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Holiday Painting at the Mall

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Holiday Painting at the Mall

Post by rosecanino on Mon Dec 12, 2011 9:07 am

Hi All,
I decided to call my local mall and see if I could pay to set myself up there for a couple weekends in December to offer Holiday face painting. This is my first year at marketing myself in my community and I thought being set up beside Santa at the mall would be a really great marketing move. I am feeling a bit discouraged though... I had to pay $50 a day to be set up and so far after one weekend it is looking like I will not make back the cost to set up. Most parents seem apprehensive to approach me at all... the kids seem excited but the parents don't want to make eye contact. So I am finding it difficult to even promote myself by handing out cards for future parties. Any suggestions?
I printed out $5 and $10 off when you book a party coupons and stuck them on the back of my cards. I figured that would be an incentive to at least check out my website and consider booking a party. How do I get my cards into the hands of future clients?

Here are some pictures (mostly of my daughter) Very Happy


[img][/img]




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Re: Holiday Painting at the Mall

Post by a face painting mom on Mon Dec 12, 2011 9:13 am

Gift Certificates! Print them up, and sell them at a discount.

An empty chair tends to stay empty, and a full one, it stays full! Try to have a kid in the chair, even if you have to give it away, you may find that you soon have a line to get what seems popular. Kind of like ordering desert...unless someone breaks the ice, no one orders. One does, everyone does!
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Re: Holiday Painting at the Mall

Post by a face painting mom on Mon Dec 12, 2011 9:14 am

The gift certificates are for parties, I sold a bunch at a craft show, had the disount in it, but people were more willing to purchase if they did not have to commit to a date.
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a face painting mom

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Re: Holiday Painting at the Mall

Post by MeeMee on Mon Dec 12, 2011 10:00 am

Just tossing around some promotional ideas... Do you look like you belong with Santa? Is your booth decorated with icicles, candy canes, and have a Christmas magical look? I see you are a fairy, are you a Christmas fairy or pretty girl elf? Do you have a big beautiful photo of a child with their face painted sitting on Santa's lap on your photo board? Also if parents are having to wait a long time for Santa is there a way for them to have a place holder card while they are being painted?


Last edited by MeeMee on Mon Dec 12, 2011 10:09 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Holiday Painting at the Mall

Post by bluebunneh on Mon Dec 12, 2011 10:03 am

Can you play music or add Christmas lights to your booth? Can people tell that you are offering face painting? Do you have a big sign? You may want to have a friend bring costumers in. Paint something on their face and have them draw attention to you. Wear a cute Christmas outfit or colorful wig ( I wear wigs when I paint and kids LOVE it ) Always smile! ^_^
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Re: Holiday Painting at the Mall

Post by rosecanino on Mon Dec 12, 2011 7:27 pm

Thanks for the ideas...
I have been dressing up and I have also had my daughter with me and been painting her face as well.
It might just be the time of year? People are most apt to do something like that when it is warmer weather and not so much when they are getting their picture taken with Santa?
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Re: Holiday Painting at the Mall

Post by Kat's FacesForFun on Mon Dec 12, 2011 8:12 pm

PICTURES. Make sure you have a REALLY good display!!
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Re: Holiday Painting at the Mall

Post by Tasha on Mon Dec 12, 2011 10:55 pm

make sure people can see you over a crowd. maybe have a bunch of Balloons or tall sign. maybe you can talk to the Santa set up and see if they will hand out your cards with the pictures they're customers are buying.
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Re: Holiday Painting at the Mall

Post by a face painting mom on Mon Dec 12, 2011 11:05 pm

Ohhhh....give out 1$ discount coupons to anyone who sat on Santa's lap?...or anyone with a receipt from a mall store? Print them up, give them to the merchants...?
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Re: Holiday Painting at the Mall

Post by HillbillyDiva1 on Tue Dec 13, 2011 1:59 pm

rosecanino wrote:Thanks for the ideas...
I have been dressing up and I have also had my daughter with me and been painting her face as well.
It might just be the time of year? People are most apt to do something like that when it is warmer weather and not so much when they are getting their picture taken with Santa?

I worked for 7 years painting faces next to Santa at the Theme Park I work at and always had a long line. The reason I'm not still doing it is the park gave over the Santa photos to Kodak and they kicked merchandising out of the Santa barn and tried it in the toy store for 2 years but too crowded. The parents that are not making eye contact are doing it so when they get in the car and the kids complain that they didn't get their face painted the parent can say "Oh I didn't see them." They ether don't have the money or are too tight to pay for it.
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Re: Holiday Painting at the Mall

Post by OtterGirl on Tue Dec 13, 2011 3:06 pm

Hopefully things will pick up once the kids are out of school. I think the $1 off for mall receipts is a good idea. Ask if you can set up a small display or flyer in any kid-oriented stores like Gymboree, Kids Gap, Candy and toy shops, etc. If you can get another adult to help you out, have them work the Santa line handing out your cards. Tell the people that if they show the card to you in the next two hours, they get a discount. (The time limit thing makes people more likely to spend).
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Re: Holiday Painting at the Mall

