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Feeling pretty down today

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cmzaha

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I am sure most of you remember the problems in my main market. Well the new last night is our owner is losing the market to a rotten company called Raw Inspirations. We still have a slim chance the council will go against the recommendations of the City Manager but very slim. The snake of a City Manager whom was all for our owner taking over the market at the end of last year has now turned against him. I am really thinking money was given. Not even sure if I can find another viable market so I might be out of business :cry:

Still saying my prayers but they seem useless these days. My other 3 markets are less than useless, just an exercise in loading and unloading...So I am very dis-heartened and sad today. Sadly my sales were finally coming back to what they were 2 yrs ago.
 

DeeAnna

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Oh, Carolyn, I'm bummed to hear this. Due to a recent decision by my biggest customer to drop my company as a vendor, I think I can appreciate how you are feeling right now. You have my sympathy....
 

TeresaT

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I am so sorry for both of you. (We need a "dang! that sucks" button on here.) I hope things turn around for you both and something better will happen. I'm a firm believer in what doesn't kill you makes you stronger and the whole "silver lining in every cloud" philosophy. (Yes, you can tell me to go shove it!) Sometimes, you have to wait a long time for it, but it does happen. (Not very helpful, I know. I'm sorry. But, hang in there. If you give up, you'll never know what great things could be around the next bend.)
 

Soapmaker145

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Not what I wanted to see:(. I'm so sorry to read your post. I've kept you in my prayers hoping the situation resolves in your favor and that your market is saved. Could you possibly talk to other vendors and together get a lawyer to advise you on how to approach your city council? There might be some laws or regulations that might work in your favor.

You may feel overwhelmed right now and think your business is over. It doesn't help to stay in that frame of mind. You need to think of a different approach (es) to reach customers. You might want to look into selling through some specialty shops or through local stores that target the right customers. Our Wholefoods sells handmade soaps and once a year holds a fair where local artisans showcase their products. Maybe you have some local B&B/ spas/beauty salons in the area that you can contact. I don't know much about selling soaps. I'm just trying to get you thinking in a different direction. Start by making a list of people/businesses to contact. Look at local universities. They offer business seminars/connections to help people with marketing.

Two years ago, I thought that I was going to lose the business that I've spent over a decade building. I had been fighting one business person for years who repeatedly did the opposite of what the business needed. I didn't realize at the time that he was trying to protect himself. There was no way to go through him. After spending a lot of time depressed and frustrated, I figured out that I needed to zigzag around him to save my work. It all started with forgetting about my feelings and thinking logically about what needed to be done. Easier said than done but it gets easier the longer you think about how to do it.

The situation in this market has been unstable for a long time. Start looking for other opportunities to sell your products. You're strong and you're a fighter. Get your feelings out of the way. You can get depressed after your business is back on track if you feel the need to mourn the old market.
 

navigator9

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Oh Carolyn, my heart goes out to you. Your one market where sales were really strong...that hurts. I know how much work it is, and when you work that hard, it should pay off. I really hope things work out for you.
 

Dahila

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I am so sorry Carolyn, if this is any consolation for you, my table price went 100% up and my sales are down to nothing, I do not sell enough to cover the cost of table.. thinking about quitting
 

doriettefarm

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Dang Carolyn, I'm so sorry to hear your news. Have you thought about online sales instead of markets? If I was selling that's probably what I'd try to do . . . no booth fees, crappy weather, loading/unloading/reloading products. You need to be pretty savvy with social media so your goodies will get seen by others but at least you won't have to deal with crappy market managers.
 

galaxyMLP

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Carolyn, I'm so sorry. I think about your market every so often and hope that things are always resolved for your best interest. I hope that slim chance comes true!

Dee Anna, that must be so hard. I imagine you relied on that regular customer.

To both, I hope that things do get better!
 

cmzaha

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Thankyou everyone. We have had a website since 2010 and my daughter used to make a living from it, but times have changed and she is just burnt out of the constant battle to generate orders. The last 2 years sales dropped 50%. I have no desire to wholesale, I like my markets and enjoy the friends I have made. It just sucks when this is the only real good market around. I am still having faith some prayers will help. Will know Tuesday

DeeAnna I am sorry to hear you lost your biggest customer. It makes it very hard.

Dahila, I know what you mean about booth prices. This company that is probably going to take over charges $75 plus $15 for electricity per market. Some market nights it is tough to make $100. Of course some nights like last night are great but there is just not enough of those nights.
 

shunt2011

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Carolyn, I'm so sorry to hear this. Shows and markets are just getting too hard. Between too many B & B and cost. Hoe things turn around for you.
 

DeeAnna

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A guy I used to work with often said "the only thing that doesn't change ... is change" and he's right. I knew my big customer wasn't going to be around forever, but I didn't know when they'd go.

