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At what point do you start merchandising?

 
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ConnorUllmann



Joined: 08 Aug 2013
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2013 10:41 am    Post subject: At what point do you start merchandising? Reply with quote

I was wondering at what point people who have had successful comics decided it was a good idea to add merchandise. Was it a number of visitors per week on your website that you tipped over that helped you make the decision? Was it a large number of requests from fans?

I've been to the front page of reddit a couple times now with my comics, and that was my main goal for the last month, so I'm not sure exactly where I should be going from here! Thanks in advance for any help!
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ttallan
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Joined: 28 Feb 2008
Posts: 1128
Location: Ontario

PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2013 2:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I started making merch when I started going to conventions, because I'm old-fashioned and still prefer selling to someone in person rather than online. I do have an online store, but the majority of my sales happen at cons. I go to maybe five a year.

One common answer to this question is to ask your readers what they want. Do a poll. I think the ballpark figure is you can assume something like 1% of your readers will spend money on you.

Also, start small. There's plenty of stuff that you can put up for sale without a lot of your own upfront investment-- PDFs, POD books, or merch through POD storefronts like Zazzle.
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ConnorUllmann



Joined: 08 Aug 2013
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Sun Aug 11, 2013 7:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What made you decide to start going to conventions (with the intent to sell merchandise, not just attend)? I'm completely new to the world of webcomics and such, so I'll probably have to spend a while just attending and figuring out how it all works. Just looking for some advice on goals for down the road Smile
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Traegorn



Joined: 16 Feb 2010
Posts: 156

PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2013 4:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I do cons to advertise my comic first, sell merch (and dead tree copies of my two webcomics) second.

It's not a bad way to get new readers, especially if you can sell enough to make your table back.
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ttallan
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Joined: 28 Feb 2008
Posts: 1128
Location: Ontario

PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2013 1:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If possible, definitely attend a show first before applying for a table. Attend s few different shows, to get the feel for how the Artist Alley or Dealer areas work.

When you finally are ready to apply for a table, be sure to start with small shows, ones where you won't have to pay >$250 per table. If you have a friend with a comic who also is thinking about exhibiting at a show, you can share the costs.
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ConnorUllmann



Joined: 08 Aug 2013
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Tue Aug 13, 2013 1:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'll have to look into shows that I can attend in the future (just to go, not to have a table). I definitely would like to do shows in the future if my comic gets a larger audience.

Quote:
If you have a friend with a comic who also is thinking about exhibiting at a show, you can share the costs.

I really wish I had a friend I could share with! I don't know anyone who makes webcomics (or even goes to cons), so I'd be stuck out on my own.
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Tube-Head



Joined: 08 Sep 2013
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Sun Sep 08, 2013 11:32 pm    Post subject: Finding these shows Reply with quote

Where can you find out where these shows are? Also, are you finding that working the conventions gets you more traffic to your website?

Thanks for the help.
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Traegorn



Joined: 16 Feb 2010
Posts: 156

PostPosted: Mon Sep 09, 2013 12:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, there are various con listing websites put there, like CONtainment ( http://containment.greententacles.com/ ) and GeekCalendar ( http://www.geekcal.com/ )

If you're looking for something specific, like Anime Cons, there's always AnimeCons.com (surprise, surprise http://www.animecons.com )

As for guaging response, I hand out a LOT of business cards from my Artist Alley tables... And usually, after an event I see an uptick in site traffic and social media followers.
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ingmardrewing



Joined: 08 Sep 2013
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Wed Sep 11, 2013 11:02 pm    Post subject: germany Reply with quote

Has anybody an idea if there area larger cons in Germany? I found the "comic salon erlangen", but that's it so far ...
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