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SPIEL in Essen Success?

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BeyondCloister
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Joined: 12/31/1969

Sorry if I have posted this in the wrong section, but I could not find a 100% suitable one.

I am thinking of exhibiting at the Spiel event in Essen next year using one of their mini-booths.

I was wondering if anyone from the UK had tried this before and if so could they provide any hints or tips and also was it worth it?

My one big concern is the language issue. Is it possible to get by on English alone or should I brush up on my O-Grade German from 17 years ago?

fashun_diva
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Joined: 12/31/1969
SPIEL in Essen Success?

I'm not from the UK, but I can give you my two cents on this topic as we exhibited in Essen last October. It was definitely worthwhile for us to do so. We managed to recoup all our costs (and more) through game sales at our booth and the contacts we got via Essen were invaluable.

Language:
You can generally get by without German (I don't speak it myself), but if you can it's a great help.

If you don't have your game rules translated into German, be aware that you may lose some potential game sales.

Tips:
- Given that you are based in the UK, try to personally haul the stock to your booth if you can. We spent a lot for warehousing and delivery services directly to our booth- it just wasn't worth it.

- At minimum you need to have 2 people manning your booth, but it's much more manageable with 3 or 4.

- If you only have 1 or 2 games, try to share your booth with someone. This not only brings down the cost, but it also makes running the booth SO much easier.

- Have a demo table at your booth.

- I'm not sure if it's possible, but try to secure a booth at one of the "better" halls. We got stuck in the back of a hall that was focussed on 2nd hand games and games retailers. I personally feel we would have had even better sales if we had a better location.

- Don't forget to do pre-convention A&P. This lets visitors/retailers know that you'll be exhibiting and if you do your A&P well, this will drive more visitors to your booth, increasing your potential sales.

Hope that helps!

Vertex
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Joined: 12/31/1969
SPIEL in Essen Success?

How valid is the idea of demoing prototypes in Essen in order to get publishers interested to look at your game? Has anyone tried this?

Do they sell booths and tables for this kind of use?

What is the cost of mini-booth + 3 tables for the duration of the fair?

How many copies unknown self-publisher would be able to sell in essen?

Vertex

zaiga
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Joined: 12/31/1969
SPIEL in Essen Success?

Vertex wrote:
How valid is the idea of demoing prototypes in Essen in order to get publishers interested to look at your game? Has anyone tried this?

Haven't tried, but from what I hear and see publishers are up to their necks in work when they are attending Essen. They are Busy, with a capital B. You might get to demonstrate a prototype at night, after the fair has closed, but in any case you'll have to make an appointment with the publisher for this. Personally, I don't think Essen is the best time for demonstrating prototypes, as publishers will want to devote their time to selling their current games first!

Quote:

Do they sell booths and tables for this kind of use?

Not specifically. The SAZ (Game Designers Guild) has a few tables, though, and I have seen people demonstrating prototypes there. You might want to hook up with them if you want to demonstrate protos at Essen. I must say, those tables were often empty, occupied only by a lonely designer.

Quote:
How many copies unknown self-publisher would be able to sell in essen?

Depends on the quality of the game, and the buzz it receives during the fair. Games like Oltremare and Shear Panic sold out during the fair (700 and 500 copies, resp.).

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