Archive for Show Blogs

The Show Continues, but Website Shipping captures our attention.

If you have been following this blog, you know that we have a web store, www.mendys.com. While we have been blogging lately about shows, we having not been discussing the day to day running of our very busy site. We care about all of our customers, but we are speaking now to those of you who order from us…. we highly recommend US Postal Service Priority Mail over any over service that we offer. They have a very good system that is time tested and we have never had an order lost or misplaced. We can find out immediately when the package is and get rapid notification when the order is delivered. No other service is as effective or efficient in their work and that they work the weekends and you wonder why no one else works this way.

Today, we had to solve a problem with a customer’s order that was shipped by another service that will not reach its destination in time for the customer’s trip to Spring Training. That order, which needs to travel coast to coast, is still sitting about 40 miles from where we initially shipped it; it will be Monday before it moves again. So it will spend 4 days not moving, while the customer will be justifiably upset about this delay. Mendy’s will offer to fully refund the customer, but one cannot help but wonder why others do not model themselves after USPS.

Tony Mendiola
Mendys

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First Day Concerns at the Show

Friday at the CSA show in Virginia. This is really a football autograph show, I have baseball items mostly. (What is that line about never bring a knife to a gun fight?) Anyway, counting on my usual customers to save me, the folks that do not collect autographs. Friday, a free admission day, became a “buying day” for us, collecting new items for the next show (Oriole Fanfest). We will see what today brings. Just a short blog for now.

Tony Mendiola
Mendys

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If this is Thursday, time to start a new show.

Off to Chantilly Virginia today, to start to setup for the three day show which starts tomorrow (Friday). Getting into the exhibition hall on Thursday gives dealers a chance for a leisurely set up, rather than a rushed, same-day-as-the-show setup. Looking forward to this show as it is close by, but since it is mostly a football autograph show, my expectations are limited as I have mostly baseball items. But one can never tell about shows like this. Dealers are terrible predictors of the business.

(Update – 2pm) Back in line again, waiting for the promoter. I know what promoters have to deal with in putting a moderate size show together but many other dealers do not and generally make a show manager/promoter’s life a living hell. Today, the crowd is very patient as the promoter’s staff is running late and setup is being delayed. But they are begining to fidget.

Tony Mendiola
Mendys

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The Daze after the show.

The time after a show is often difficult as you deal with fatigue (try standing on a concrete floor for 6 to 8 hours for three days), fatique (loading up the show trailer right after standing on the concrete floor all weekend) and fatique (driving home right after loading the trailer, after standing on the floor). I find that I need more time to recover, a sign that I am becoming a more “experienced” dealer.

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Long Day Sunday, Show was overall a success!

The last day of a show is a day of enduring. First the show lasts about 7 to 8 hours of show time, then there is about 4 hours of packing, 1 hour of loading and about 2.5 hours of driving home. By the time I got home, no time for much of anything, need to get to bed and get to sleep prior to going to “real work”.

Today Monday, time to count the receipts, and place an order for this weekend’s show. Ran out of the 2008 World Series Baseballs, a big seller in Philly (go figure)… so quick ordered some more. Also ordered more baseballs for this weekend’s show in Chantilly, VA. Even though it is mostly a Football autograph show, there are a few minor baseball guests and folks are always looking for a dozen MLB baseballs to take to FLA before spring training stops. Most of what was ordered today will be sold to customers from the show in Philly. Post show sales are often more than pre-show sales.

Tony Mendiola
Mendys

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Great Show Day, WHEW!!!

Dealers always have two impressions of a show at any given time, what their cash box tells them and what their mind (and body) are telling them… and most often these impressions are opposed to each other. A dealer could be thinking that a lousy show is in progress, but once the till is counted at the end of the end of the day, they may suddenly find that it was really a great day. The opposite can (and does) happen just as easily.

Today was one of those rare days that you are so busy that you think you are doing well, but you are afraid to check the cash box at the end of the day, because you don’t want the disappointment. But I just checked anyway…. It was a great day.

The worried expectations about the return of this show to the Philadelphia area and the effect on the economy on the business may have been for naught, at least for one day. From the huge lines of customers just waiting to get into the show, lasting until mid-day, to the very busy and packed aisles, to the dealers running around looking for change from other dealers, to the fact that some dealers ran out of bags for their customers’ purchases, the positive signs of this show’s success were everywhere. If tomorrow is as busy as today, there will be plenty of happy, cheerful dealers whistling merry tunes as they pack up.

Tony Mendiola
Mendys

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Booth looks Great… Now if it will only sell!

Yesterday was a very long day. Move in was 8am for us, but there were the usual “first show in a new location” delays. Got to see alot of the usual dealers, boy does everyone look older these days (I am sure they would say that about me).

The booth looks great, crammed with alot of stuff. I took pictures, but technology of my camera and the laptop do not match, so need to wait until I get home to upload them to the blog.

The show attendance was very good, but I am disappointed thus far with my premium location. Sees more ‘out of the way’ verses premium and sales were not what I expected. But with things the way they are these days, should have expected it. Alot of people were there, looking mostly, expect alot of sales today as the lineup is huge (Mays, Aaron, and Frank Robinson).

More in a latter blog..

Tony Mendiola
Mendys

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Load Up and Traffic….

Well, made it to the show site. Loaded up the trailer, took most of the day, then drove up this evening. Fought off the traffic of Washington DC, Baltimore, and the outskirts of Philly. Only 150 miles, but it takes nearly four hours. Patience of a Saint is needed!

Went to the show site this evening, It WAS a wine show today, it will be a Sports Memorabilia show in about 11 hours. I cannot see how so much can be done by the convention center staff in such a short period, but they are very good at what they do. I know they rarely get the recognition they deserve.

So to rest… tomorrow will be a very long day indeed. Hope to blog alot….

Tony Mendiola
Mendys

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Last day for thinking!

Okay, ordered everything (I hope)…
Packing it up tomorrow, hope there is enough room in the trailer…
Traveling to the show site tomorrow, what is the best way to get there…?
What about the traffic… Dealers hate traffic…
New location, new show, new customers, probably sleep terrible tonight, thinking terrible thoughts…
Man, did I ask the boss for the day off? Maybe he will not notice….
Time for a glass of wine, then off to sleep… Okay maybe two glasses….

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Prepping for the show!

Preparing what to bring for the show is the hardest part of getting ready for the show. You cannot always be sure what to bring, what will sell, and what will not. The baseball memorabilia market is such a multi-dynamic market that anything can affect it, from the weather, the daily news (baseball, financial, obituaries…), etc, that predicting how well you will do at the show is an impossible task.

For the upcoming Hunt Show, I am predicting a lot of pent up spending, as there hasn’t been a show like this for awhile in this area. But there will be a lot of folks, due to the economic downturn, looking to sell some of their items instead, seeking the best deal from the dealers. Could be a buying show or a selling show. The term “buying show” is used often times in ‘dealer speak’ to say ‘ I really didn’t sell a lot, but I did buy well’ which means that more money went out than came in.

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