Got a trade show coming up and don’t know where to start? Here’s 10 sure-fire rules to make sure you’re “show ready.”
By Bill Wheeler
Tradeshows are always successful whether they are big or small. What is important is what you do at a tradeshow to make it successful for you. Tradeshows are a lot like networking; you will be more successful and build more sales if you go to with the attitude to build relationships and contacts not just expecting sales from each and everyone you meet. Here are 10 easy tips you can do to get the most out of your upcoming trade show.
- Set a goal for your trade show. Is it to get 10 qualified leads? Is it to get 50 names for your newsletter. Be specific and realistic about your expectations. I have attended many shows and this is a critical step.
- One of the most effective ways to succeed in a tradeshow is to do a pre-show promotion on your part. Invite people to come and see your display at the tradeshow. Maybe offer them a free gift if they bring in your promotion at the tradeshow. Invite everyone on your email list and say this is a great opportunity to view your products and services.
- Look professional with both your display presentation and how you or your staff looks.
- Draw attention to your display with give aways, multimedia demonstrations, or eye-catching graphics. Have plenty of professional promotional materials on hand to share with people visiting your booth.
- Train your staff to present your company with the best image and the most current product and service information. It is ok to say you don’t know, but be sure you share that you will find out and3. follow-up as quickly as possible while they are there or immediately after the show.
- Have an exclusive show special with a specific deadline so there is a call to action and a sense of urgency.
- Have a prize bowl. Give away a prize if they put their contact information in the bowl. It doesn’t have to be huge, just something that would entice someone to share their information. This way you have the power to contact them for future promotions and a follow-up letter/email thanking them for visiting your booth.
- Be approachable. I know this sounds obvious, but for longer shows, it can be stressful, make sure it doesn’t show. You want people to see you as inviting and friendly. If you look stressed and tired, there are plenty of other options for them to pursue. Keep in mind your goals and this is only for a fixed time, so be as friendly and outgoing as possible.
- Listen to your attendees and build a relationship. Take notes of people you meet.
- Follow up with a thank you for attending, answers to questions, etc. The host of the trade show may have a list of attendees or other vendors that you can follow-up with after the show.
Now for the Don’ts:
- Listen to your attendees and build a relationship.
- Don’t eat, drink or chat on the phone.
- Don’t chat with your associate (you can do that anytime), chat with attendees. Absolutely do not complain about the show, other vendors or attendees, it just makes you look bad.
- Don’t sit in a chair the whole time or behind your table. Mix and mingle with attendees.
- Don’t leave your display unattended, if possible, have a partner to relieve you if you have to step away for a few moments.
Making your tradeshow experience a success is easy when you look professional and are enthusiastic about building relationships. If you meet the right people it only takes one to take you to the next level. For other business and marketing tips, be sure to subscribe so you get the latest tips and tricks curated for you and delivered right to your inbox.