How to Set Up Your Trade Show Boothâ€¦ and Get Noticed!
Dec 14, 2017
Trade Shows are usually hosted in large venues, like convention centers and conference rooms. There are some things you cannot control; for instance, which area your company is assigned in the room. However, the look of your space is all in your hands. With hundreds of vendors and tables set up, how do you make your booth unique?
When trying to reach potential clients or business connections, standing out in the chaos of a hundred other businesses revolves around first impressions. Your first job at a trade show is to stoke the interests of the crowd and convince them that coming over to your booth will be worthwhile and interesting. This can be accomplished with a variety of visual aids, signage, or fun music, depending on your business.
Once someone has the interest to approach your booth, be sure to engage them. Be personable and get them interested in what your business does; ask them questions about their business: Find out what they do for a living, and more importantly, why they get excited about it. They’ll most often ask you the same thing – and the longer someone stays at your booth, the more likely it is that others will gain interest in you, too.
At a trade show, it is important for your audience to interact with whatever you are selling. This gives them the opportunity to get a taste of what you offer and ask any questions they might have. It also affords you the chance to give an informal, memorable sales presentation. Do you make food for a living? Give out free samples! Is your product large or digital (photographer, architect, event planner, etc)? Bring a slide show of some of your projects! Whatever you do, think of a way your audience can experience a little slice of what you offer.
You’ll be tempted to always have your salesman game face on while manning your trade show booth. You’ve worked hard to sell yourself and your product, but tradeshows aren’t sales calls—they are a time to make connections with real colleagues in real life. Focus on starting or building up relationships with those in your field. Don’t ask, “What can they buy from me?” but rather, “How can we help each other’s businesses?”
The saying holds true that everyone loves free stuff. We always recommend bringing little giveaways to hand out to everyone who stops by. But make sure your giveaway is useful and memorable – and doesn’t get lost in the piles of generic stress balls and pens. Strive to stand out among your competition and think of a giveaway that is unique to your business!
Throughout the time of the trade show, you should be giving out as many business cards as your audience will accept, and hopefully receiving just as many in return! You might not receive immediate business as a result of your efforts, but if you make sure to follow up with a call or email to all the contacts you receive, you’ll build connections that can turn into sales. Bonus points for bringing up a talking point from your conversation at the trade show!