Re: So, I was thinking...

    I will call but it will have to be at night or on the weekend.



    One machine can do the work of 50 ordinary men. No machine can do the work of one extraordinary man." -Elbert Hubbard

    WWFD

  16. #25
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    Re: So, I was thinking...

    Jeremy--------The experience I had was doing the Southern Christmas Show in Charlotte, a 12 day show at the time. One of the biggest issues was the display of work. Every time I went to work my day I could hardly find my work there was so much merchandise piled on the table. Half of what I had on display was covered up with other merchandise, usually that of the person/persons on the previous shift. There just was not enough pre planning to accommodate every vendor equally. The other vendors involved were into "fabric" and knew very little about woodwork or how to promote it. (that should not be a problem with this group). Each of the vendors should have been allotted an equal amount of display space to work with without being crowded out. No one will represent the work as well as the maker!! All shows are a gamble anyway--------you never know what the outcome will be. I wish all the best for NCWW and anyone who wishes to be a part of the promotion/participation of the idea.

    Jerry
    We make a living by what we get...............We make a life by what we give

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  18. #26
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    Re: So, I was thinking...

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Davis View Post
    I will call but it will have to be at night or on the weekend.
    let's talk over the weekend, evenings are out for me. Look forward to talking.
    Stuart Kent
    Founding Director of the North Carolina Furniture School
    Robust, Rikon, Oneida, Harvey, & Easy Wood Tools Dealer
    503 Second St, Ayden, NC 28513
    252-916-8226
    http://ncfurnitureschool.com/
    https://twitter.com/@tweetncfs
    https://www.facebook.com/northcarolinafurnitureschool

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  20. #27
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    Re: So, I was thinking...

    I think this is an interesting idea and could be interested in participating. It would be great if the class could be online. FYI - the 4th world's largest sporting event in the world will take place in Tryon this fall. The Equestrian games will have participants from all over the world, and have an anticipated attendance of approximately 500,000. I'm sure having any presence at this event will not be inexpensive, but think of the opportunity.
    Cathy Skipper




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  22. #28
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    Re: So, I was thinking...

    I am interested. One area of concern would be credit card sales. Doing several craft show a every year I have noticed a growing demand to process credit card transactions. Currently they make up roughly 1/3 and that number increases every year.
    Maker of fine saw dust
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    "Ability is what you are capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines how well you do it."
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    Re: So, I was thinking...

    Quote Originally Posted by ScottM View Post
    I am interested. One area of concern would be credit card sales. Doing several craft show a every year I have noticed a growing demand to process credit card transactions. Currently they make up roughly 1/3 and that number increases every year.
    Very good point, you will lose a lot of business, especially higher end goods, if you don't take credit cards. And with any internet enabled phone nowadays it's real easy to take them. Just be sure to remember the fees you lose (roughly 3%)

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  25. #30
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    Re: So, I was thinking...

    Quote Originally Posted by tri4sale View Post
    Very good point, you will lose a lot of business, especially higher end goods, if you don't take credit cards. And with any internet enabled phone nowadays it's real easy to take them. Just be sure to remember the fees you lose (roughly 3%)
    I find that I make even more smaller sales with credit cards. The percentage charged is worth the sales to me.
    Cathy Skipper




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