Couple of days ago, I was giving you some tips to help you as you go along your journey to making a living off your artwork. I still have more tips to hit you with, so let's get back into it!!
8. DOUBLE UP ON YOUR SMALLER ITEMS
Stickers, buttons, pins, and bookmarks will sell like hot cakes because they are cheap to produce and are inexpensive to the customer (usually no more than a buck! Sometimes 2 for a buck). Double your supply of these because those dollars that you get for these will add up quick. THESE SMALL ITEMS ARE THINGS YOU DO NOT WANT TO SELL OUT OF. PERIOD.
9. GIVE THAT FREE SH*T
You need to have a plethora of free items where they can just walk by and take it. People will blow by you constantly whether they are rushing to catch that cosplayer for a picture, going to an event, or just walking through. They may not buy from you the first day, but people will definitely take anything that is free. In fact, a lot will quietly walk up to your table, take the free stuff, and then scurry off without engaging you. It happens, but they will check you out later so it's all good. The two staples are flyers and business cards, but be creative! If you can make little origami figures or small prints or balloons or anything like that, DO IT! Just make sure you have your information of it somewhere (an instagram, a facebook, preferably a website).
10. DO LIKE POWERLINE'S SONG SAYS
STAND OUT!! ABOVE THE CROWD! You need to make your pressence known! Our first year, my friend brought his DJ equipment and did a live gig at our table while we sold items. We had people coming up to us every 5 minutes on the first day just to be there and dance. Many people became customers that first day. Well imagine the shock when we noticed that the following day, there were other people playing music from radios. Flash foreward to the next year and there were a couple of people who had TURNTABLES THEMSELVES. My suggestion on this is tread lightly with neutral music (no hardcore rap or loud heavy metal) and start on the lower side volume wise. You can't go wrong with techno, video game music, and definitely anime themes. Luckily, we played the right mix of things that the security even told us to turn our music up some! Other ideas to help you stand out are raffles where you give away some of your products, live acoustic show, mystery boxes...the possibility are endless!!
11. WHEN IN DOUBT, FAN BOY (OR GIRL) IT OUT
There is a debate about whether people should do fanart or not. MY ANSWER. YES! YES! and more YES! Look! It's HARD to come in as a newbie with no fanbase and then try to sell your original product. Not that it can't be done. It's just harder and you'll hurt your pockets way more. People will be more likely to drop 10 bucks on your original 6-7 hour poster of All Might vs Broli then 10 bucks on that completely new manga that no one has a clue about. The appeal of fanart is that they WANT THAT ORIGINAL ONE OF A KIND ARTWORK OF THEIR FAVORITE CHARACTERS. They could go into wal-mart and get the Avenger's poster or they can get this original sick art of The Avenger's taking on Bleach Shinigami's. So, while I will never say fill your whole stock with fanart, a couple of pieces will go a long way for your sales.
12. RELAX AND ENJOY YOURSELF
One thing people will do is get so wrapped up on sales and making their money back, they won't enjoy the actual experience. YOU'RE GONNA TAKE A HIT IN YOUR WALLET NO MATTER WHAT. It's rare for people to get out there and just sell out their whole inventory even for some of the artists who are already established as well. So just have fun above all! Make friends. Stop people just for cosplay pictures! It doesn't have to be for a sale (though it might lead to one). Also, the more fun you're having at your table, the more people want to be a part of that fun (hence why playing music works so well).
I think this is all I have for you for now! I might do a part three if I think of anything else. lol. Whather this was helpful or not, DO NOT STOP GOING FOR YOUR DREAMS! I've seen countless people give up because it didn't go so well their first outting. Especially, my people who want to do manga style art. THIS APPLIES TO EVERYONE THOUGH!! DOING POORLY DOESN'T MEAN YOU GO HOME WITH YOUR TAILS BETWEEN YOUR LEGS AND CRY YOURSELF TO SLEEP IN A FETAL POSITION. You access and restrategize for next year.
Oh! That's another tip!! Every night after the convention, I would jot down notes about the progress of the day - good or bad, things that I noticed, connections I made, anything that had an impact on the day! Then, I would take all my notes and talk to my team and go over our failures, successes and ways to do even better next time.
GOOD LUCK EVERYONE! Thanks for reading all of this and come back for more interesting blogs and read my series Endlocke that is on this site too.