Product – check, wicked display – check,
business cards – check! You’re all set to attract, obtain and keep customers at
a craft sale right? Weeeeell…we think there’s another important aspect that
many people forget about that should become part of your craft show checklist.
We know selling your product is your first choice. And if they don’t buy today
then handing out your business card is your second choice. But you’re leaving
money on the table if you don’t get either of those shoppers to...
Sign up for
Think about it: how many times do you take
business cards home, file them away in your office and bring them out to review
each month? Probably never (check out this article on how to keep your business cards out of the trash). When you hand out your business card, you’re
leaving a 2nd interaction in their hands. It’s like giving someone you
like your number; they hold all the power and all you can do is wait and hope
that they call…or that you bump into them again. If you're in a situation where
you’re meeting lots of shoppers that you like, gather their emails! You’re
ensuring a 2nd interaction with them and increasing your chances of
a future sale.
If you don’t already have a newsletter
campaign set up, don’t let that stop you from collecting emails this weekend. You’re
coming face to face with your target market and you should be taking advantage
Follow these 5 steps to start collecting
emails and creating a Newsletter Campaign:
STEP 1 – Decide on a newsletter style
You can make it whatever you like depending
on your business. You can send one out:
- as your new product lines debut
- for each craft show season, letting
shoppers know which events to find you at
- when you’re having sales or promotions
- weekly or monthly if you constantly have
something interesting to share like DIY’s, blog posts or updates
You don’t want to email people just for the
sake of emailing them (that will get the unsubscribe link clicked real fast)
but you should try to find something of value to email your subscribers about
at least once a month. Remember, out of site, out of mind, so if you don’t do
anything with that email list, you won’t see any results.
People will also want to know what they’re
signing up for so whatever you decide on, be sure to communicate that to people
(you also need to follow Canadian Laws and ensure people are aware what they’re
signing up for, more on that below). Have a quick elevator pitch you can say to
people as you’re wrapping their purchase or as they’re browsing your table.
“Would you like to sign up for my Newsletter? I send out emails once a month
with promotions and as I release new product lines.” You may even want to give
your shoppers an added incentive for signing up and let them know their email
will be entered to win _______ (fill in the blank with one of your products or
services). Just be sure they know they're signing up for both an entry and your newsletter.
STEP 2 - Sign up for a service
If you don’t already have a way to collect
emails on your website and to create and send newsletters, you’ll want to sign
up for a free service like MailChimp (they have paid options as your list grows
but you can use their service for free up to 2000 subscribers. If you hit that
amount of sign ups at your next event, you’re a rockstar!). As mentioned above,
you can get your newsletter drafted after your craft show this weekend; just
make sure you use this event to gather emails, either online or offline.
Step 3 - Gather info
The easiest way is to set up an app like MailChimp
Subscribe to gather emails using your tablet or phone. If you already use
MailChimp, you can set up MailChimp Subscribe on your tablet or phone to gather
emails on the spot and link it up to your MailChimp account when you have wifi.
This option is faster since you don’t have to go home and manually enter all
the emails, plus, you can choose the double opt-in setting on MailChimp to be
sure you’re following Canada’s Anti-Spam Laws. Once the subscriber enters their
email in your form (first opt-in), Mailchimp will then send the subscriber a
confirmation email with a link for them to click on (second opt-in).
If you don’t want to set up the app or
worry about someone walking off with your tablet or phone at a busy event then
it is perfectly fine to use pen and paper. You do still have to keep Canada’s
Anti-Spam Laws in mind so be sure to have a read over the next step and follow
the guidelines for providing a proper sign up form and sending a confirmation
email (Mailchimp has instructions for gathering emails offline and sending an
If you don’t want to add too much work into
the paper form with newsletter details, dates, checkboxes, etc., you can simply
collect names and emails using our printable form below and then send the shopper an
email after the event to follow the proper process. The email should remind
them they signed up for your newsletter list at X event and include a link to
an online form where they can electronically enter their name and email and
then confirm their subscription through email.
It’s also handy to have a clipboard so
people don’t have to clear a space on your table to write.
Click on image to enlarge & print
Step 4 - Follow the rules
As mentioned above, keep in mind that Canada
has Anti-Spam laws and if someone complains about receiving an email from you,
they perceive as spam, you may need to provide proof of a valid CASL (Canada
Anti Spam Law) compliant opt-in (MailChimp gathers and stores the proper
information for you when you follow their double opt-in process). Find more on
those laws here but the
basics you need to follow are:
- Make it clear on your form that people are
signing up to receive emails from you and that your company is going to be the
- Your form must not trick people to join
your mailing list by having a pre-checked checkbox that opts them in. Keep this
in mind for offline as well: just because someone entered their name and email
to win a prize, doesn’t mean you can start sending them promotional emails. If people
are entered to win a prize when they sign up for your newsletter, it needs to
be clear on the form that they’re also signing up for your monthly newsletter.
- A double opt-in is required which means
once you gather those email addresses, you must send a confirmation email with
a confirmation link the new subscriber must click in order for you to put them
on your list.
- Your email gathering system must capture
the date/time and IP address of the new subscriber
(MailChimp will collect this data for you when you use their double opt-in
- If the subscriber unsubscribes (by
emailing you or clicking a link) you may no longer email them.
Step 5 - Take action
You’ve likely heard before that it’s much
cheaper to market and sell to an existing customer than it is to acquire a new
one, so you need to make use of that list! These are people who have either
already bought from you or liked your products enough to agree to receive
messages from you. After the show, start working on your newsletter and be sure
you’re sending them something of value. You know how many emails you receive in
a day and your subscribers are probably in the same boat; send them something
they’ll appreciate receiving. Have a catchy subject line that intrigues them to open
your email and make sure it’s full of high quality photos and info about your
If you're looking for more ideas like this that will help increase sales at a craft fair, download our e-book: MAKE MORE MONEY AT CRAFT FAIRS. It's full of valuable tips you can actually use and that will actually get you results. Everything you need to know about selling and selling out at craft fairs is in this guide so you can spend less time consuming and searching for the right info and more time creating!
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