7 Things NOT to do in Your Exhibit Booth
We’ve Talked About the Do’s of Your Exhibit Booth – Here are the Don’ts
We can talk about everything you could do to make your booth more appealing until we’re blue in the face – but what about the things you shouldn’t be doing?
While there are a lot of different things you can do to attract prospects, there are also some things you should stray away from to avoid turning customers off. We’ve outlined our top 7 tips for what not to do during an exhibit. For more information on exhibit best practices, feel free to consult our website!
“While there are a lot of different things you can do to attract prospects, there are also some things you should stray away from.”
1. Don’t close your booth too early.
The goal of an exhibit is to network and make connections with prospects, current customers, and industry professionals. How can you connect with potential prospects if your booth is closed down?
The number one reason people lose out on prospects is not having enough booth time. Make sure you have a strong booth staff to keep your booth open if possible and build relationships with multiple attendees. The more people you talk to, the better the chance of leaving a lasting impression.
“How can you connect with potential prospects if your booth is closed down?”
2. Don’t take lunch at a busy hour.
Obviously, you should take the time to sit down and eat lunch, but make sure to plan it out during a time when it isn’t too busy. You want to make sure you aren’t losing any potential prospects by breaking at busy times.
By planning your lunch breaks with your booth staff strategically, you’ll be able to make sure you have staff at the booth during the busiest hours, so you can make the most connections.
“You want to make sure you aren’t losing any potential prospects by breaking at busy times.”
3. Don’t ask prospects simple “yes” or “no” questions.
Your booth time is when you should be asking your visitors the important questions. Be sure to ask them qualifying questions that go beyond the simple “yes” or “no,” such as what they’re looking for from a product or what problems they have that have yet to be solved.
This will help you engage better with your prospects and will also give you an idea of which leads to consider “hot.”
“Your booth time is when you should be asking the important questions from your visitors.”
4. Don’t huddle with your own employees.
An exhibit is a time for you and your employees to branch out and make connections. It is a time for your company – your brand – to get noticed.
If your booth staff only mingles with each other, it makes it difficult for your brand to get noticed. Encourage your team to walk around, chat with people, and engage with all passersby attendees.
“If your booth staff only mingles with each other, it makes it difficult for your brand to get noticed.”
5. Don’t gossip about competitors.
Nothing can leave a sourer first impression than hearing someone talk negatively about the competition.
It doesn’t have to be a secret that you have competitors but remember to be mindful of what you and your employees say – even when you aren’t talking directly to a prospect.
At exhibits, you should always conduct yourself professionally, at all times.
“Remember to be mindful of what you and your employees say.”
6. Don’t keep your phone in your hand the entire time.
It’s okay to take some pictures of your booth, booth staff, or attendees interacting with your stand, but make sure your phone isn’t in your hand the entire time.
Nothing says “unapproachable” quite like someone glued to their phone. Make sure you use your phone sparingly throughout the exhibit, and always put your phone away when potential prospects are at your stand.
“Nothing says ‘unapproachable’ quite like someone glued to their phone.”
7. Don’t talk without listening.
Obviously, you want to give your story about how great your brand is – but make sure you’re not just talking about you without listening to the prospect.
Exhibits are about connection, and that can’t be a one-way street. Make sure you are also getting to know your prospects, their businesses, and their needs.
“Exhibits are about connection, and that can’t be a one-way street.”
Bonus tip! – Don’t try too hard
While exhibits are professional events, you don’t need to take everything seriously. Exhibits can also be a place to have fun and show potential prospects that at the end of the day, you and your employees are people like everyone else.
Exhibiting at a trade show is a great way to emphasize the human aspect of your business, and robotic-like professionalism takes away from the fun of it. As a concluding note, don’t try too hard – don’t be afraid to let yourself have fun, and don’t worry too much about the numbers. Focus on the connections that will fuel your business in the future.