Expos and craft fairs are a common sight on the Central Coast, but 805 Boutiques brings a new twist to the familiar scene. Owner Robin Peterson said she saw an opportunity to showcase direct sales and multi-level marketing businesses in the community.
Three years ago, she rented a small venue and sold spots where local sellers could share their products. Peterson admitted that her business debut produced lackluster results.
“It was terrible, no one showed up,” Peterson said, laughing. “But it was a lot of fun.”
She said that everyone agreed that there needed to be more events catering to this specific market.
The idea and business continued to grow and gain recognition. Currently, the events take place in Sunken Gardens, located in downtown Atascadero, supporting approximately 50 vendors in selling their wares. Peterson noted that the City of Atascadero made the transition to the outdoor area painless and the larger venue allows her to sell booth placements at a more competitive level.
Peterson believes her business helps the community by connecting local buyers to local sellers. Direct marketing sales generally are limited to the seller’s circle of influence — friends, family and co-workers. However, 805 Boutiques allows budding entrepreneurs the chance to broaden their limited contact range and establish a greater clientele base. She believes that helping others is just good business sense.
“There’s more than enough customers,” Peterson said. “There’s more than enough opportunity, finding our niche and being visible and reaching those people is that much easier to do if you are helping other people.”
Apart from being a business owner, Peterson also works part-time as a masseuse in a local chiropractic office and also homeschools her two children, ages 2 and 4.
“I love my kids more than anything,” Peterson said. “But being able to help others, specifically being able to help other local moms work out a part-time job and be able to stay home with their kids more, that’s probably my biggest business passion… I think that the more parents can be with their kids, the better society will be.”
805 Boutiques plans to host three events at Sunken Gardens in 2019; March 16, May 11 and a holiday event scheduled in mid-November. All the events are free to attend and this year Peterson is excited to announce food trucks being added to her business expo.
For more information, visit https://www.facebook.com/805Boutiques/