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Review of the 2010 MN Tile Festival


Thanks to everyone for all your hard work to put on the 2010 MN Tile festival. MN Tile Festival Logo It was another amazing festival with great art, tours, speakers, food and setting promoting handmade tile and mosaics with very nice weather (9 years running). Below are all the statistics and images from this years show and comparisons to other years.  If you have questions, ideas, or concerns please contact the HTA and we will be happy to get back to you. Check out the day of pictures at the MN Tile Festival page on facebook by clicking here and the Handmade Tile website
In This Issue
The 2010 MN Tile Festival Review
The Numbers
Thanks Norma
Thanks to our Volunteers
Next Meeting October 18th
The movie of the MN Tile Festival
Award winners
Miss out on the Commemorative Tile?
HTA directory advertising info
The 2010 MN Tile Festival Review
The 9th Annual Minnesota Tile Festival was a mix of great improvements and some disappointments.  We had a full show of artists the second year in a row and the first with out having a national tile conference that brought in more artist vendors.  The artists and vendors are more diverse than ever with the expansion of tile setters, a fireplace showroom and more designers.  That is a great sign that we are getting a more holistic body at the show for patrons to take in.  We hired a new photographer and got lots of great photos to utilize for PR throughout the year. We also hired a film maker to make a video of the show to be able to post on U tube and for PR for TV opportunities, which has already been used. The camera guy works for WCCO TV and got the show on the 10 pm news with clips he took.

Attendance was a disappointment for this year's festival. Attendance was 633, significantly down from last years 765. It is always frustrating when we work so hard to reach out to new audiences and bring in the past audiences to not see success. The major highlight though is the exit surveys which not only tell us people were amazed and delighted with the show but gave us lots of useful info on where to target for better sales for artist.  We have already started strategizing on how to capitalize on the new data. Results are are down below.

One of the constants is sales from artists have been consistent form the first year of the MN Tile Festival.  Some artist do very well, some artists do well and some do poorly.  Every year it is a different category of art that does well.  This might have to do with the variety of patrons coming to the show, different types of work shown, booth styles, salesmanship style and pricing of work. 

Our marketing of the show was a mixed bag of success and presents challenges for the future.  We laid a lot of new ground work for the future with some of the concepts like the creation of  a logo and tag line (Discover American Tile). We upgraded the show program, hired a filmmaker to film the show and create a 3 minute video of the experience that we can post on U tube and on the website, a new photographer to utilize for PR through out the year.  We also courted a lot of media and professional groups we had never approached before. Trebuchet worked angles like getting celebrities to come to the show and radio and TV to be present but it fell through at the last moments and was frustrating not to get the extra attention.  But we got a lot of new people thinking about the show that never did before now we have to convert them through out the year.

heart tiles by Cotton TileA huge bright spot was that our social media presence was amazing. It was up from last year and was the major success of driving people to the show.  Facebook and the use of our newsletter program to selected groups a month leading up to the show proved to be a great way for us to interact and track our progress.  Many of the artists utilized the tools we created in their social media posting the logo, dollar off tickets and free tickets to their peeps.  Social Media is very affordable and we got a great response. 

Thank you to all of our artists for participating and showing the community the amazing variety and selection of handmade tile, mosaics and tile art available. You can click here to visit all of the artists' websites.

Results of all data collected
The information we collected is too long for the body of  our newsletter please click the link below and you will see all of the years side by side for attendance, money made, lost, how many tickets of each category came in etc.  It is very interesting.  Tell us your thoughts and if you have any ideas on how to improve.

Results of the 2010 MN Tile Festival data click here
The Numbers
Here is where the tile festival notices were posted: Star Tribune calendar, Twin Cities Bungalow Club,  American Swedish Institute e newsletter, Tile Magazine website, Tile Heritage Foundation website, Yelp, ASI e mail blast, HTA website, many of the HTA member's websites, there were probably more but this is what we know of.
Paid advertising - MPR streaming for a month (140,000 downloads)  Tile Directory (full page ad) , postcards(5000), Blue Sky Guide (coupons), Midwest Art Fair full page ad,Summit tour ad, Spaces ad, facebook ads, google keywords.

Thanks Norma
silent auction imageSuper thanks to Norma Hanlon the tile festival coordinator.  She communicated with the artist, volunteers, laid out the booths, put the artist packets together, ran the silent auction, and took care of all the little details that came up during the event. 

