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Trade Shows Part I: How to Drive Traffic to your Booth

October 9th, 2011

Exhibition floorWe’ve all witnessed the annoying salesman in front of his tradeshow booth rattling off product info like a machine gun. Immediately you tune this person out and try to escape as fast as you can. Why would you be so rude? The man is just trying to make a sale. If you had the time you would explain to this pushy salesman he is going about it all the wrong way. You would explain to him he has to sell himself first, not the product. People don’t like to be sold to by robots, you would tell him. Sadly, you are not there to provide advice; you are at the show for a reason.

So you proceed down the row and come in contact with a polar opposite of the pushy salesman. Little Ms. Timid watched as you strolled by. She made no attempt to start a conversation because she already read your face. You were headed in the direction of the large crowd that was gathering in front of the booth at the end cap. Instinctually, you were drawn in this direction due to the magnetizing power of the herd. Obviously this company understands how to drive traffic to their booth.

I want to stop my little story right here and ask you something. Do you know how promotional products can help you add clients to your roster? Before I answer this question you have to ask yourself, “How are you going to use a promotional product to help you drive traffic?”

Driving Traffic

PrizesI’ll assume the salesperson you appoint at your booth can close deals, and all you really need are some useful promos to get people interested in coming over. Think interactive spinning wheels with prizes or objects that light up, for example.

Time and time again I see promotional products used the right way, and the wrong way. Here’s an example of how to leverage promos to your advantage at any tradeshow. First, you have to understand if you share useful knowledge then people will automatically flock to your booth.

What is the most effective way to do this? Become part of the program by signing up to speak on subject matter that is truly valuable to the attendees or a niche subset. A 45-minute power point presentation should do the trick, along with a Q&A session built-in. Don’t forget the most important element: entertain your audience, don’t bore them. Just before the presentation wraps up make sure you have an assistant pass out a sheet that rates your performance (it also contains lines for contact info).

After your presentation those who were touched by what you have to say will approach you. This is your chance to build a relationship with this person and to invite them to your booth, where low and behold, a promotional giveaway item is waiting for them. Now a connection has been built, and the all powerful reciprocity factor has been engaged. I’ve seen this speaker tactic work in every kind of venue, not just trade shows. It is one of the most effective ways to market your business without spending a dime.

Once you decide your plan of attack it’s time to look for a trade show promotional item. Need help figuring out what’s best for you? Let our experienced staff of promotional product specialists help you find what you need. Call 866-751-PROMO (7766) right now and leave the thinking up to us.

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