Getting out into the local community and meeting potential hirers is one of the best ways to promote your party kit. Whether it’s a parent and baby event, a summer fete or a zero waste market, having a stall is a great way for people to see what’s actually in a party kit and better understand the benefits of the concept.
Here’s our guide to promoting your party kit at an event:
So you’d like to have a stall but how do you find an event?
Join local parenting, zero waste and small businesses groups on Facebook. This is one of the best ways to find out about events being planned. Try connecting with local school PTA groups as not only will this generally help to promote the party kit concept but may lead to an invite to join their summer fete or Christmas fayre. Keep an eye out in the local paper or community group notice boards for upcoming events which may have an audience who would be interested in your party kit.
Once you’ve found an event which may be suitable contact to ask about a stall. If your party kit is free to hire or donates income to charities or local causes you may find that event organisers are willing to give you space for free so it’s definitely worth asking.
If there is a fee to have a stall at the event or you are approached to have a stall, find out first the expected audience size and demographics. Check this will be worth your while and fits with the target audience of your party kit before investing time and any money into setting up a stall.
Before committing, ensure you haven’t already taken a booking for your party kit for the day of the event, or at least have enough party kit equipment available to make up a display.
Some event organisers will ask for proof of public liability when booking a stall. If you don’t have this for your party kit (depending on your set up it may not be a legal requirement) talk to them first.
Things to ask the Event Organiser
Confirm with the event organiser what will be provided for you at the event. If there is a table provided, check what size this will be and ensure you can fit your kit equipment and the rest of your planned display in the space available. It is a good idea to take a large tablecloth with you, making it even more important to check the size first. If you need power or wi-fi check about access to these prior to the event.
Find out what promotion the event organisers plan to do. Ensure they have the details of any social media accounts you use to promote your party kit, such as a Facebook business page or Instagram account, and have a clear description of what your party kit offers. This will help the message about your party kit reach even more people than just those attending the event.
If the event is to be held outside, ask about any wet weather contingencies. If there’s no option to get under cover consider borrowing a pop-up gazebo or tent with removable sides.
Preparing for the Event
Planning the Stall setup
Consider what you plan to display on your stall. So in addition to the equipment from your party kit, how can you explain the benefit of the concept visually?
Some kit owners have used wooden play food to give an idea of what the kit equipment looks like in action. It’s a great way to show off the colours and the range of items included in the kit.
To add height to the stall without investing in banners, attach a pole either end of the table and string across bunting and garlands from your kit. I used some copper pipes from the hardware store with a selection of clamps and ribbon to attach the pipes to the table edge and legs. This is fairly flexible which means it isn’t too critical on the design of the table, if being provided unseen.
Pack an emergency kit of things you might need to set up your stall, such as safety pins, tape, scissors, a pen and paper.
Posters and Flyers
For posters and the price list, one of the easiest ways to display these is either using a noticeboard or using photo frames which can be stood up.
Templates to create your own poster and price list are available in the members area, or here are some generic print-at-home Party Kit Network posters:
To reduce the need for flyers add a QR code to your posters. To generate a free QR code to download and add to your poster design try https://www.flowcode.com/ This could direct people to your website, Facebook page, or kit listing page on the Party Kit Network website.
Ensure when printed the QR code is at least 1 inch high so that it's scannable. Most smart phones will scan a QR code through the glass of a photo frame.
If you do want to provide flyers for stall visitors to take away, try to get these printed on recycled paper. Or if you’re feeling creative and want to really embrace reuse, try printing on the inside of cereal packets and other paperboard packaging. Another option is to get a rubber stamp made with your kit’s contact information and creating flyers from scrap paper.
Encouraging Visitors to Your Stall
Consider what might entice your target audience to stop and spend time at your stall. If your kit is aimed predominantly at parties for children, a bubble machine can be a good way to engage the smaller ones, encouraging parents to stop and giving you an opportunity to talk to them. Running an activity, such as a zero waste craft or drawing activity is another way to engage people into staying a bit longer at your stall.
You may want to display more than just your party kit, such as other ideas for reducing waste at parties. This might be plastic-free party bag ideas, eco-friendly gift wrap examples or a set of reusable pass-the-parcel bags.
Consider how you will take any bookings which might come from talking to people at the event. Ensure you have access to your calendar (or however you manage kit availability) and have a way to capture the required information from bookers while at the event.
Taking a Buddy
Ideally take someone with you who can help both with the stall set up and talking to visitors. Often there isn’t more than an hour to set up a stall before visitors start to arrive and it can take a while to get everything into place. Preferably take someone who is naturally chatty and well briefed on the party kit concept, especially if chatting to people is outside of your comfort zone.
If talking striking up conversations with strangers fills you with fear, practicing what you're going to say ahead of the event will really help. Think about what’s the easiest way to explain the concept. Also think about which elements of a party kit will the event’s audience be most interested in? Is it reducing waste? The convenience of having everything in one box?
Promote via Social Media
Leading up to the event, post the details of the event as often as possible on your social media accounts. Make sure you tag the event location in any posts and include details of the event date and time. If you tag the Party Kit Network’s social media accounts (@partykitnetwork) we will try to share as well.
Even if you don't run any social media accounts for your party kit, it will be worth finding local groups you can post about the event in (although do check the group's rules as some only allow promotional posts on certain days, etc).
Prepare the text for any social media posts you want to share on the actual day. This will mean that once your stall is set up you just have to take some photos and then can quickly post before getting back to talking to actual visitors at the event. It can be really busy so taking time away from your stall to write an eloquent social media post is often not practical.
At the Event
Try to remember to take some photos of your stand so you can share them later on your social media accounts or use as future examples to event organisers.
Where possible, get out and talk to the other stall holders. It’s a really great way to connect with others locally who you may be able to collaborate with in the future. For example local zero waste businesses, party entertainers or cake bakers are often worth seeking out.
After the Event
Even after the event it is worth sharing photos from the stall, capturing the essence of the day. It’s a great way to keep the conversation going and get all the value you can from the event.
Party Kit Stall Checklist
Things to prepare before the event
▢ Plan the set up of your stall
▢ Print posters and/or flyers
▢ Share the event details via social media
▢ Organise a buddy
▢ Practise what you're going to say to stall visitors
▢ Plan how you will take any bookings
Things to take to the event
▢ Folding table and chair(s), if not provided
▢ Tablecloth big enough to cover the stall table
▢ Your party kit
▢ Posters promoting your kit
▢ Printed price / equipment list
▢ Safety pins
▢ Blu tack
▢ String or twine
▢ Pen and paper
▢ Snacks and water bottle (reusable of course!)
Photos copyright Party Kit Network CIC and Frome Eco Party Kit