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16 Must-Follow FaceBook Pages for Trade Show Exhibitors and Marketers

You can find everything for your next trade show experience online on a FaceBook page. If you have a business and need to showcase your products, make connections and find distribution you can get notices on events in exotic locations or close to home. Or you can get the 411 on how to put on your own trade shows to bring opportunities for local companies to your area. For all of the information you need on fabulous trade show events and companies here are 16 must-follow pages focusing on various aspects for exhibitors and marketers.

Trade Show Marketing

This is a great site to find tips and hints for making the most out of your trade show experience.

Bahama Trade Shows

We all need a vacation now and then. Why not make going to trade shows a way to mix business with pleasure? This site features trade shows in the sunny and luxurious Bahamas. So, pack the bikini and get ready to hit the beach in between business networking at the shows.

Internet Trade Shows

Want to make business connections without ever leaving the house? That’s my style. For internet entrepreneurs, this FaceBook page that showcases Internet Trade Shows is a great page to bookmark.

Dazzle Me Trade Shows

If hosting trade shows is your forte, sites like Dazzle Me Trade Shows are helpful contacts to have. This is one of the pages hosted by companies that can help you put together your next great event.

ASDT Trade Shows

ASDT is an actual trade show for anyone with products or services to promote. It hosts its event in the exciting city of Las Vegas, Nevada. Keep up with all of the information to prepare to visit this high-powered show.

Women’s Trade Shows

Okay, us girls have to stick together and this blog is a great place to start. Focusing on trade shows that feature feminine products and companies owned by women, it gives the ladies an edge on business connections.

Silver Spur Trade Shows

Silver Spur Trade Shows is another company that can help you host your own show. They have a lot of experience to put into making your trade show fabulous.

Parker Trade Shows

Parker Trade Shows is great for anyone with jewelry and accessories to sell. They host four events per year in Texas.

Star Trade Shows

Star Trade Shows is an all around event planner. A large scale trade show promoter can help you in so many ways. They do all the hard work, so all you have to do is enjoy the spectacle.

O’Loughlin Trade Shows

This is another great trade show promotion company that can put together an event for your company. They even have an app for that! Download their app to keep up with their events and plan trips to various events.

TradeKey Trade Shows

You have to friend this page to find the information on various worldwide trade shows all over the world. It’s worth it if you like to travel and want to visit exotic locations while showing off your business.

Trade Shows, Events and Markets in Alberta

Okay, here you go. This is another great site to find trade shows and take a vacation at the same time. Visit one of the many Alberta, Canada trade shows to showcase your business and take in the amazing culture and beauty of Canada. It may share a border with us, but Canada is a whole different world.

Midwest Apparel Trade Shows

If you live in the Midwest like I do, and want to find trade shows for clothing and apparel distribution that are close to home, check out the Midwest Apparel Trade Shows.

Trade Shows Alerts and News

The name says it all. This is a page set up to get you up-to-the-minute information on the latest news on the trade show industry.

Asia Trade Shows

It’s hard to argue that Asia has the stranglehold on tech and manufacturing. If you want to travel, get the latest info on trade shows in this power location right here on their FaceBook page.

Trade Show Emporium

Get your stuff together and have a great presentation for your next trade show by visiting pages like the Trade Show Emporium on FaceBook where you can find information on the shows they attend as well as get banners and signage for your booths.

5 Clichés About Trade Show Booths You Should Avoid

Trade shows can be really fun, both as a vendor and as a guest. My first advice is if you’re going to be a trade show vendor go to a show beforehand and see the place in action. Who’s getting sales? What colors are common? Approach booths and you’ll quickly find out what you want to avoid as clichés run rampant. You’re almost guaranteed to see or hear some of these well-worn tired clichés. If you want to make a good impression and not send potential customers running and screaming from your booth, read on for the worst offending clichés and avoid them. Your business depends on it!

Don’t ask stupid questions.

