Dan Naden

5 Things to NOT do at your company’s next trade show – Part 2

In our first part of this three-part series, we introduced the first two crucial mistakes that companies routinely make at trade shows.

Let’s continue our journey with reasons #3 and #4:

  1. Sit behind a table
    There are a few situations where I can see sitting behind a table making sense:
    a: if you are Troy Aikman (or any other famous person), and I’ve come to your autograph signing
    b: if you are a conference organizer, and I am checking in at the conference registration desk.

    Most other scenarios create an unnecessary barrier between vendor and visitor. Nothing creates a disparaging “I am vendor/you are prospect” vibe like placing a table in the middle of your booth. If you need a table to place information sheets, collateral, giveaway items, make it impossible for anyone to sit behind the table. Removing all chairs from your booth may cause some initial friction, but it ALWAYS helps engagement and quality of interactions.

  1. Wait for attendees to come to you
    It takes courage and gusto, but sometimes you might actually have to step outside your protective, comfortable, safe 10×10 booth and bring people to you. Think back to 7th grade dance. The girls were on one side of the room; the boys were on the other; it took a bold strike of confidence to walk over to the other gender’s side and make the 1st move. Be the person who takes the first step in understanding a) why did the person come to the show? b) what did he/she learn? Ask these two questions out of the gate and you remove the sleazy, used car salesman factor.

Stay tuned for our final part of this three-part series in a few weeks. You won’t disappointed by this last tip around lead quality vs. quantity.

Until next time,

Dan Naden

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