Six simple mistakes often made by exhibitors

The clock is literally counting down on the ONS 2018 homepage! With the show 4 days and 17 hours away, exhibitors will have their objectives set, messaging confirmed, branding sorted and will now be onto the last-minute prep – fantastic.

However, even with the most amazing pre-show organisation there are some simple, obvious and basic mistakes that exhibitors often make. Having attended over 80 international exhibitions over the years, we thought we’d share those we’ve most commonly observed:

1. Sitting on the job – many stands, especially shell scheme packages, come with chairs and let’s face it exhibitions are exhausting. However, someone sitting on a stand instantly becomes less approachable so unless you need to have a one on one meeting with someone, or your stand has a purpose-built seating area, then aim to stand to make your stand more interactive.

2. Capturing contacts – this may seem obvious but it’s amazing how many business cards get put into pockets. When you return to the office everyone suddenly has 50+ cards and they can’t remember the details of the conversation and know how best to follow up. So, have a system for managing contacts, whether it’s using an electronic lead capturing device or a simple notebook to scribble some notes, make sure you capture the main points of the conversation. It will make life much easier, and those business cards far more valuable, when you do return to the office.

3. Being distracted by your phone – it’s inevitable that there will be things going on in the office during ONS and your to-do list isn’t going to shrink while you’re at the show but you’re there for a reason and exhibitions are a significant investment for any company. So, if you’re on the exhibition stand then put your phone down and focus on the people in front of you. If you do need to make a call or answer an email, then pop off the stand.

4. Standing in a group with colleagues – it’s natural to want to talk to people on the stand with you, however this makes visitors far less likely to approach you, after all no one wants to interrupt a conversation. So, spread company members across the stand and be ready to…

5. Make the first move – walking onto a stand can be intimidating for many people so when someone approaches, smile, introduce yourself and ask if you can help. They will likely be delighted that you’ve broken the ice.

6. Escape the stand – with so many visitors, exhibitions can be a non-stop stream of conversations and often it’s difficult to leave the stand (especially if you’re the stand manager). However, it’s important to walk the show. Take some time to see what everyone else is up to, how have stand-designs and technology evolved, what marketing / sales techniques catch your eye. Learn from what’s going on around you.

These really are such simple points, completely obvious when pointed out.

Have you observed these too? Or what’s the one thing you’d point out to exhibitors? We’d love to hear your thoughts and wish everyone exhibiting at ONS 2018 a really good show. We’ll see you there.

About Project Neon:

As a key to business success, we support our client's growth by ensuring that marketing doesn't fall off the to-do list, or become an "I'll sort that tomorrow" activity. We work with start-up's, small businesses and even international players who don't have an internal resource or just need a helping hand. If there are tasks to complete we'll do the running, we deliver.

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