“Can I help you?” and “Are you enjoying the show today?” are just a couple phrases used so much they are meaningless. My head hurts at the end of the day from rolling my eyes so much. Help me with what, exactly? I would love help cleaning my house, thanks. And yes, I am enjoying the show today. Are you here to ask mundane questions or try to convince me I cannot live another moment without your product? First impressions are everything.

Giving out meaningless samples, like candy.

Unless you’re a homemade candy company, of course. But if you’re marketing accounting software or all natural pet products, candy has nothing to do with your booth and is simply a waste of money. For a pet company, try a dog biscuit sample with your business card in a clear bag tied with a ribbon.

Overdoing the display with bright colors, patterns, music, etc.

I’ve walked right by these eyesore booths in trying to save myself a massive headache. Yes, you do want to stand out with unique colors, maybe a different feel than the common black and orange/red/green/insert neon color here. Try a more relaxed scheme like you’d see in your own home. Sage green and dark purple would make an interesting display and stand out from the modern, high-tech vibes so common in trade shows. Music might be okay for your booth in some instances, but always make sure you can easily talk with your potential customers!

“Cry for Attention Gimmicks”

People dressed in spandex bodysuits dancing, jugglers, a clown and monkey jumping on a pogo stick. You get my drift. We’ve all seen the extreme shows that some vendor inevitably hires in hopes to attract attention, often with lines that make us cringe. Cue the clown and monkey on the pogo stick- “Hop on over to Mimi’s Mums now!”.

Body language

Resist the urge to pull up a chair and chat with a colleague. If you need to sit down, go somewhere else for a few minutes. Think about it. Are you more likely to go up to a booth with vendors slouched in chairs with their feet up, or a vendor standing casually while smiling and being attentive? It may seem like a no-brainer, but please do not read, talk or text on your phone, use foul language, overdo the perfume or cologne, or eat, drink, or chew gum while in the booth. I have personally seen every one of these and it gives off a very unprofessional vibe. If the vendor doesn’t care enough about their product, why should I?

Unfortunately, clichés will always exist. Don’t fall victim to their lure. Be creative, don’t talk like a robot, and be yourself. Let your passion for your product take over and just talk to people. If you let your passion show through, that will gain more customers than any cliché ever will.

14 Common Misconceptions About Trade Shows

Trade shows are places where people meet to talk about products, or find new ways to squeeze more profit out of their existing systems. The problem with trade shows is that they have gotten a reputation for being expensive, while not giving back a good return on investment. Trade shows are only a waste of money for those people who are held back by the common misconceptions surrounding trade shows. Once you learn the truth, then you feel like you have learned a great secret to making more profit.

You always need a booth at a trade show.

This misconception is something that I can understand, but that does not make it right. You do not need a booth to succeed at a trade show. A nice conference / hotel room where you can set up business meetings will be just fine for your purposes.

It is all business at a trade show booth.

Business may be your reason for being at the trade show, but the attendees want to see something exciting before they will talk to you. Light shows, celebrities and giveaways are essential for trade show success.

All I need is to introduce my new product to get an audience.

Once the “ta da!” effect of a new product wears off, your booth foot traffic will start to fall off. Do not rely on just your new products to bring in people. Use gimmicks and familiar products as well.

I need my best people staffing my booth.

No, you need people who are knowledgeable and friendly to staff your booth. If your top engineer is a miserable old guy who hates people, then he should not be working your booth. You are better off spending time doing intense product training on your more outgoing employees than trying to convince miserable people to be nice to potential customers.

Every person at my booth is a potential customer.

Some people at trade shows are there to talk business, while others are just there to kick the tires. After you have been to enough trade shows, you learn to tell the difference and develop ways to focus on the buyers and let the tire kickers do their thing.

I must be as energetic as possible to get people to come to my booth.

The key to getting foot traffic at a trade show booth is to do things that attract people. Light shows and big, booming announcements work great. If you plan on “working the floor” by trying to talk to people as they walk by, then all you are doing is being annoying and people will purposely avoid your booth to avoid talking to you.

There is no such thing as partners at a trade show.

