Top 5 tips: For start-up festival and events traders
Updated: Jun 24, 2019
As new traders, we know that there's nothing quite like being thrown in at the deep end, and gambling your own money, to make you sit up and listen to a few tricks of the trade.
So, in the spirit of paying it forward we decided to collate our top 5 pieces of advice for anyone starting out in the exciting world of festivals and events trading:
1) Start small
Whilst Glastonbury and some of the big music festivals are every traders dream, they aren't always friendly on the purse strings, and many have established traders who've been attending their events for years. On top of that, the pitch prices at said 'biggie' festivals and events are rather high. Until you're familiar with your market and trading style it's best to aim for smaller events. This gives you a chance to practice trading in less pressured environments and work out any kinks that might crop up.
2) Stay Local
When you're just starting out it's important to keep your overheads low. Whilst the lure of the aforementioned 'biggie' festival and events can be intense, you'd be surprised how much petrol and accommodation cost, tied in with attending those events, tot up. Check out your local events in the first instance, then aim for events with a commute of no more than 3 hours to keep things manageable when you first start out.
Not something that comes naturally to us Brits, but many events organisers are open to negotiations around pitch prices. If you don't think you'll make your money back at an event, be honest. You'd be surprised how many events organisers are happy to go lower or offer a reduction for multiple event bookings.
4) Do your homework
The events and festival scene in the UK is huge and whilst many events organisers are legitimate lovelies, there are a few scammers about so beware. It can take a matter of minutes for someone to set up a fake Facebook event and take payments, but it could take a long time to get your money back. Try to book events which have been established for a few years or more and if you're unsure about an event don't hand over any cash. Do your homework online to find out how much interest there is in, what past events have been like and what fellow traders think of an event before you commit to anything.
5) Make Friends
Trading at a festival is a great opportunity to meet a range of talented individuals from all walks of life - and most traders are happy to swap products in lieu of payment too.
Getting to know other traders is a great way to expand your network and knowledge of the events industry. Plus, it's always nice to make new friends, especially ones that make loaded fries and pizza!
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