Enthusiasm is a great thing, but it’s not so great when it turns into pure hysteria (or something like it). If you are rushing to sell to the first person that enters your trade show booth, you have a few marketing lessons to learn. Here’s how not to scare people at a tradeshow!
Tip Number 1: people that attend tradeshows tend to be on the shy side. You’re lucky if most of these people even enter your trade show booth area – let alone sign up for something or talk to you.
Tip Number 2: do not rush over to the first person you see and aim for the hard sell. Hang back a bit, say hello, and don’t be over-zealous.
Tip Number 3: let your display do the talking for you. You don’t have to create a wild and huge display in order to attract attention. But, you do have to make sure that your trade show display sells itself.
Tip Number 4: set up something that’s interactive. If you can let a computer explain your product or service for you, you won’t have to sell anything.
Tip Number 5: tell your salespeople to calm down. If you hire people that work on commission, they will be over the top, but that’s not the way to sell. Ask people to come in, see what you have to offer, and get them to ask you questions.
Tip Number 6: work with someone that attracts attention. If you can get a popular person within your industry (an author, a speaker) to show up at your trade show display, you won’t have to sell anything. Sure, you may have to pay extra for this person’s presence, but it will be worth the extra money.
Should You Always Go Big?
The answer here isn’t as simple as you might think. Sure, bigger tradeshow booths get more attention, but that’s not always a good thing. Plus, if the show you are going to attend is filled with double-decker booths, adding another one to the mix isn’t going to help. Try to go the opposite direction that everyone else at the show is moving in. While you shouldn’t necessarily always go big, you should always work with a professional team. Why? Otherwise, your booth will look sloppy, and that certainly won’t draw people in.
It can be tough to know when you’re scaring someone away from your booth, so we recommend testing out your sales method before you get to the show. Ask your friends and family members to give you some feedback on your sales tactics. Find out if you’re selling methods are too far over the top. Learn what you’re doing wrong, and try to improve your pitch while you can. But, don’t stress over your process either. The best sales people in the business are those that are relaxed and confident without thinking too much about what they are trying to sell.
Prep in Advance
In addition to testing out your methods beforehand, try and get your product or service mentioned in a tradeshow publication. You will have to pay extra for this kind of advertising, but getting a column in a tradeshow magazine prior to an event can pay off. People reading these publications will look for your company at the upcoming show, and that’s priceless advertising.
Learn From the Best
If you’re about to attend your first show, let this one be a lesson. The more shows that you attend, the more you will learn. Try to find the person that is having the most success at the show, see what they are doing differently, and then try to copy some of those ideas. Most importantly, pay attention to the way that those people are selling, and what their trade show booth looks like. You’ll quickly see that the hard sell doesn’t always work the best, and that sometimes it’s far better to sit back and relax while letting people come to you.
If you can’t figure out why people are running away from your booth, you might be the problem. Don’t rush over to everyone that you see. Instead, take our advice and let things happen naturally. If you have a great product or service, what you’re selling will sell itself. The rest is just icing on that proverbial cake. What are your best tradeshow tips? Do you always try to sell right away? Do you have any better sales tips to offer? Let us know!