Do trade shows still drive profits up?

by WF- Enzo Administrator
14 replies
We have all attended or even sponsored in a trade show at least once in our life, may it be an educator summit, HR congress, advertising forum, and the like. Do you think they are still effective in generating new leads for your business, or are people merely interested in things like free food and free merchandise/giveaways?
#drive #leads #profits #shows #trade
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  • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
    Originally Posted by WF- Enzo View Post

    We have all attended or even sponsored in a trade show at least once in our life, may it be an educator summit, HR congress, advertising forum, and the like. Do you think they are still effective in generating new leads for your business, or are people merely interested in things like free food and free merchandise/giveaways?

    Trade shows are great for leads, but they are even better to just sell something while you are there.

    And shows where the attendees had to pay to attend (the more the better) are very fertile prospecting grounds....highly qualified buyers attend these events.

    And I attended dozens of these events before I realized the opportunity I was missing. I know two very wealthy service suppliers that attend four trade shows a year...and are booked solid for the year, just from these events.

    I devoted a third of my book on sales prospecting to how to use these events to generate the bulk of your sales.
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  • Profile picture of the author Alex Cohen
    Originally Posted by WF- Enzo View Post

    We have all attended or even sponsored in a trade show at least once in our life, may it be an educator summit, HR congress, advertising forum, and the like. Do you think they are still effective in generating new leads for your business, or are people merely interested in things like free food and free merchandise/giveaways?
    Why wouldn't they be?

    Sure, the internet has added a new dimension to marketing. But the old ones still work.

    A lot of babies have been thrown out with the bath water unnecessarily.

    Alex
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  • Profile picture of the author savidge4
    My Satellite install business we are in 20 plus shows a year... a pretty big time booth and custom trucks. A show a few weeks ago one of the major companies I sub for was actually there with a nice "Tent" and plastic card tables. they left about 4 hours after the show opened. A rep later called and asked what our schedule was so they were not at the same events LOL.

    My Marketing company we do maybe 6 shows a year, and do very well with it. The whole concept behind "Marketing" is to be where YOUR optimal prospects are and be it Online or in person, I want to be there.
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  • Experiential marketin' is jus' a way contemporary term for YEAH I GOT THE ACTSHWL HOTS.

    Nuthin' beats informed & fleshtastic enthoosiasts pitchin' up close with The Superexpectational on a myootyool Iris muscle workout.

    'Part from mebbe ice cream.

    Tellya, anywan gives me free ice cream rn might as well be Satan.

    (Note to self: surely that guy has a YouTube channel. Even if it is only for SHOES, for sure I would look in on it. Worst case scenario ... all the stock got bought up centuries ago, an' now all they got left is frickin' flip flops.)
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    Lightin' fuses is for blowin' stuff together.

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    • Profile picture of the author savidge4
      Originally Posted by Princess Balestra View Post

      'Part from mebbe ice cream.
      ( Note to self: effin i get up close and Superexpectational on a myootyool Iris muscle workout with Princess BRING Ice Cream )
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  • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
    Originally Posted by WF- Enzo View Post

    We have all attended or even sponsored in a trade show at least once in our life, may it be an educator summit, HR congress, advertising forum, and the like. Do you think they are still effective in generating new leads for your business, or are people merely interested in things like free food and free merchandise/giveaways?
    This needs to be said.

    Trade shows aren't good or bad for business. It's just a platform...where qualified prospects gather.

    What you do at the trade show, who you talk to, whether you stand in a booth and wait for people to talk to...or start conversations in the halls.....all of this matters as to whether it pays for you.

    I was at a Dan Kennedy event with a friend, and she commented on how exciting it was and all the people that attended.

    And I explained the categories of attendees like this;

    "At every trade show, marketing event, or seminar there are three kinds of people; Guppies, Piranha, and Sharks.

    The guppies think everyone there is a fellow guppy. They are there to see things and spend money. These are the prospects and customers.

    The piranha look like guppies..to other guppies....but they can tell a fellow piranha from the rest of the guppies.They are there to eat the guppies. These are the people that prospect among the attendees, making appointments, getting clients. They are there to sell the guppies. They are smaller in number than guppies, but they are always there.

    The sharks are the people that sell from the stage and host the event. They sell to the guppies and the piranha. They are easy to spot, because they are so few in number and generally have small groups of people around them in the halls."

    She asked "Which are you?"

    I said "I'm a piranha. Sometimes a shark, but piranha is my default setting".

    It took me years of attending these events before I graduated to piranha.

    The people that buy the booths? They pay for everything. The people that make the most deals? They are trolling the audience on breaks and after hours.