Wrong! Some of the most successful trade show presenters work hand-in-hand with partner companies to drive more traffic and get better results.

Attractive booth staff is overrated.

Ask yourself if you would prefer to talk to an attractive person (male or female), or someone who looks like they haven’t showered or been to the dentist in months.

A complicated booth makes customers want to learn more about my company.

A complicated booth makes potential customers walk away from your booth and head over to the booth that a competitor’s booth that is easier to understand.

Eh, those pamphlets from last year are fine.

All of your trade show handouts need to be brand new and customized for that trade show. If you don’t care about how your pamphlets look, then customers won’t care either.

I’ll just set up for the last day of the trade show, when everyone is there.

If you do not plan on setting up for an entire show, then don’t bother wasting your time or money.

These cute toys will make popular giveaways.

When I go to trade shows, I look for the giveaways that I can use after the show is over. Canvas bags, water bottles and pens always make great giveaways because people will use them after the show is over, and that increases your marketing return on investment.

I’m going to set up at this trade show that is not part of my industry because none of my competitors will be there.

There is a reason why your competition is not setting up at trade shows that are out of your industry, and they are the same reasons why you should avoid those shows as well.

I never set up a trade shows because they are a waste of money.

You know that competitor of yours who is always making great industry contacts and always beating you out for the big deals? That competitor goes to trade shows and takes the business that you leave on the table. That is why every successful company invests the time and effort into trade shows.

What’s Holding Back the Trade Show Industry?

The Trade Show Industry: Its Biggest Problems And Simple Fixes

Trade shows can be a great boost for your business—new leads, networking with others, and high visibility are all results from a good show.

But we’ve all been to that one show: the one where people who are supposed to be coordinating are wandering around like they’ve been lobotomized, no one seems to know where anything is, and you’re pretty much left to fend for yourself. Most of us have enough experience to handle situations like this, but it does make the industry look bad.

There are some solutions, though—not just for trade show planners, but for attendees as well.

1. Spring for the right personnel if you’re planning a trade show.

Don’t just throw an ad in the paper or on Craigslist for warm bodies; take the time to hire people who are used to thinking on the fly and have management experience. Theater arts majors from your local college are perfect for this sort of thing. You might pay a little more, but it’s worth it to provide a good experience for your guests. Bad reviews, on the other hand, can spread like wildfire.

2. Don’t cut corners.

This applies both to trade show planners and exhibitors. If you’re going to be visible, do it right. Nothing looks worse or sadder than a show or booth that appears to be an advertisement for the local dollar store’s decorations aisle. Take the time to plan out what needs to be done and spend the money to do it.

3. Follow up after the show.

If you’re in charge of the trade show, check in with the people who were at the show and ask them about their experience. If they respond with generally good reviews and some suggestions, you’re doing your job well. If their responses contain lots of profanity, it’s time to rethink your approach.

If you have a booth, remember to follow up on your leads from the show. Just because you gave them printed materials doesn’t mean they’ll automatically remember you; keep in mind that you’re not the only company there. Make sure that you get contact information and follow up either by e-mail or even old-fashioned snail mail.

4. Make it simple.

Again, this applies to both organizers and exhibitors. Don’t make dealing with potential customers harder than it has to be. For organizers, streamline the process as much as possible; don’t make signing up for a booth like doing corporate tax forms. Make the system clear and make sure that there’s a specific contact person in case someone begins to panic. Most problems can be solved very quickly if your contact is on top of their game.

For exhibitors, remember that you don’t need a lot of information for a lead—just basic information. If they’ve stopped by your booth, it’s because they’re interested in your product. So don’t drive them away by turning it into an interrogation for their life story. Get their info, be friendly, and talk about your product.

Trade shows can be great for both organizers and companies, but they can also make the DMV seem like Disneyland if done wrong. With basic planning and coordination, the experience can be pleasant rather than horrific making it better for everyone involved.

