If you've been in the artist alley before, you may have learned (hopefully not the hard way) that a first year show isn't always the cat's meow. However, I couldn't entirely say that for Omni Expo, because it offer a ton of surprises for me, which I personally never thought it would bring. But instead of me beating around the bush, let's get straight to the point - how was Omni Expo?
- For starters, let's start with the good. The first bit of information I picked up on was the kindness and helpfulness of the hotel staff and the con staff. I heard through the grapevine that the Omni Expo staff was going to be unsympathetic, but I can't say that's true. Every single staff member I met was kind and offered me assistance when I needed it. I actually called out "Help Me God" and sometimes that worked. For example, I was grabbing a few last items from my car and I really couldn't carry them to the convention center. Luckily I came across a nice gentlemen in a golf cart and took me straight to the convention doors. This was probably the biggest highlight of the weekend. He also gave me the overview on the area / hotel and yes, this hotel was HUGE.
- Next pro is that I sold a TON of oricas. Go figure, right? I mean, at Hurricon no one was really purchasing the oricas and that was a free show! This is where I can understand that no two cons are alike. For example, some cons I sell a ton of oricas, some cons I sell a ton pins and some cons I sell a ton of the World Ends With You Pins. The pins I will say, did suffice in this show, so I can't complain one bit.
- What's more interesting is that I had some big sellers. The couple of sellers that stuck out in my mind was on the first day when I sold the ENTIRE pokeball pin set. Then, I ended up selling a great deal of Egyptian God Cards along with Exodia. I also had a number of sellers return and wanted to purchase more cards! Finally, the last purchase, which came from a non-con member by the name of Kenny, he and his family purchased over 11 Lucky Panda pins, plus more. A real nice guy and from what I was told he was in the military - nice doing business with everyone who purchased in bulk!
- Let's steer away from the stand for a bit and go towards my friends. I got to hang out with Joshua Hymes, Eric (Rainbro Dash), Arlene and the people from the Gala, which surprising was the stand next to me as well Chris, his sister Nichole and few others I did not catch their names. But this goes hand in hand with the Whose Line panel as well as the What Would You Do panel - The panels didn't get recorded, but they were memorable as always.
- Finally, I want to discuss the placement of the stand. On Friday and Sunday, I was gathering a ton of traffic, which turns into (yes you know it) - profit. I had an end stand and fortunately it was facing the registration desk, but you would think that having that stand would mean a ton of business right? Well...
- Time for the cons - Let's revisit the last pro I mentioned - the placement of the stand. I don't know what it is sometimes with the Tampa / Orlando crowd. I sometimes see a ton of flow of traffic at my stand and then sometimes (and for quite some time) there's NOTHING. Everyone else around me is getting business, but why ignore the one stand in between? This is where my point comes into play about the Miami conventions - my fan base is down there. I don't know if this is a vibe thing, but if it is - what vibe am I giving off (If someone can please pin point this - please tell me!)
- The second con is probably the worst - there's a ton of people I personally know from around the Orlando / Tampa area. What's shameful about this (and this isn't true with all of you - Chris and Nichole *cough cough*), is that those people didn't even want to converse with me! I mean what the hell, seriously, this because one of my pet peeves and for good reasons too! I mean it would be nice if some of you actually sat down and spent maybe about 10-15 minutes having a conversation with me or even coming up to me and saying hello. What's real aggravating about this, is that I had to come up to those people and start talking to them, telling them who I was! I mean does it kill you to say hello or even ask if you want to chill or anything of the matter? Seriously, I hope this improves, but I don't want to be damaging a ton of potential relationships. I do enjoy just about everyone's company and yes, I do want to be your friend! If I didn't make it clear already to some of you, I moved here from RI knowing no one. I'm not in it just for the money, which if I'm giving off that vibe - I'm sorry, because that's NOT the case. Fortunately, I haven't really met anyone who has seriously pissed me off yet, which is great. This is why I like Miami so much - it's almost seems like I have a family down there.
- I didn't cover my hotel cost. Well, I was expecting that hit, moving on...
- There were times where I seriously got aggravated because I wasn't making enough (and you probably understand why), but that in turn gave me time to think - oh well, this too is God!
- The final con was the amount of stuff I needed to bring to show and transport around. This was NOT pleasant by any means. I had to order bell hops constantly because the artist alley wasn't in a secure area. However, this gave me time once again to THINK.
- I sold no clocks. Yeah if this product doesn't go off Supercon I may discontinue this product line.
So in the short terms, there's an even amount of Pros and Cons to this convention. I could go into a lot more detail, but I don't think it's wise to beat up this horse any more than it needs to be beaten up. In the long run, I may end up doing it again, I may not, but one thing is for certain - I need to be seriously prepared for my next conventions - I'm not going to let these funks get in my way. This is why the report is called (No More Games) So for the month of June and before the end of May, it's time to come up with a strategy and a damn good one I hope! So, it's back to drawing board! Let's see what I can conjure up next!