We’ve had some questions about booth fees, and we’d like to address them. It’s true, Market Day booths in 2012 will be $50.00 per month. We’ve always strived to be transparent as possible about our policies, so we’d like to outline what you’re paying for when you hand over your dollars to vend at Market Day.
- A better schedule. By moving to the first Saturday of each month, we’re positioning ourselves away from holidays and events that have traditionally interfered with our traffic. Our new schedule coincides with the always awesome first Saturday of the Des Moines Farmers’ Market. We’re moving off of June’s Des Moines Arts Festival, and onto the weekend of 80/35, whose large audience should push more shoppers downtown. Our new schedule pushes our fall dates earlier, taking advantage of the warmer weather, and leaves several weeks to garner buzz for our fourth annual Black Friday bash.
- More infrastructure. Our new application system is a great addition to last year’s process. Vendors receive instant confirmation of their applications. In addition, we’re mapping out our spaces in order to efficiently place as many vendors as possible into our events, and we’ll be assigning spaces this year, eliminating too-early mornings and standing in line to compete for placement.
- More ads. We’re planning a big media push in 2012. More ads = more traffic = more sales. We’re striving to bring as much attention as possible to our awesome vendors — our budget for ad buys has doubled!
- More social media. We’ll be blogging, tweeting, and facebooking our butts off to make sure the Market Day digital presence is as strong as ever.
2. We’re sticking to what works.
There’s a lot about Market Day that isn’t broken, and we’re certainly not fixing it. For your money, you receive:
- A fantastic location. We love our new home at the Kirkwood Lounge and Des Moines Social Club. For the first time in Market Day history, two consecutive years will be held at the same venue, reinforcing Market Day’s continuing presence in Des Moines. Our second year has seen an increase in rent, but we believe that the benefits are well worth the costs.
- A crack team of devoted planners, at a reasonable price. Cat, Scott, and myself are insanely dedicated to Market Day. We work hours and hours, nights, weekends, whatever it takes to keep Market Day growing and thriving. The stipends we take are small, serve to help us from having to spend Market Day time on other jobs, and are not going up this year.
At the end of the day, we know we’re worth $50 a month. We can never guarantee any vendor will make their money back, but we do know that most do — especially those businesses which work their crafty fingers off, improving products, signage, displays, and customer interaction.
Most of all, we always want to improve Market Day — for the benefit of our vendors and for the city of Des Moines.