12 Tips For Trade Shows

This past weekend I had my first trade show booth at Mefest, a local women’s show held twice a year. It was a busy, exciting time and I learned a few things in the process.

  1. Wear comfortable shoes.
  2. Make sure you have plenty of water since you’ll be talking most of the time.
  3. Have large print visuals. It seemed a lot of people liked to examine from a distance before they decided to approach the table.
  4. Smile and speak cheerfully. Not easy when your feet hurt, but necessary.
  5. Don’t cross your arms, especially if you’re standing up. It sends an unfriendly vibe to people.
  6. Stay behind your table, unless you’re giving out treats. I found that some people acted as though I was about to pounce unless I sat behind the table.
  7. Some people won’t be interested. Instead of wasting time trying to convince them they need your product or service, realize that not everyone is your target market. Then focus your energy on the few that do want to hear more.
  8. I don’t know about you, but I hate pushy salesman. People love to shop, but they hate to be sold to.
  9. Try to keep conversations at your booth off to one side so that people can still see what you have on display.
  10. The most popular booths were the ones that allowed potential clients to be involved in some way. How could you interact with the people who stop by?
  11. Think about the type of people who will attending before you commit to a trade show booth. For instance, a show for seniors probably wouldn’t bring you many possible clients if your business was a nightclub. Or a show for new moms might not be the best venue to attract business coaching clients.
  12. Have fun – people will be attracted to your enjoyment.

There you have it. Twelve things I’ve learned as a new exhibitor. I did have fun and I’m looking forward to the next event I can be involved with. It was a lot of work, but I contacted about sixty potential clients. All in all, a good use of my time.

Please share your experiences as a trade show exhibitor, I would love to hear about them.

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