Trade shows and blind faith.
In the fashion industry on the side of the fence I am on, trade shows are a typical traditional part of the business. We have blind faith as we pay the large fees to set up our little 10 x 10 booth and our sales samples and then we hope that the buyers will show up. Sometimes we can send out postcards or flyers about the trade show, but mostly you just hope the right buyers are at the show and stop by your booth. Its really like a game of rolling the dice for a young brand. Sometimes you are lucky if you break even, its partly because as a new brand, buyers are not familiar with your brand, they have to see you a few times to try you out, or place a small order and see how it does for their shop and then come back later and place a larger order. Its a game of dice. You don't always break even at a trade show, but you just have to have blind faith as you show up for another one. There are other ways to reach customers, you can cold call buyers and try to make appointments or you can get up at 4am and go to Henri Bendels open call that they have a few time per year....there are a lot of different ways these days to get sales, you can have an online store or place your own goods in other online stores. None of these guarantee success. Its much more difficult that it was even ten years ago, when the path to sales was very traditional. For me its a bit of blind faith for each trade show I go to. I just hope if I build it well, they will come. Isn't that how the saying goes? If you make it - they will come? Hmmmm. we will see.