I have been thinking about this alot recently, as most of you know, I do lots of shows, but I am becoming increasingly aware that lots of peeps are tempted to do shows and I really worry about how much money people are making or loosing. Its actually not as straighforward as you think to calculate whether you made a profit at a show, I think that lots of people see you taking money and think that you make a killing......this is soooo not true, and after the weekend of doing a very expensive show, taking thousands of pounds and calculating that I made a loss, I was annoyed, seriously annoyed because other people made bigger losses, this it's not OK. NOT OK that shows cost alot of money and then you are not guarenteed to make that money back, ofcourse you get new customers, but if you break even and do that then its not so bad, if you consistently loose money, then you could be spending it else where on something more effective.
So I thought I would write about it, I am going to to do a little spread sheet for vendors, where they can plug some numbers into, and it'll help them cost a show out, I have a day on wed to do it, so I'll share the link here so people can download a copy and run some figures through it...seriously if you do shows have a go, you might be really shocked at how much money you might not be making.
I know that maybe some people may not really understand why I would do this, but actually, there is a real community of vendors who do shows together, some of us only know eachother by seeing eachother at shows, but the shabby organisations of some shows and taking peoples money is starting to really annoy me.
When I twittered about this earlier some people were asking me if it was that it was organisers who were amatuers that was the problem, and actually its not, its actually the bigger shows which are the problem, when a stand costs a few hundred quid, you are not taking a massive risk, but when it costs you 500 or even a 1000 then you are. If I spend that much money on a stand I want to know that there is going to be the footfall I am paying for, and that the advertising has been made to get people there. And its not an excuse for the organiser to say they make no money out of it. We are here running businesses.
Someone said to me recently 'my stand cost 500, accomodation cost 200, I don't have travel costs and I took 800 quid, so I made 100 quid profit'. I had to restrain my self for not shouting because they probably made more like a loss of about 400 at least.
One thing that vendors sometimes forget to take into account is the cost of the product they are selling, how much did the materials cost? how long did it take to make? How much wages do you pay yourself per hour, and then add on NI and tax. Not to mention a squillion other things you have to take into account. So, I am going to do the spread sheet in the next few days and get peeps to have a go, but first of all, I know there are quite a few people who are doing this excercise with me, please go and work out how much profit you make on your product, once you have this information it will help you loads, sometimes its easier to figure out how much you make on a kilo, or a batch of items instead of 1, even time yourself over the next few days, its such a good excercise.
And you must make sure that you take wages as a cost before profit, don't not exclude wages.
OK, thats a start for now xx