Friday, November 28, 2008

Daryle Lambert: Antiques should be on People's Want list

The bird is gone and most people have had enough football so what is next? Gift time, right? I hope we all thought of the blessings we have received this year before we go out and spend too much money on things that perhaps we don't need. I personally have been looking in every nook and corner to see what I still have that someone might want to purchase as that special gift. I am surprised at the items that I had forgotten about that were just sitting out in the garage and storage room. Yes, you will soon see them listed on eBay. I think the deals that they will be offering during this Christmas season will make it well worth using their services. The cost of selling the $12,000 Kentucky Derby Glass on eBay was just $250, not bad at all. But don't forget that other sites such as Online Auction may charge even cheaper rates.

What will people be looking for this year that we can provide? Royal Doulton and Lladro figurines are being sold at almost give away prices. I think the mothers on your list may be looking for one of these; ones that bring back precious memories of their little girls or boys. Dads will be buying sports figurines for their young sons that involve the sport they love. Husbands may purchase that vase that is perfect as that special centerpiece on their table or that lamp that makes their living room complete. Wives will be scouring the shops for a collectible that can add to that special collection of their husbands. But this Christmas, I believe people will be shopping much more carefully and quality will count. Isn't it strange that we have been teaching that quality counts from the 31 Club’s formation?

Remember: if you don't show people what you have for sale soon, the season will pass quickly and you will have missed an excellent opportunity to decrease your inventory and increase your bank account. So how should we advertise?

The local papers are excellent venues for advertising during this season. You may want to say “Christmas Specials” (Antiques and Collectibles for the Ones You Love) and your phone number. You should find this ad to be very inexpensive yet effective. Also, don't rule out Online or or a new website called that you may want to investigate. All of these sites’s traffic will pick up over the next few weeks and this increases your chance of success in selling the items you have listed.

I believe that the best way to sell your items at this time of year is to call or e-mail past customers to inform them that you have something that would make a fantastic gift for a loved one. For many years now I have sold one of my customers a painting for his home each year and I don’t think this year will be an exception. I know a person that prepares a list of special items that they have for sale and a letter wishing their past customers a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. They also include a list of items they have available for sale. I think that is quite an original and inexpensive idea. Most stores make 80% of their profit for the year during this season so maybe they have something to teach us.

Usually I am a humbug this time of year but for some reason I have the Christmas spirit already! I think it may have something to do with all of you and the encouragement that I receive from you. Many thanks and happy hunting…

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