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I Just Flew in From the Tradeshow and Boy are the Booths Tired
Tom Nightingale / BtoB / May 20, 2013
“I just flew in from Dallas and boy are my arms tired.” This joke allegedly dates back to the vaudeville era. And while the joke is ancient and hasn’t gotten any better with time, neither have many tradeshow efforts. Last week I was at a B2B conference that included an exhibition floor.
I was amazed that in this day and age, when magazines and Google offer countless tips (Google returned over 23,000 hits when I searched for “trade show best practices”), we still see horrible booths and deplorable show floor etiquette. Sure, some companies really had their house in order. Their show presence was clean, open and inviting, well-rehearsed, fun, informative, and they engaged with their prospects. However, these were the exceptions.
Throughout the show, I saw booth staff that should have been engaging their prospects with friendly smiles and interesting means to capture leads. However, the vast majority had tired and hard-to-read booth graphics. Often their staff members were on their phones or emailing. This show happens to use much of the exhibition time to feed the attendees on the show floor and, as a result, I saw many exhibitors eating or talking to prospects with plates of food in their hands.