Seven Little Changes That’ll Make a Big Difference With Your Trade Shows

Trade shows are an excellent way to take your product from production to a household name. It’s like a fashion show. Your product must make an entrance or establish a presence at the trade show to make an impact on the world. To make this happen, you must know what people are looking for to impress them and make your product stand out. Here’s what I suggest based upon what my past experiences with trade shows.

1. Always Involve Top Management in the Planning Process

If you involve top management in the planning process, you’re more likely to get better results at the trade show. Upper management often knows what the public is seeking because they study market research, and they know the latest. If you involve them in the process, you’re more likely to make the sort of appearance that’s worthy of attention.

2. Prepare and Plan for Major Trade Shows

Keep in mind that planning properly for a trade show can take between 12 and 18 months. If you want to be a leader at the trade show, you have to prepare in advance to make a statement at the show. This means planning your display and how your product will be demonstrated and displayed.

3. Hire Friendly and Personable People to Promote Your Product

You should hire people who can promote your product. These people should have a genuine enthusiasm for your company and the product. Keep in mind that the best person to promote your product may not be the most experienced person, but it could be the biggest cheerleader for your product. Be certain the person you choose will be enthusiastic, energetic, and engaged throughout the entire trade show.

4. Use Product Demonstrations

Product demonstrations will attract a crowd. They will keep your audience engaged and help them understand how your product will benefit them in the future. This is your time to shine, and you want to make sure that everyone understands your product and its use after each demonstration.

5. Be Aware of Espionage Practices

Though we don’t like to think about it, it is a reality that espionage occurs frequently. You must know how to defend against it because it’s bound to occur. Trade shows are a place to display your best, but don’t lose your edge to the competition.

6. Know How You’ll Gather Hot Leads

You should know how you’re going to handle leads and prospects that you get during the trade show. Always have a strategy for turning leads into sales.

7. Designate a Person to Act as a Trade Show Manager

If you have a person who is your designated person to handle trade show management, you’re more likely to have a successful experience. This person should ensure that your team knows what they should be doing during an event and when someone is speaking. They will know when your should be getting leads and working the crowd and when you should be promoting the company’s name and image.

Seven Changes You Can Make to Make Your Trade Show a Hit

Once you make these changes, you’ll have a step ahead of the competition. You just have to implement the tips and monitor progress throughout the show to ensure that you get the best outcomes possible. It’s not difficult, but it does require persistence. Get out there and show us how to create the best trade show experience possible.

12 Reasons You Should Invest in Trade Show Booths

A trade show is also sometimes called an expo. These shows give your business the chance to do many things and help your company grow. Here’s how:

1. Promote Products

There are many people that have probably heard of your company but don’t know much about it. A trade show lets you explain what your products do and why they need them. The more they know, the more likely they are to use you.

2. Advertise New Products

Companies are always trying to come up with new ideas. A trade show is a great place to advertise your new products and to get the attention of people who are visiting the expo.

3. Demonstrate Services

Instead of just seeing a picture or reading a brochure, people at an expo want to see a demonstration of what you do. An expo will give you the opportunity to show your customers exactly what you can do for them.

4. Promote Company

Instead of advertising actual products and services, you can use the trade show to promote your company in general. Give away items such as pens, bracelets, or t-shirts just to get your name out there.

5. Get New Customers

At a trade show, you want to be friendly and outgoing to people who visit your booth. You can gain a lot of new customers by making new connections. Get emails, phone numbers, or sign people up for special promotions.

6. Make Professional Connections

It is sometimes helpful to meet people who are in the same or a related industry. You can form a relationship with other business owners, and this can be beneficial for both parties.

7. Secure Investors

There are some people who go to trade shows to find businesses they can invest in. If your company needs an investor, an expo is a great place to look.

8. Get Ideas

While you are at the trade show, take the time to visit other booths yourself. You can get ideas of things for your business and see what other companies like yours are offering. You can also get ideas of how to do a successful trade show by seeing how other people run their booths.

9. Find Employees

You can use a trade show kind of like a job fair. If you are looking for a new employee(s), you can talk to people about this while they are checking out your booth. If someone is interested, you can get all his information and set an appointment to meet with him.

