Archive for September, 2011

Aquababies Wiltshire has a great day at the Bath Baby and Toddler Show

Aquababies WiltshireWritten by Lora Dawson of Aquababies Wiltshire

The build up to the first Bath Baby and Toddler show seemed to gather momentum up to the week before when we were all counting down the number of sleeps to go. Hannah had done a fantastic job promoting the show with TT from Tumble Tots and Igglepiggle handing out balloons the week before in Bath.

The night before I was frantically putting together our goodie bags for the first 100 entrants for our competition. We were doing a free prize draw to win a 5 week course, 20% or 10% discount, as well as taken names of people who would be interested in our free taster session that we will be running in Bath in November. Each bag contained a swim nappy, our leaflets, a bit about the history of AquaBabies and a rubber ducky (everybody loves a rubber ducky!)

The morning of the show brought a number of disasters that added to the excitement of the day. My sister, who was coming across from Brighton to look after our toddler Zach for the day was unable to catch the train due to a collapsed tunnel! So calling in reinforcements in the form of Mum and Dad from south wales they too had to do battle with the traffic as the M4 was shut at the Chippenham junction.

Small disasters averted we kissed goodbye to Zach and met Julie-Ann James, who is the founder of AquaBabies and brought baby submersion technique to the uk, and made our way through the diverted traffic to the show at the Bath Pavilion.

Right from the start the organisation was fantastic. We were met at the car park and offered a place to off load before we parked up. This is always an advantage as a number of shows and sales we have done in the past had me lugging boxes and display boards a great distance to and fro from the car. It is always a little nervous before the show as you do not know who your neighbours are going to be and if you have a better spot than your competitors. On arriving I found my spot and was very excited to see that my immediate neighbour was my friend Tara from The Musical Tree house and opposite was Paul from Rugby Tots who I had been following on twitter so it was great to put a face to the name.

Aquababies stall at the Bath Baby and Toddler ShowThe stall space was good; I always move the table to the side so that customers are able to look at all our display stand, especially the photos of our pool and the pictures of our lessons. The table had a display of the equipment we use, a pile of entry forms, enough pens to last the day and a stack of 10 goodie bags at a time (that way you know at a glance the number of people you have spoken to). Once all set up it was time for a coffee and to speak to all our friends who were also exhibiting. Debbie from Tumble Tots was there next to Emma from Small Print, as well as Jennie from Baby Sensory. Sam from Bath Parent also stopped by to wish us luck and having only communicated with her via email it was great to meet her. Hellos, hugs and good lucks done we waited with excited apprehension for the doors to open.

The queue to get into the Bath Baby and Toddler ShowHaving had a sneak peak we knew the queue was big but wow, it was buzzing on our stall for the first 2 hours, time flew past. We had 3 of us talking to customers and we had people waiting to talk to us, it was also great seeing a number of familiar faces. The Musical Tree House was selling lots of percussion instruments and Rugby Tots were giving loads of magnets and stickers out. Being so busy meant that I missed Baby Sensory’s taster session, but Jennie said it went well. Jo Jingles and socatots had the next 2 demonstration shots which I also missed but I did catch a little of the Planet Tots fashion show which looked really good, the clothes were great and modelled well by the little ones. The talk on first aid was informative but the next demonstration I was able to see was Rugby Tots it was really energetic and encouraged me to sign up Zach for a term in Bath. Then came the big event: Julie-Ann was giving a talk about the benefits of baby swimming. It went well and we had a number of parents-to-be come and talk to us on the stall after wanting to know more. Around 3pm it had started to get quiet but this was livened up with Tara and Tom banging on the drum for the musical tree house demonstration.

Feet and back were beginning to tire now and the number of customers coming past the stall had slowed down, this however gave us time to make new friends such as Extra Care Midwifery, Born in Water, Arbonne and Mulberry Kidz at Komidea. And to chat with old friends such as Buggy Bee. By the time the doors were closed I had the exhausted but buzzed feeling of a very successful day with a long list of names of potential customers .

A big thank you to Hannah for doing a fantastic job getting over 700 people through the door!

Tips for a successful show:

  • Comfy shoes as you will be standing on your feet all day.
  • Layers, the temperature can change depending on what you are doing and how busy you are.
  • Make sure you have more than enough number of pens and customer query slips.
  • Remove any chairs from your stall, no matter how tired you get, you make a better impression
  • standing than sitting.
  • Use the time not only to meet new customers but to network as well.