Friday, June 6, 2008

Wanted: Full-Time Employment -- Part 2 Thought of Having a Trunk Show?

The term "Trunk Show" has been around for a hundred years or more -- probably back to the haute couteur days when new fashions were being released and sales people were travelling around the world with trunks full of the newest fashions. Here's the definition: A "trunk show" is a special sale in which vendors present merchandise directly to store personnel or select customers at a retail location or another unique venue. In many cases it allows store personnel to preview and/or purchase merchandise before it is made available to the public. It is particularly desirable to have the actual designer present at the event. Most small businesses do this to get more buys.

More defined by today's standards -- it's when an artist, craftsperson or specialty salesperson comes to a store, sets up a sales environment within the shop and sells directly to the public/patrons of the shop. Usually, the "trunk show" vendor gets 60% and the shop gets 40% of the sales receipts. (that's what I ask for when I have done trunk shows.)

It's really that simple. You must know of some nice shops in your area which carry a nice line of clothing or gifts with or without a jewelry line? Get dressed up, put on some of your best jewelry creations, take a handful of business cards, a small portfolio of your jewelry photographs and hit the streets.

Usually shop owners do not like "cold calls." What I do is drop into the shop and check it out. Look around, see what is on the racks and shelves -- what sort of jewelry is already being sold. Scope it out!

Once you feel this is a shop that might be right. Walk up to the salesperson and introduce yourself. Say that you'd like to make an appointment with the manager or buyer about hosting a trunk show in their shop. (give them your business card as you are introducing yourself and SMILE!) This way you are not putting anyone on the spot and it's not a cold call.

They are probably going to be curious about what you sell and very well might want to talk with you right then and there if someone in authority to buy is available. That's why you should always go prepared to show and tell. If they would like to see you come back, they'll tell you.

If you are lucky enough to be seen right on the spot -- you've got your foot in the Proverbial door. Congratulations! Don't say you can't do this: YOU CAN DO THIS!

Sometimes people have no clue what a "Trunk Show" is. Explain you'd like to come in, take a small corner in their shop and spend an afternoon showing and selling your jewelry. You'll schmooze with the customers, help them try on jewelry, and sell as much as you can for them: the shop. In return they get 40% of the proceeds without having to buy merchandise up front, stock it, tag it, or anything -- it's effortless for them and they make out like bandits (so do you, but don't tell them that!) Plus if it's a clothing shop, they may make a clothing sale after someone has bought a beautiful necklace or pair of earrings. Or vice-versa.

MORE TO COME......I'll continue this thread more. Please write in with tips, hints, suggestions or things you've found to help your business grow. I know everyone can use help in this area and we'd love to hear from you, including me! Write me at:

Quickie Earrings for Quickie Wholesale Merchandise: Here's another pair of earrings that are a breeze to make. I wholesale a lot of this design as well. I use 8mm Swarovski crystals in a rainbow of colors. My Jolie Beadcaps, 2" headpins, baby brass beads and my hoop earwires. I also make these with 8mm colored freshwater pearls -- they sell equally as well. They are fast to make and appeal to the full spectrum of shoppers. Keep thinking about what sorts of quick inventory/low cost wholesale items you can work into your line so you can generate income with minimum wear on your time and resources (money!)

On the Home Front: My Fridge-Freezer broke down yesterday! Yep...I've got sister countdown in motion....she arrives today at 7:00 pm. I've got a dinner party for 8 on Sunday afternoon, a freezer full of brisket, chicken, fish, burger, you name it, and the Fridge-Freezer goes Ka-Ploooee on me! Water everywhere, drip, drip, dripping on my kitchen floor....meat defrosting in my freezer.

Last night I was cooking said raw, now-thawed-out chicken, burger, fish, etc., on the barbee while Randy was seal-a-meal'ing it as fast as he could while the Appliance Repair-God was fixing my fridge.

It could only happen to me, right??? This is just what I needed the night before company coming. Well, ok, let's look at it this way: I could have left for vacation and come home to said refridgerator-freezer having done its thing while I was gone, right?? Now, that would have been a nightmare....aaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!!!!!!!!! So, if it had to die, I'm glad I was home to get the paddles on it and get its heart back ticking.

Now, at least everything is already cooked and all I need to do for the next three weeks is heat and serve. Yahoo!

Ya all have a great weekend. Remember......Pay it Forward. -- Jill

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