Cake Central › Cake Forums › Cake Talk › Cake Decorating Business › how to engage 2nd customer at our table?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

how to engage 2nd customer at our table?

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Hello fellow decorators,

I have a question and this section looks like the best place to post it.

Mom and I rent a table monthly to sell goodies at one flea market, and also periodically have a table at other events. I have noticed that when a potential customer comes over -- or someone who just wants to yak -- a second person often hurries over to check us out. So our table looks busy! But when I try to get the second person's attention to serve, often he/she will walk away as soon as we make eye contact. The second person usually does not return.

Any suggestions how to engage the second person, without shooing away the first person? There are two people staffing the table: mom and me, no possibility to add more staff. I looked at some web pages that talk about trade show traffic, but they talk about handing out literature and freebies, which doesn't apply to us.

thanks in advance for your thoughts.
post #2 of 8
I've found that when you have two people working a table it sometimes helps to have one person working behind the table and the other person in front (assuming there is room in the front). The person in front is in a better position to engage casual onlookers, since the onlooker will have to walk right by them to leave the table.

If you are serving samples, the person in front can tell the person behind the table to plate the sample, and while the sample is being prepared you can give your elevator pitch.

Quote:
Quote:

but they talk about handing out literature and freebies, which doesn't apply to us.


Why doesn't this apply to you?
post #3 of 8
When only one seller is at the table, it works to turn to the second person and say "I'll help you next" and then turn back to the first person and ask "Is there anything else?"

When there are two sellers, they can each engage one customer, no?

Anyway, it's the seller's body language that signals something to the customer...maybe that there is an important conversation that they don't want to interrupt?
post #4 of 8
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jason_kraft


Quote:
Quote:

but they talk about handing out literature and freebies, which doesn't apply to us.


Why doesn't this apply to you?



Our table has items for sale, not as a rule free handouts.
post #5 of 8
Jason has made a very important point: that it doesn't matter what your product is, the rules of engagement are the same.

In my experience, it's the same whether you are selling ice cream cones or diamond rings. The way in which you address the customer affects the way that they stay and pay or run away.
post #6 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by rwarren

Quote:
Originally Posted by jason_kraft


Quote:
Quote:

but they talk about handing out literature and freebies, which doesn't apply to us.


Why doesn't this apply to you?



Our table has items for sale, not as a rule free handouts.


So the venue does not allow you to offer free samples?

If that's the case, you should still have business cards available at a minimum. A flyer you can hand out to people with info about your business and a gallery of your work would be better.

Many tips for engaging trade show traffic would absolutely be relevant to what you're tying to do.
post #7 of 8
With the scenario you described, my guess is the second person wasn't really interested or they would have stuck around and come closer when you made eye contact. They just came over to see what you had with no intention to get more information or make a purchase. I am much the same way at farmers markets, etc. I don't know why I still like to go to them since I usually don't buy anything. But I am curious to see what people are offering and to be a part of the event even as an onlooker. So I am more inclined to go to booths that have someone already there so I can see what they have but have no desire to engage the person at the booth. So for some people, there is nothing you can do to engage them.
post #8 of 8
I agree with denetteb. Sometimes the lookers take the opportunity to look without pressure when the owner is engaged.

I purposely have planned my retail store to be very laid back and to make sure customers can look all they want without feeling the obligation to buy. In markets when there are many vendors, like yours and mine, not all will be customers.

I actually set up my layout to make sure that I made a clear path through the store just so that lookers won't feel obligated to engage with me if they are passing through. But my traffic pattern lets the curious come through, possibly getting those that wouldn't have just come in, and maybe eventually get them interested in my products.

Jason has a good point. Some people don't want to talk to you and the card with the website can sell for you.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Cake Decorating Business
Cake Central › Cake Forums › Cake Talk › Cake Decorating Business › how to engage 2nd customer at our table?