Trade Shows: Why Attend? Why Exhibit?

Why exhibit at a trade show?  Why attend as a buyer?  The simple answer is because Trade Shows work!  Last week some colleagues from one of our suppliers were in town and we met for an early breakfast in one of the large convention hotel monoliths on the Las Vegas Strip.  As a lifer in the industry, the meeting gave me a sense of wonder as our biz buddies were effusive in their proclamations that they were having a hugely successful experience as an exhibitor at this Trade Show 200 event.  It was if they were doing a testimonial live and in person about why trade shows work.

It’s not important what the product line or service is.  The components to successful participation with strong ROI are the same for all.

At Las Vegas Expo, we innately grasp and totally comprehend what makes exhibiting and attending a Business to Business event so rewarding.  The humorous part was being told this by our pals that were blown away by their sales generated on the show floor as if they were letting us in on some Top Secret intel.  Hearing first hand of why convention participation is integral to a company’s sales and marketing efforts was deeply satisfying.  For anyone working in the convention industry, spreading the word that Trade Shows work is everyday practice.  Having the opportunity to have seasoned, experienced savvy manufacturers touting all the trackable and quantifiable gains they accomplished here in Las Vegas was reaffirming to our Complete Show Services Mission.

Why does exhibiting work?  Our vendors turn as an exhibiting company illustrates the answers.  They sold a lot of product to people they had been talking and emailing to and they knew that being able to talk in person to these buyers was integral to getting these new major customers on board .  The buyers were able to touch and feel the product line.  They buyers were able to ask questions and look in the persons’ eyes as the answers were given.  Thoughts, ideas and all variables of the manufacturing process, product specifications and delivery logistics were discussed.  Meeting face to face allowed our friends’ credibility and thorough product and industry knowledge to be conveyed in fun and engaging conversations.  The interpersonal interaction is dynamic….it’s just not possible to get this across in e-mails that can be crafted to or interpreted to read in many different and possibly conflicting or confusing ways.  Convention exhibiting allows the buyer and seller to freely interact while allowing for immediate comparisons to fellow exhibitors with competing products or services.  You just can’t get that through E-communications and attached pdf renderings.

Call me old fashioned, call me a relic, call me a dinosaur yet there truly is something magical about a hearty hello, a smile and a strong hand shake (for those overly effusive and emotional , I repeat , use a handshake not a man hug when you meet ).  Listening to your customers’ needs and sharing details and information live and in person is irreplaceable.  It’s the first step in relationship building that is the backbone of customer retention.

Successful exhibiting does not just happen!  The steps our friends took are the same proven simple actions that lay the foundation.  Prospective customers were invited and tentatively scheduled for appointments in their booths or for a meal or joined for one of Vegas’ great entrainment concerts or shows.   With a busy schedule of pre-booked, the time on the show floor was preset and the truly new and yet to be identified prospects that came by the booth and engaged in fruitful interactions added to the success.  You just can’t meet and talk to as many people in one day with traditional sales approaches as you can on a trade show floor.  No amount of road warrior sales techniques or cold calling from a desk can match the sheer quantities of talking to buyers with real purchasing authority as you can in 1 day at a convention…. let alone compound the numbers into 2 or 3 days on an exhibit floor.

There’s a cherry on top of this treat to further add to why trade shows work.  Our suppliers spoke about how they  met people that are good new prospects everywhere they went.  This might not work for the bashful types but if you’re no wall flower….like our pals, funny, personable ,warm & engaging with a solid geek streak running through their souls….they met people in elevators, outside seminars and inside seminars (they took turns in the booths and in the educational sessions).  They met people they never knew in the taxi lines, in the lively taverns & bars and at the sizzling entertainment they saw.  With thousands and thousands of industry folks in town, they were doing business everywhere they went.  Of all the tried and true booth traffic building techniques, all the unlimited spectacular booths we can design and build for you…..the part that really blew our pals away was that if they hadn’t attended, if they hadn’t exhibited, they never would have been in town to meet all the buyers they met OFF the show floor.

That Trade Shows work was a striking revelation to our friends.  To all of us at Las Vegas Expo Complete Show Services, we loved to hear what we already know…… Trade Shows work.  Whether you are newbie novice or decades long trade show veteran, give us a call or send us an email and we’ll help you achieve success by walking with you step by step.

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Mitch Isaacs, mitch@lvexpo.com – Sales & Marketing Manager, Las Vegas Expo Complete Show Services

 

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