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Outside Lands 2022 Debrief

*OSL=Outside Lands. WCC=West Coast Craft

**NOTE: all numbers are based on POS transactions only and exclude venmo and cash sales. POS transactions were 86.6% of OSL sales.

About Vending Outside Lands:

Cost: $3,000

What you get: a covered 8x8 booth space, a box in a shipping container that is locked every night, 3 working passes to the festival daily, and free parking for the weekend. There was no electricity or outlets but we did get access to wifi.

Location: San Francisco, CA. Tent is located on the polo fields between the main stage and the rest of the festival grounds.

How much do you think your booth placement changed things? (@janeli.co)
  • My product was safer on the inside and we didn’t get blasted by the sun like we did last year (although we did sort of bake instead), but I definitely think I would have done better where I was last year. My booth has a LOT going on in the way of color and sparkle and is meant to be eye-catching. Having me on the outside corner last year brought a lot of people to my booth that weren’t already planning on going to the WCC tent (it caught their attention as they were walking from one stage to the main stage)

People immediately reacted with more interest when we hung shirts from my backdrop so they could see it without having to care enough to look through the clothing rack. I do think that having to *ask* to see a size instead of just being able to do that on their own and touch the material and such (like they would be able to do on their own with a clothing rack)

Prepping Inventory

Each event is going to be different and it is always so hard to pack inventory. I tried using numbers from previous events and adding a little cushion when packing this time. I was able to go home at the end of each day and bring back more inventory as needed. 

  • Brought 10 each of stickers which was NOT enough. I brought a ton more the second and third day. I used to bring a stack about 1.5 inches tall of each sticker and that is way too much.
  • Earrings - I brought 10-15 of each and that was more than enough.
  • Enamel Pins - I brought 10-15 each and had to restock the second day
  • Clothing - I was out of stock of most sizes of a few designs so I wasn’t going to really push clothing. This definitely impacted my sales proportions.
  • Shirt sizing recommendations according to the internet (which I foolishly did not use to pull sizes)
    • S = 10 %
    • M = 23 %
    • L = 31 %
    • XL = 23 %
    • 2XL = 9 %
    • 3XL = %

Follower gains or more previous clients finding you? (@tonalli_)

  • I brought a little over 2,000 of my business card stickers to hand out to people and we ran out about halfway through the third and final day. I also go through the event hashtags afterwards and like photos from people who look like they would have shopped with me in case they DID and lost the card and go “oh yeah I liked that shop, I’ll follow them”…that’s what happens in my head anyways.
  • How many followers did I gain? 150…
  • The takeaway? Make people follow you on the spot! Have a QR code they can scan to be taken right to your IG.

What assumptions did you make that were right/wrong? (@galaxybraindesign)

  • Assumed stickers would be comparable with other events - WAY higher volume for festivals
  • Assumed people would react better to seeing all of the croc charms laid out in the ring display boards - just confused them. Returned back to divided containers and was way better 
  • Assumed that pricing things low would lead to more sales and thus higher revenue overall - this was wrong! At music festivals especially, people are there to SPEND. Give them what they want. Your prices need to adequately reflect the amount of work these events require. Also, lower prices can sometimes make products feel cheaper to customers.
  • Assumed it would be easier to just bring in added stock as needed daily - NOPE. Picking and packing up inventory when you get home at midnight every night.
  • Assumed that people wouldn’t want to carry around prints so I didn’t bring them - correct! The best selling items were small ones that could be used immediately or easily tucked away.

Things I’m changing before my next festival:

  • Get open-back tablecloths for easy access to inventory
  • Organize things like cash and chargeable devices in pouches that you can just pull at the end of the night to take with you
  • Less packaging on things like necklaces
  • Keep clothing organized by SIZE rather than design and keep each size in a different (LABELED) bin
  • Create more instagrammable parts of your display! See below for the two things that were photographed the most

For more craft show tips, visit my "How To: Craft Shows" blog post.

You can also learn about my experience vending at Firefly Music Festival HERE

If any of this has been helpful to you, please consider leaving me a tip so that I can continue to provide these resources FOR FREE and never gatekeep!

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