10. Help Customers

You can make special offers to your past or current customers at the trade show. You could do special drawings or contests that they can win by visiting and participating in the expo. This gives customers a feeling of inclusion and a chance to win great prizes.

11. Get Attention

At a large trade show, chances are good that there will be at least one other business just like yours. This is your chance to stand out about the others and gain attention for your company.

12. Speak

Some trade shows let each vendor have time to speak and make a public presentation. This gives you a chance to reach even those people who don’t stop at your booth.

As you can see, investing in a trade show booth can do great things for your company as long as it is done the right way.

Where Will Trade Shows Be 1 Year From Now?

Fear Not for the Future of Trade Shows

What does the near future hold for trade shows? While conflicting opinions exist regarding what lies ahead for trade shows, optimists have the right idea. Technology is changing the game for sure. Embracing advances in technology and how it relates to progressing trade show platforms is what is keeping innovative companies ahead of the game.

No, the Sky is not Falling

We have heard countless industry insiders sound off about how Internet access to reviews and new product press releases equates to the demise of the trade show. That is simply not the case. While reading reviews and product descriptions online gives buyers an idea of a product’s worth, it does not take the place of a personal introduction to the product. Even when evaluating service industries, putting a face to the resource lends to increased trust in the brand. If the information superhighway is an enemy to the trade show industry, we must embrace our adversary.

Cavorting with the Enemy

You love the Internet. I love the Internet. What has sparked our love affairs? We like feeling powerful, and knowledge is power. I like stats and facts being only as far away as my smartphone. What I like more is knowing something my neighbor John does not know or being privy to a deal he cannot obtain. Just as our childhood daydream was to have the shiniest bike, our adult aspiration is to have just a little bit more than our counterparts when it comes to information and technology.

Wise marketers take advantage of this fact by offering something extra to trade show attendees. And I don’t mean the traditional raffles that people easily glide by at booths. Give them something unique such as a first glance at new industry advances or financial incentives that are unavailable anywhere else. Once these benefits are outlined, it is time to hit social media like a bug to a windshield and promote the pants off the exclusivity being lavished on attendees. This creates hype. Hype creates conversions. Thank you, Internet.

Take it one step further and spread the word via social media, company blogs and newsletters about guest speakers and special events at the show. Why not? The more benefits touted pre-show, the more eager beavers will be donning walking shoes and toting notepads to get the insight their competitors are not being afforded.

Build it, and They Will Come

Set up and teardown of exhibits are not fun. I am not in the business of pretending otherwise. What I do know, however, is that with products designed for easy setup and teardown, the task is far less mundane and tedious. Lightweight plastic interlocking pieces that create engaging and aesthetically pleasing displays simplify the job of representing your brand with class.

With uncomplicated exhibitions showcasing your product while inviting potential leads to come take a look, you are ensured more conversions. After a weekend of nonstop schmoozing, nobody wants to dismantle heavy construction. Truth be told, after a long weekend, all we can think about is packing up, getting our weary feet elevated and catching our Sunday night guilty pleasure on television.
Rather than fearing the future of trade shows, we should collectively celebrate the evolution of these events that will continue to introduce products and services to target markets. Embracing the changes allows us to utilize the Internet rather than deeming it our Achilles’ heel.

13 Things About Trade Show Exhibits You May Not Have Known

Are you ready for your next trade show? You may be surprised that pulling off a successful booth isn’t as easy as it looks. Here’s 13 things you might not know about trade shows – but should.

#1: You’re Actually Expected to Work.

Depending on how many helpers you have, you could be doing most of the work yourself. You may fancy yourself a salesperson and a people-person, but you also have to be a builder, designer, manager, and custodial crew all rolled into one.

#2: Travel Gets Old Fast.

Jetting to some exotic hotel event center sounds like a nice break from the standard office routine, but you might start longing for home when you have back-to-back shows around the country. Pack a travel pillow and a few good books so you can enjoy your downtime on the plane – it may be all you get for awhile!

