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  1. #1
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    Default My Bright idea(s) to rejuvenate the T&WWWShows

    OK people here's your chance to stop complaining about the Timber & Working With Wood Shows and submit your ideas to the organisers for consideration.

    Couple of suggestions:


    • Don't run down the organisers. They are the best the shows have ever had and more than willing to listen and act on any reasonable and affordable suggestions.
    • Leave your negativity outside of this thread.
    • Submit any and all suggestions no matter how big or small.
    • Be realistic with your suggestions.
    • Just because you think a suggestion is dumb or silly doesn't mean doesn't mean it isn't a good suggestion. It may well be the suggestion on everyone's tongue something they were scared to submit.


    I can't emphasise this one too much.
    • Above all else be realistic.


    Cheers - Neil

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  3. #2
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    Neil, thanks for inviting us to comment on this (can of worms ):

    About the only thing I can think of is related to the amount of vendors at the show. More vendors means a more exciting and vibrant environment. Haven spoken to a number of vendors who weren't at the show last year, their main gripe was, "it's cost prohibitive". My suggestions are therefore:


    • A venue conducive to both participants and vendors (I don't think Jeff's shed is the solution).
    • Invite other streams of artisans to participate in the show, combine disciplines?
    • I'm there for the demonstrations. In the past there have been many Woodturners demonstrating. What about other disciplines (what happened to Neil and Liz Scobie)?
    -Scott

  4. #3
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    Default

    Woodworkers don't mind traveling to attend a good show, GTG or demo and a good show to me is one with lots of exhibitors and demos no matter where it is.

    Move out of the high cost venues, lower your overheads and attract more exhibitors by lowering the rental for their stands.

    Change the name to The NSW Working with Wood Show.

    My 2c worth.

    Ross

  5. #4
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    Default

    Thanks for the chance to put some comments into this.I enjoyed the earlier shows more than lately, I think what I liked was the demos how to do things which may seem simple.
    Workshops on the following.
    Chisel and plane blade sharpening
    Use of various hand power tools ,Router Circ. saws,sanders etc.
    Setting up and checking table saws,router tables.
    Use of planner/thickys,setting blades etc.
    A session on whats new in the way of tools and gadgets.
    Whats new in finishers ie,paints stains,oils etc.
    Safety in the work room,machines,chemicals,finishing products.
    I'm sure other Formites will add to this list but I think it is "how to do things"
    My 20 cents worth for now
    Cheers

  6. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott View Post
    (what happened to Neil and Liz Scobie)?
    They were on Jim Carrol's stand.

    *How about having some sort of forum challenge with the entries being displayed at the show? We haven't had any forum challenges for a while. Or a general challenge not just forum members? I think it would give people more of a feeling on involvement in the show. And something else interesting to look at.

    *A turning challenge at the show perhaps? All turn an egg cup or something? Best time. Most accurate. Best finish.Etc.Go from a standard pattern so apples get compared with apples. Unless of course you are goin gfor the "most crazy" award. Anyone who wants to can do it at the show. Go home covered in shavings? They all get displayed at the show till the end. (Although may pose a problem getting them back to the people who made them.... if they want them.)
    anne-maria.
    T
    ea Lady

    (White with none)
    Follow my little workshop/gallery on facebook. things of clay and wood.

  7. #6
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    Hi Everyone I am going to be watching this with true interest. I am more than happy for suggestions for improvement. I remember when we took the shows over Neil gave me reams of paper to read with your suggestions for the then Timber Shows. Suggestions you had been making for ages but you had no one listening - I am listening!! One of the stand out comments was that you had no where to sit when at the show - the very next show we introduced visitor seating areas. Keep them coming (the suggestions) some we will be able to implement and some we won't. We are all in this together aren't we?? Liz

  8. #7
    crowie's Avatar
    crowie is offline Life's Good, Enjoy each new day & try to encourage
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    G'day Neil,
    IMHO, I'd love to see the major power tool suppliers back at the show showing off there wares.
    Could you please ask the organizers to invite them, along with some of the hardware suppliers.
    Invitations could also be sent out to woodworking clubs, mens sheds, and high schools.
    Also please could we ask the organizers to raise the promotion levels of the show through all sorts of trade magazines plus radio [interviews with woodworker who will be participating as well as ads] & TV ads, as the few people I am in regular contact with, only here it's on when I have pointed it out.
    My 2bobs worth which I hope has been constructive.
    Cheers, crowie

    PS - ask the venue food & drink vendors to moderate there prices to encourage more sales....

