Exhibiting at a trade fair can make a huge impact for your business, and it‘s all down to how your people behave. Here’s a few things not to do.
Exhibiting at a trade fair can make a huge impact for your business. But have you spent as much effort on getting your people ready as you have on the booth or the logistics? It doesn’t matter how much you have spent on your stand, if your personnel don’t know how to behave, you may as well stay in the office.
“But,” you say, “everyone knows how to ‘do’ an exhibition. You just turn up, stand on the stand and talk to people.” So why is it, that when you walk around a show, there are some stands that just don’t give a very good impression?
Here’s a collection of our personal favourites. You’ll probably be thinking yeah, you’ll never see any of this on our stand. But think about it at the end of the week – how good an impression did you really make on visitors and passers-by?
1. Make some calls
Make the most of your time whilst on stand duty by making phone calls – visitors will be impressed by how busy you must be and can stare at the displays whilst they wait for you to finish your call.
2. Do some paperwork
Catch up with all your paperwork by setting up a portable office on the table – not only demonstrating to visitors how busy you are, but how effective your organisation is by maximising the use of its assets.
3. Catch up on the office gossip
Form a huddle with the other stand manners – it’s a great chance to catch-up with colleagues, and there’s less chance you’ll be approached by some time-wasting visitor. Good conversation topics include “The latest company cock-up”, “What’s wrong with our management?”, “Aren’t customers stupid” and “Never trust a German”.
4. Avoid talking to visitors
Use one of these two methods to get rid of visitors; a) jump on them as soon as they step foot on the carpet or b) smile at them but don’t start a conversation – they’ll wander off eventually.
5. Don’t take a lunch break
Eat your lunch whilst on stand duty – masticating is a good trick for attracting visitors.
6. Spend some time with your friends
Bump into old industry mates and invite them back to the stand for a few drinks – far more interesting than talking to potential customers.
7. Enhance your collection of random business cards
Test your memory by collecting as many business cards as possible and not noting on them what you talked about or what follow-up actions are required.
8. Entertain visitors without the need to talk to them
Give your visitors a wide-variety of literature to read whilst on the stand by leaving magazines and brochures from other companies lying around.
9. Keep housekeeping simple
Keep your stand store or cupboard in tip-top condition by using the following two procedures. For putting things in; 1) open door, 2) throw items in, 3) close door. For taking things out; 1) open door, 2) throw the stuff at the front to the back until required item is revealed, 3) close door (applying shoulder to door as needed).
10. And finally…
…Try to look miserable – maybe a visitor will take pity and come and talk to you.
Image: Trade Show PR