High Frequency Marketing
PR & Media Relations in Spanish - Website positioning

HOW TO SELL HOBBY ITEMS BY MAIL

You can, if you are ambitious, start a Mail Order Business

selling collectibles to hobbyist by mail.  To begin, you must

first find a hobby that appeals to YOU.  Next, you must spend

several weeks researching that hobby.  You must learn what

collectors want and how much they are willing to pay for it.

You should also know what other dealers are willing to pay for

the merchandise which they sell.  And you must be willing to pay

the same amounts.

Perhaps you already know exactly what you want to sell.  If you

have been collecting old Valentines, then start a Mail Order

business buying and selling old Valentines.  Or Stamps.  Or

Comic Books.  The first rule of Mail Order selling is to sell

what you yourself would buy.

To give you an idea of what collectors buy and sell by mail,

here is a partial list of today's collectibles:

Phonograph Records      Cigar Labels         License Plates

Beer Labels             Circus Posters       Music Boxes

Salt/Pepper Shakers     Greeting Cards       Old Pencils

Atlases                 Military Medals      Sheet Music

Doll Clothes            Menus                Cigar Boxes

Train Photos            Old Calendars        Maps

Street Car Tokens       Buttons              Postcards

Fruit Car Tokens        Fruit Jar Labels     Old Magazines

Gun Catalogs            Paper Currency       Cartoon Books

Theatre Programs        Political Buttons    Baseball Cards

Children's Books        Stock Certificates   Old Toys

Gems, Minerals          Belt Buckles         Airplane Photos

FBI Posters             Newspapers           Coins

Arrowheads              Old Jewelry          Boat Photographs

Advertising Cards       Dog Pictures         Movie Magazines

Autographs              Dolls                Hunting Licenses

Valentines              Cookbooks            Beatle Items

Stamps                  Indian Relics        Railroad Books

Fishing Licenses        Comic Books          Thimbles

Automobile Manuals      Diaries              Railroad Passes

Antique Barbed Wire

I would like to suggest that you send for sample copies of two

magazines.  They are read avidly by hobby dealers and hobby

collectors alike.

THE COLLECTORS NEWS, Box 156, Grundy Center, IA  50638

THE ANTIQUE TRADER WEEKLY, Box 1050, Dubuque, IA  52001

Each of these publications contain around 70 or 80 pages of ads

from dealers and collectors.  Almost every hobby publication,

large or small, is listed somewhere within its pages.

Once you have selected your field, start a file.  Keep copies of

all the ads selling your kind of merchandise.  Also keep ads

showing the dealer's buying prices.  If price lists are offered

in ads, send for them and STUDY them.  MAKE YOURSELF

AN EXPERT IN YOUR FIELD.

Try to locate any publications that deal with your field.

Often, you can locate small mimeographed publications and

newsletters which will give you all kinds of useful information.

Your next step is to look for merchandise in your own community.

Here are some suggestions:

Start by attending flea markets and antique shoes.  Don't be

afraid to make inquiries of dealers.  They often have what they

consider "junk" stashed away, assuming that it isn't of much

value to anyone.  I once discovered a fabulous stamp collection

that way!

Browse around through Thrift Shops.

Study the garage sale ads in your local newspaper.  Visit any

that sound promising.  (Sometimes, it pays to telephone first.

Also, by telling people what kind of merchandise you are looking

for, they may be able to direct you to others who have exactly

what you need!)

Place "Wanted to Buy" ads in your  local Swapper's News, or

your  local newspaper.  Be sure to list your phone number.

It is amazing what you can find in your local community if you

work at it.  However, if you can't find enough merchandise

locally, run ads in the Collector's Magazines listed above.

Their rates are very, very low.  And you will soon discover that

they are widely read!

Once you have accumulated a decent stock of merchandise, you are

ready to begin selling it.  If there are publications

specializing in your field, by all means advertise there.  You

have a ready-made audience!  Also run ads in the big hobby

magazines.

Type up a list of what you have and have an Instant Printer make

a hundred or so copies for you.  Hobbyists don't mind

typewritten, mimeographed, or Xerox copies . . . it's half the

fund of collecting.  Then run your ad.  Your ad can merely offer

your list to interested collectors free (or for a stamp, to weed

out coupon clippers).  Or you can offer to make a sale straight

from the ad.  If you do the latter, stick in your price list

with the merchandise.  It will be read . . . eagerly!

Here are a few sample ads run by hobby dealers for your

consideration:

  "Railroad Timetables, 1940's

   Four different - $4.00 postpaid..

  "Old Children's Books and Texts. Stamp for List."

  "85,000 Comic Books, Movie Magazines, Funnies, etc.

   1900-1957.  Catalog $1.00 (Refundable)."

  "Original Movie Poster, Pressbooks,

    Stills, 1919-1975.  Catalog - 50 cents"

  "Sleigh Bells!  Stamp for list."

  "Sheet Music.  SASE for list."

Just in case you are not familiar with the phrase, "SASE" means

"Self-addressed, stamped envelope".  As you progress, you will

learn continually.  Most hobby dealers will tell you that they

learn more from the collectors who buy from them than they could

ever learn from any other source.

Below are some other hobby publications that may interest you.

It would be a good idea to include postage when requesting

copies from the publisher.

Antiques and Collecting Hobbies, 1006 S. Michigan Ave.,

Chicago, IL  60605

Linn's Stamp News,  Box 29,  Sidney, OH  45365

Doll Castle News, Box 247, Washington, NJ  07882

 

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