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Do Like the Boy Scouts (If They Were Exhibitors)

The president of our company was at Exhibitor2012 last week. As you can imagine, this show is a big deal for us; we get to meet with display manufacturers face to face and see what new products they’re developing. As he walked the aisles, the president noted that, at some booths, the staff seemed to know little if anything about the product. Other booths were crowded with too many staffers – who stood around chatting with each other. “What a waste of time and money,” he thought.

Going to a tradeshow is often a good thing. Going without a plan, however, is the equivalent of making a bonfire with $100 bills. If you’re going to spend the time, money and man-hours at a expo, you want some ROI. It won’t just fall into your lap – you have to make it happen. Make it happen by being prepared. The Tradeshow 101 pages of our web site offer a wealth of helpful information in this area.

The page is named such because this section starts with very basic definitions and types of displays, then graduates up to strategy and follow-up. Our clients are not all seasoned expo veterans, so starting with the basics is important.

Announce that you’ll be exhibiting at the show!


We’ve observed that the one thing just about all exhibitors could improve on is training their booth staff. It’s really the only way to achieve your goals at the show. You do have goals, don’t you…? Yes, you must have goals – meet new prospects, launch a product, build your image, schedule meetings with clients, enter a new market, etc. Whatever the goal may be, it cannot be achieved solely with a nice-looking display. It’s about people – your booth staff and their interaction with attendees. Remove the face-to-face interaction, and you may as well take out ads in the trade mags.

The human interaction is the catalyst for achieving your goals – just the tip of the proverbial iceberg; many steps (in addition to training!) must be taken in advance of the expo to help make this happen, such as logistics planning, promoting your presence, etc. This helps to drive traffic to your booth.

Plan your Trade Show Checklist take steps to reach those goals, and above all, do your follow ups. Make every tradeshow dollar count by setting clear goals and training your staff on how to achieve them.




About Joan Weis