When it comes time to choose which employees will staff the booth at your next trade show, do you automatically call the sales department? If so, maybe you’d better think again. Just because someone is good at sales doesn’t mean they’ll be a natural in the trade show environment. Often, sales people forget that they don’t have time to do a complete sales pitch on every prospect that enters the booth.
- Approachable, outgoing, people-oriented
- Professional: experienced at trade shows (no time for a “learning curve”)
- Comfortable engaging people
- Able to qualify before selling
- Knowledgeable about company and products
- Good communicator (with a clear, simple message)
- Good listener
- Enthusiastic (but not overpowering!)
- Good attitude
- Familiar with the competition
- Polite to “lookers,” yet won’t waste time
You definitely don’t want to use trade shows as a “reward” for performance contests. Anyone who thinks trade shows are a vacation has certainly never worked one!
Many exhibitors seem to be overly aggressive on the last day. Is it perhaps because they suddenly realize that they weren’t going to meet their goal for leads? When you work hard before the show, as well as during it, you have nothing to fear.
On the other hand, sometimes those who aren’t the most likely candidates find their element in the booth. They may not have the smoothest sales pitch, but they are genuinely excited about the product and treat all visitors with respect. Their eagerness and excitement are contagious, making the sales look easy.
Which kind of staffer would you rather take to your next show? If your sales force is full of “negative Nellies” as far as booth duty is concerned, maybe you need to look to those more willing, and then teach them to be capable.
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