Trade Show Tips for Small Businesses | Podcast #1

Trade Show Tips for Small Businesses | Podcast #1

Hi I’m Tina and this is the trade show
planning podcast, the creators of Trade show Basecamp. If you haven’t already,
click Subscribe below to find our channel quickly and to get notifications
when a new podcast becomes available. In this podcast, I’ll be sharing some of
trade show planning dot com’s top trade show tips for small businesses. From training
booths staff to budget signage tips, I’ll be covering the secrets to having a
profitable trade show. Like many small businesses, budget is probably an issue
for your trade show planning. For 10 by 10 exhibit space also known as an inline
space, many small businesses love retractable banner stands and pop-up
displays. These signage products are more affordable and also easier and cheaper
to transport than other branded booth properties. Even a single large
retractable banner stand can cost $300 or more. For this reason I recommend that
you always plan your signage with reusability in mind. Specifically you
want to design your signage with generic messages and stable products in mind, not
one-off promotions or sales. Messages specific to one show or temporary
pricing information can be printed in a much cheaper way. Use temporary adhesive
for instance to attach affordable poster boards to more permanent signs or
hardware or use tabletop signs for displaying this type of information. Is
your trade show exhibit space larger than a 10 by 10 ? For instance a so-called
Island or corner space? You’ve got some space to fill! It’s tempting to buy
permanent new or use both properties to reflect your brand. However this is not
necessarily the best investment for a small business.

Booth properties need to be shipped sometimes at great expense to you. Once
at the show Union regulations often require that you pay a
official labor to assemble your branded booth, another really large expense. My
recommendation to you consider renting booth properties. Work with the vendors
endorsed by the trade show themselves to rent booth properties. The vendors will
then print the signs and install them in the rented booth properties at the show.
That means you won’t pay for shipping. Best of all, official show vendors tend
to offer the same sizes in terms of booth properties and signage from show
to show. That means that the signage that you buy from them is frequently reusable
from one show to the next. A combination of retractable banner stands, pop-up
displays maybe even that your staff carry in and rented booth properties can
be a really affordable way for you to fill your booth space. Another great way
to fill booth space? Host presentations at your exhibit. Later in this podcast
we’ll discuss why you may want to consider hosting presentations in your
exhibit space. Our next topic? Driving traffic to your exhibit. Let’s talk more
about hosting presentations in your exhibit area Instead of renting
expensive conference space from the show itself, design your exhibit to include
presentation space. An interesting presentation with an audience is a
surefire way to draw traffic to your booth. Live product demonstrations and
educational presentations in your exhibit area have the following
advantages: one they fill large space usefully and cost-effectively. Renting a
few chairs is way cheaper than renting booth property and is a great way to
fill the space at your exhibit in a professional-looking way. Number two it
allows you to save money on renting conference room space for presentations.
Renting conference room space for sales presentations can be very costly. This
strategy is cheaper and also serves to number three: drive traffic to your exhibit.
Not only will presentations in the exhibit attract
attendees passing by but you can promote the presentation scheduled in your
pre-show marketing. This gives attendees a reason to
schedule a trip to visit you. Another great way to drive traffic to your
exhibit? Use great icebreakers! Regardless of pre-show marketing, it’s still the
responsibility of trade show staff to actively start conversations using
icebreakers That means striking up conversations with attendees passing by
and actively initiating conversations with those already in your exhibit. As we
teach in Trade Show Basecamp, great icebreakers are open-ended questions. An
open-ended question like “What brings you to the show today?” These types of
questions are much more likely to make an attendee stop and think about their
reply, giving you a chance to continue the conversation. Want to learn more
about how to create great icebreakers? Visit tradeshow planning com /blog My
last recommendation in this podcast for driving traffic? Hanging signs! Signs that
hang from the expo ceiling aren’t necessarily cheap, however if you have a
large exhibit space they are unfortunately a must. At a large
tradeshow, a well-designed hanging sign can attract attention from a great
distance making it easier for tradeshow attendees to find you. A great hanging
sign should include attractive colors, your brand name and a descriptive
tagline about what you offer. My third topic in this podcast is probably the
most important: how to train staff. I’m assuming if you’re watching or listening
to this podcast, you’ve probably already committed thousands to hundreds of
thousands of dollars to exhibit at a trade show. The biggest mistake that we
see small businesses make at a trade show is not adequately preparing staff to sell,
even if it means spending just a few dollars more. Without training, your staff
we’ll be little more than warm bodies at the exhibit and your trade show likely to
be a waste of time and money. This can spell ruin for a small business or
startup who have sunk a lot of their budget into exhibiting our trade show.
The purpose of exhibiting at a trade show is of course to sell. Make sure that
all staff working your exhibit understand the following: your business
goals, how to start sales conversations with great icebreakers, how to qualify
leads during a conversation with a potential customer using the lead
interview when to disengage from conversations that will never lead to a
sale and how to propose a next step that will meet one of your sales goal. Sound
daunting? Have staff working the booth who aren’t sales pros? So how can you get
your staff up to speed quickly without breaking the bank? To solve these
problems we’ve created trade show Basecamp, the first online video course
of its kind. This course is designed to teach you or your staff to have
profitable sales conversations in just five easy steps. More than trade show
tips and tricks, trade show Basecamp is a complete guide to training your staff to
have profitable sales conversations. Have you learned anything in this podcast
that you didn’t already know? To learn more about trade show Basecamp visit
trade show planning dot com. Thanks for listening to the trade show planning
podcast. Don’t forget to subscribe and visit us at trade show planning dot com

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