Inspiration at the Trade Exposition
Trade expositions, also known as trade shows or trade expos, can be quite time-consuming and expensive, but they can also provide unique opportunities that can quickly justify that expense and time commitment. Consider these 12 reasons to attend a trade exposition.
Have you read: Should You Attend Trade Shows?
While trade expositions are a great place to see thousands of products in one place, they have many other advantages, too. Some of these include:
- Gain knowledge and exposure to new industry trends, products and resources that are available for your business. This is a great way to learn about what’s hot, what’s fading and what your company needs to have or do right now. It also gives you insight into new products and trends that are coming in the near future.
- Stimulate new ideas and creative ways to support your business despite the economy, past seasons and more. You will gain this knowledge in many ways – your competition at the trade exposition, your general experience at the show and even your participation at the show will make an impact. Visiting booths ,talking with others, and participating in seminars and events will allow you a chance to gain a new perspective. While you are watching a demonstration or viewing new technology, someone else may watching the same thing — but from a different perspective. They may ask a question which causes you to think even further.
- Meet other retailers and vendors and learn from their experiences. People come from all over the country and even other countries, giving you a wide variety to experience. That brings us to:
- Networking: You are listening to another store owner discuss a product and find he has similar concerns to yours. You begin a conversation with him, exchange business cards (bring plenty of cards to the show!) and find a time to meet to further discuss your stores. As you talk, another attendee overhears you and joins in the conversation. Within minutes, you have formed a network to exchange ideas and help each other. This happens frequently on trade show floors. More exchanges will happen at the networking gatherings hosted at the shows.
- Learn what your competition is up to. Be able to compare your business with the industry trends in other states, as well as close to home.
- Vendors will be collecting business cards in order to contact you later. Make sure you do the same. Collect cards and brochures. Make notes regarding the products or services Also, keep a directory for future reference.
- Participate in educational seminars, networking events and surveys that only take place at trade expositions and will expose you to new people, new business ideas and new ways of thinking for your business success.
- Get answers right away, whether from a vendor or a retailer, since trade expositions allow for immediate communication and easy, accessible outlets of exposure for both vendors and retailers.
- Become educated regarding your industry so that you can better support your clients and customers by utilizing all the resources trade expositions offer.
- Have fun. Yes – have fun. Nothing gives a business owner more energy than a good time while working to keep them motivated to want to work more!
- Free Stuff/Giveaways/Discounts. Businesses use these to bring potential customers to their booths. Of course, you don’t need to purchase anything. Most require you to leave your contact information. You can expect a follow-up call in the weeks after the trade show. Often these will include substantial discounts so if the product line is something you are interested in, it’s a good idea for you to take the time. HINT: Take along your business cards or pre-printed labels with your contact information. It will save you a great deal of time and writing while at the show!
- Attending a trade exposition gives you plenty to think about, to consider. But it also is a great motivator. Most return home rejuvenated, ready to implement some or much of what they have learned. Those few days away, often with an extra vacation day added in, give you the drive and energy to jump back into your store with renewed enthusiasm.
Are you ready to prepare for the trade show?
Read Should You Attend Trade Shows? for ideas on how to get ready.
Also see, Home from the Trade Show for ideas for after you return home.