Best Practices in Trade Shows – Part II

If you have read our first part of the series, you were probably wondering what you should do during and after the trade show. Well, you arrived at the right place. Find all the answers here.

Trade shows are a fantastic way to grow your business. Don’t know how to start planning your events? Follow the right steps with our blog and get the most out of your events.

During the Show

Show Up Early

Set up the alarm as early as possible. Arrive at the floor with plenty of time to make sure the booth is set up and that you are ready to welcome your first lead. There is nothing worse than arriving at a booth and find people unprepared, still putting up banners or without the demos running.

Track Your Visitors

Hopefully, you will meet with hundreds of people. Don’t rely on your memory. It is impossible to remember every detail of every conversation. After speaking a lot of people over the course of several days, your brain simply won’t make it.

A simple solution? Take notes on the back of each business card to know exactly who you met and what you discussed. Another more sophisticated option is to use an iPad-based visitor management system, such as the iPad Receptionist. It is helpful to record the names and email addresses of everyone who visits your booth.

Follow Up Appointments

If you followed the tips of our previous blog, you should have appointed meetings at least one week before the event.

Honor those commitments. Be on time and have the meeting room or other location ready before it begins.

Pro tip: Keep an appointment database (we recommend the Salesforce CRM) to know the exact time someone is coming to meet you.

Stand Up and Be Ready

Just don’t sit behind a table. Standing with arms crossed will make your booth look closed and uninviting. Appear as welcoming as possible with a positive body language. Go out, be engaging, talk to all attendants (don’t be pushy, though!). If your booth is too small, push the table back against the booth wall and stand up, be ready.

Keep the trade show agenda on hand, to know what’s happening at any given time. If there’s a conference in any of the rooms, it would be the perfect time to schedule a break.

Don’t Leave Early

Even though they seem as endless, trade show come to an end. We know you are tired and want to leave, but fight the urge! Keep your spirit and your smiles up until the very last minute and after all the prospects have left the event.

After the Show

Follow-Up Immediately

What happens after the show is just as important as the event itself. Just sit back and ask yourself some questions: What worked well, what didn’t? What should we do differently next time? Will we attend again in the future? What did our sales team learn about the prospects’ wants and needs from interacting with them at the exhibit? Jot down this information and use it when creating your tradeshow strategies for next year.

Don’t forget to follow up with prospects right away! Ensure that they still know who you are, and are likely to respond more favorably to your follow-up offer. If same-day follow up isn’t possible, then be sure to follow up within five days. A simple automated email thanking them for visiting and offering a follow-up meeting will be good enough.

Attending a trade show is an interesting opportunity to network, learn, grow, and face-to-face marketing. If you follow these simple rules, you will be able to make the best out of them.

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