Booth Visitors: The “Others”

When planning strategies for your upcoming trade show, you need to be sure you know who your target audience is for that show and what you want to do with them when they visit the booth. However, there is another group of attendees that I call “others” that you also need to think about and plan for. “Others” are visitors that come to your booth that aren’t a part of your defined target audience, or a lead that sales would follow up with, but are somewhat important – These attendees come to your booth and take your booth staff away from their task of uncovering and talking to your target attendees.

“Others” may include:

  • Consultants (important because they may recommend your products, services to clients)
  • Students (important because they may become customers/target audience in the future)
  • Spouses (important because they may influence someone in your target audience)
  • Current customers (important  but can also be a hindrance to achieving your goals if they just want to come to your booth and chat.)
  • Other exhibitors/friends (a hinderance for the same reason as current customers)

You and your team need to have a plan in place for how to deal with the “others” that come to your booth so that you can be courteous and helpful while dealing with them as quickly as possible to get on with your strategic plan.  For example, If you can, designate a booth staffer as the person to talk with visitors like consultants, students, spouses, and current customers. You can also have packets of material or informational flyer ready to hand out to these visitors to help disengage and move them on their way without feeling ignored or disrespected, and when a current customer or other exhibitor/friend comes to the booth, greet them and let them know that you’d love to catch up on your lunch break or for coffee or cocktail at another time.

There are no “right” answers for how to deal with “others” who come to your booth, but you should discuss them with your team and come up with a plan for how you can make them feel appreciated, while sending them on their way so you and your team can get on with the task at hand – identifying and talking with your target audience.

What have you done with “others” who come to your booth? Share a tip.

About Susan Brauer

Susan Brauer, CME and president at Brauer Consulting Group, has more than 20 years experience in the trade show and events industry. Her experience in setting strategic, quantifiable objectives, promoting and strengthening key corporate messages and demonstrating ROI has led her to also become a sought-out speaker at national trade show events and conferences. Susan’s areas of expertise include strategic goal-setting, event measurement programs, booth staff training and hands-on, interactive workshops.

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