Episode 13: OSD Audio
For this episode of Exhibitor Insight, we meet with Buzz Delano, the Director of Business Development over at OSD Audio. He's also a trade show veteran who's been exhibiting for the past 35 years. If you're new to the game, Buzz has some helpful advice for you that you don't want to miss!
Build Meaningful Relationships
Buzz's advice for exhibitors is simple but crucial: you have to build meaningful relationships at trade shows. Events such as trade shows are a hub for social interaction and communication between businesses, industry leaders, and consumers. They're essentially a huge meet and greet party with the sole purpose of making connections, so take advantage of that opportunity and network with as many people as you can.
Even though trade shows are meant for exhibitors and attendees to meet and network with one another, building relationships that are actually worthwhile is harder than it seems. Attendees generally spend an average of 15 seconds at each exhibit, so it'll take some strategic planning for you to turn that small interaction into something more significant and long-lasting. Here are some tips to keep in mind the next time you're at a trade show:Make A Memorable First Impression
Your first step in building relationships is to create a memorable first impression. This can be achieved through a number of ways, such as having an exceptional booth design, giving away unique promotional items, or providing an interactive experience. By standing out and remaining fresh in the minds of attendees, you increase the chances of establishing a meaningful relationship with them. Showgoers experience so many exhibits throughout the day that it can be hard for them to recall exactly who they've met with. Your goal should be to distinguish yourself amongst all the other companies at the show.Communicate Genuinely
Although trade show attendees all recognize that you're hoping they do business with your company, you shouldn't become too eager and aggressive of a salesperson. Primarily focus most of your conversations on potential customers, but don't just ignore those that seem uninterested either. A friendly interaction still has the potential to boost your brand's overall reputation. Remember, having memorable conversations with attendees will always serve to benefit you. Furthermore, don't try too hard to close a deal, or you'll just end up driving visitors away. You're more likely to stand out and be remembered when you focus on building personal and genuine relationships. This may not lead to an immediate sale necessarily, but it could potentially create more business down the line.Design Your Booth Accordingly
If you already know your main objective at the trade show will be to build relationships with attendees and other exhibitors, try to design your exhibit booth in a way that will accommodate your needs and help you achieve that goal. For example, try including plenty of seating areas and conference rooms in your exhibit. This way, people can chat and network with one another in a very efficient and comfortable manner. Additionally, try to implement a relaxing and welcoming aura within your booth by playing music or serving refreshments. This can prompt visitors to stay longer, giving you more opportunities to talk to them. There are a lot of ways to facilitate conversation; choose the ones that work best for you.Follow Up After The Show
This is something we've covered many times before, but this step is so important that we have to mention it again. It is extremely crucial for you to follow up with your leads after the show ends. You want to show that 1.) you still remember the conversation you had with them, and 2.) you value their time and opinion. Including a personal note that addresses your previous conversation with them can go a long way toward their willingness to do business with you. Furthermore, make sure your follow-up email is short, clear, and concise. It should be a simple thank-you letter that's straightforward and appreciative.