#3: Watch Out for Fair-Weather “Helpers.”

You may find yourself with a lot of volunteers willing to help you when the next trade show is in sunny Orlando, but the don’t expect many volunteers for shows in the flyover states. Even if you do get helpers, they may be more interested in the hotel pool than in the newest company display boards.

#4: That Budget Isn’t as Big as You Think.

Before you start plotting those display upgrades, keep in mind even a large budget is going to disappear quickly. Better to spend it on promotional items first, and then buy the fun stuff.

#5: The Longest Distance Between Point A and Point B is between your booth and the Entrance.

To make matters worse, drayage costs have doubled over the years, so some of your budget will just go toward having your display moved. If you luck out, you won’t have to use the drayage provided and can make due with your own dollies and carts.

#6: You’re More Shy Than You Thought.

If it’s your first show, you may be surprised that it’s hard to be as outgoing as it is at your home store. The reason is simple – people are often talking and visiting as they walk through a trade show. At first, it seems almost rude to interrupt them. Put this fear behind you and begin approaching all those potential customers.

#7: Standing On Tradition Isn’t Always Worthwhile.

If you just took over your company’s trade show list, you may be shocked to find out a few of them never seem to bring in much new business. Don’t be afraid to research new shows and recommend show circuit changes. It may breath new life into your leads.

#8: Always Take More Than You Need.

This goes for everything – promotional materials, brochures, pens, paper towels. If you can run out of it, you will. Having extra just means you won’t need to purchase as much for the next show.

#9: Don’t Forget Plan B.

Always have a backup plan. If your demo model breaks, you better have a new one waiting in the wings. If your number is misprinted on the brochures, you better be ready with blank labels to cover it up. Plan for everything, and be prepared to recover on the fly.

#10: Gimmicks Get Leads.

You may think no one ever signs up for drawings or contests, but you’d be surprised how many leads these most basic of gimmicks can generate. Be creative, come up with something new that really makes your company stand out.

#11: Mind the Staff.

You probably know to train your staff fully on the product. They probably know to be polite. The problem happens when they talk to the cute girl at the booth next door while potential customers stalk off frustrated.

#12: Watch for Common Missteps – after the show.

The shows over and your display survived the thousands of people that tramped through it everyday. Don’t rest yet! Most damage happens after the show. It’s easy to break something when you’re rushing through your display break-down so you can get home.

#13: Don’t Forget to Follow Up!

A successful show isn’t measured by how many leads you got, but by how many leads you can close. Don’t forget to contact all your leads, preferably within two weeks of the show.

15 Things Your Boss Wishes You Knew About Trade Show Booths

Being part of a trade show offers a company the opportunity to market itself to a wider range of customers. The experience also helps the company to gain higher visibility within an industry, which allows it to reap the benefits from a larger number of contacts. Here are a few tips you should know about trade show booths that can help you to maximize the success of your presentation:

1– Manage Your Budget Carefully

Attendance at a trade show can be a big expense for a small company. Ensure that your budget covers all the necessary items without excess padding. Keep a realistic eye on shipping and transportation costs. Never use the trade show as an opportunity to pad your expense account; it only hurts the company if you are significantly over budget.

2 – Focus Your Booth’s Message

Your company may offer a wide range of products or services. Trying to enumerate everything it offers can be confusing and off-putting. Stick to a few key concepts that will help attendees to remember your company, and let them explore further after the show.

3 – Prepare Carefully

Take time with your set-up and materials to ensure you present an organized and competent image when interacting with show attendees. Try to anticipate attendees’ needs.

4 – Meet New Suppliers

A trade show presents not only a chance to acquire new customers, but also a chance to learn about new suppliers that can offer better prices. Be alert to these opportunities and get information for your company.

5 – Project The Best Possible Image For the Company

If your company has chosen you to present at a trade show, understand that you are representing the company’s interests in all that you do. Groom carefully, dress neatly and keep your behavior, both at the show and after-hours, within reasonable limits.