    I speak from experience.
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    • Profile picture of the author savidge4
      this is classic.. so TRUE. Im not much for the sales pitch type events. I do wedding Shows, home builder shows and the like. Wedding shows because 40% of the time a marriage means a new residence. Home builder shows.. well that one is pretty obvious LOL

      When possible I set up outside as well as inside. "The people that make the most deals? They are trolling the audience on breaks and after hours" - SO TRUE I set up outside before the event starts and probably break down an hour after it closes. More deals are closed on the way out than inside or the way in hands down.

      Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post

      This needs to be said.

      Trade shows aren't good or bad for business. It's just a platform...where qualified prospects gather.

      What you do at the trade show, who you talk to, whether you stand in a booth and wait for people to talk to...or start conversations in the halls.....all of this matters as to whether it pays for you.

      I was at a Dan Kennedy event with a friend, and she commented on how exciting it was and all the people that attended.

      And I explained the categories of attendees like this;

      "At every trade show, marketing event, or seminar there are three kinds of people; Guppies, Piranha, and Sharks.

      The guppies think everyone there is a fellow guppy. They are there to see things and spend money. These are the prospects and customers.

      The piranha look like guppies..to other guppies....but they can tell a fellow piranha from the rest of the guppies.They are there to eat the guppies. These are the people that prospect among the attendees, making appointments, getting clients. They are there to sell the guppies. They are smaller in number than guppies, but they are always there.

      The sharks are the people that sell from the stage and host the event. They sell to the guppies and the piranha. They are easy to spot, because they are so few in number and generally have small groups of people around them in the halls."

      She asked "Which are you?"

      I said "I'm a piranha. Sometimes a shark, but piranha is my default setting".

      It took me years of attending these events before I graduated to piranha.

      The people that buy the booths? They pay for everything. The people that make the most deals? They are trolling the audience on breaks and after hours.

      I speak from experience.
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      Success is an ACT not an idea
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  • Profile picture of the author JPs copy
    I coordinated events for a SAAS company briefly.

    The company would exhibit at all the major industry trade shows. They had lead forms available where customers/prospects would write their name, phone number, email in exchange for a potential giveaway like an iPad.

    Those lead forms would come back, get scrubbed and entered into the system. It's a way to systematize the lead gen process.

    My personal approach has been get friendly with a few of the organizers at the event because they know a good percentage of decision makers directly. Be helpful, conversational and try to build a genuine relationship. Also offer to volunteer as well. You can watch who they interact with at events and ask for mutual introductions later.
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    John Peters | Copywriter of Things & Direct Response Guy
    Put an end to cold prospecting, there's a much better way

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  • Profile picture of the author sameolesong
    just got back from a trade show and after observing vendors
    10% looked to be doing ok,
    90% had that sad, desperate look in their eyes.
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    • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
      Originally Posted by sameolesong View Post

      just got back from a trade show and after observing vendors
      10% looked to be doing ok,
      90% had that sad, desperate look in their eyes.
      It's not the booth. It's who's working the booth.

      One lesson I learned in working a booth is is that you stood at the front of the booth, and offered a sheet of information....and asked a short question that would sift the visitors from the buyers.

      The sheet was just a device to engage.

      And if I found an interested prospect, I spent time with them, and would write orders. I wasn't there to gather leads. I was there to do business.

      If you are getting people to sign up for a give-a-way, you are signing up a ton of non-buyers, and missing the few that are actually there to do business.

      This lesson took me decades to learn.
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    • Profile picture of the author WF- Enzo
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      Why do you think they had that sad, desperate look?

      Originally Posted by sameolesong View Post

      just got back from a trade show and after observing vendors
      10% looked to be doing ok,
      90% had that sad, desperate look in their eyes.
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      • Profile picture of the author GordonJ
        Originally Posted by WF- Enzo View Post

        Why do you think they had that sad, desperate look?

        We have no information. We don't know what kind of a trade show, what time of the day he went (later attendees might run into tired people), and what he even means. How can you look at someone in a booth and make any assessment as to the state of the business?

        Spurious question at best.

        Claude hit the nail on the head, and trade shows still bring in big business to those who know how to use them.

        What evidence do you have to the contrary? What is the source of your information?

        GordonJ
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      • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
        Originally Posted by WF- Enzo View Post

        Why do you think they had that sad, desperate look?
        I don't know how sad they are...

        But the vast majority of people manning a booth at a trade show think they are there to answer questions of people who walk up to their booth and insist on talking to them.

        You can usually tell if the business owners is the one manning the booth. He/she's engaging people, asking questions, and maybe even stepping out of the booth into the hall...getting people's attention.

        Most people in a booth at a trade show are forced to be there. And to them...it's just really long hours of boredom. But time goes really fast when you're working.
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  • Profile picture of the author myob
    I go to trade shows to prey on the vendors and attendees. Never bothered with renting a booth.
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