Surviving a sneaker convention could be easier than you think.
By Haikal Bakar
As more sneaker conventions pop up on this side of town, we provide you 8 pointers for surviving a sneaker convention, whether you’re a buyer or seller.
Buyer: Whether it’s a big convention or a small scale meet-up, you’ll find out soon enough that talking about sneakers is pretty much the best way to break the ice. Chances are people you meet will be talking about that big upcoming release, so do your research. Knowing a thing or two about classic releases will help you navigate your way around the OGs.
Seller: Find out how much space you will be entitled to. Plan how you’re going to arrange your items beforehand so your booth doesn’t end up looking like a garage sale. Also think about the venue – that’ll determine the crowd that’s coming, and their spending power.
2) Be reasonable
Buyer: Nothing wrong with looking for a steal but be reasonable. If you’re looking to make a deal for those Mastermind x Adidas sneakers, then be prepared to splash the cash. Low-balling is not the way to go.
Seller: Be realistic about how much your items are worth and plan your pricing strategy ahead of time. Make profits reasonably, don’t earn the “douchebag reseller” reputation.
3) Dress your best
Buyer & Seller: Sneaker conventions are opportunities to dress your best. You don’t want to end up getting bashed on Instagram for what you wore. Dress comfortably too, though, because can you imagine the heat?!
4) Expect a sausage fest
Buyer: We hate to shatter the dream, but don’t expect to pick up your chick in kicks here. Even if you spot the rare one, chances are, she’s already hooked up with another sneakerhead, or she’s married to one and they’ve got little sneakerheads in Baby Jordans. On the rarest occasion she’s still single, you can expect to be competing with a hundred other testosterone oozing sneakerheads. To that we say: may the best man win!
Seller: Since it’s going to be sausage fest, be prepared to sell more items for guys than girls. You can throw in a few women’s items for good measure. Or, you can sell women’s items in otherworldly sizes – we know of guys who wear women’s Roshes, come on now, you know who you are.
5) You snooze, you lose
Buyers: Go early to get first dibs on all the good stuff – most sneaker convention organizers practice rewarding the early birds with freebies. Psst, we hear the first 200 attendees at Kicks On get a goodie bag with Straatosphere merchandise!
Sellers: Set up early so you won’t miss any potential buyers. Engage in friendly conversation with people who visit your booth; promote your items actively, or you can expect to be swatting flies all afternoon.
Buyer & Seller: A sneaker convention is an event for the sneaker community. It won’t hurt to be friendly to everyone. Be open to meeting others, don’t judge, and don’t hate.
7) Keep your belongings safe
Buyer: Most booths at sneaker conventions deal in cash-only terms, which means it’s going to be a field day for pickpockets and dishonesty. By all means, bring your life savings along but safeguard it with your life.
Seller: This will involve some serious multitasking, but always keep one eye on your wares, even while negotiating a deal with a potential buyer.
8) Stay till the end
Buyers: A true sneaker ninja knows when to strike. Staying till the end of the event allows you to avail of discounts offered by sellers who want to clear their stock. Organizers would also schedule the best giveaways towards the end of the event.
Sellers: Don’t be quick to pack up. Be patient; you won’t want to miss out on buyers who take a longer time to decide.
Got another tip to surviving a sneaker convention? Leave a comment below.
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