Buyers are constantly distracted during a tradeshow, which means you have to quickly capture their attention and get them interested. Don’t waste an opportunity — follow these guidelines to help make sure your staff is ready to sell effectively.
Avoid soft sells
Trade shows require a hard-sell approach. When attendees show interest in your booth, approach them immediately and invite them to learn more about your products or services. Don’t leave people waiting — trade show attention spans are short, and people will leave your booth if they can’t get help in 60 seconds or less.
The way you greet a visitor to your booth shows your professionalism and willingness to help. Avoid innocuous greetings like “Can I help you”, “Hi, how are you?”, or “How’s the show going?”. Instead, ask a direct question that engages the visitor and helps you gauge their interest in your company’s products or services — “What information can I tell you about our new heating system?” or “Hello, what are you looking for in a patio door?”.
Watch your manners
Certain booth behavior looks sloppy and conveys that you’re not interested in your customers. Don’t sit down. Don’t eat, drink, or smoke at the booth. Never leave your booth unattended. Don’t spend time chatting with colleagues instead of focusing on customers.
Build your credibility and authority
Trade shows and exhibitions can be a great opportunity to position yourself as an expert in a particular niche. So if the opportunity presents itself to form part of an expert panel, deliver a presentation or run a seminar, grab it. It will instantly raise your credibility amongst the show’s audience as well as being a powerful PR story that you can work to your advantage.
Ask lots of questions
Engage a prospect by asking open-ended questions — ones that require more than a yes/no answer. This will help you determine their needs and interests. Focus your responses on how your product or service can meet these needs. Be sure to observe the 80/20 rule — listen 80% of the time and talk 20% of the time. Try to avoid any kind of prepared sales pitch, which can begin to sound robotic after you’ve said it for the 50th time.
Connect with B2B prospects using LinkedIn InMail
In the days following a trade show, valuable prospects often end up dealing with hundreds of emails from sales reps and marketers. Instead of ending up near the bottom of a crowded email inbox, use LinkedIn InMail to stand out.
InMail lets you connect with any LinkedIn user, regardless of your previous history with them. Since users are notified of InMail via a LinkedIn alert email, they’re more likely to read and respond to your InMail than they would a standard email.