Preparing For Your First Trade Show
Trade shows are an invaluable marketing tool, putting your brand in front of thousands of retail buyers and wholesale distributors looking for new product lines. If you’re planning to attend your first trade show, it’s important to be prepared in order to achieve success. Use this tips to plan for your first show:
Train your staff.
No matter how hard you try, it will be impossible for you to be included in every conversation at a trade show, so hiring and training staff to work alongside you is vital to success. In the weeks and months leading up to the event, work with different team members to discuss your goals for the trade show, and go over the basics including how to approach and engage with potential customers and wholesale distributors. Team members should be fully trained on product features and benefits, including costs, current distribution and inventory counts.
Remember the follow-up.
The trade show experience is not over at the end of the event. One of the most important aspects of attending a trade show is the follow-up, where you reconnect with potential customers or wholesale distributors. In order to successfully follow-up after the show, you have to prepare a way for people to leave their information. Whether you have an area to drop business cards, or a sign-up sheet to collect email addresses, remember to plan a way to retain this valuable customer information.
Pick the space.
Don’t just grab any open space that’s available, thoroughly think it over before making a decision. Do you offer a product that’s priced lower than competitors? Maybe it would be a good idea to set-up nearby so trade show attendees see your product is a better value. Do you want to grab people right when they get in the door, or wait until they’ve walked through the entire show? The former group may not want to linger around as they become anxious to see what else is out there, and the latter may be tired from a day of networking, so it’s important to decide where your brand should fit in the middle of the trade show.
Be prepared for criticism.
Attending a trade show will give you access to thousands of wholesale distributors and retail buyers within one to two days. Don’t expect every one of these trade show attendees to fall head over heels in love with your product, but don’t get discouraged either. Listen carefully to the advice that they give you, after all, their industry knowledge is probably much broader than yours. Don’t take the feedback personally. Instead, use it to improve your product and then follow-up with them to let them know you took their advice.
Another way to get in touch with experienced distributors? Contact the team at Mr. Checkout Distributors who service over 35,000 stores across the country.