Last November 18-19 2017, a couple of members from the First 4 Figures Official Collectors Club volunteered to represent First 4 Figures during MCM Birmingham Comic Con, and we’re here now to listen to their story.
As we all know, First 4 Figures attended their first ever Comic Con (New York Comic Con) last October 5-8, 2017, and the team had more cons than pros to speak of when asked about their overall experience. Although the knowledge and exposure gained was priceless, F4F’s Alex Davis still felt that the entire endeavor as a whole just wasn’t economically sound. This was when F4F Official Collectors Club member, KEI MEARA (A.K.A. NANASE), had a light bulb moment.
Nanase contacted Alex and told him about how he organized a meetup with a few of the club’s members for MCM Birmingham Comic Con 2017, and suggested how he was gladly willing to volunteer as F4F’s representative during the Con. This was definitely a great idea because with the help of the community’s support, F4F is able to gain exposure across the different corners of the globe without having to attend each and every Con. And so, together with SIOBHÁN NEWTON, another club member, they were off to MCM Birmingham Comic Con to promote First 4 Figures with pride.
Nanase and Siobhán’s game plan was simple – go around the 2-day Con wearing F4F T-shirts provided by Alex and Chocks to hand out leaflets and mainly talk about the Official Collectors Club. Unfortunately, it wasn’t as easy as they thought and things didn’t go according to plan. Here are some of Nanase’s insights on their experience during my interview with him:
So, how was day one in terms of the giving of flyers?
“My honest opinion? It was tough. People don’t like flyers at the best of times (because) it can be quite intrusive. I felt that when we were approaching people, we were interrupting them from what they were doing and most didn’t want to engage in conversation with us.”
How was F4F received during the Con?
“From the people that did engage with us, (however), 99% had never really heard of F4F but really loved the products displayed on the leaflet. We met about 10 people over the whole weekend that have heard of F4F. The star of the show was Bowser though. Without him on the leaflet, it would have been extremely hard. Nintendo allowed us to hand out leaflets on their Mario Odyssey bus. Everyone that we engaged with in there loved him, so for the rest of the day, we stayed in the Nintendo booth talking to people in their queues and on the bus.”
This was for both days?
“Yeah. Occasionally when the Nintendo booth was full and everyone inside had flyers, we would go outside and canvas the area in populated spots… When we were roaming around we were trying to promote the club and engage in conversation while handing out flyers to people (that) we noticed (were) buying collectibles.”
And these people buying collectibles would entertain you?
“The people buying collectibles were the ones that mostly engaged in conversation. It was mostly small PVCs on sale there to collectors, so when they saw the resins in the picture they loved the quality... They wanted to know about the different licenses F4F had and upcoming products, mainly anime lines.”
Let’s move on to the group meeting. How was that as an experience, and what did you guys do as a group during the Con?
“It was awesome to finally meet them. We have spoken together for a few months now so it was great to be able to meet and hang out with people that shared the same passion and hobby as me. We spoke a lot about our collections and excitement for upcoming statues and TTs. We explored the Con together looking and taking in what was on offer and had lunch together. Unfortunately, we were quite busy with the leaflets and talking to the public to get involved too much with the goings on at the Con.”
Okay, I think I’m down to my last question. Would you do it again, and what would you do differently?
“I would definitely do it again as I loved being able to talk about F4F constantly for 2 days straight and it was awesome to see people show enthusiasm towards the products. As for what I would do differently, I would definitely want a booth to allow potential customers to see the products up close for themselves. It would allow for better conversation, too, as they would have approached the booth themselves. Also for the canvasing with leaflets, it would be great to direct them to my booth so they could see the products and discuss (it with) them. Oh, and stick some anime lines on the leaflet. Bowser and Nintendo saved my ass!”
And there you have it. Overall, like anyone’s firsts of anything, it was a learning experience for both the club members and First 4 Figures. Moving forward, we can only expect nothing but better things to come (assuming this were to happen again).
If there’s one thing I would like for you to remember after reading this blog is that the type of community Alex, Chockles, and the rest of the F4F family have nurtured is unlike any other, and Nanase and Siobhán’s voluntary support is irrefutable proof of First 4 Figures’ unbreakable bond with their entire community.
Are there any upcoming conventions or events in your area that you'd gladly participate in as First 4 Figures' proud representative? Let us know in the comments section below and we can definitely work out the details behind the scenes.
We would like to give a massive shout-out to Nanase and Siobhán for proudly representing First 4 Figures during MCM Birmingham Comic Con! We’ll have to wait and see Chocks’ rating of your performance.