I love the Q and A portions of the blog, cause I can not blindly try and figure out what to write about, I can actually answer specific questions.
Do you have any website recommendations for making business cards
(and/or any other business card-related advice)?
I use VistaPrint right now, and they have a fast turn around time and decent prices. The quality is not outstanding (not heavy cards, matte printing -although I'm sure they offer Glossy) They save my card as I had it before, so it's just a click for more cards, and a week turn around.
For those that want more quality card stock and the sorts, I would look into a local printing shop for that. Designing the card will take more time than finding a printer to print it, but once you have it down, it should be no problem.
Make sure you love your logo and your business name... Once it sticks, that's it.
People will remember you forever for that, logos, catch phrases, etc...
Make sure it is something you want them to remember.
business is just me--I don't have anyone to help during reptile shows
and such--so I'm a little worried about when I have to leave my table
for a short period of time (bathroom breaks, etc.). Are people usually
pretty friendly when it comes to watching someone else's table briefly?
Anything else that might be a little difficult with only one person at a
That's a tough one, as I usually have plenty of help. Make sure that who ever watches your table is someone you can trust absolutely, and someone who has knowledge of what you are selling.
Don't ask Joe Shmoe over there selling Bearded Dragons to help you out with your table while you go get a Hot Dog, as they could be the one telling a potential customer that Ball Pythons are venomous. (This is not a knock on Beardie Breeders, and I know most reptile hobbyists know about Ball Pythons, but it is a possibility just in the sense that misinformation can be easily spread under the guise of your reputation)
People are helpful, and most can and will watch over your table, but if you can, ask the show promoter to be next to someone you know and trust. THAT is the best way to make sure everything goes smoothly.
Being one person at a show is tough. If you have a crowd, it is very difficult to provide customer service to more than one person at a time. Also, watching the table to make sure there are no sticky fingers or mistreatment of the animals is a trying task. You have to be several people at once, always watching, always aware.
Smaller shows don't bode as much of a problem as larger ones, but the issues are still the same.
If you are doing your first show, I would suggest maybe splitting a table with a friend. You can get a feel for vending, you have someone to help you and someone you trust there with you, and you can better gauge how you can handle an entire weekend of "work".
Then, when the time comes, break off and do it yourself.
It's not too hard, but there is a lot to remember to plan for and a lot to do.
I will revisit the "How to Vend" topic on another day.
I hope this helps, and please, keep the questions coming!
Have a great day, my friends!