We JUST launched our 2019 Application (go ahead and apply if you’re looking to start or grow a creative brand). And all these new, fun, excited people have dropped their names and dreams into our digital world to sell at Cleveland Flea.
As we spend this week selecting our #FirstFiftyFlea vendors of our season, it came to our attention that we need to provide some behind the biz insight into the difference between Building Brands versus Selling Products.
WHAT IS A BRAND, WHY IS IT DIFFERENT THAN SELLING PRODUCTS + WHY SHOULD I CARE?
Thanks for asking. A brand is a company that has a WAY of seeing the world- and that way of seeing the world finds its way into its booth design, business cards, website, product design, and more. Having a brand forms a relationship with shoppers that is about more than money. Why is that advantageous? Well, in a market full of makers (not just here but everywhere) you’ll make more money, easier and for a longer period of time if you have a relationship with your shoppers that goes beyond price. If the only reason people have to choose YOU over your neighbor is whose item is cheapest, you’re making yourself a commodity. You’re only then competing on cost. That’s not a smart way to do business. It is a way to do business, but it’s not what we’re looking for at Cleveland Flea. And more importantly, it’s not what our shoppers are looking for either. They’re looking for brands they can love. Brands they can get behind and know. They’re looking for you to provide them value for their dollars, not just the cheapest option.
So, to recap:
Brands form relationships with shoppers over shared values
Brands create loyal fans
Brands don’t have to compete solely on price
Brands have mission statements, philosophies & values that they share with the world
OK, SO WHAT DO I DO IF I SELL PRODUCTS BUT WANT TO CREATE A BRAND?
Well, we' just opened enrollment into our Business Incubator Program via our 2019 Application. You’ll just pick the description that fits you best:
You run a creative hobby you want to take more seriously
You don’t know that you have what we need to see for our application but would someday like to sell at Cleveland Flea
You have a great business idea you’d like to start at The Flea
And we’ll be in touch! We’re here to help you build, run and grow the brand of your dreams!
Onward & Upward,