By the time you read this you’re probably scheduling your flights for the start of another trade show season. Heck, you might already be at the airport!!
Well… hope not, because we have our fair checklist list ready for you.
There’s a lot to it when preparing a fashion trade show. It’s definitely not only about carrying your collection in a suitcase. At HUUB we have an end-to-end and 360º approach to every aspect of the business and it’s this holistic and bird view we want to grant when solving our brands logistic challenges.
So maybe it’s not a surprise when I tell you that in order to succeed and sell more in the trade shows it all starts… with your suppliers! Ready? Here are HUUB’s 10 tips to be a perfect 10 in your next trade show (yeah, that’s what you saw on the title, we don’t do clickbait here)
As aforementioned our journey starts with suppliers management:
1 – Plan your selling expectations for the trade show
Don’t be afraid of selling and expecting growth. Isn’t that what you want after all? If you’re reading this you probably already took a look at your brand’s new collection. You might even be the owner and creator of the collection yourself so you know what you’ve designed, you know that the story you’re telling through your designs is beautiful and meaningful and therefore able to convince buyers worldwide. If you don’t trust yourself who will right? Still, keep in mind that this emotional bond can’t be the only card in the table. Save mind space for a rational approach to your collection. Some pieces sell more, some patterns sell more. It’s a lot about trends and what the market wants at the moment. With these two combined you will be able to plan your sales expectations and avoid major surprises.
2 – Share sales expectations with your supplier
It’s important that the relationship and engagement with your suppliers grants this possibility. If you produce X number of pieces and your sales expectations in the trade show season point out to double your sales and therefore your production (don’t worry: we know it’s not this simplistic) why shouldn’t you notify your suppliers from the start? You know they’re not producing to your brand only so sharing this expectations will definitely bring more alignment and when you place your final purchase order they can’t argue. And if they do you just say the old and simple “I told you so”.
3 – Get your samples done in advance
Yes this is a no-brainer: of course you need your samples in advance. It’s maybe our concept of “advance” that bring some new light to the tunnel. All our brands struggle with this: sometimes suppliers even send the samples directly to the trade show!! Can you imagine yourself in a fair without knowing what and how your pieces will arrive? No possibility of quality control whatsoever? And I’m not even talking about these urgent matters, the baseline of this topic is at a different level. Remember we told you how planning your sales expectations is important? Well, if you’re the creator or have this huge sensibility to picture the whole thing from the drawings you could be good to go. However you know that’s not the case with everyone right? Having your samples in advance allows you to get a touch and feel approach to your collection and you can reach out to important stakeholders like your agents and top clients to see their first reaction (it’s a great PR move also, but we’ll get there) or to you’re closest friends and family that will bring honesty to the equation, or even random potential customers. All these referrals will serve as the first market and commercial test of your newest collection even before the trade show starts!
Do this planning tips make sense to you? Great! Now we need to actually get your collection inside the trade shows. We’ll now talk about fair logistics and shipping.