Selling at Craft Fairs can add up to a lot of expense really quick! Cutting corners is one area where we have to be really careful when it comes to products and displays, because that can mean a sacrifice in quality as well. One area where you can save some big dough though is in promotion. Here are some low-cost and free craft show marketing tips and techniques you can use to boost business.
These are free to create. Use them to create and share a page for your business. You can also suggest to craft fair organizers that they create a custom page for their event and allow all the vendors to share it. It is very easy to do – and best of all it’s completely free.
Craigslist Event Listings
Craigslist allows people to post free event listings. Go to your local Craigslist and post ads for your area or ask the show promoter to do so or allow you to. You can also advertise your items for sale on Craigslist and say something like “Want to see before you buy? Come visit us at the XYZ festival on (date) at (location)”
Community Bulletin Boards
Most communities have areas where there are free bulletin boards you can post to. Create fliers for your business and for any events you will be attending and post them locally. You can also suggest these locations to show promoters. They will be grateful for extra advertising for free.
Pinterest and Other Visual Social Media
A picture is worth a thousand words. Take high quality images of your items and watermark them (to prevent theft) and post them on your Pinterest boards or on group Pinterest boards. Remember it is important to never spam, and do not only self-promote – share other items too and create great boards. You can get ideas from my own Pinterest boards 🙂 Don’t know Photoshop? No problem there are free alternatives out there like PicMonkey. Give that a try.
Are you savvy with video and love to teach? Consider doing some quick YouTube video tutorials and placing them on YouTube. This is a great way to get discovered and you can also use these videos to link back to your website/blog and vice versa.
You Need a Website
Spring for a custom domain for your business and create a website. There are many programs out there that will allow you to build a basic website free/cheap with no real programming skills. You can also get a custom domain to point to a free Blogger blog if you are so inclined. A web presence and custom domain is key for a professional appearance and for creating name recognition and drawing repeat business. Need help naming your business or finding a catchy domain? Check out my post on free business name generators for help.
Business Cards and Magnets
A low-cost investment that is completely worthwhile. Business cards are imperative, but how to not get lost in the sea of business cards? Get creative. Use different shapes, a great font or cool paper/stock to make them memorable. You can also print on fridge magnets, a little more expensive yes, but also functional so people are more inclined to keep them and not simply toss them aside and never see them again.
You can learn more tips on great business cards and how to create them inexpensively. Learn more on this post: Business Card Ideas for Crafters and Artists
Think outside the box. Have you ever been to a restaurant or a local event and seen programs, menus etc with local ads placed on them? Look for ways to advertise locally. My son’s high school does a musical every year and many local businesses advertise in that program. It’s not overused and gets you a very targeted audience.
Also, look for local publications that have inexpensive ads. Newspapers are often pricey, but not always. In our community; we have something called “the shopper” that gets delivered to thousands of local mailboxes for free each week. Their ad rates are extremely reasonable, and again – very targeted to a local market. This is ideal if you create crafts or art with a local flare.
Magnetic Car Decal
This one time investment makes your vehicle a rolling advertisement for your business wherever you go. Over time it can lead to name recognition in your local area and may piqué people’s interest enough to call or visit your website if it’s cleverly done. Take the time to create something eye-catching and memorable.
There are definitely a lot of ideas for free and inexpensive ways to market yourself. In a sea of information it’s important to really take time to consider how to make yourself stand out. Hopefully these ideas have sparked some inspiration. Good Luck!
Did I miss anything? Feel free to share your ideas in the comments 🙂