Should You Cold Call or Attend a Trade Show?

Should You Cold Call or Attend a Trade Show? Banner

No matter how you slice it, you have to market your product in order to sell. For most companies, that means cold calling when you’re in the startup phase, and hiring sales people to call for you when you reach a certain profit point. Setting up a booth at a trade show (a portable trade show display or a larger one, it doesn’t matter) is another way of selling, but (in many ways) this kind of selling is much more effective than going the cold calling route.

Should you choose trade shows over cold calling? Not necessarily; the best course of action is to combine both cold calling and trade show events in order to successfully sell your product. If you haven’t attended a show before, though, here are the main reasons why some business owners (and prospective clients) greatly prefer the tradeshow floor to picking up the phone and dialing a stranger.

Advantages of the Trade Show

Do you know why most of the world’s biggest companies fly people to meet prospective clients in other cities? Why waste this money and time when you can just as easily jump on a program like Skype or start a Google Group? Because you can’t replace that in-person connection and feeling. So, let’s start there.

1. You can connect with people in person. You can shake hands, create eye contact, smile, and, you know, do all of those other human-type things.

2. Your market is in front of you. Cold calling means going through a few people before you find the person that you need to actually sell to. People that are interested in what you’re selling already attend trade-shows, so all you have to do is sell properly.

3. You have the chance to educate people at a trade show. Anyone taking the time to attend a trade-show is there to learn more about the product you sell or the business you’re in. Use these events as a sort of teaching platform, and you’ll show people what it is that you do best.

4. You can weed people out easily. If you set up your marketing properly, you can easily weed out those people that aren’t really interested in what you’re selling (the browsers).

 Why Combine the Two

 After attending a show and getting a bunch of contact details for prospective clients, you have to follow those leads up with a phone call. While these calls aren’t technically cold calls, they are considered “warm calls,” but you’ll still have to make those calls. You can break the ice at a trade-show, invite people into your booth to chat and learn more about your business, and then follow that small conference up with a phone call that will hopefully lead to more business.

Of course, this all depends on the products that you sell. If you’re just selling t-shirts, for example, you’ll sell the product right at the show, and you may not need to follow up with a call right away. But, you’ll still be able to capture all of the contact details you need at the show that you attend, and that means you’ll have more information than you would with a simple phone call. See how shows and calling go hand in hand?

Getting Them to Your Booth

Which scenario do you trust more:

1. A guy stands outside of a booth with a clipboard and asks people to fill in their name, phone number, and address.

2. A guy stands inside of a booth that draws people in. He shakes hands and talks to visitors, and he points them towards an interactive display where they can play around, explore the product, and see what his business is all about. After that, he offers them an iPad and a chance at a drawing if they fill in their name and phone number.

As you can see, scenario number two is the better one. Why? Because people trust companies that have customized displays (even if those are used exhibits) that include interactive elements – it just makes sense. So, how do you get there? You have to start with a great display (portable trade show displays or otherwise) that really showcases what your company is about.

That’s where we come in. Blazer designs custom booths and used exhibits for any company seeking to attend a trade-show. Whether you run a Fortune 500 or you are just starting out, your booth matters. From portable trade show displays to use exhibits, we do it all.

Give us a call today to see what we can do for you!


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