A small business like mine, and perhaps like Carolyn's, is a balancing act based on most things going well most of the time and not too many things going wrong at any one time. A little change is okay, but it can be tough to recover from a big change no matter how hard a person plans ahead and no matter how good at business the person may be.

So I can really appreciate Carolyn's problem. :(
 

dibbles

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I am sorry to hear that Carolyn and DeeAnna. Markets are hard work even if you enjoy doing them. And losing a big customer hurts. Hang in there guys.
 

cmzaha

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Carolyn, I'm so sorry to hear this. Shows and markets are just getting too hard. Between too many B & B and cost. Hoe things turn around for you.
You are quite correct. I have 3 small one's that I am lucky if I leave with $50 at the end of the night. As I mentioned they are an exercise in load, unload, setup and teardown. These are new markets that I hope will eventually take off.

A guy I used to work with often said "the only thing that doesn't change ... is change" and he's right. I knew my big customer wasn't going to be around forever, but I didn't know when they'd go.

A small business like mine, and perhaps like Carolyn's, is a balancing act based on most things going well most of the time and not too many things going wrong at any one time. A little change is okay, but it can be tough to recover from a big change no matter how hard a person plans ahead and no matter how good at business the person may be.

So I can really appreciate Carolyn's problem. :(
The fella you worked with was very savvy. We had a manufacturing company that made us a great living, allowed, travel, a sportfisher, motorcycles etc, but we also had a bad partner and knew it would end someday. That someday came sooner than expected and ensued a 2 yr legal battle. He wanted to pay us a measly little amount on a buy-off. Hubby was going to do it and I threatened divorce if he signed the papers. I found a lawyer, built a case and 2 yrs later we have over 10x's what was originally offered plus he ended up with 300k in attorney fees and my high end attorney cost me 25k. We did not have to call or correspond with our attorney every time we turned around. Unfortunately we tried to help out my daughter and SIL when the economic crash hit. Enough said...That was a change I was not ready for and it put us in the position I am in today. Retired, old truck, no boat, Harleys in the garage, but no road trips as we planned. Still trying to help support the kids since SIL is out of work more than working since last Dec. and daughter's health is not getting better. My markets were buying all my groceries
 

nsmar4211

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Sorry to hear the troubles!!!

Do you guys have any small gift shops around that might be interested? Or "off the wall" type shops? Or any kind of downtown?
 

TBandCW

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Carolyn, that really sucks!:( I can tell you what we're doing these days. Last summer we dropped all the farmers markets that had gone down the tubes due to a horrible market manager. The markets started out great two yrs ago, and this was their business, but got lazy and it all went downhill. Now he can't get anyone to do his markets. (karma in action) We got into a few good markets, so that is all fine but we are now going in the direction of weekend street fairs and larger venues. The fees are pretty steep ($300-$400), but since there are tons of people at these events it is well worth it. Long days and we are exhausted (both in our upper 50's) but the $$$$ comes with it. This last weekend we were the only candle and bath vendor!
 

doriettefarm

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There's a soaper in my area that stocks products in the Harley-Davidson shops, several spas and even the art museum (in addition to her own storefront). She seems to do pretty well but I still see her attending lots of different markets & festivals. Plus every 6 months or so she does a spot on the local morning show and gets free advertising for her goodies.
 

cmzaha

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Carolyn, that really sucks!:( I can tell you what we're doing these days. Last summer we dropped all the farmers markets that had gone down the tubes due to a horrible market manager. The markets started out great two yrs ago, and this was their business, but got lazy and it all went downhill. Now he can't get anyone to do his markets. (karma in action) We got into a few good markets, so that is all fine but we are now going in the direction of weekend street fairs and larger venues. The fees are pretty steep ($300-$400), but since there are tons of people at these events it is well worth it. Long days and we are exhausted (both in our upper 50's) but the $$$$ comes with it. This last weekend we were the only candle and bath vendor!
I simply cannot afford the larger and even those do not do well here anymore. Last year the B&B people that attended the LA County Fair took a financial "bath". I had considered a holiday craft fair at the Anheim Convention center and was so glad I had passed. If I remember correctly it was around $700 for 2 or 3 days, and was a huge loss for most of the vendors. They just do not seem to work here anymore. Our manager is a pretty good manager although he still has some things to learn.

There's a soaper in my area that stocks products in the Harley-Davidson shops, several spas and even the art museum (in addition to her own storefront). She seems to do pretty well but I still see her attending lots of different markets & festivals. Plus every 6 months or so she does a spot on the local morning show and gets free advertising for her goodies.
Just curious is her labeling under the Harley Trademark? Our Harley shops really stock nothing, but 1 brand of clothing that is not under their logo
 
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