The Best Way to Prepare for Your Next Trade Show
You have spent months planning for this trade show. Operations, merchandising, marketing and sales have all worked closely together to create a showstopping booth (designed and built by the award-winning experts at E&E Exhibit Solutions, no doubt), gathering the product materials, creating video, images and special show discounts to hopefully capitalize on the thousands of prospects that will attend the event.
The Worst Behavior of All
After making this investment and setting the sales goals, how is it that you don’t seem to attract the traffic? Well, it could be that you are simply ignoring those that pass your booth.
In an on-floor-interview of exhibitors during an IAEE Expo, the question was asked: “What’s the worst behavior you’ve ever seen an exhibitor do at a trade show?”
The stories were wild but they can be summed up to one unforgivable behavior: Ignoring the Prospects.
Some exhibitors were busy talking to each other and ignoring the prospects.
While others were just busy on their cell phones and ignoring the prospects.
A few had their backs to those walking by their booth.
They were…you guessed it, ignoring the prospects.
But perhaps the worst behavior witnessed was a salesperson who ignored prospects completely by sleeping at one of the desks in their booth.
Prepare for The Big Stage
Working a trade show is not like your normal work schedule. You can’t close the door to your office, take a nice long lunch or hang out at the water-cooler with your peers and rehash the GoT final episode.
Working a trade show is like being the star in a Broadway play that lasts ten hours. You are the main character. You are in every scene and the audience has come to see YOU. You need to grab that figurative microphone and put on a show!
- Make eye contact with those walking by
- Greet them warmly
- Invite them to come into your booth
- Entice them with mention of your video
- Compliment something they are wearing
- Comment on a themed hat or t-shirt they are wearing
- Offer the opportunity to sign up for door prizes
- Suggest they come in and take a moment to rest and use your trade show charging stations
- Use open-ended questions to grab their attention:
- “Would you like to learn how to never vacuum again?”
- “How important is your child’s education?”
- “What is your number one technology pet-peeve?”
Bottom line – while the hours are long and your feet will hurt – trade shows are the number one way to meet face-to-face with the largest number of prospects in the shortest period of time. It is also the best way to increase your sales leads for follow-up after the event.
Let’s face it – your company didn’t spend months of planning and thousands of dollars to send you to a trade show so that you could update your Instagram story.
Here’s hoping you are the star of the next trade show event you attend!
In the meantime, keep E&E Exhibit Solutions in mind when you are planning and designing the “stage” upon which you will shine!
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Check out our past newsletters for ideas on trade show accessories , training your sales staff, follow up and more.