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Markets 101: The Basics

It is time to think about markets, you know the flea markets, the farmer’s markets, market events that are small and the events that are big. In this blog post, I will focus on 5 key take-away on how to evaluate your market strategy. From figuring out the best market for you to sizing your booth and everything in-between.


4 Tips on How to Rock Your Market Seasons:


  • Do your research on local markets:

    1. First find local shows and markets and read the reviews. Here are some ways to find markets:

      1. Facebook Events- Facebook is a great resource when it comes to finding local events, and research on how the market is marketing itself to bring in customers. The last thing you want to pay to attend is a market that lacks any structure or marketing for itself.

      2. Fairs and Festivals: Fairs and Festivals is a database that lets you search craft fair, art show, and festival listings by region. For an extra fee, they give you access to applications and contact info through their website so that you don’t have to search for it online on your own.

      3. Yelp: While Yelp is primarily used to rank brick-and-mortar businesses, there are also pages for many well-known craft fairs


  • Figure out what each market is all about: Think about what each event is going to be like and if it will be the right fit for your brand.

    1. Audience: are you a modern brand applying to a vintage flea market? Don’t be surprised when you don’t get any sales. Find the market that fits with your brand so that your audience will be there as well.

    2. Goals: Figuring out what your goals are can help you figure out what your intention for each event will be focused on. Building an audience, growing your e-mail list, wholesale clients or just straight to consumers.

    3. Timing: Think about the timing of each event carefully- will is during a specific holiday season and can you put together gift packs for that holiday

    4. Your time invested: How far away is the event? How many hours do you need in advance to set up and tear down? all of these aspects are very important to understanding if a market will be right for you. Most artisans do not even break even at events due to the time spent traveling, setting up, making the inventory, being there, tearing down and packing up.


  • Spacing and required fees: Do you need the biggest booth or will you sell the same amount with a smaller booth?

    1. We had a client at Pike Place Market say that their sales where the same whether they had a 4-foot space or a 10-foot space. That is vital to know because a 4-foot space can cost $50 while a 10-foot space could be $200. The money you save but just using the smaller space could be worth it. Not every artisan can do this, some need a bigger space as well.


  • Is it worth it to apply to the bigger shows?

    1. Are you a first-time market goer or a long-term player? Think about using smaller shows as a means to navigate the playing-field of markets. This might seem odd but sometimes just going after a few smaller events helps you refine what your in-person customers want more or, do not want at all and how you can better set up your booth for better branding.

    2. Once you are comfortable enough, you can start refinding your brand, booth and overall appearance and put your best foot forward when applying for bigger shows.


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