Saturday, June 6, 2015



Well it’s that time of year again. Summer show seasons are under way and I for one am very excited.

Today’s episode is all about the “BIG SHOW.” In fact, I’m going to do a 2-part podcast. Today is show 1 – getting prepared and having all the tools you need to show up and be successful. Part 2 will be what you do during the tradeshows as well as how you build on that momentum for the next 6 months.  My hope is regardless if you are a manufacturer, rep or showroom you’ll come away with a few tips to make it your best show season yet. 

As I mentioned earlier, it’s an important time of year for all parties involved. How you work together is a like a waltz. You must move consistently through all aspects of the dance.

It really does take a good deal of planning, but with some preparation and a strong team to help with a few logistical tweaks – your game of attack come opening day should be fantastic.

I’ve been going to tradeshows for about 13 years and always find myself walking the aisles looking for the newbies. Unfortunately, most stick out like a sore thumb. Their table placement is wrong, their booth is too dark, they may be blocking flow with a book shelf that is supposed to be merchandised… the list goes on.

I’ll kick this off with A few important tips that begin to make your to-do list about two – three months out at least if not more.

Courtesy of NY NOW
  •       Choosing a trade show 
  •       Location 
  •       The look of your booth 
  •       Making it approachable 
  •       Show specials? Everyone loves a deal, especially the ones spending the money. Retailers love to save where they can.
  •       Snacks and Drinks
  •       Offer something different, something of value. If you are a local at that tradeshow, have a cute print out of the areas must see retailers, restaurants, coffee places… etc. It’ll set you apart from another vendor who may sell something similar to you.Social Media plan of attack or reach
  •       Make all your reservations – try to always stay within walking distance
  •       Dry Run before shipping: Making sure you create a list of all items that you’d like to have in your booth. All printables, don’t leave for the last minute. Make a space to test out your booth, map out the booth before packing it up to ship.

                                                               What should you bring? 

  Pens: Always bring extras. Electric pencils are great in a pinch too.
  Bags: I love throwing a few reuseable bags in my luggage for last minute items or my lunch to carry to the show.
  Electronic Gadgets: If you have electricity in your booth. Then good for you… if you don’t due to saving costs, then make sure you bring travel chargers for your phone, laptop, etc.
  Cups: I bring my own travel mug and water bottle to refill.
  Badge Holders: I have several that I’ve collected over the years that have a pen holder and a spot for my business cards.
  Items to keep in booth: Catalogs, postcards, price sheets, folders, notepads, business cards, staplers, Square or other credit card machine device if you’d like to sell products for at once delivery, or sell the booth at the end.
  NOTEBOOK: I like a classic journal to staple retailer business cards or to write notes on anyone who visited me.
  Smartphone: I use my iPhone to take photos of badges when they forget to bring biz cards or don’t want to give me all of their info.

  Lead retrieval scanners: These are great for your first tradeshow. So often folks forget to bring business cards and you don’t want to miss a single person that came by. These are great to create your first data base.

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