Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Tell me what you think!

I have just spent two day driving from Wisconsin to Utah for the Home Machine Quilting Show. When you are in a car for over 25 hours there is not a lot to do except read, think or drive. Oh, yes there is the inevitable snacking.  And I did see more snow on the ground than usual for this time of year.  The farmers are way behind this year.

Since you are not interested in what I snacked on or what I was reading, let me tell you what I have been thinking about!

There are a lot of new shows being announced and will be in the marketplace in the next two years. AQS and OCS have both announced multiple new shows.  Quilts, Inc. has reopened Chicago and MQX has announced Springfield.  Other shows like Quilting with Machines are closing citing too much competition.

1                   From the consumer’s point of view this is probably a good thing.  More shows offer more choice some will be in new locations and closer to their homes and they can get to the shows with less expense.  Will they spend those savings or pocket it? Will they attend more shows?  Will spending increase?

2                   From the vendor’s point of view there will be increased expenses to attend all these shows.  Some of them will be in locations that have been overlooked and that will be a good thing.  Will revenues increase sufficiently to justify the increased cost of attending more shows?  Will vendors attend more shows?

3                   The show promoters where locations double up might see dilution of attendance or vendors who cannot handle multiple locations or who do not want to return to the same area relatively soon after they were there previously.  If there are more shows with contests, will sponsors step forward with more money?  The logistics of moving quilts will get more difficult.

4                   The baby boomer generation will start to retire in earnest over the next 10 years.  The stock market is booming right now.  But there is a sense of uncertainty that has depressed consumer confidence and spending for years.

5                   The work force participation is lower than it has been in many years.  Where is all that money coming from to support these people? Taxes? Savings? Charity? Family?

6                   Our industry is not based on need, it is based on want.

I have formulated several scenarios of how this will play out.  Before I share them, I would like to know what your think?  So you can respond directly to this post or if you would rather have your identity preserved respond to my email at jim@quiltersrule.com  Let's start a conversation.

I would like to know if you are a consumer, vendor or show promoter.  Personally I work on two sides of the problem as a vendor and a show promotor.