Post by rosecanino on Tue Dec 13, 2011 3:49 pm

Really great ideas!
I am set up again this weekend so I will use the coupon idea for sure!
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Re: Holiday Painting at the Mall

Post by a face painting mom on Tue Dec 13, 2011 4:07 pm

Let us know how it goes! I hope you rake in the dough!
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Re: Holiday Painting at the Mall

Post by rthling on Tue Dec 13, 2011 7:38 pm

I tried to get a spot in the mall here, and was wildly unsuccessful. They offered me a spot for $750. I couldn't even consider it.
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Re: Holiday Painting at the Mall

Post by scgilland on Tue Dec 13, 2011 10:59 pm

This is something I am considering too, I was offered a booth for $500 a month at my local mall, and am still milling around with it. I can set my own hours and my kiosk will be advertising when I am not there. $500 is alot for me in one month, but I am thinking I may want to try it for one, just to see how it does.
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Re: Holiday Painting at the Mall

Post by Guest on Wed Dec 14, 2011 12:02 am

I can't think that painting in a mall at Christmas would be profitable. I hope you manage to come out ahead and get some results from your marketing.

Just playing Devil's Advocate here...

1) people are on a mission - SHOPPING, not there for entertainment purposes. Crowded, stressed and wanting to get out as quick as they can.

2) if they bring the kids it is to see Santa, kids usually dressed for photos, don't want a) to be painted in the photo b) get make-up on the nice clothes

3) Cost - malls don't give away space. Would have to be extremely busy in order to make back your investment in the space.

4) Any marketing is good, but, I don't think that busy people trying to shop, see santa, etc. are the most receptive. It may be that there will be some good leads BUT, if as you are experiencing, you aren't getting any real interest then you don't have an opportunity to show off what you can do to the potential clients....

I had to stop at the mall a week ago last Saturday to mail a parcel on my home from a gig... it was horrible. Parking was a nightmare, the crush inside was smothering, you could only manouver along single file around the crowd, you couldn't even get in the food court...

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Re: Holiday Painting at the Mall

Post by Miss Ronnie on Thu Dec 15, 2011 9:27 am

This spring I got an "in" at one of our local malls by doing a friend a favor. I sat with her and her daughter at her aunt's store in the mall all day with a very small paint set-up. My friend twisted balloons and her daughter played games with the kids that came in. That was a marketing opportunity and although there was no money involved, it paid off because the aunt is friends with some of the people who operate the mall. So I got to paint there this weekend by Santa Land... for practically next to nothing in booth fees. And they have already booked me for some other upcoming mall happenings. In this neck of the woods where professional face painting is still considered a novel idea and not as common as in other states or countries, one has to work hard to market themselves and convince people that they NEED face painting for their event or business. So sometimes you have to work for free or for peanuts to get something off the ground. I also had to paint for "tips only" for two months at a restaurant while the manager tried to get his corporate office to approve paying me a fee...
santa rendeer
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Re: Holiday Painting at the Mall

Post by rosecanino on Thu Dec 15, 2011 10:32 am

Yes Sharon I agree with all of your points. I did not think about that initially but thought hey this is where the kids. I put a coupon on the back of my cards to get $5 or $10 off a party. I am going to hand these out to the people in the line and introduce myself. Even if I don't get many interested in getting their faces painted I might get a few people check out my site.
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Re: Holiday Painting at the Mall

Post by rosecanino on Thu Dec 15, 2011 10:44 am

scgilland wrote:This is something I am considering too, I was offered a booth for $500 a month at my local mall, and am still milling around with it. I can set my own hours and my kiosk will be advertising when I am not there. $500 is alot for me in one month, but I am thinking I may want to try it for one, just to see how it does.

This is a tough decision. Initially when I first read your topic about this I thought that the price seemed really great (compared to what I am paying per day). But you have to consider how many hours you are willing to put into it and how many faces you need to paint per day to make a profit. I think the best advertising we can get is for people to see us in action and I am not so sure that malls are the best place for face painting. This is just based on my own experience so far but I think people are not in celebrate mode but in mission mode most times at the mall. If you could offer other products or services (like hair feathers). I think those are pretty popular right now, and adults and teenagers would like them as well. Henna is another option. I noticed that there are a lot of teenagers hanging out at the mall. If you do decide to do it I would figure out how to market to them as well... even with some pictures and examples of designs that they would like. I would approach it as a marketing move and not have too many expectations about making a big profit.
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Re: Holiday Painting at the Mall

Post by Miss Ronnie on Thu Dec 15, 2011 11:38 am

Honestly, I don't think $500.00 a month is that bad and I would probably pay it if offered... especially since you can most likely include glitter tattoos and hair tinsel/feathers, too.
Might be worth it... unless your mall traffic is dead or they were going to stick you in the nether region of the mall.
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Re: Holiday Painting at the Mall

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