Career Advice

Rules of the Road: How to Prepare for Your First Trade Show

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Attending trade shows can be the most lucrative thing you can do outside of working in your office. Trade shows are where you can find deep discounts as a retailer or find new products to complement your existing inventory. If you’re new to the world of trade shows, exhibits, and conferences, then you’ll want to be prepared for what’s ahead even before you arrive. With so much to see and do, it can be overwhelming if you’re not sure what to expect. Here are a few tips on how to make the most of your first trade show experience:

1. Do your research

Find out as much as you can about the trade show you’ll be attending. What time do you need to arrive to set up your booth? Are there costs to attending #1 trade show exhibits? Are there any special requirements for attending the show? This will help you budget and plan accordingly.

Attending trade shows can be the most lucrative thing you can do outside of working in your office. Trade shows are where you can find deep discounts as a retailer or find new products to complement your existing inventory.Click To Tweet

2. Make your booth look professional

First impressions count! Invest in good-quality signage and shop trade show booths to ensure that your booth stands out from the crowd. Make sure you know what it takes to transport and set up the booth as a good setup makes a huge difference.

“Trade shows continue to be a lucrative way of expanding a business and getting more sales. Hence, this industry offers many opportunities for people looking for long-term and successful careers. Have you considered a career path in the exhibition industry? Working in this field offers the most exciting and dynamic experience with so much room for growth. If you are thinking about it, here are some awesome positions you’d want to consider.” – 5 Great Career Paths in the Trade Show Industry

3. What to bring (and not bring) to the show

You’ll want to bring enough literature and business cards to hand out. Don’t worry about bringing too much you can always ship materials home if you have items left over. And speaking of shipping, make sure you allow enough time to tear down your display so you don’t miss your ride or your flight home!

4. Network, network, network!

Trade shows are all about making new connections. Whether it is on the exhibition floor or after hours at a meet and greet event. Don’t be afraid to mix and mingle with the other exhibitors and attendees. You never know who you might meet!

5. Know where the bar is

Let’s face it, deals often happen at the bar after hours. But beware, too much drinking can lead to problems. If you’ve been hitting the sauce, it’s probably best to stay away from the negotiating table.

6. Know where your hotel is located

If you are off-site from the trade show, know how to get back to your hotel room. There is nothing worse than being lost in a strange place with no idea of where you are supposed to be.

7. Tear down carefully

When it’s time to pack up and head home, take down your booth carefully. You don’t want to damage any of your materials or displays and have to have them remade after the trade show. Consider using a shipping service. It will make your life easier in the long run.

Now that you know more about trade shows, exhibits, and conferences, you’re ready to take on the challenge. With these tips in mind, you’ll be sure to make a great impression and come away with some valuable new connections. Good luck!


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