Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Craft Show Confidential: Hang Tags

I’m so sorry for missing my blog post last week – my computer was hit with a virus and I had to reinstall everything. Notsofun.

That said, I’ll dive right into this week’s topic...hang tags.

Please note that when I use the term “hang tags”, I’m referring to anything attached to your work that contains information about it – this could include tags with string loops, bookmarks, cover wraps, etc.

The visual impact of your work not only comes from the work itself, but also from the professional image you project – your packaging can be used to enhance this image.

Let’s start with the basics – why would you want to have hang tags? Here are a few reasons:
  • At times, they can act on your behalf – not everyone is a talker and you don’t want to force unwanted conversation on them. Consider the hang tag as your silent salesman.
  • You can put a price sticker on a hang tag instead of directly on your work, which helps you avoid damage.
  • The customer in your booth may not be buying a book for themselves. If you include product information on a hang tag, it makes it easier for your customer to educate the gift recipient.
What information might you include on a hang tag?
  • Your logo, business name, etc. – anything that helps to reinforce your brand image.
  • Contact information
  • Size
  • Price
  • Materials and/or techniques used
  • Care instructions
  • Creative inspiration
  • Symbolic meanings
For the book artist, what information would be particularly useful to include on a hang tag?
  • Is it acid-free/archival? This is really important for photo albums.
  • Number of pages
  • Page size
  • Are any of your materials recycled and/or do they contain post-consumer content?
  • How does the page paper handle ink?
  • Is the paper handmade?
  • Did you make the paper?
Think of it this way – what information have you included in your Etsy shop listings or on your website? All of this information is useful to a customer deciding whether or not to buy something from you.

A few things to consider when designing your hang tags:
  • Make sure that your hang tags fit in with the style of your work.
  • Keep the size of your work in mind when you choose the size of your tags.
  • Make sure that the font size is big enough to read.
  • Don’t try to cram too much in – it will be hard to read.
  • Make sure that they’re durable – you don’t want to have to replace them after every show.
  • Hang tags don’t have to be square or rectangular – alternative shapes may help your work stand out.
  • Folded tags give you twice as much space.
  • If you make your hang tag functional, it is less likely that it will be thrown away (and it will keep promoting you). A natural choice would be to use a bookmark for product information.
Do you use hang tags on your books? Do you have another creative option? I'd love to hear about it! Send me an Email with photos and I'll try to include them in a follow-up post next week. Be sure to include your name and a link to your Etsy shop.

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