  9. #8
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    Crowie Thanks for the comment. We do invite major tool companies etc - its not in our interest not too have them there. Last year to the Melbourne Show we introduced for the first time VEK Tools - they are major. Re advertising: we use radio, television (something that was reintroduced by us when we bought the shows) all of the main industry magazines Australian Woodworker, Wood Review and Woodsmith. In Australian Woodworker we also have a number of pages dedicated to our program for each of the shows, where we promote all of the presentations. This year we are also on the address carrier sheet advertising each of the shows. We don't use newspapers and this decision was made 3 years ago after finding out what we were spending on them and the return we were getting which was nil (we measure this by surveys from each show). We reinvested the money spent on newspapers to our television campaigns. We have a very clean database of over 10,000 national woodworkers and this is marketed via E News (our dedicated newsletter) 4 times pre show for each show. We run an active campaign to Woodclubs, and Men's Sheds whereby we offer discounted entry fees for multiple bookings and free tickets for the organiser of the club and also the coach driver. As well as that we run a schools program they are also offered a discounted entry price of $6.00 and teachers have free entry. We send out worksheets (our exhibitors supply the questions) to the attending schools and keep in regular contact with them - we have really built this program up and now see large numbers of schools attend. We spend multiple hundreds of thousands a year on marketing. Re your PS on the food at venue...............on this one I can only say we will try .................the venues no matter where are a law to themselves, and we get this comment at all shows. I try and tell them our visitors would sooner welcome a fresh sandwich or a sausage in a roll without all of the gourmet rubbish they put in them just to push the price up!! I am with you on this and will endeavour to try and get them to understand!! Lots of thanks for the suggestions. Liz

  10. #9
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    Crowie; shivers I forgot to say we endeavour to get radio interviews on the 'stars' of the show and usually we do succeed - however this is unpaid and always up to the station whether radio or television. For instance if a big news story breaks you are shafted putting it politely. Liz

  11. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ross View Post
    Woodworkers don't mind traveling to attend a good show, GTG or demo and a good show to me is one with lots of exhibitors and demos no matter where it is.

    Move out of the high cost venues, lower your overheads and attract more exhibitors by lowering the rental for their stands.

    Change the name to The NSW Working with Wood Show.

    My 2c worth.

    Ross
    Ross, I believe you are right about the high cost venues and have stated the exact same thing myself.

    finding the solution is not easy, but but IMO, the problem is too easy to see.

    The public wont pay good money to walk into an empty venue, & the merchants NEED TO MAKE MONEY or they will not show up at the venue.

    As I see it, the best way of giving the Merchants a chance to make money after paying their staff, transport costs & stock outlays, is to lower their stall fees. One way of doing this might be if the venue fogoes all or part of the stall fee, & receives a % of the stall takings.

    Another way might be a change of venue from the Capital City to a smaller town nearby that would welcome a cash injection into their community. For me, I don't need an Air Conditioned Pavilion, Id be happy with a bigger & better show under canvas on an oval.

    I'm not a buisness man but maybe if the organizers owned that canvas instead of renting a pavilion, they may have a better chance of making money as well. That could also promote competition between rival towns for the venue, thereby reducing the costs to the organizers and giving them a chance to make some coin as well.

    Now I am typing out an expansion to this idea that is not at all thought out, but what the hell, it might start a better idea.
    I made a comment on another thread about holding it farmer browns padock. Having no idea what these venues charge, or how much money everybody concerned makes from these shows, ..... Could it be held in a padock under canvas. The organizers would need a bigass genset, water & toilets, but the venue fees to the organizes would be low.

    Just spitballing.


    One thing though Ross, A name Change to The NSW Working with Wood Show is a terrible idea. I hope you were only joking.


    Steve
    The fact remains, that 97% of all statistics are made up, yet 87% of the population think they are real.

  12. #11
    Charleville's Avatar
    Charleville is offline Nocturnal and primeval - I fish at night.
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    I suspect that I am like a lot of woodies. ie I did not get into woodwork until I retired and then spent thousands of dollars buying machinery and tools and attending every possible woodworking show, lapping up as much info as I could and attending all of the demos that interested me.

    Then, this year I did not attend the major Working with Wood show in Brisbane for the first time in several years. Why? (a) Because I had seen some of the demos many times (eg Gifkins) and there were no new ones for me to see; and (b) I have bought all the machinery and tools that I am likely to buy for a while and so the presence of major machinery and tool vendors held no attraction for me.

    Soooo - having reached a certain level of competency with my wood working, I am now seeking less of the basic information than I once did and more of the unusual skill type presentations or the presence of inspirational woodworking pieces to admire and be inspired by.

    Not totally unrelated was my attendance at the Maleny Wood working show a couple of weeks before the Brisbane WWWshow. To a large extent, what I saw at that country show turned me off the big Brisbane show because of the stunning pieces of craftsmanship that I saw on display there. The woodworkers who had their stuff on display there probably could not afford a stand at the metropolitan equivalent but yet the quality was inspirational and well worth the long drive to attend that show. I have not seen the same level of quality worksmanship at the WWW show.

    That makes me wonder whether it may be worthwhile for the WWW show organisers' to make special one-off invitations to a small handful of super talented craftsmen to display their wares and be present to talk about same, with their WIIFM being that they get to sell their product without having to outlay heaps for their display stand.

    The popularity of a successful, very well run country woodworking show like the Maleny wood working show also attracts some vendors who are also to be found at the big metropolitan shows; eg Carba-Tec and the guy who sells the hinges and catches, chains etc that are used by box makers. That companies like Carba-Tec have a sale in the week before the show means that there is no special need to attend the show to get a "show special" but that is pretty usual for such shows. The same happens for the marine industry shows where chandlers like Whitworths will run a sale two days before the show and not have a stand at the show.

