I mystery shopped the Winter Park Art Festival (not on video!)

Yesterday was a glorious day! Howard and I arrived at Panera’s at 8:00 in time for the 9:00 opening of the 51st Annual Winter Park Arts Festival here in Winter Park (Orlando), Florida. The sun was out, it was a wonderful, brisk 50 degrees and we were there to beat the crowds (expected at 300,000 over the 3 day show!).
Of course, owning a mystery shopping company, I am also scouting for “good sales and marketing” skills that I see out and about.
The first example I noticed were 2 Asian girls (about 18 yrs old)approaching festival goers (including us) and asking “Do you like Thai food?” (of course). “Well, here’s a coupon for you”. I asked if they had a food booth at the Art Show. The reply was “No, our restaurant is located on Edgewater Drive.”. Now, if I was a food vendor, I may have been annoyed but as the owner of this restaurant, I had to say “good guerilla marketing”. He or She sent out 2 adorable, friendly, smiling, engaging marketeers to hand out coupons and plug the restaurant to the tony, upscale art festival crowd. Well done!
My second example was the guy at the New York Times Newspaper booth. I had been considering ordering the Sunday only edition, being a former New Yorker. I asked him how much that would be. (Don’t all our customers start off with THAT question?). He responded with, “Have you ever purchased the NY Times before?” (Long time ago when I lived in New York). He then explained that if I bought it at a newsstand , it was $5.00 but if I decided to order from him, it would be only $3.75. He first told me the higher price and then the $3.75 look like a “deal”. Hey, we all want a “deal”. Then, hold on to your hats, he asked me to sign up and subscribe!! He was a closer. I declined because I remembered that my friend Karen orders the Sunday NY Times and offered to share it with me (even better).
My 3rd example was really all the non-engaging artists that sat behind their booths hiding, some eating, some talking to a friend, some on a cell phone. There were a handful who engaged Howard and I as we looked at their art, sculpture and jewelry and starting asking questions and showing their art proactively.

Everywhere you go, there are selling lessons to be learned! Let me hear some of YOUR examples.

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