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10 Dos And Donts For Working Your Trade Show Booth

Exhibiting at trade shows requires an investment of time and money. To maximize your return, follow these 10 critical do's and don'ts of working your trade show exhibit.

Exhibiting at trade shows is an effective marketing strategy for giving your company exposure and connecting with corporate decision-makers and end users. But it comes at a cost. In addition to paying for travel expenses, you'll need to pay for your trade show exhibit and rent space in the convention hall. You'll also be spending a considerable amount of time away from your office. That's why it's crucial that you do everything possible to make the event a success.

How you work your booth at the show will play a key role in your results. Do the right things at the right time and you'll not only improve your odds of recouping your investment, but also generate an impressive return on it. Do the wrong things and the entire event might turn into a huge waste of time and money.

With that in mind, read on for the 10 most important do's and don'ts of working your trade show exhibit.

5 Things You Must Do While Working Your Booth

Put yourself in the shoes of an attendee. You're at the event to find new products, see existing suppliers, and meet new business owners. You've also been on your feet all day, so you're tired, hungry, and a little impatient. Given those circumstances, you're more likely to have a positive experience if an exhibitor does the following 5 things.

#1 - Greet Attendees

When someone stops by your trade show exhibit, welcome them. Set everything else aside and shake the person's hand. Break the ice with a question or two regarding where the individual is from and how his or her experience at the event has been thus far.

In short, make them feel glad to have visited.

#2 - Ask About Their Problems

Everyone attending the event is there for a reason. Maybe they're looking for new suppliers. Perhaps they're searching for hot new products to sell. Or maybe they have unique business-related problems for which they need to find a solution.

The only sure way to discover the reasons an attendee is visiting your booth is to ask.

#3 - Offer Valuable Information

Attendees love information as long as it's relevant to their needs and interests. Give it to them for free and you might end up winning fans.

For example, offer a free booklet containing tips that address the business challenges attendees are experiencing. Or ask visitors to sign up for a free email newsletter through which you'll send them helpful, insightful articles about their niche.

#4 - Qualify Leads

Not everyone who visits your booth will be a good lead. Some will be tire-kickers, doing basic research regarding their options. Others will merely be curious or motivated to visit by your free giveaways.

Create a process through which you qualify leads based on the urgency of their needs and their budgets. That way, you can spend the majority of your time with people who are best positioned to leverage your help.

#5 - Collect Contact Details

One of the keys to trade show marketing success is to follow up with attendees after the event. In order to do that, you must have their contact information. Start by seeking their names, phone numbers, and email addresses. If possible, find out their titles, budgets, and when they need to make a decision regarding potential solutions to their problems.

Collecting attendees' contact details should be a component of your lead qualification system.

5 Things To Avoid Doing While Working Your Trade Show Exhibit

The things you should avoid doing are just as important as the things you must do while working your booth. The good news is that they're simple and (hopefully) intuitive.

#1 - Abandon Your Booth

Emergencies aside, you should never abandon your trade show exhibit. You or an employee should be present at all times to greet visitors and engage them in conversation. Even if there is minimal floor traffic and the event is nearing its end, keep your booth occupied with staffers at all times.

#2 - Eat

Eating gives attendees the impression that you're unprepared to speak with them. The impression may be unfair, but it will still drive away would-be visitors.

If you need to eat, take a break and go somewhere else to do it.

#3 - Text Or Talk On The Phone

Like eating, texting and talking on the phone gives the impression that you're unavailable. Worse, it may also suggest to attendees that you're not interested in helping them solve their problems. That impression is likely to push them toward other exhibitors who are ready to engage and help them.

#4 - Ignore Visitors

As noted earlier, every visitor should be greeted warmly and engaged in friendly conversation. Surprisingly, many exhibitors and staffers talk with each other while ignoring attendees who are roaming their booths.

If someone approaches your trade show exhibit, that individual should receive your prompt and full attention.

#5 - Sit

Sitting seems harmless, especially if you've been on your feet the entire day. But it may suggest to the people walking past your booth that you're less than enthused about being at the event.

If there's no one around, take a few moments to let your feet rest. But stand if there are people near your booth or walking in your direction.

You're going to invest a considerable amount of money in your trade show exhibit, booth rentalBusiness Management Articles, and travel expenses. Keep the 10 basics of working your booth in mind to ensure your investment pays dividends during and after the show.

Article Tags: Trade Show Exhibit, Trade Show, Show Exhibit, While Working

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Skyline Houston offers innovative, high-quality solutions for exhibitors. Having a bold, sophisticated trade show exhibit at Gulf Coast shows can provide valuable exposure to your target audience. For the latest in portable displays, inline modular systems, and island exhibits, visit today.

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