    So, in summary, to get my continued attendance at the big WWW show, I am wanting to be entertained or enlightened or inspired by new stuff, especially seeing out of the ordinary craftsmanship that I might be inspired by or want to buy their products. eg there were some stunning coffee tables at around $1700 at Maleny and I would love to buy one once my grandkids are old enough to not wreck it when they visit. Even just talking to the guy who made them made my whole visit really worthwhile.

    Anyway, that is my two bob's worth. I have always enjoyed the big woodworking shows but struggled to find much on the agenda to interest me this year, having moved far enough past the beginner stage to want more.


    BTW, the food prices do not deter me. If we want those services there, those people need to make enough money out of the exercise to want to return each year. I also appreciate that plenty of seats and tables are available in the outside eating area. That is a great feature at these shows.
    .

  13. #12
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    I have never even heard of the Maleny Wood working show, or any other country woodworking shows.

    Is there a list of these somewhere?

    Are they run by the same people?

    On the food, I don't really think it's much of a issue, take a sanga.

    Steve
    The fact remains, that 97% of all statistics are made up, yet 87% of the population think they are real.

  14. #13
    Charleville's Avatar
    Charleville is offline Nocturnal and primeval - I fish at night.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ticky View Post
    I have never even heard of the Maleny Wood working show, or any other country woodworking shows.

    Is there a list of these somewhere?

    Are they run by the same people?

    On the food, I don't really think it's much of a issue, take a sanga.

    Steve

    I don't know anything about their organisation but it looks like a local community thing. The area around Maleny is an arty, crafty sort of place so I reckon that there would be a number of clever woodies within close reach. That local community sense comes with food stalls from the local schools etc. It is a small show but very, very well organised with wonderful facilities, great free parking, strolling quirky musicians, lots of timber to buy and indeed was entertaining enough for my wife to really enjoy our day there.

    Their website ... Maleny Wood Expo : What's on

    I am not suggesting that they will surpass the big metropolitan shows but perhaps there are things that might be learnt from such a successful country woodworking show that might help the big shows.

    .

  15. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charleville View Post
    I don't know anything about their organisation but it looks like a local community thing. The area around Maleny is an arty, crafty sort of place so I reckon that there would be a number of clever woodies within close reach. That local community sense comes with food stalls from the local schools etc. It is a small show but very, very well organised with wonderful facilities, great free parking, strolling quirky musicians, lots of timber to buy and indeed was entertaining enough for my wife to really enjoy our day there.

    Their website ... Maleny Wood Expo : What's on

    I am not suggesting that they will surpass the big metropolitan shows but perhaps there are things that might be learnt from such a successful country woodworking show that might help the big shows.

    .
    Folk love the country atmosphere,and Maleny is a stunning area...some very talented woodworkers there too...
    Mapleman

  16. #15
    crowie's Avatar
    crowie is offline Life's Good, Enjoy each new day & try to encourage
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    Quote Originally Posted by Liz Falloon View Post
    Crowie Thanks for the comment. We do invite major tool companies etc - its not in our interest not too have them there. Last year to the Melbourne Show we introduced for the first time VEK Tools - they are major. Re advertising: we use radio, television (something that was reintroduced by us when we bought the shows) all of the main industry magazines Australian Woodworker, Wood Review and Woodsmith. In Australian Woodworker we also have a number of pages dedicated to our program for each of the shows, where we promote all of the presentations. This year we are also on the address carrier sheet advertising each of the shows. We don't use newspapers and this decision was made 3 years ago after finding out what we were spending on them and the return we were getting which was nil (we measure this by surveys from each show). We reinvested the money spent on newspapers to our television campaigns. We have a very clean database of over 10,000 national woodworkers and this is marketed via E News (our dedicated newsletter) 4 times pre show for each show. We run an active campaign to Woodclubs, and Men's Sheds whereby we offer discounted entry fees for multiple bookings and free tickets for the organiser of the club and also the coach driver. As well as that we run a schools program they are also offered a discounted entry price of $6.00 and teachers have free entry. We send out worksheets (our exhibitors supply the questions) to the attending schools and keep in regular contact with them - we have really built this program up and now see large numbers of schools attend. We spend multiple hundreds of thousands a year on marketing. Re your PS on the food at venue...............on this one I can only say we will try .................the venues no matter where are a law to themselves, and we get this comment at all shows. I try and tell them our visitors would sooner welcome a fresh sandwich or a sausage in a roll without all of the gourmet rubbish they put in them just to push the price up!! I am with you on this and will endeavour to try and get them to understand!! Lots of thanks for the suggestions. Liz
    Thank you the detailed reply Liz...
    After last years show were we didn't have many of the major power tool suppliers [Makita, Milwaukee, Hitachi, DeWalt, Bosch, etc], I personally sent an email to there sales managers asking for there attendance this year...
    I've sent you a "pm" with some other free advertising ideas which may be of some use.
    Cheers, crowie

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