How to Start Tackling Marketing for Surtex

Marketing for Surtex: Not only focusing on your portfolio

It’s already the middle of February. Are you just focusing on your portfolio and making art all day? That’s great!! However, remember this is the time to get started in other key tasks for Surtex.

I remember we felt overwhelmed when we were getting ready for our first Surtex. It was challenging to get organized and balance everything out. We also didn’t know exactly how to tackle the marketing side of a trade show like Surtex. One thing I now know for sure, just buying a couple of ad spaces in the industry magazines and sending some promo postcards won’t cut it!

Here are some pointers to get started:

  • Start creating and cultivating genuine relationships with buyers: These take a long time, so the sooner you start the better. If you think you might exhibit one day or even if you don’t think so this is still relevant.
  • Create a board or a chart with your 10 most important ideal buyers: And strategize and organize your way into creating a relationship with them. Connect, send them emails with your art and ideas that contribute to their role, company or product.
  • Focus on Self-awareness: This is super handy because as you start building trust and you start communicating with your prospect clients you want to keep yourself real and authentic. And how can you do that? Just by knowing who you are.
  • Go to other designer shows: There are tons of other shows you can attend where you will meet prospective buyers for your designs. Research and start meeting people face to face. Start conversations with small boutiques. Sometimes store owners don’t even know there is a possibility of licensing designs. Just like we didn’t know this world existed before we knew it existed.
  • Start your booth draft yesterday: Don’t wait until you have all the collections organized you start designing your booth. There are a million little decisions about your booth that you want to start tackling now. This goes also for your portfolio book, press kits and giveaways.
  • Start creating a library of PR template pitches that can work for your brand voice: It’s useful to have these ready by the time you need to approach the media. The most stressful scenario is to have to figure out a pitch email the same day you have to send it.
  • Organize your time wisely between art making and business/marketing stuff: Make sure you set time aside for maintaining relationships, marketing promo materials, collaterals, and creating pitches. Bring structure to your creativity!

The first thing is to get organized. I use Trello to create a submission plan, because it’s easy to have it all in one place, Plus, it’s visually understandable (a gift for your right brain). Remember ORGANIZATION and BALANCE blended with your creativity can take you very very far in life and in this beautiful licensing Industry that we are all part of.

If you feel that you need to bring more structure in your daily preparation to make sure you create a great marketing campaign, try our marketing module for Surtex:

Marketing for Surtex, coaching

What is included in the module: 2 coaching sessions with accountability, 2 worksheets, one guest expert webinar and 2 tutorials.

This is what we will tackle during our time together:

  • Together we will set up a personalized marketing plan model for your trade show campaign. You will have a go-to doc with calendar references and deadlines.
  • You will get guidance and references for printers, blogs, PR, magazines, and so on. We’ll discuss and choose according to our plan and how relevant it is for your style.
  • We’ll assist you with different pitch templates and ideas to approach different platforms. Including sample texts and wording for social media posts and email communication.
  • Help with brainstorming, idea generation and guidance deciding for your Booth Giveaways and press kits. Worksheet with checklist and diagram provided.
  • Brainstorm and assessment on your promo pieces according to your budget, plan, and goals.
  • Introducing a new follow-up system to your Newsletter communications. New followup board custom built for your marketing plan.

Marketing for Surtex: marketing materials

You can also get our “Boost your Marketing Plan for Surtex” webinar anytime

We will have Mei Park as our guest expert, she is a marketing strategist guiding and supporting small and creative business owners. Watch it live or get the recording. It will be live next Monday, February 20th 1PM PT/4 PM ET.

Here is what Mei will be teaching at the webinar:

  1. Mei Pak webinar announcement: Marketing for Surtex exhibitors -DariDesignStudio.comLearn how to create your Buyer Black Book, get clear on what information you need to find, where to find it and how
  2. Discover how to outsource your BBB research affordably and easily so you can focus your time and energy on other parts of the show
  3. You should create a pitch that introduces you and your work to potential buyers and clients
  4. We won’t drop you in the deep end of the pool! Pitching is a nuanced process and is both art and science. We’ll show you the best practices with pitching and how you can make a great first impression using highly converting subject lines, calls to action and strategic copy in your emails
  5. Use the right Instagram hashtags to promote your presence at the show so you’re getting in front of the most excited buyers
  6. Start thinking and creating marketing materials and giveaway items you should bring to the show

Get the Shine Marketing module here which includes the webinar or get the webinar here, you will have it forever to watch anytime you want!

To get more helpful info that we only share to surface pattern designers, subscribe to our Shine list here.

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