Yesterday I tried something new and to say it didn't go well would be an understatement.
I signed up to run a vendor booth at the local mall to sell Jamberry. I paid to rent the table and then had to purchase display stands and black sheets. I spent hours preparing for the event and asked other vendors for their tips and tricks. I made signs, prepped for give aways, got samples ready, and practiced my set up a good half-dozen times. I felt nervous, but ready.
I spend most of my day teaching, which means getting students excited and interested in things when sometimes they don't want to be there. I've done a few Jamberry parties to varying degrees of success. I figured this vendor event would be a piece of cake!
I got to the event two hours before it was starting to set up. The table I rented was not there. I spent forty minutes trying to track one down because the coordinator was not responding. Mall security just brought me one (thank goodness) and once the coordinator showed up, my concerns were brushed off. I am not impressed.
I was also double booked for the same spot with another vendor. Her table (and chairs) were also not delivered (and she paid for them as well), so I shared. Another vendor didn't have his table. As someone with a background in event planning (student council, being an RA, being a teacher, hosting a bunch of baby showers and bridal showers, etc), I was not impressed by the logistics.
Before the event started, I was already a nervous wreck and super frustrated by the series of events. For seven hours, I stood on my feet, trying to talk to people. I applied about fifty samples. I had a raffle. I smiled and said hi to everyone who passed.
People were super rude. I sold two items, making a ten dollar profit for the entire day. I did everything right, according to all the direct sales articles I read. But, despite all my preparation, the event flopped. I failed, big time.
I'm glad I tried. I learned that supporting myself and my family on direct sales is not something I want to do because it's too much rejection and too unpredictable. I don't have a thick enough skin for this.
I'll still be doing Jamberry, but just events with friends I know and online parties. I don't think talking to strangers and putting myself out there in a vendor event is my thing. I tried, I failed, I learned something about myself. I guess I have to be okay with not being amazing at this.