As we approach mid-year you have more than likely attended a Tradeshow or two this year as an exhibitor. If you have not (shame on you) you should really add several to your marketing mix for the balance of the year. Tradeshows are an excellent way to showcase your products and services, while getting some face time with clients and prospective clients. You also generate leads…if you are doing it right.
Most are NOT doing it right, and have done at least two of the Tradeshow Mistakes I have listed below…pssst, fact is you probably have make all four of these blunders.
1. The Overselling Puker
Do not exhibit at an expo or tradeshow expecting to close any sales on the spot. Your mindset should be to build relationships, educate, and listen. It’s just that simple, show interest in those that do stop by your booth. Your Tradeshow Display should tell about your products and services with a glance – so you do not need to talk about your products or services…ya it’s hard but DON’T DO IT. Ask the visitors what brings them to the expo, what is their business, listen, ask more about them…talk about them…did I mention you need to talk about them? Not about you or your products or services, do this and IF and only IF they ask about you and your services – then give them tidbit or two – don’t overdo it. Don’t ask for a meeting – DO ask for their business card to enter your drawing (eh your follow up system that is).
2. Giveaways…You Know I Was Going Here!
Everyone loves a promotional product giveaway people expect and look for them as an attendee at a trade-show. Don’t just give out Pens to everyone because they are cheap, yes pens are great and are the third most popular promo item but you need to really put some thought into what you are handing out at these shows.
Paying more per item and getting less is much more effective, a useful item that is relevant to the attendees is gold. Make the visitors to your booth earn the give-a-way, by entering your drawing – spinning to win, etc., get some excitement going at your booth.
3. Never Let Sales Staff Man Your Tradeshow Booth.
Your sales staff is always in sales mode, and if you are a solo act you probably have the same mindset when exhibiting. Take off your sales cap and don’t let your sales staff attend any tradeshow unless you have trained them NOT TO SELL. Have a meeting before each tradeshow with a plan of action so everyone is on the same do not sell program. And while on the topic of manning your booth – turn off your cell phone, ipad and any another other electronic devices that will steal your attention from visitors, it’s a huge turn off and you will lose prospective clients – you need to STAND UP, never sit and engage with everyone that makes eye contact and stops by your booth.
4. Never Following Up On Leads.
You spent hundreds, maybe even thousands to exhibit at a tradeshow and then you NEVER follow up with the leads you generate. It’s said that upwards of 80% of trade show leads are not followed up on. So why bother wasting your time and money attending an expo? You need a Marketing System that does all the work for you – leads should be followed up on within 24-48 hours, tracked and continued to be followed up with using an automated system. Tracking your leads will show the ROI (Return on Investment) for the tradeshows you attend – if you know the ROI you know if you should keep attending events of this nature or if you need to tweak your plan, your display, your give-a-ways, etc.
Now you can go book some tradeshows avoiding these four mistakes.
Leave a comment below of some tradeshow tricks that have worked for you!
To Your Success!