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Steve
11-02-2009, 07:32 PM
Check out this video on how to get more out of your trade show interactions and presentations.

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picframer
11-02-2009, 07:54 PM
Check out this video on how to get more out of your trade show interactions and presentations.



Trade shows in another company put us on the map, exposure but it was the product offerings, we were outside the box and ahead of the big guys.

At the same time trade shows are (can be) expensive, the key I learned from an employee we hired as VP Marketing is to look bigger than you are, know your stuff inside out, and be very professional, you have to produce results, have the gear at the booth etc. I was the CEO so the final decision was mine, at the cost of $65,000 for the show (3 days) he wanted I balked but gave in, the benefits we reaped were far beyond my wildest dreams.

I probably won't bother with trade shows this year for the Yard Care as we are now fully booked from mid April to the last week of May which is great, I think trade shows are an excellent marketing tool......wonder what the stats are cost vs return in our business.

Steve
11-03-2009, 05:08 AM
Do they have yard care trade shows in your area that homeowners attend? Have you ever attended one?

picframer
11-03-2009, 03:30 PM
Do they have yard care trade shows in your area that homeowners attend? Have you ever attended one?

Yes they have them here but I work the John Deere Booth.

Steve
11-04-2009, 05:38 AM
When you were working with them on the booth, did you pick up any new ideas from them or did you find yourself teaching them how best to utilize their booth?

GopherHunting
11-04-2009, 11:01 AM
hi Steve,
Great video on "doing a trade show right". :) How did you find it?
I agree with Jeff (the man in the video) that trade shows are still important and can be an effective way to get business, but that you need to "do them right".
I also agree with the comments below that trade show exhibiting can be very expensive and one can lose a lot of money quickly if you don't know what you are doing.
But I think the most important message in the video applies to all business, not just trade shows. Build personal relationships and treat people like humans!
It pains me that walking down the aisles at a lot of trade shows is like going on to a car lot. I am suddenly pounced on by all sorts of people popping out of their trade show booths (sort of like gophers popping out of their holes in my lawn :) ) wanting to sell me something! All these gung-ho sales people would do well to watch Jeff's video.
As an unimportant side note, I kept wishing the camera would swing around a little bit so that vase wasn't directly behind Jeff's head... I thought it was a little distracting...
Anyway, great video about trade show marketing and business marketing in general. Thanks, (another) Steve :D

Steve
11-04-2009, 01:15 PM
I found it through twitter, amazingly enough :)

It pains me that walking down the aisles at a lot of trade shows is like going on to a car lot. I am suddenly pounced on by all sorts of people popping out of their trade show booths

Oh I so know what you mean. I HATE trade shows for this reason. Sometimes it gets to the point where I am walking down an aisle and trying to not make eye contact with anyone at their booth for fear I will get sucked into a sales pitch. I scope out the ones I am interested from a distance and try to make my way to them without looking at any others.

I am suddenly pounced on by all sorts of people popping out of their trade show booths (sort of like gophers popping out of their holes in my lawn ) wanting to sell me something!

Did you ever operate your own booth? How did you conduct yourself so you projected a different feel?

picframer
11-04-2009, 08:37 PM
When you were working with them on the booth, did you pick up any new ideas from them or did you find yourself teaching them how best to utilize their booth?

Image, knowledge of your offerings in lawn care are key, the five largest in our city were there, two had good marketing material but the people runningthe booths had limited knowledge when i asked key questions.

Steve
11-05-2009, 05:42 AM
Did any of the booths at these show ever really draw you in or were they pretty bland? I bet a lot of lawn care business owners struggle to find ideas that would make their booth exciting and attract people.

picframer
11-05-2009, 06:43 PM
Did any of the booths at these show ever really draw you in or were they pretty bland? I bet a lot of lawn care business owners struggle to find ideas that would make their booth exciting and attract people.

The excavation/Yard Care/Lawn Mowing booths were tired rented booths, nothing stood out.

Personally I would set a piece of my gear in there, have a very nice polite lady handing out fliers (laugh but it works, I have done many shows where we hired models, I realize this is over the top for us) and as an owner I would work my butt off answering questions and have a few well dressed staff that knew their stuff, once again it's presentation and image, all I had was a truck and trailer with a new 2520 and chipper on the trailer in the parking lot as I was too late to get space and already told Deere I would work their booth, I picked up around 27 small to med sized jobs in April then hell broke loose and I haven't been able to keep up since.

Steve
11-06-2009, 08:53 AM
That reminds me of the last lawn care business trade show I was at. Some booth and I can't even remember what they were offering, had these three gals sitting in front signing posters of themselves.

I tell you, it was as if these guys never saw a gal in their lives! They were all circled around, blocking off the walking area, just to get this poster signed.

Afterwards I thought, well that was something. I don't know how that ultimately translated into sales, unless they were selling posters or maybe there was a $1 to kiss a girl fee I didnt see somewhere.

But it was certainly buzzing.

Maybe if you can do that and also somehow shoe horn in a sales pitch some how, then maybe something will come of it?

picframer
11-06-2009, 07:49 PM
Although I was the CEO of our security company, my VP Marketing presented the idea and I was dead set against it, aftet long and sometimes heated dicsussions I gave in, this was our first big and national trade show, we walked away with over $500,000 in contracts, budget was for $100,000. I know Ms. Hilton has a quote about the femal gender, all I know is we had line ups every day, girls bright prospects in and we closed deals hand over fist, it took us 11 months to catch up with the new business done at the first show.

Would I do it for this company I have now, not a chance, this kind of selling or marketing or whatever you wish to call it just goes against what I believe in, I know it works and if others use it, more power to them, there is more than one way to skin a cat:)

Steve
11-07-2009, 09:59 AM
It is fascinating to see though both sides of things and the results one can get from them.

picframer
11-07-2009, 07:44 PM
It is fascinating to see though both sides of things and the results one can get from them.

Yes that is true, still a bit of old school myself when it comes to marketing tactics, I do not have tunnel vision but some things do rub me the wrong way, sometimes I will give in, sometimes not, times my decisions have cost us money in other companies as I would not allow a sales or marketing team to do something that was to....out there. Anyhow I backed off they did their thing, it worked and the shareholders received the rewards.

Steve
11-08-2009, 10:57 AM
It does make you wonder, how far should any of it be taken. Why not hand out cigarettes at trade show booths? Or maybe free drinks? LOL It also makes me think of some of the members who experimented with the bikini lawn care service as a way to attract media attention. It seemed at times to last for a short time and then disappear.

Who knows, maybe somewhere in all that there is a level of mixing fringe ideas with marketing that would work to a certain extent but past a certain line it becomes a turnoff and a liability.

Maybe it needs to be experimented with to see what works and what doesn't.