6 – Use A Gimmick To Get Attention

A laptop computer provides endless opportunities to use PowerPoint, images, music and other features to draw visitors to your booth. Offer something unusual to get their interest.

7 – Avoid Clutter

Spend time throughout the day keeping your booth looking organized and clean. Heavy traffic can make a mess of booth area. Use the time in-between rushes to get your booth back into shape.

8 – Manage Last-Minute Problems

Understand that attendance at a trade show offer a variety of opportunities for things to go wrong. When your presentation is damaged or your suit is ruined, be ready to handle the emergency calmly.

9 – Engage Your Audience’s Senses

Your booth should be colorful to be visually interesting and have sample to examine for tactile opportunities. Try to engage attendees’ senses in as many ways as you can to attract their interest.

10 – Choose A High-Traffic Location at the Show

Sign up for the show early so that you can get a good location on the floor. A spot that has high traffic will allow you to make more contacts than one on the fringes in the back of the room.

11 – Have A Sufficient Number of Materials on Hand

Make sure you have a sizeable amount of brochures, business cards, promotional items and other materials on hand so that you can make the most of the traffic near your booth.

12 – Collect Business Cards

When speaking with interested parties, ask for a business card so the company can send additional information to them at a later time.

13 – Make Contact With Media

If you see media wandering around the show looking for interesting shots, make contact and talk about your company and what they do. Have something positive and insightful about the show that will get you a quote in an article that will also get a mention of your company.

14 – Give Attention To Current Customers

When a current customer stops by to say hello, take the time to engage with them fully to cement the relationship. Find out if their needs are being met properly.

15 –Get the Mailing List of Attendees

Most trade shows offer a list of pre-registered attendee, either free or for a small price. These lists can be good reference materials for sales throughout the year.

What NOT to Do With Your Trade Show Booths

Trade shows are an excellent way to get the word out about your company and find new customers. Unfortunately, some exhibitors don’t get the results they anticipated. Avoid these common mistakes that make your experience at a show more stressful and jeopardizes your chances of getting as many visitors to your booth as possible.

Don’t Bring Booths That Are Difficult To Set Up

Don’t invest in trade show booths that have a bazillion pages of instructions. Look for display booths that are easy to assemble, so you don’t have to waste valuable time trying to get your display up. If you can snap together your booth quickly, you will have time to walk around and scope out your competitors before the show starts.

Beg, borrow or steal space to set your trade show display before attending the show. You’ll know if you have everything and you’ll know how long you will need to get ready.

However, there’s a much more important reason to set up your booth before the big day. Put up your banners, just temporarily, and walk past the booth. How long did it take you to walk by? It probably took you just a few seconds to walk by your booth. This is how long you’ll have to grab people’s attention, which brings us to the next thing you should never do with your trade show booth.

Don’t Overload Your Booth

Pick one or two messages to get across at the trade show. You might want new leads, to make sales or to introduce a new product. Focus on one or two ideas and then have your booth’s graphics and literature focus on these goals. Don’t overwhelm people with 50 different messages as they walk past; keep it simple.

Don’t Make Your Booth a Blinking Nightmare

Trade shows are often loud and chaotic. Make your booth seems like a sanctuary to weary attendees. Have room for leads to sit down while you talk to them. Avoid garish blinking lights, unless you happen to distribute blinking lights. A trade show is not a carnival. It’s really tempting, especially at your first trade show, to do everything possible to get passersby to notice your booth.

Don’t Haphazardly Staff Your Booth

Don’t pick employees to staff your booth based on who will work weekends. Take your most experienced employees to the trade show, ones who excel at customer service and sales. You don’t want a great lead to walk up to your booth and see an 18 year-old cramming a sandwich in his mouth. Be willing to shell out extra money to get your best people to staff your display. While family members may volunteer to come to the show and help out, don’t use them unless they are very familiar with your company. If you don’t staff your booth with the right people, you’re just wasting your time and money.

You have only one chance to make a good first impression at a trade show. Don’t blow it by making any of these mistakes.

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