Thursday, April 15, 2010

Trade Show Success

With the Women's Entrepreneurial Network's April 26 annual trade show just ahead, the question we should be asking is "How can I best use my networking skills to make the best of the offering?" As an exhibitor we want to plan for success.

Many business people blindly fork over hard earned cash for booth space without a thought about what they want to achieve as a result of both the financial and time outlay.

Set a goal for what you want to achieve. As we learned with the Certified Networker training, the more specific you can be the better. So for example say, "I want to schedule four appointments with possible prospects as a result of this day-long event," instead of just, "I want to get more business."

Publish those goals! Create a sign for your booth that will let everyone know what you are attempting. Then each person will be able to read your message and might be able to help.

Invite people from your networks. This might be the easiest way to get prospects to see you in action. Also, since the WEN trade show is free to attend, it can be a good way to reward referral sources.

Create your follow-up system before the event. Timely connections will mean all the difference between success and the waste of time. If you are going to send everyone who came to your booth a postcard, you'll need to have that piece ready before the event. will allow you to create a card that you can then send later. Check with Certified Networkers Sharon Czarny or Kris Downey to see how it can be done.

Have something that bring people to your booth, but also be able to qualify prospects. Certified Networker, David Trisel, graf-X-cape, limited his expensive giveaways at a recent show by having people play a game at his booth. It also gave him a longer time to talk with them while they were trying to be a winner.

Ask for business card of the people you want to talk to later. Being selective means fewer contacts to follow up with. The time you do spend with the ones you want will be time well spent.

Know the types of people your other booth neighbors want to meet. When someone is not right for you, you may be able to walk the person to someone else.

See ya' on the 26th. Come wee what my goals are!

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