Here were the questions in the survey
1. how did you hear about the show?
A. Media - 32 specific responses   71 overall
B. Friend65
C. Come every year42

2. How many years have you attended the show?

Did you buy anything?
A. Yes - 88
B. No -  84

3. If you did, was the total...
A. Over $10040
B. Under $10055

A. What was your favorite part of the show?
B. Artists145
C. Speakers8
D. American Swedish Institute70
E. Food20
G. Tours9
H. Other10

4. Your home zip code
The results 82 zip codes were recorded up from 45 last year.  8 were out of state one less than last year and we did have the tile conference going on last year.

Thanks to our Volunteers
The work that goes into the event both before, during and after is a testiment to the passion people have about this show and handmade tile and mosaics.  These people and all of the volunteers through the years are the legs of the festival.  Thanks to everyone!

diner Thanks to the American Swedish Institute and Karin Krull the ASI representatives and the countless volunteers. Karin planned the event with Josh Blanc Norma Hanlon and Lisa Trnka. They coordinated all the ASI volunteers as well as the staff Alix Hoff, Deloris Anderson, Donna Pierson, George Swanson, Gerry Anderson, Greta Jaeger, Harlan Widholm, JoAnn Swanson, Lizzie Anderson and Sylvia Myren. 

Thanks to all of the Handmade Tile Association volunteers too. Tom Hanlon, Alex Chinn, JoAnn Hendricks, Rachel Levy, Rebecca Rayman, Lara Roy, Maxine Theusch, Layl McDill and Daycia McDill.

Thanks to the Brad Benn from Edina Art Center for the Make one Take one tile workshop.  Last but not least thanks to Mosaic on a Stick for  their mosaic on a stick workshop.  Both groups were well received and people were very thrilled with their projects.

Next Meeting October 18th
Next meeting will be at Clay Squared to Infinity.
34 13th Ave NE
Minneapolis, MN 55413
612-781-6409 for directions

When - Monday October 18th
Time - 6 pm to 8 pm
Pot Luck

Review of MN Tile Festival.  If you have opinions this is the meeting you should attend.
last days to submit for the 2011 Directory.Click here to get ad rates
Concepts for the 2011 directory
Connections to other tile groups
Discuss committees for 2011

We are looking for venues to have meetings for 2011.  If you would like to host a meeting please contact the HTA to set one up.


Josh Blanc
Handmade Tile Association.LLC
Quick Links
The movie of the MN Tile Festival
2010 was the year the MN Tile Festival went Hollywood with a professionally produced film of the show.  highlights include interviews with artists, meet the president, film of the American Swedish Institute and great handmade tile and mosaics.
Click here and you can watch the U Tube movie
Award winners

Some new concepts we did this year was to have a press tent and invite the press to really engage the show and its artists.  Three staff from the Pioneer Press were charged with being the jury of the show.  They were stunned and initially overwhelmed by how much great work they saw and took over two hours to make their decisions going through the show twice to make sure they saw everything.  After a hard deliberated process they selected three artists for Best of Show Awards in the following categories. 
meet the award winners link
Sheryl Tuorila - Most Creative

Laura McCaul of Earth Wood and Fire - Most Unique

Marty Pearson - Most innovative

Having the press be involved in this way allows the organization to have a bigger impression when we send out press releases that they know what an amazing show this is and they can write to that effect.

Miss out on the Commemorative Tile?

 Special thanks to Sandre Griffen of Blue Marble Clayworks for making our 6th Annual Commemorative tile. If you wanted one please contact us and we will get one out to you.
commemorative tile image
We still have some left if you would like to purchase one click here and buy online with a credit card and we will mail it to  you. Or stop in at the HTA office or call 612-781-6409
or email.
We had three speakers this year!  We saw that many vistors came just to listen to that speaker and then discovered the show

Larry Millet

stephany eaton

Peter Solac

  Thanks to Larry Millet, Stephany Eaton and Peter Solac for their great talks.
Thanks to all of our sponsors

ASI logo

Handmade Tile Association link

Spaces logo and link


HTA directory advertising info
Advertising with
The Handmade Tile Association in 2011
Deadline October 15th
Ad rates start as low as $99
Contact the HTA today

ATNW tile festival
ATNW postcard image
Two weeks after the MN Tile Festival Josh Blanc went out to see our sister organization Artisan Tile North West Handmade Tile Festival. At the next meeting Josh will bring back his discoveries and talk about the similarities and differences of their event.  And what we can learn from each other.