Tradeshow Tips for Success from Industry Leaders
Tradeshow season is upon us. It is that time of year again when everyone gathers at industry shows to meet with customers, check out new vendors, and see recent market trends. Tradeshow Booths will soon be full again, for the first time since 2019, at McCormick Place in Chicago, for ProMat 2023.
ProMat brings together leading manufacturers and supply chain solutions providers from around the world. Some of the best in the industry gather for a week to share ideas, discuss new solutions, and network. ProMat is always a huge success, and this year will not disappoint. Due to the pandemic, a live ProMat show has not existed since 2019. A recent article written by Modern Material Handling stated that ProMat is expected to be 35% bigger than the last in-person show held in 2019. This year is the year to make an impression within the industry.
With all the excitement and business of the show, it can be a little overwhelming. We recently interviewed industry leaders on what they do to ensure a successful trade show. Todd Hart, President of Flow-Rite Controls, tells us how he leads his team to success at their booth. Andy Schmidt, Vendor Relationship Manager at Mitsubishi Logisnext Americas, tells us his steps to ensure success walking the show. And lastly, our President, Matt Monteath, provides 5 critical steps for success to any new person exhibiting at tradeshows.
For several years, Todd Hart has led his team at ProMat and many other tradeshows. He has seen the excellent and challenging sides of exhibiting and attending a show. Because of his wealth of experience, Todd always walks into a show completely organized. This means understanding and meeting all pre-show deadlines, having a schedule for who will be working the booth and when, and having a set plan to ensure success at the show. What are Todd and his team’s number one goal? They want to meet with and connect with as many customers as possible. Todd explains that ProMat is one of the only times they have customers from across the globe in one building to sit down and meet. This often leads to strengthened partnerships and new business.
Todd also urges everyone to go into the tradeshow with an open mind, “be curious and ready to learn.” He explained that shows like ProMat is a great place to see what trends are coming into the market and how past trends are progressing. “It is a great place to walk the show floor and look for repeats of concepts to identify new trends.” After identifying which trends seem prevalent in the year’s show, it is always a great idea to meet with your industry partners and discuss them to see how quickly they will progress.
Andy Schmidt takes a different view at tradeshows. Andy and his team focus on walking the show and finding new ways to strengthen their business. Before the show, the Mitsubishi Logistics Team sits down to identify weaknesses in its company’s supply chain and product offering. Once they have a list, they review who will be exhibiting and what value they can bring to the company. They also identify what current vendors will be exhibiting or attending the show they want to meet with. Andy and his team then walked the show, stopping at each booth they marked as a priority and setting up a meeting time with the team.
Andy urges everyone attending ProMat to walk the show and attend as many after-show events as possible. “It is often very loud in the exhibit hall, so these after-show events are a great way to find a quieter place to connect.” He also stated that after wearing comfy shoes, his number one tip is to “be careful whom you let scan your badge when walking the tradeshow floor.”. Many people look to scan as many badges as possible. This often leads to post-show email boxes being spammed by every company that scanned your badge. Andy suggested this is an excellent way to lose the information and connections you wanted from the show in the overload of info from other exhibitors.
And finally, Matt Monteath provided tips for success for newbies exhibiting at tradeshows. These are listed below.
- Find something unique that brings people to your booth.
- Make detailed customer notes so that you can tailor your follow-up emails or calls to their pain points.
- If providing giveaways, make sure they are memorable after the show, so people remember to call you
- Take small breaks throughout the day to fight fatigue.
- Make sure you are on the same page as your team regarding what you want to get out of the show. This will ensure you are there to help each other be successful.
Whether you are attending the show or exhibiting this year will surely be memorable. We all want to see this show be successful for our teams. What does your team do to ensure success? Share any tradeshow tips or tricks you have for the material handling world! Comment below, and we will be sure to share these via our social media outlets.
Don’t forget to visit your powRparts team at booth #S359. We will be there to show how our website is a smarter way to purchase, demonstrate our product offerings, and be there to answer any questions or concerns. Additionally, we will be hosting a March Madness Bracket for all the sports fans out there. Make sure to visit our booth to submit your Final Four picks. All winners will be placed in a drawing to win gift cards and store credit.
See you at ProMat 2023!
McCrea, B. (2023, February 14). Promat primed for return to Chicago in 2023. Recently Filed RSS. Retrieved March 8, 2023, from https://www.mmh.com/article/promat_primed_for_return_to_chicago_in_2023
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