- Create a warm and inviting ambiance
Your attitude and body language at a trade show booth are critical for having people visit you and for creating interest in your products or services. It can be intimidating for people to see the sales staff standing up, arms crossed, eyes narrowed and clearly ready to pounce on any interested visitor. Be sure to create a warm and inviting ambiance in order for passers-by to want to enter your booth and visit you. Your non-verbal and verbal messages must be clear and engaging. In addition, gifts and promotions are also very useful for attracting potential customers.
- Open the dialogue
Trade shows offer the opportunity to initiate a constructive dialogue with your potential customers. Take advantage of this time to establish this special rapport, ask the right questions to identify their needs, be attentive, position the value of the company, and offer them appropriate solutions based on their situation.
- Take notes
The time you should invest with each potential customer depends on their qualification. So, you will direct the conversation according to the goal that you have set, supported by the quality and quantity of notes you have taken for each visitor. These notes will make your strategic follow-up on the conversation more effective and produce more profitable results.
- Learn to disengage quickly
One of the hardest things to do at a trade show is to disengage from people who are ultimately not good leads. This may seem a little cold, but it often turns out that independent consultants, competitors, partners, job seekers and others like to visit booths for all kinds of reasons. Remember that a lot of time and resources are invested in the planning and execution of a trade show booth and your company is there to develop new business. Therefore, sales people should be able to quickly detect a potential prospect and politely disengage from inopportune visitors in order to spend their time with qualified leads.
- Ask for referrals
Remember that anyone can refer a new customer. So you may have a meeting with a person who does not fit the desired customer profile but who could potentially refer someone who does. Be sure to take advantage of all your meetings and do not hesitate to open the door to all those with whom you exchange during the event.
- Don’t eat in the booth
When things are quiet, you might be tempted to take a bite in the booth. This is not recommended. You never know when a potential customer might show up! You must be ready at all times. Getting stuck with a mouth full of food of with food residue around your mouth could damage your image and make you miss an opportunity with a long awaited prospect. Be presentable and professional at all times. If you need to eat, ask a colleague or a friend to replace you while you take a break outside.
- Have your list of potential clients to visit at the trade show
Before the show, identify exhibitors that might become potential clients. At the appropriate time, take a moment to strategize and visit each one. You will be able to finalize a number of meetings by inviting them to a phone meeting first.