CCH Convention Recap - Help me Create a Quick Sales Pitch! (see Post #49)


It’s almost done! I just need my business cards to come in and that’s it. My wife has been super supportive and is helping with organization (she’s a type A, which can I say?)

My first convention is at the end of June; I’ll share details about how it goes and what mistakes I made (I’m sure there will be plenty!)

*Oh and the authors of “So, You’re Possessed!” invited me to share a booth with them in October, so maybe we can do a joint report back then too. I’m excited about that!

Any suggestions for additions to the setup? I’m considering getting one of those lateral stand-alone vertical banners for future conventions but only if I do okay in June.


Oh really? That’s awesome! :slight_smile: though I admit I didn’t know c.o.g had its own convention. Or is this your own convention?



This is Derby City Comic Con in Louisville, Ky. Just your standard little comic con - it probably draws between 5-10k people each year.


I just got a brilliant suggestion in the CCH private thread. I need to do some sort of banner or even (on the cheap) a poster board with a “choice message” like this one…

You see my booth. It looks really interesting. What do you do?

  1. I come over and check out the art!

  2. I walk over and ask the author guy about interactive fiction.

  3. I get out my phone and download the app right this second because it seems awesome!

  4. Thank you but I will keep walking because I don’t like art, or apps, or reading! Wait…why am I here??


I don’t want to put you down or seem rude but is there a reason why you went with so much black for your stand?

With the awesome artwork you use in your game you would be able to do so much more in terms of the design of your stand.


Congratulations on your first convention booth! I hope you do well.

The booth’s looking a bit dull to me and not very eye-catching. The only thing sticking up doesn’t seem very bright.

Do you have quick instructions for how to get hold of the game’s demo?
Can you actually print out a sample of the game, so people can have a quick look? Even if it’s a large board, with an emphasis on “YOU ARE THE HERO!!!” or something.

I do like the idea of that poster board with a choice, but not the 4th option. I’d like to see the choices as all positive ones. I’d add in something silly instead, like “I hope he doesn’t realise I’m a superhero in disguise…”


Well I have still have a month so that’s why I’m here asking for feedback. So no worries!

Yes I want to add some large artwork, like on a vertical standing banner, but that will be an investment of $150 or so (at least) so I wanted to go slow and maybe roll that out at the next show if sales justify the expense. From everything I’ve read about conventions, it’s best to start small and add a piece with each show, again if sales justify it.

But yes it does need more color. For now, maybe swapping the black tablecloth for a red or blue one might provide some color?


If you’re investing money, I’d say that $150 would be better spent on keychains or badges (pins?) or stickers or something, that you can sell, or give away, and will also advertise the game.

The colours do pop on the black. But… well not enough colour really.


Ok, here is what I would personally do. I work with stand design quite often (Graphic designer) although in a different sector but this is my 2 cents.

The tablecloth should just be a neutral color, black is fine (Bright colors tend to become a eyesore and the tablecloth is basically just a cover to make everything seem more neat.) The first thing I would change is the banner hanging infront of the table to be more of a eyecatcher.

Also try looking for a couple of standards so that you can place the brochures(?) and flyers(?) that you have laying on the table in a upright position. These shouldn’t set you back too much.

I’m willing to make a design of the banner completely free of charge no strings attached, if you don’t like it, don’t use it. Otherwise I’d be glad to help out. (I like these kind of things)

If I come up with anything else I’ll let you know :slight_smile:


It would look great if you stood the prints up they’re colorfull and will stand out


Congrats dude. Wish I could attend but, well theres school and an ocean in the way! I hope it goes great!


I love that. If I saw that on a poster it’d definitely give me a smile and make me more likely to wander over :slight_smile:

I also second the freebees if you are going for something extra. You can sometimes get small stickers and things printed relatively cheaply. Otherwise lollies will probably do the trick for a first convention to see how they go. (Or maybe do a guess the number of lollies in the jar which is CCH themed with some pics/stickers/colour themed lollies etc.) I know it only seems like a little thing but with open days and fundraisers I’ve been involved in it’s a cheap way that seems to attract people. Even if many don’t buy anything, a busy stand seems like a popular one and people will be more likely to head over.) I’m guessing there might be something like that in the white container? Maybe make it a see through glass or plastic to make it more visible or put a “take one” sticker on it.

Maybe colour theme or add pictures to the side of the white cards (price lists?)

Good luck with the convention!


@FairyGodfeather, yeah I won’t be plunking down another $150 until the second convention, and yes I’ll have to figure out how it’s best spent. I’ve been reading a lot of “how to stage your booth” articles and people disagree about giveaways. Some folks say, “yes, anything to draw traffic to your booth,” while others say, “freebies just clog up your booth and waste your time with people who aren’t really interested in your product, while distracting you from those that might actually want to talk to you about your product.” I’m not a marketing guru, so who knows who’s right?

