We’ve all been there: we’re at the Con or the show or some event and for whatever reason things are just going slow. Perhaps we’ve talked to a number of people, maybe not. However, we just aren’t making the sales numbers we want.
When that happens, my advice is: Stay Positive!
It happens. Every show or event has ebbs and flows. People start the day looking around, perhaps they are waiting to make their purchases because they don’t want to carry things all day. Perhaps the bulk of the crowd is hearing an excellent panel and so the floor is nearly empty. You see that group you know will be interested, but something else catches their attention just before they reach your table and now they are heading the other way. You have something to say and you know people will want to hear it, if only they will stop and listen!
The key is to not let it bother you. Don’t take it personally. Doing that can be hard; sometimes very hard. You’re putting in a lot of time and energy and it is natural to want everything to go well the whole time. But I want to warn you that the last thing you want to do is broadcast a negative vibe. Once that happens, you will just compound your problem. People come to the shows to have fun. They want to interact with fun and exciting people. They do not want to stand and hear sales pitches from unhappy artists and creators.
This year I had a table at Wizard World’s Chicago Comic Con. I enjoyed the Con, met a lot of great people, and made several very good contacts. (I also bought stuff.) On Saturday there were over 100k people who attended.
I started doing comic conventions this year with Planet Comicon in Kansas City, which set attendance records for Bartle Hall this year. That was also an excellent show and I definitely intend to do Planet again in 2015.
While fantasy novels are not exactly an exact plugin for a comic book convention, there is a lot of overlapping interests and I will likely also do another Wizard World show next year as well.
From these cons and other related events, I did want to mention one item I’ve been noticing: I am seeing more and more women attending. And not just as someone who is there because of someone else. In fact, I would say that I saw more women in the Artist Alley section of Chicago’s Comic Con than I saw men. Granted, that is not a scientific polling by any stretch of the imagination, but I saw ladies across all age spectrums from young to … more senior. I saw people of numerous backgrounds and interests, but one thing the huge majority had in common was their personal interest in being there. They were buying art, comics, books, and merchandise of all types. These attendees are really into the shows and artists and books. They enjoyed being there!