@Yippie, Okay I will stick with the black tablecloth and strive to add more color around it. I will definitely invest in some small stands for the prints to get them vertical. They are actually pretty colorful, especially the color block one (the cover to Issue #1), so that should help bring more pop. And yes I know my banner is pretty bland. I think I spent a grand total of $16 on it (it was a special on one of the online banner stores). If you’d be kind enough to design something for me to look at, of course I’m going to say yes. :slight_smile: Thanks for the offer! This is great community. PM with any questions, etc.

Keep in mind that the app’s artwork, while awesome, was designed specifically for the app and isn’t large enough to blow up into huge signs, although the 8x10 prints turned out well. The Dirty Girl/Crook image is a much larger image, and I could use that one for larger promotional signs in the future, but the image doesn’t include the app title, so I’d need to work with my artist to add the title if I was going to use it for signs, etc.

@Melzzi_d, I’m already on it! :+1:

@Tree, those sound like pretty flimsy excuses to me! School! Ocean! Bah!

@Jacic, Okay I’m convinced to make the fourth option also positive but perhaps a bit sillier as FG suggested. That’s great feedback. I thought about doing a little promotion but I wanted to at least loosely tie it into the game, so that gives me something to brainstorm. Right now the only freebies are the Lifesaver mints (I was going to write a little hokey note by the bowl saying something like “Become a lifesaver! Be a Community College Hero!”

And maybe with the two signs to the right (price list and app intro), I could use colored paper instead of white. Perhaps a light green or light blue or something?


I scored some help! Hopefully I’ll have a slightly more impressive setup in the next week or two - I’ll share when it’s ready!


YAY! Looks good! We did our first convention for SYP earlier this month, as well. Can’t wait to double represent, looking all legit. I’ve also been trying to do all the research and got a lot of feedback about making sure there is “interest” drawn to the table through the use of color and display items of varying height.

We got a standing banner that I think turned out really lovely (for the banner and stand combined it was about $72, we did it through VistaPrint with some discount codes during a sale, if that helps). We were thinking a red or maybe yellow table cloth as well…not that our two stories necessarily need to color-coordinate, but seems like we’re on the same page! :smile: I agree that propping your gorgeous prints up on a stand will also help add more color and depth.

So excited, too!!!


Wow @MizArtist33, that’s a great price! Do you mind if I PM you about the show? We’ll all be pros by the time October rolls around.

And for everyone, how about this text for some sort of sign?

Learn more about Community College Hero, an interactive gamebook where you make the choices!

You are trudging through the aisles of the convention when you spot my interactive fiction booth! What do you do?

A) I run over to the booth to look at the cool art! I like cool things! And art!

B) I walk over to the booth and ask Eric all about interactive fiction. I like the idea of making decisions that affect the story!

C) I whip out my phone and check out Community College Hero on my favorite platform like iTunes or Google Play! Wow I can download it right now for just $3.99!

D) I am secretly a super-villain bent on world domination but I act like a normal person when I walk over to say hello to Eric. He’ll never know!


I would change C to be sans the “Wow I can download… its only 3.99” bit, because your straight out telling them all the important info, let them get invested a bit and go search details for themselves or talk to you. That’s just my opinion though.


It’s all good! Always happy to chat. Love the sign idea, as well! Hopefully, you can fit that onto a sign big and clear enough for people to easily read at a glance when they walk by (because, for some people, that’s about all the time they will give you, while others will stop and ask about it, is my thinking), it’s a great idea!


That is a great start. My experience is in displays for: collectibles (baseball cards), guns and games and hand-carved pipes (please don’t ask. lol). I think a little from each norm would help here so I am going to suggest elements that you may take, mold and use as you desire.

The biggest difference between what you are promoting and what I usually see in conventions and shows is the product. Guns, collectibles and even games you can (as a customer) pick up the product and hold it. It becomes real to the customer at this point.

Your product, to become real must be experienced by the customer in a different way. If I were doing this for my own series, the first thing I’d look into is getting audio and visual samples of the story ready for the customer to experience. Ipods are kind of easy to set up in this case, each having ear-pieces; cheap tablets (if I had the budget) for the visual samples…

black velvet is good for inside display cases but here it bleeds into your presentation. I’d switch to a Royal Blue or Magenta type of cloth … so going off the above I mentioned, I’d have 2 listening kiosks set up on either side and 2 viewing cubes set up with the tablets.

The main thing is to make your product real for your customer - once it is real and in their hand the connection they build can then be sold.

Anyways, back to my writing, if I can answer further questions or have further thoughts please let me know.


@Malebranche, I think you are right. Talking price that early is a bad thing. Even a small price creates a psychological barrier to closing the sale. I’ll take out the price language.

@Zolataya, I see your point about connecting the customer with the product. I do have an iPad and I’ll bring it with me with CCH loaded and ready for demo. However, my thought is that about 95% of convention goers will have their own iPhone or Android with them and could, once convinced, buy it within 10 seconds, so even though yes there is a barrier there, it’s a short one, and one that they are used to dealing with all the time.

And yeah something like a row of three tablets all lined up with CCH ready to play would look awesome but wouldn’t be cost effective (unless two other families lend me their iPads)